When the Fisherman’s Away, the Old Trout Will Play

Himself goes on a fishing trip once a month, like clockwork, regardless of the time of year, and is gone for two or three nights. But about once a year, he goes on a backpacking fishing trip with his brother, for five whole nights. When it comes to making stuff, the 5-day trip is really the E-ticket. I do not cook, clean or launder. I sew, I knit, I binge-watch British mysteries. I have at least as much fun as he does.

This time I made two tunics. One is the Vaguely Photographed Tunic, because I simply cannot get an accurate photo of this fabric. When I photograph it in direct light, it bleaches out; in dimmer light, it looks black. It took a lot of fooling around on iPhoto to get the sample photo shown above, which at least gives an idea of what the print looks like. The fabric is Burma silk, which I got at Laura Murray’s booth at a Sewing Expo in Minneapolis a couple of years ago. This one is dark and iridescent, with a crisp finish, like a lightweight duppioni, that I will probably make go away with washing. The pattern is the long version of the San Diego tunic, which I have made before (the short version, discussed here).


The other tunic is my third iteration of Marcy Tilton’s Vogue 9193. I love this pattern. I have done the sleeveless version in linen (discussed here), and the 3/4-length sleeve version in ponte (here). I like it so much that I might even lengthen it and make it into a dress. This version is a marled hemp-cotton jersey from Sewing Workshop.

But I did make one adjustment for this one. At first glance, I liked the stand-up collar shown on the longer-sleeved version. It had kind of a retro, Judy Jetson vibe that I thought was cute, or amusing, or something. But in practice, that collar is a pain. It gets in the way of everything–necklaces, scarves, cowls, shawls, ruanas, jackets, you name it. It’s mega-annoying.

So, I just topstitched the edge, and serged it. Working carefully and shaping the edge as I went, I just pressed under by about 3/8″ and stitched it. And the fabric saluted and said, “Yes, ma’am! You want me to lie nice and flat?  You got it!” Fabric is not usually so respectful, in my experience.


This is what it looks like when worn next to the garage by somebody squinting into the sun:


I also made a couple of necklaces.

Once upon a time I had intended to give up beading, thinking I was overextended and could barely keep up with my textile stuff. I gave most of my beading stuff to My Daughter the Art Teacher, in a fit of misguided self-denial. But then we retired to Albuquerque, which happens to be the home of both Mama’s Minerals and Poppyfield Beads.  I studiously avoided going to either one for a couple of years, until I fell among bad influences the kind of people who do beaded knitting projects. But I mustn’t make excuses.

Since every time I make a long necklace I end up wishing I had a short version, I did two sodalite-based necklaces with other assorted stones. Sodalite is the stone equivalent of denim, and I love it.



And then, because I already have gray-based long necklaces, a short one–mostly agate, with quartz and glass:


And guess what? Himself just announced that he is going fishing again on Wednesday! Woo-hoo!


7 comments on “When the Fisherman’s Away, the Old Trout Will Play

  1. All very impressive. Please don’t encourage me to try any new crafts – your necklaces are just too gorgeous😃.
    Long may the husband continue to fish. Much though we love them it is wonderful to get solitary time!


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