All things Laborious

You can’t wear white after Labor Day.


I said, you can’t wear white after Labor Day.


You aren’t listening.


Ok, now lets really focus, ok? No white after-


Hey, Missy! I mean you in the head wrap- I am trying  teach etiquette and class here- now go change into something appropriate!


Ok,  Sassy sleeves Armani- just settle down. We have rules here. I demand that you leave and take your seasonally inappropriate bichon with you!!!


Aargh. Let’s try again. I repeat. No white after Labor Day!!!


People! I am trying to remind all of us of the importance of following fashion rules! If we didn’t have rules, our society would just collapse into jumpsuit wearing mayhem. Now go and move your white garments to the off-season storage as God intended!!!!


E Tu Altuzarra?????


Donatella, you are not helping. I’m going to need you to go sit down. In the back.


photo credits:  All images remain the property of their original owners.

Wearable Wednesday Gucci

Fabric, boots….purr, purr….


She’s like a surly Superhero forced to go to a cocktail party at the Justice League’s accountants house.


Ok, the lowslung pants trend officially must stop NOW>


Ok, that slit is not safe at the water cooler, but other than that- yes, indeed.


The reptiles of William Morris…


Previously unreleased pics of the Crackerjack sailor at Gastonbury-


I’m starting to warm to the snakey sundress look… that bad?


I just can’t-its all over the place- were these the last 5 items left on the rack by mistake?



photo All images remain the property of the original owners.

At Last! The Sew Grateful Giveaway!

Happy Oscar Weekend!!! oscar

I’ll bet you all thought I’d forgotten my Sew Grateful Giveaway- it’s been a turbulent week…..root canal, forgetting that I had to work Saturday, new puppy shopping (Bruderlein is so busy, he needs a little Pup Friday to assist him, don’cha know!) but I am ready to get this HUGE EVENT going! First I’d like to thank everyone who pulled me out of my funk in my last post- I’m actually feeling quite embarrassed by my petulance. Never fear- the gaudy will go on. I know no other way!


First, I’d like to say that every comment was great! I so enjoyed seeing what everyone’s favorite classic movies are and I now know who’d sofa I plan to retire to after a hard day!  If you are wondering, here is what all our bloggy peeps like to watch at home:

Some of you like noir– one of my favorite reading genres and would suggest you check out:Humphrey_Bogart_in_The_Big_Sleep_trailer

-Dark Passage

-The Big Sleep

-Rear Window

-Mildred Pierce

And of course-


Want your heart-warmed?


-It’s a Wonderful Life

-Auntie Mame

Like a saucy heroine?


-Philadelphia Story

-His Girl Friday

-The Women

-History is Made at Night

-Bringing Up Baby

For your singalong pleasure we have-


-Holiday Inn

– Seven Brides for seven brothers

-Mary Poppins

-The Sounds of Music

Want to read along?


-The 10 Commandments

– Wuthering Heights

– Pride and Prejudice

Ready for the most popular? 

It’s my favorite Frank Morgan movie! Yes!  The Wizard of Oz is our most popular film!Now this pic is rumored to be photoshopped- but doesn’t it look much nicer?


Bruder thought it would be fun to take the Wizard of Oz fans and choose our winner from that pool-

Ready? Nope, not yet.

Now, I love classic movies- my favorite ride in Disney World is the Great Movie Ride- I get positively giddy when I’m on it. So in honor of the 1st blogger that mentioned my favorite movie- I have a little additional prize.

Women poster 3

Hari!! You mentioned The Women and earned my ‘jungle red’ nails in a big thumbs up!!! It looks like all of us would love to hang out with Rosalind Russell! header

Bruder- may I have the envelope please? OK. Bruder is too engaged in chewing training  his new little friend Helmutt Burgermeister to assist me today, but he promises to be back very soon when he has his staff under control. I will bring in a substitute. John? academy5

Our Winner is:

Erin! of Trumbelina Sews!   Erin- check your junk email!

photo credits: google images- all pictures are the property of their original owners and licensed for reuse.

Sew Grateful Giveaway!

Happy Sew Grateful Week! I’m happy to finally remember to take part in this- usually I’m of the ‘oh- that was so cool- I wish I’d….next year’ school, but I’m on it this time!


I’m quite grateful for all the folkes out there that tolerate and even giggle at my foolishness and come around to Chez Grievances to share a thought and an animal print with me!

theda 2

So I’d like to have a little giveaway! A loverly selection of vintage patterns! All you gots to do is tell me your favorite classic movie to watch and why it’s the best! Bruder will let you know what he likes to watch while I sew- he’s quite partial to noir, don’cha know!




The hope is that all relevant pieces are included- these have all found their way to me by various routes!

My lovely young assistant will of course, select his favorite to win! So if you really want these- don’t forget that Elizabeth Taylor got her first screen kiss from a collie! Bruder can be bought!


Oh, Bruder reminds me that I need a cut-off date. How about by the end of friday, the 28th of February! He will select after his 1st saturday morning nap.

photo credits: meadhawg, google images, little me. All images remain the property of their original owners!

Zebra Striped Dress


Hey Jungle Cruisers! Check out this zebralicious ensemble from Jean of all Trades! Kind of gets your style engine purring, doesnt it?

Originally posted on jeanofalltrades:

I’m ringing in the New Year with a dress in one of my favorite patterns: Animal print. There are so many types of prints (zebra, leopard, giraffe, snake, tiger, even cow!) so the look never gets repetitive. Add color to the mix, and you can see why I’m drawn to the infinite varieties of animal prints. Plus, I like animals, and you know what they say about imitation being the sincerest form of flattery. I’m copying their pretty designs!

zebra dress

Dress: Swapped
Pleather boots: MIA
Necklace: The Vegan Woman
Vinyl purse: Shop in Pittsburgh

The best part of this dress might be that it was free. I got it at a clothing exchange from a fellow animal-print lover who tired of this particular piece.

Zebra close-up

It doesn’t have a defined waist, which makes it really comfortable, and the black vertical detailing at the front keeps this looking long and lean…

View original 39 more words

Free your mind and Sew Groovilly


A dear friend of mine gifted me with a wonderful series of books recently- my sewing life is about to be enriched, I feel it.

Holy Man Jam, Boulder, CO  Aug. 1970

Have you ever wanted to sew and felt like ‘the Man’ was keeping you down? Do you ever feel stifled by the institutional strait jacket of fit and structure? Don’t let it get you down and harsh your mellow- The Illustrated Hassle-Free Make Your Own Clothes Book is here for you!

son of

I have long envied bloggists that do book reviews so I am very excited to take you thru the process of this marvel of a book that will soon liberate us all from darts, bras and societal beatdowns! Here is a quote from the dust jacket:

‘Yes, here is the straight-out dope on how to make your own clothing. No more mystique, no more sexism.’…’ Homemade clothes should not only be a ‘chick thing’. Does your old man need a new sarong? Has his hemp hoodie worn out? Don’t replace- ’embroider on a pretty little patch’!hippies

One more stirring quote before I begin gathering my supplies and we get started on our adventure!

‘There’s a thing about high fashion- it’s pretty much a hype. All this raising and lowering of hemlines, these do-dos and don’t-don’t’s seem to us to be just a way for the clothing industry- big business indeed- to keep their thing going. We find Vogue and Bazaar magazines best for cutting up as collages. They are not under any circumstances to be taken seriously.’lsd_hippies

Alright. I feel less uptight already. Or maybe it’s the incense I’ve started burning in the sewing room. Boy, I wish Bruderlein would stop coughing.

Ok, our list of supplies seems reasonable and I already have most of them. Well, except the Raavi Shankar cassette and the copy of Prophet that I’m supposed to have. Well, I’ll pick those up later at the Co-Op I was told to join in the preface.


Now, what to make first.. No, don’t run ahead Anne, that’s a downer. Enjoy the vibrations of the cosmos and read some more Gibran. ‘If you reveal your secrets to the wind you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees’. Hmm. This incense is making me really wants tacos..

Basic sewing section:

Casings, clipping curves, elastic, facings, no darts. Wait, what?


‘We don’t use darts on tops because we don’t use bras- they give your clothes a funny shape. If you want to make darts, you can figure out easily enough how to add them to the tops.’2240814610_78345b0942_z

Um, I’ve never really been a fan of the braless ness. My bunnies need a hutch, you know? You really don’t get good cleavage without a bra- I can’t go thru the day lying on my side to maintain cleavage in my braless state?! Ok, chill. This is my homogenized, sanitized, commercial, heavy, repressed upbringing making me sweat this. So I’m going to remove my foundation garments (clearly a man shackle, right?) and my little bracelet that says ‘What would Dita Von Teese Do?’ for this review. Dedication to my craft- I have it. I think I have to adjust my chair now.


Sewing tip:

‘When you first need to have snaps for something you are making, buy a large card full of assorted sizes; then you have them for next time. Same with needles and hooks and eyes.’

Phew! I was really thinking that my hoarding of textiles and such was going to be a problem with this books principles; luckily I will take this as a consumer compromise.

Another handy tip involves using nylon zippers as the metal is cold and scratchy against bare skin. Why must I have so much bare skin????? You know what else is cold and scratchy? My nipples. Sorry for that info, but I’m still a little bummed about not getting to wear my underwire. I’ll try to stop bringing it up. By God I will try.bra

Most of our manuals instructions are for hand-sewing. You can’t always depend on having power to run your big business hype sewing machine and as the landfills slowly fill with Berninas and Singers, our planet dies. I’m now so overwhelmed with images of the rainforest glutted with old overlockers that have become nests for toucans..sigh…

I’m torn- to accurately review this book, I should hand sew everything I make, but, as I would like to review this book within the year, I will break down and use this corporate tool- my Singer. Please forgive my lack of dedication.

The section on embroidery and hand-stitching is detailed and thorough. I can now embroider a butterfly, crescent moon or a peace sign on all of my old mans dress pants. He is thrilled. mermaid

Special tips about fabrics:

Nap- nap feels groovy. Nuff said. DSC08608

Grain- grain is well-defined and explained in the paragraph and additional thoughts on working with bias ‘ala Harlowe’.

Taking care of materials-

‘It’s better to take off crepe clothes before frying potatoes, if you don’t like the idea of having them dry-cleaned.’


‘Constant dry cleaning knocks the hell out of a fabric and gives it an unpleasant, chemical smell. Clean wash smells and feels a lot better. Also, washing cuts down on non-bio-degradable plastic bags which end up over the head of your favorite cat or child.’  Folks at home, I did not make that last part up, I swear. Even I would place a cat ahead of a child, even a favorite

For our next installment, I will cover the section on Remodeling Your Old Clothes. I hope that you have enjoyed this peek into a classic, please stick around for more!

In the meantime, I would like to leave you with a thought from the subject of our authors other works:

“The period between four and six in the morning is called the Brahmamuhurta, the Brahmic time, or divine period, and is a very sacred time to meditate.”
― Swami Satchidananda, The Yoga Sutras

I think I will go put my bra on and watch Project Runway. Oh, and Father- that was parsley. Don’t worry.


photo credits: google Images, The Illustrated Hassle-Free Make Your Own Clothes Book, meadhawg, little me. All images remain the property of their original owners.

New Textiles to caress and croon to….

Back in July, my beloved Aunt Magi gave me a gift card to for my birthday and it has finally been deployed! Help me plot and scheme, will you? As usual, please remember that all sensible suggestions will be ignored.hat

Now, I couldn’t locate the yardstick- I think I didn’t return it to it’s rightful place the last time I threatened the cat with it (I kid! Flannery would hurt me in my sleep) so I will use the Teutonic measuring system to show scale. Dachshund!!! Katze will not reveal her weight to you, but she states that she is perfectly breed standard. DSC08585


I thought this border print would work well with Mccalls 6600- 6600

Next: DSC08584

Perhaps Simplicity 1585? 1585

Or Simplicity 2308?


Hmm…. yes, I know it’s brown, Ma, but I only bought 1 piece of brown fabric, I swear! DSC08587

I’m thinking about Victory Roxanne- 2001

Ok, this is my Red October piece- maybe a Mathilde? DSC08593

These next pieces I just needed, you know- NEEDED! DSC08591


This would be Katze’s favorite, I think- who can blame her? Its pink and snakey?!


Have a lovely saturday everyone who made it thru my rambling- I must go make room in the Chamber of Textile Hoarding for these treasures!

Magi, if you are reading this- I love you and thank you so much!!!!

photo credits: little me, google images, pattern review. All images remain the property of their original owners.