Ignore the dark circles

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to finally attempt sewing some clothes for me (for now why don't we just quietly ignore the resolution about cleaning the garage, ok?). I had originally planned to wait until I was in the shape that I was in, ooh, 9 years ago, but that was starting to look like a very long wait. It's been very much a three steps forward, one step back, one step forward, two steps back type of thing. Excessive chocolate consumption probably hasn't helped...
This is the 'muslin' version for a schoolhouse tunic, using some cheap fabric that I had inherited. The fabric is too heavy and thick - completely the wrong fabric for this pattern really, but I just wanted to have a practice first.
I had the theory that I should probably follow a pattern for my first attempt at adult clothes, but now I'm not so sure. My measurements seemed to be a good fit for this pattern, but I ended up altering it in several places. It would have probably have been more forgiving in a lighter weight fabric, but I ended up taking some of the width off the bodice, adding a hint of waist shaping, plus angling the back bodice, so that it followed the curve of the back better.
As for the length, it didn't seem quite so short until I saw the pictures taken from that angle...
So, for the Translation of the Day, a word suggested by Jackie seems appropriate:
UK English: tart = a prostitute or promiscuous woman in US English. (It can also be applied to a man these days)
UK English: get tarted up = to dress and get made up in a provocative fashion in US English. nb. it can also be used for just improving the appearance of something, though. You could tart up a room ready for a party. Or I might say that I was getting tarted up for a night out, just because I was wearing make up and smarter clothes, even if they were not provocative.
UK English: slapper = a promiscuous woman or tramp in US English (slightly more extreme than tart)
UK English: slag = a prostitute or promiscuous woman in US English (slightly more extreme than slapper)
UK English: slag off = to bad mouth someone verbally in US English (usually to their face) .
As in, does this dress make me look like a tart? I get tarted up so rarely, that it might just be that I am not used to not wearing jeans. Still, I wouldn't want people to think that I am sort of slapper.
Luckily the pictures are small enough that you can't see all the grey hairs that I could see in the bigger version. One of the problems with living in LA County is that I think that I will be the only person around here under 70 that can't be bothered to dye my greys.
Ooh, while on the subject of California, does anyone have any recommendations for things to see in San Francisco and Sacramento? We'll only be there for a day or so each. Ok, I had better run if I'm to squeeze in a swim today. Take care,

Crossing the divide

It is possible that I might never get around to answering e-mails or reading blogs ever again: I have discovered the watch instantly feature on Netflix. I truly thought that it would only be the dregs on offer, too. So, having just finished reading North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell and seeing mention on Goodreads that the BBC had done a mini series, I was very surprised - and happy - to discover that I could watch it online immediately.

I don't know if hearing English accents and seeing places that I recognise makes me more or less homesick. Most likely more so. I do feel sorry for Richard Armitage, the actor who played Mr. Thornton, though. I imagine that any girlfriend of his that has seen that series must be constantly pestering him to scowl a bit and put on that accent...
I might have been neglecting my inbox, but watching the series did help me finally get around to making a wee baby blanket for a nephew that will be soon putting in an entrance to this world (Ravelry link here). Ok, ok, so you all know that I don't crochet that fast. I *might* have watched the series twice...
Plus it took me about 15 bloomin' attempts at various patterns to find a zig-zag that worked for me. I cobbled this one out of this pattern, skipping the lengthwise stripes and seaming - then adding in some horizontal stripes instead. The usual avoidance of pale baby colours took place - my hope is that the baby blankets that I give are the ones that get use, as the mum won't be dreading that it gets vomited on or what have you...
You know, I don't think that I would have predicted that when I was in my early thirties that I'd have been spending an evening watching a period drama while crocheting a baby blanket. Anyone looking at a list of my likes would probably think that I had some sort of split personality. I like to read so-called 'gritty' murder mysteries; watch action movies and rugby; listen to rock, golden oldies and the like; I like to ski and to swim; I like putting together furniture and DIY; I have often been treated as one of the lads by male friends - and am therefore cynical about romance and all that, avoiding chick flicks with a groan. Yet you'll also find me spending quiet time at home sewing, knitting, crocheting and drawing; reading the odd Gaskell or Austen or Dickens; listening to classical music when I clean; crying at Out of Africa (ah, that bit when she gets on her knees to beg for the land for the tribe...tch).
When looking for a YouTube clip, I noticed that rather a lot of the comments tended to be along the lines of admiration for the aforementioned Armitage, so this seemed like a good time for these translations:

Translation of the Day:
UK English: dishy = good looking or attractive in US English
UK English: fit = good looking or attractive in US English
UK English: tidy = good looking or attractive in US English
UK English: fancy = be attracted to someone or have a crush on someone in US English
UK English: totty = attractive person that you are considering as a sexual object in US English
Take care all,