[Sewing] Skirts and Stuff and Things

Okay, like I mentioned before I actually did sew some things in September.

First, there is the Short Lace Top from Be My Goth. It’s a free pattern, super easy to sew and the tutorial is very detailed (and kind of hilarious 🙂 ). I cut a size 38 in width and a 36 in length since I’m only 1.6 meters tall. The top still isn’t that short on me, but I like the length as it is.

Short Lace Top - front view

Short Lace Top - back view

I also made a skirt ouf of a knitted wool fabric with a black and white herringbone pattern. It’s a thick and warm fabric, perfect for fall and winter here in Germany. At least I hope so. Out of pure styling laziness I took the photos with bare legs and feet – but I already know it looks great with black tights and a sweater.

Herringbone Skirt - side view

The pattern is self-made again, but it only consists of two trapezes and one long stripe for the waistband. It hits right at the knees, so I might also wear it at work some time.

Herringbone Skirt - back

Inside of the waistband is a broad elastic, because the fabric itself isn’t stretchy enough for an elastic waistband. Which I only realized after sewing the waistband on 😉 But opening one seam and inserting the elastic wasn’t that much work. I did the hem with a herringbone stitch, to keep it elastic. And because of the herringbone pattern of the fabric 🙂

And I made a birthday present for a friend. She’s a real Star Trek fan, so that’s always my theme for her birthday presents. Last year she got a Klingon dictionary (including grammar rules!), but this year I decided to sew something for her. Her party was kind of a last-minute decision, so I only had one week to decide what to sew and stitch it up. She got a red and black neckerchief with a delta shield embroidered on it.

Star Trek Scarf

So, that was my sewing September. Right now I’m finishing the hem on another skirt (I seem to get obsessed with sewing skirts) but I’ll show it to you later this month 😉

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Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair

This post has been in my queue for a very long time now! Sometime in June I entered a giveaway by Becky at Make me do and actually won a lovely baker boy hat! I promised to take some pictures of it and show her, but all (!) the photos I took looked horrible. So I’m very sorry Becky, I haven’t forgotten this, I just had to find the time to get better pictures! And I’m fairly new at self-photography, so this took quite a lot of tries. But at last, here’s one I like:

Me myself with Becky's baker boy hat!

Me myself with Becky’s baker boy hat!

Is it not a fabulous hat? I love it! As she said in her post it’s a very light fabric and I already wore the hat quite often when it was really hot in Germany and the sun was trying to bake my head every day on my way to work. I’m convinced I noticed lots of envious looks from the people around me 😀

So thanks a lot Becky, I’ll surely wear it again next summer!

[Books] A. Lee Martinez – The Automatic Detective

Yes, I managed to finish some books this week 😉 Not all of them today, but I didn’t come around to writing the reviews ’till now.

Contents:
Mack Megaton is living in Empire, a city of the future where seeing mutants walk around is normal and robots can gain the citizenship. And Mack is one these robots. Originally he was designed to be an ultimate killer and fighting machine, but he got something called the Glitch – the ability to “think” outside of the perimeters of his original programming. So instead of destroying everything he makes his living as a taxi driver. At least until his neighbours disappear and he starts searching for them… and he’s got no idea into what he’s got himself into. But his failure would lead to Empire’s end.

Criticism:
I had kind of a hard time getting into the writing style here. The story is told from Mack’s point of view and since he’s a robot I had to get used to the different terms here. For example, instead of remembering something he’s accessing his memory matrix and so on. Since I studied something technical it wasn’t so bad for me, but I guess this could be a problem for other people. On the other hand, I loved how he just didn’t understand sarcasm and hints. Pure logic can be really entertaining.
At first “The Automatic Detective” seems like a real detective story, with Mack following clues to find out where his neighbours are. But at some point there also comes lots of action in it and I was totally blown away by the plot! I just didn’t expect at all what was really going on there! There was no clue at any point where this would lead! And this unpredictability is what ulitmately makes me love this book. I just love being surprised by good plots.

Conclusion:
While the book had a slow start, it picked up its pace fast. I loved the plot and how I just couldn’t guess it. I also liked the characters a lot – they’re all unique and displayed very detailed. I can only recommend reading it!

[Books] Glen Cook – She Is the Darkness

This is the seventh book of the Chronicles of the Black Company – and I feel like it took me ages to read it… the first half of it was really exhausting.

Contents:
Croaker finally moves against Longshadow, the last shadowmaster. Und is therefore getting closer to the mystical Khatovar, birthplace of the Free Companies. With the help of the comatose wizard Smoke Murgen is able to spy on almost everyone of their enemies… but still nobody is prepared for what lies beyond Overlook. And meanwhile Lady’s mad twin sister Soulcatcher is pursuing her very own schemes.

Criticism:
The books has a very slow start. The first half mainly consists of Murgen’s ghostwalks with Smoke but tells little of what he, Croaker and Lady actually do. While the unfolding plots are interesting I missed the personal touch of it. I didn’t get the feel of being a part of the action but more like being a watcher of the events. Also the main characters planned a lot during this time but acted very little.
Fortunately that changed at some point and the plot really starts. The ghostwalks with Smoke are also reduced, but I felt like Murgen never was so close to center of action as Croaker when he was still annalist. I still couldn’t put the book away at the end and the ending totally stunned me. But I am hoping for the next part to be better than this one. And I have to admit, I’d like to have another annalist…

Conclusion:
This was the first time I really had to struggle with a book of the Chronicles of the Black Company. I started it about a month ago but had to put it aside for two or three weeks during that time. However the ending was so unexpected I’m already looking forward to reading the next part. I still got my thumbs up for Glen Cook!

[Books] Carsten Steenbergen – Teufelsacker

Inhalt:
Anno 1256 werden auf einem Kornfeld bei Gleidebach zwei Fuhrleute grausam getötet. Der einzige Überlebende berichtet im Fieberwahn von einem Dämon, einem Korngeist, der sie angegriffen hat. In der nahegelegenen Abtei wird die Geschichte als Wahnvorstellung abgetan und ignoriert, denn hier steht vor allem der Umbau der Basilika im Vordergrund.

Doch Heinrich, der Sohn des Landvogts, beschließt zu helfen. Denn das Kornfeld gehört zum Hof von Bruno, dem Vater seiner heimlichen Liebe Katharina. Und so stößt er auf ein dunkles Geheimnis der Abtei, das bereits seit 300 Jahren gehütet wird.

Kritik:
Das Buch hat mich von ersten Seiten an in seinen Bann gezogen. Und dafür gesorgt, dass ich Kornfelder für die nächsten Monate eher meiden werde. Die Geschichte fand ich gut durchdacht und es gab einen ganzen Haufen zwielichtiger Gestalten, über deren Rollen im Geschehen man rätseln konnte.

Die beiden Hauptpersonen und -erzähler sind Heinrich und Katharina, wobei mir Heinrich sehr sympatisch war. Katharina hingegen fand ich ehrlich gesagt eher fad und langweilig. Ich fand sie war hauptsächlich dazu da, zu erzählen was auf dem Hof ihres Vaters passiert ist, aber ich kann mich nicht daran erinnern, dass sie selbst aktiv eine große Rolle hatte. Bei Heinrich hatte ich am Anfang das gleiche Gefühl. Er hat zwar ständig bei verschiedenen Leuten um Hilfe gebeten, aber selbst aktiv geworden ist er erst viel später im Buch. Manchmal wollte ich ihm schon ein wenig in den Hintern treten, dass er mal selbst die Sache in die Hand nimmt.

Fazit:
“Teufelsacker” ist eine wunderbare Schauergeschichte, bei der es wirklich an fast nichts fehlt. Unheimliche Gestalten, grausame Morde, ein gefährlicher Teufel, Geheimnisse, Verschwörungen – alles vorhanden. Dafür hat es mir bei den Hauptpersonen etwas an Initiative gefehlt. Trotzdem auf jeden Fall lesenswert, es war teilweise schon schwer, beim S-Bahn-Fahren an der richtigen Haltestelle auszusteigen 😉