He is here – and my life will never be the same again.
He’s the light of my life, and already has both me and daddy firmly on the hook 😉
Thanks for all kind words 🙂
/ Åsa & Charlie
As we all know, being pregnant do some things to your body (and mind).
Things that makes your morning routine take some extra time, and I’m not talking about morning sickness or the constant trips to the toilet – I’m talking of the head scratching process of dressing.
In the beginning (at least for me, I know everyone have it differently) you just feel bloated, unattractive and with a greenish tint to your complexion. Though wearing your normal clothes still works, if only a bit snug, some people prefer to wear cute little dresses with a bow tied on top. This was not an option for me, since we decided to wait quite some time before announcing to anyone that I was expecting.
So usual clothes it was – Even though I didn’t choose the most figure hugging tops in my wardrobe, (and thanks to Swedish autumn and winter just around the corner I could easily hide in bulky knits and cosy sweatshirts.
I was lucky enough to be able to wear my winter jacket the whole winter (it was a close one though, had spring hesitated a week more I would have been forced to get another one).
When spring arrived and my belly started to show for real, I bought a pair of pregnancy pants from a known two lettered fashion store, and kept wearing my usual tops and shirts. Everything with enough stretch in them would work. I also frequently used a pair of soft lose pants tied under the bump.
After a while I needed to add a long tank-top beneath my regular tops as my expanding belly made them look shorter and shorter.Comfortable loose pants, slim dress worn as a top and white belt.
pregnant in: week 39*
In May my belly was really growing fast and I could literally see the changes each morning. I got myself a new pair of maternity jeans (the old pair was quite worn out by this time), and even splurged on a pair of denim shorts. Summer style – also, notice the sensible walking shoes
I did attend a few parties during the spring, and in the beginning had some trouble finding a nice dress to wear.
I bought a lavender blue pregnancy dress in January for these occasions, but when time come to put it on, it never felt right. In stead I raided my own closet, and found several dresses that would work.The maternity dress I never liked.
I did wear it though – for my birthday celebration in week 39 – the day before delivery.
Although not as much as I initially planed, I did work out some during my pregnancy. And when it came to clothes for bicycling, power walks and weight lifting I just used my regular fitness clothes – Pants worn beneath the belly, long stretch tops and jackets/west worn open.
In the end my favorite clothes during my pregnancy was a slim black dress, a long tank top and a printed kimono/caftan, all worn with a narrow belt beneath the bust – non of which was new or made for a pregnant body.
Slim black dress accessorized with belt, huge jewelry and gold bag.
*In Sweden we count pregnancy in 40 weeks (with 40 full weeks as the calculated day of birth, and full term at 38-42 weeks).
I had my baby at 39 weeks and 2 days.
Last months theme on “Historical Sew Monthly” was “Heirloom” (yes, I’m a month behind, but plan to soon be back on track).
Since all my older relatives have past away I struggled a bit with this one, but finally came up with something that would work.
But while I finish things up an get proper photographs of my entry, I thought I’d share one of my favorite Heirlooms from my grandmother.
When I was a kid me and my siblings used to visit my grandparents every weekend.
My grandmother was such a fun person who loved children and was never to occupied to play with us or show us how to pluck starwberries from their gardens.
She suffered from a stroke when I was about 13 years old, and even though she survived she could no longer play with us, or even make us understand her strange sounds, no longer able to produce any words.
I remember how chocked I was about her sudden change, and my uncomfortable feeling of insecurity and when she tried to talk to me.
I’m ashamed to admit I couldn’t handle it and thous almost stopped coming along to wist her.
A few years later she had yet another stroke, lethal this time, and I remember the emptiness and sorrow I felt, regretting not being there more at the end.
After her death I was given her old sewing patterns, some threads and this particular binder – which I hold dear to my heart.
The thought of her taking the pattern drafting course slowly learning by finishing one homework/test at the time, is just wonderful.
Since I also know she loved to sew little dresses for me and my sisters – which unfortunately all have now gone to charity.
You also need to know how to alter the pattern pieces, and how to move the darts to your desired location.Interesting to see the way they used to put the darts between the breasts – something almost never used anymore.
I’m yet to make up one of these patterns, but I definitely will someday – if only to remember my granny.
By now it’s been two weeks ago the annual cultural festival in our town.
And just like last year me and my dance team was there to do a little performance.
This year the theme/time period on our dance was “Anything goes” or “All decades unite” to promote the upcoming Ball with the same theme.
I had some trouble deciding on what to wear (such a luxury problem, right), but in the end I decided to wear my new 17th century outfit. Mainly because I (correctly) guessed no one else would be wearing 17th century, and because I really wanted to try it out properly, to decide how I felt about it (stomacher and all)
The weather was perfect (maybe even a bit to hot), and the stage had been set up in the perfect spot in the middle of the park, with lots of market booths and activities close by to help draw audience to us.
Between the shows we had a short break to watch the other teams dance, and to take a short turn at the market (where we handed out information about our ball)
The Swedish Polska dancing team.
The historic dance team’s resting in the shade.
Before it was time to go home I got a few minutes to talk (and take some photos) with my childhood dance teacher Katarina.
I joined in her kids folk dance team at the age of 6, continued as assisting dance teacher at age 15, and still frequent the same summer dances, festivals, and barbecues. 17th century meets Skedevi national costume (summer edition).
Once home again, my fiancé helped me by taking some photos of my outfit (sans the fichu).
After the day ended I can truly say that I really love this costume.
I felt so pretty and stylish in it, the shape it gives me and the way it makes me feel really petite and like an Amazon at the same time is just so great (sorry, can’t describe the felling any better)
But I must admit it was quite a relief to get home, unlace and put on some sweats…
(I’m curently working on some big plans for this costume…)
During the (rainy) summer vacation this year, I decided to try to spice up out balcony, by painting the oh so neglected furniture.
Then I waited for the rains to stop.
Before I got to the fun pat of painting I needed to clean the furniture. Using soap and sponge I scrubbed away years of dirt, tuning the water into a disgusting black hue.
The it was onto the paint. Table soon to become turquoise.
Once the weather cleared I even got some nice pictures in the sun. I’m so happy with this whole project. It went so fast and easy and the color combination makes me smile (even my boyfriend approves).
I’m recently back from a weeks vacation in Belgrad – Serbia.
I’m not going to tell you all about it except it was wonderful.
We did lots of touristing and walking around the city trying to see and experiencing everything.
Here are some photos.
Wow, times really flies, it’s already been a month since my birthday and I haven’t posted about my gifts yet.
So here are what I got from my friends, family (and myself).
I’m so thankful for all my gifts and of course my ever loving family.
But this year my birthday was spent a bit different from past years.
I didn’t get any celebration or special birthday food, instead i got to bed early after dining on some pasta with sauce.
Because the day after was the day I’ve been awaiting, and training for, all year
– The Local half Marathon, which I was to run.
After hours and hours of training during the winter and spring, I felt I was ready for the competition.
So the day after my birthday me and my boyfriend made our reparation (big breakfast) and got on our bikes to the start area.
The weather was pretty lousy, but at least it wasn’t to hot…
Since this was my first try at such a long distance I made the usual beginners mistake and ran the first 10 km to fast, and didn’t had enough strength to keep it up all the way.
I did finish however, and even if I was a bit disappointed at the time, I’m also happy I took the challenge and didn’t quit even when it was at it’s hardest.
Afterwards me and my boyfriend (who did a great time in the race, by the way) went out to eat.
At the restaurant we decided to go home to our balcony for dessert, so we did.
On the week before my worked closed for summer, we had a big party – celebration our boss, who was quitting.
The theme of the party was sorrow, theater, nostalgia.
Me and the other girls at the office decided to focus on sorrow (because our beloved boss was leaving) and agreed on dress in mourning with a small black veil each.
The task of making the veils landed on me – well, I volunteered.
Then it was time for the part…Attaching the veils using bobby-pins worked wonderfully.
Sorrow-Selfie with my boss.
By now, you’ll probably all know that I work in theater.
But you might not know which one and what I do -So lets take it from the top.
For about 2,5 years I’ve been working at Östgötateaterns children department –
(“young stage in the east”)
It’s a well renounced theater, who make plays for all children and teenagers in our area.
I’ve written about some of the plays here: “Rose Rose Rose“, “Mitt hjärtas okända Arkiv“, “Marken Brinner“, “True Colors” and “Revolution“.
And What is my job?
The first guess would be something concerning the costume athelie.
And I did work there as a seamstress for bout half a year in 2012, before I transferred to ung scen/öst .
Here I’ve done all sorts of work, starting as a usher at the plays. Then I helped out at the office as assisting project manager and back up tour conductor. During this time I had about three different job descriptions at the same time.
Then another job opening came my way – the job as full time Production assistant, which I got and started on right away.
So, for about a year now I’ve been doing anything I can to make everything run smooth at the theater.
I’ve designed newsletters, planed premiere party’s, and dinners, written meetings rapports, edited the webpage, Facebook and Instagram account (Follow us here), answered the “Info” phone and mail, made coffee and bought all sorts of gifts. I’m also in charge of all the short time staffs apartments and keys.
In short – if you have a question and or need help with something – I’m the person to ask.
And I love it!
The job can be so stressful and frustration sometimes, but it’s also so rewarding and fun (also, you don’t really have time to dwell on old things, just keep looking forward).
But the biggest reason I get on my bike with a smile every morning is my wonderful co-workers.Afterwork at the big theater festival (which I will tell you about i my next post)
Everyone is so great – the actors, the technicians and the designers – everyone (Really – I mean, how many can say that they love ALL of their co-workers?), but my heart goes out the most to my closest alleys at the office
– Maria, Elin Jenny and Sara.
Maria, Sara and Elin (and me) having a bear together the first hour of summer vacation.
The high workload and pace at the office do sometimes take it’s tool, leaving one or more of us so frustrated.
We had both good and bad times together, but knowing that we always can rely on each-other for almost anything is so great. It’s allowed to break down once in a while (hey, we all done it), and the you get help back onto your feet.
Like running “Blodomloppet” together this spring.
I’ve been practicing running pretty hard this spring, and thought it would be a fun thing if we did the yearly race together at work. Let’s just say that running was not something a lot of them liked to do…
In the end we were 5 runners (all running at their own distance/time) and about 10 cheerleaders.
We all had such a great time, both running and waiting around the finishing area in the sun, that everyone agreed this would be a new tradition.The five Victors!
(And guess what – I was the fastest one, polishing my personal record with about a minute :-))
This spring/summer I also got a crazy surprise “Party” for my birthday.
Since everyone (except me) was out in the park working at the “Handicapped children s day” we wouldn’t manged the traditional lunch out for my birthday.
But about a hour after lunch Maria called me and asked me to come to the park, to help pack all the stuff.
I arrived 10 minutes later and found only three people there, working on taking down the huge tent. I started helping, and was asked to get the ladder in the train…
Out jumps 10 of my co-workers, all dressed up in masks and hats, singing “Happy birthday”.I laughts so hard.
(even though I of course knew something like this was going to happened…)
Can a workplace be better then this?
What can I say – Two award in one week!
I’m just so happy and humbled by these ladies kindness and support of my work/blog.
Thank you so much!
I really appreciate it (and I love reading your nice comments to my post and projects every week:-))
To claim the award/awards I need to follow the rules and:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site
2. Put the Award logo on your blog.
3. Answer the 10 questions sent to you.
4. Make up 10 new questions for your nominees to answer
5. Nominate 10 blogs.
And since I got two awards I should probably double it…Right?
I normally don’t pas on chain-letters and similar stuff, but I’m willing to compromise a bit on this one.
So, I will nominate a total of 10 blogs, and come up with 10 new questions.
And since answering these kind of questions are pretty fun, I will try to do both Crystals and Catherines questions here below. So prepare for a long post..
That seams quite fair I think.
But first, here are my nominees:
1. Sarah – A Most Peculiar Mademoisell
2. Caroline – Anno 1776
3. Isabella – All the Pretty Dresses
4. Merja – The Aristocat
5. Caroline – Dressed in Time
6. Cathrin – Katafalk
7. Elisa – Isis Wardrobe
8. Nora – The Shadow of My Hand
9. Liz – The Pragmatic Costumer
10. Vienna – The Austrian Woman
Lots of Swedes in there, but these are the blogs/and people I feel all do some tremendous work in both blogging and costuming.
And my questions:
1. How did you start sewing Historical/or other costumes?
2. What other tings do you do then sewing/creating?
3. What item/project that you made are you the most proud of? (may we see pictures?)
4. Do you have a secret shame item/project that you will share? (Pictures?)
5. Do you prefer Books, You-Tube videos or other, for sewing reference? And which are your favorite one/s?
6. Whats your best sewing tip/trick?
7. What’s your biggest sewing cheat that you do but you know that you shouldn’t?
8. What’s you biggest inspiration in deciding on up-coming projects?
9. Do you have a favorite era/style that you do?
10. What is your dream project? (Picture/s please)
Ok, time for some answers:
1. Why is your blog named what it is?
Everything else I tried was occupied. No, but really, I had lots of ideas, but non was vacant, or they would convey the wrong message. And being un-patient as I am, I just ran with the first thing that worked.
2. What made you decide to start blogging?
“The Historical Sew Forthnightly” 2013 – I read everyone else’s blogs and loved it.
Then, when Leimomi (the hostess of “The HSF”) picked one of my project as her favorite and linked to my (only) picture, I knew I needed a blog.
And now it has it’s own post! Yay!
3. What do you enjoy most about blogging?
I love how you have all your knowledge in one place. You can go back and take a look at previous projects and learn from past mistakes. I usually look through my “Portfolio” when deciding what to wear to an event – so much faster then going down to the basement.
I also love sharing my pictures of both costumes and events, and of course all the nice/smart/funny comments I get from my readers.
4. On average, how much time do you spend sewing?
Having a full time job, I don’t have the time (or energy) to sew as much as I like, but I usually spent an average of 10 hours a week sewing – ca 1-2 hour/s in front of the TV each night, and at least a couple of hours at the weekend.
5. Of your favorite eras, do you prefer having patterns pre-made or making your own?
I usually make my own pattern (from any era), I either drape or draft the patterns using pattern templates and my dressmaking books as guides.
I used to think it was hard using bought patterns – not knowing the makers thoughts when drafting.
But lately I’ve been trying out some ready-made pattern which all worked great.
6. Speaking of favorite eras, which one is yours and why?
Oh, this one is always the hardest question to answer, since I love them all so much, and it wary from day to day.
But I must say mid 16th century will always be in my heart – Since that what’s got me into costuming. I love the structured aesthetics of female fashion with its abundance of decoration but without flimsiness – I guess it speaks to my modern sensibility.Catherine Parr (6th wife of Henry VIII)
7. What is the most unconventional object used in a previous project? (Either in the making of, or actually in the item)
Hm, I’ve used Duck-tape, hot glue gun and plastic zip-ties.
But I think they looked at me the strangest at the hardware store when I bought metal pipe-cleaners (and heavy duty pliers to cut said metal) to use in my 1850s Crinoline.
I also must confess: My tool box (which I keep in my sewing room) is bigger then my boyfriends.
8. Describe your ideal sewing area.
Big! Preferably the whole house…
No I’m kidding, even though I tend to use about every room in our (big) apartment for sewing – You know, pattern drafting at the kitchen table, fabric cutting on the living room floor, hand-stitching in the sofa before the TV and trying out mock-ups by the hallway mirror.
Whats the fun in being caught up in your sewing room…?
Using the whole living room and hallway floor for fabric cutting. (1880s Evening Gown)
9. Care to share your favorite sewing tip/trick?
I always work on all the pieces of a garment at the same time:
Pinning everything, then stitching and finally pressing everything in one bunch, then back to pinning once again. And on and on it goes until I finish the garment with hand-sewing.
Working like this makes it go so much faster then working one seam/piece at the time. I do however need to know where I’m going with everything right from the start, as I often finish the sleeves before the bodice, and the lining is ready and waiting even before the final fitting.
The sleeves, “skirt” and buttons were all ready and waiting to be attached at this stage. (1770s Caraco Jacket)
10. Coffee or tea? Plain or doctored?
Here in Sweden it’s considered strange (and a bit childish) not to drink Coffee, but I can’t stand the taste. When it comes to tea it’s basically the same – I do however drink it “when etiquette calls for it”, but I just rather have a glass of water.
1. What type of music and/or movies do you like to have on while you work (work = sewing/creating art)
I usually watch TV-series on my computer when doing my hand sewing, preferably historic dramas.
This year I’ve gone through all seasons of: Game of Thrones, Downton Abby, The Tudors (I know, I know, sorry), The Borgias, Mr Selfridges, Outlanders and Marco Polo, among others…“Mr Selfridges”
The trick is to re-watch.
Then you already now what’s happening, and can focus on your work while listening and only catching a gimps now and then.
2. What gives you the most satisfaction while working on a new project?
I’m what they call a “project starter”, and sometimes have a hard time finishing one thing before moving on to the next. This makes my head over run with ideas, and my cutting table full off fabric and pattern piles for upcoming projects.
So fast, and easy to spot progress, makes me really happy, and make it feels like I’m really getting somewhere (See question 9 above).I love putting my projects on my dressform to see how they’r coming along. (1550s Doublet)
3. What inspires you the most when you are mulling over what to create next?
And my own fabric stash (and sometimes the fabric stores stash).
It’s when those two comes together that magic happens, as they say.
It’s like “Hey! I have that fabric!” and then I’m of…
(1914s Summmer dress)
4. Does it bother you if your pet lays on your fabric, paper etc while you are trying to work? And what are your pet(s) names?
Well, since I don’t have a pet (only a boyfriend), It does sometimes bother me when he lays on my work for attention, especially if I’m on a tight deadline.
But other times, not so much…
And his name is Johan 🙂
5. How long ago did you get involved in your hobby?
As a kid I was a really creative drawer/painter, and flooded my room (and my parents) with paintings. I can sill draw, but now a days I don’t have time to work at it as much as I used to.
I started sewing in “Gymnasiet” (upper high school) about 14 years ago, where I attended “fashion & sewing school“. Me, working on a costumers ball gown about 6 years ago.
I’ve always been interested in history, but Historic costuming is relatively new to me – I only started 4 years ago, after some sporadic previous try’s.
I think it was when I discovered “The Historical Sew Fortnightly” I really started to develop an interest in costuming and getting everything “Right”.
(Thanks Sarah of “A Most Peculiar Mademoiselle”, for introducing me to this obsession ;-))My very first 16th century gown, which I loved back in 2008. (1530s Tudor Gown)
6. What is the ultimate garment that you yearn to create?
A perfectly flawless 1550s Gown including accessories – Something I will never afford, or manage to do, but a girl’s got to dream…
I just adore Izabela of “A Damsel in This Dress” Tudor gown.
7. What has been the mistake that taught you the most?
I make so many mistakes all the time (and always learns a lot), I’ts hard to choose just one.
Perhaps it’s one of the events I went to last year – The Historic Multi Era Picnic, were I put so much effort into everything being perfect for me and my sister, that I ended up totally exhausted and really cranky instead of just relaxing and having a good time.
So now I try to put some of the pressure aside and not fretting over every detail ( I said try.)
8. If you have any advice for someone just starting out in the hobby, what would it be?
Oh gosh there are so many – You know, always press, baste, measure and take your time etc.
But I would say – learn to make it right, so that you then can learn how to cheat.
And also – Don’t be afraid of starting over or doing it wrong – just use cheap fabrics in the beginning. I spent half a day trying to pattern a 1860s bonnet before I realized it just wouldn’t work. (1860s Bonnet)
9. Who has been the biggest inspiration and/or mentor when working on projects and/or keeping you motivated?
Everyone on the historic blogosphere.
But most of all I’ts been Leimomi of “The Dreamstress” for bringing everyone together in “The Historical Sew Fortnightly“, where I love to show of my creations.
I also owe a great debt to Sarah of “A most Peculiar Mademoiselle” for getting me into historical sewing.
And I love to read and marvel over Izabela of “A damsel in This Dress” and Lauren of “American Duchess” for their never ending inspiration and impeccable sewing skills.I soo need a red Robe Anglaise now… (Picture from American Duchess)
10. If you could attend any event (historical or otherwise) what would it be and why?
Such a hard one, but I would love to go to Costume College one day, to see all the fabulous people/dresses and attend all the classes I’ve can only dream of here in Sweden.
Poster for CoCo 2015
Nostalgic musings, on historical clothing, traditional costume, fantasy, photography and history.
Historical lifestyle blog and clothing store
an exploration of historical costume
The trials and tribulations of an over-enthusiastic seamstress learning to create period-correct historical items and fashions
Make your own history
Regency & Historical Needlework.
My life in stitches - adventures in the world of costuming...