A new obsession is born

My life has changed a lot over the last 18 months. Apart from moving from the delightful but rainy and rather chilly UK to the south of Spain, my work situation has improved quite a bit, too.

I have a nicer job, in a nicer company, with a nicer title and a somewhat improved salary to go with it. Spain, on top of that, is much cheaper when it comes to the cost of living. Which means that now I am in a position that I can occasionally shop for things I like (which tends to be a bit on the higher end of range), like some nice shoes for fall. To be honest, right now it’s rather incomprehensible that I’ll ever want to wear closed shoes again, or any shoes if I can avoid it. We’ve been graced with a 3 week heat wave where temperatures won’t even fall much below 25C over night, and I’m not complaining. But we all know this will come to an end eventually, and I like to be prepared.

So I got myself a pair of really nice shoes:

Chie Mihara Zamusin
Chie Mihara Zamusin

Now, obviously shoes alone won’t make a good fall/winter outfit. So I went searching for a coat. And I found one.

Alabam Chanin, Ezra coat
Alabam Chanin, Ezra coat

The only problem with this coat is that, improved situation or not, just short of 5k is not a price tag I can afford. What’s a girl to do?!

Clearly make one herself.

Now, before you walk away, shaking your heads in disbelief (and I wouldn’t blame you, I feel this is a bit of a crazy undertaking), hear me out. Winter is coming. This coat is not a winter coat. But it will be perfect for spring – which is still a rather ambitious timeline, but hey? Evenings spent in front of my fireplace, lovingly hand stitching all those cut-out appliques? I’m game.

So I started on a test panel. I mean, not even I am crazy enough to start on a coat as a first project in a totally unknown-to-me technique.

Alabam Chaning - easy ring design
Alabam Chaning – easy ring design

I decided that the middle panel of Colette’s Mabel (of which I made two recently, which I will show you in due course, I promise) was a perfect size for a test piece. And because I’m me and couldn’t really be arsed with cutting a stencil for something I might hate, I just drew some circles on the fabric and called it a design.

Then I started stitching. The jersey came from my stash, obviously.

After a couple of hours I had this:

Alabama Chanin  - not quite there yet
Alabama Chanin – not quite there yet

I’ve added a few more of the smaller circles in the meantime, but I’m not quite done yet. As it turns out, threading needles with strong thread in less-than-optimal light is a deal breaker.

So I ordered some self threading needles, which arrived today, and I’m thrilled to finish this (hopefully) this weekend.

And despite the fact that I still feel I’m mad to even try this, I’m really stoked by the idea of the finished skirt, and even more so by the possibility of a coat I’ll love. I mean, c’mon – isn’t it just beautiful?

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