And so Christmas is here! And what a whirlwind December has been! You may remember that I promised a make for my trip to India in November, but this did not materialise. I was planning to make some palazzo pants out of a gorgeous blue cotton, but sadly it wasn’t wide enough and I didn’t have any other suitable fabrics. Therefore, that plan was over.
India was fab. We spent a lovely three days in Mumbai, which is such a great city, made even better by the fact that our friend used to live there, so gave us restaurant recommendations – normally the most stress-inducing part of our holidays! Charlie and I tend to not eat until we are about to pass out, and then frantically look at the Lonely Planet, pick something we think looks ok, traipse miles to it, decide it isn’t as nice as we thought and then look back in the book for somewhere else to go. Nightmare – especially when either one of us becomes “hangry”!
In Mumbai, we went to the Mangaldas fabric market. This was such a novel experience for me. I have been in a few fabric markets in my time, but this was another level. We were the only non-Indian people in it, so everyone was exceptionally excited to help us. I had a tiny square of fabric from the UK that I was hoping to find in India, as I need about 15m in it for a special project I am working on for next year. Therefore, our experience entailed hundreds of different men racing up to us, grabbing the sample from me (by the end, the sample was a filthy little brown square, rather than the pink it began!), running off to their stalls or down into the basement, promising me the world, but delivering the wrong colour / material. The market was good, but very much based around men’s suiting and shirting. There were a few nice cottons at very good prices, but nothing that especially tinkled my fancy. Oh well – I bought a great cotton in Myanmar last year – maybe if I didn’t have this sample so etched in my mind I would have found something else to buy instead!
After Mumbai, we travelled to the centre of the country to Kanha National Park to go on a tiger safari. This was fabulous. We saw a tiger in the wild, albeit it was about 150m away. The guesthouse we stayed in was beautiful, and weirdly, we were the only guests and had 12 staff waiting on us…a very unusual and luxurious experience! We then flew to Goa for some beach time, which was a perfect end to a lovely holiday.
The slight fly in the ointment was that on the way home I managed to pick up a horrible cold and full body rash, which meant I missed two days of work (my first days off since working at my current company – very cross for ruining my track record!!) and this also meant December flew by without enough time for Christmas crafting.
Therefore, my make for December was squeezed into a couple of weekend days and consequently, EVERY SINGLE PART OF IT that could go wrong did. I made a velvet version of the Sew Over It Ultimate Shift Dress, but did the hack from the recent Lisa Comfort magazine to make little tie sleeves. I can’t face telling you how much of it I messed up – for one thing, I forgot to cut out enough pieces! Velvet jersey is also very tricky to sew, which added to my issues. Hopefully you can’t tell as the velvet hangs in a particular way and catches the light! I thought the hack, which super cute, was not amazingly well explained and also potentially the sleeves were a little long – I will change this if I ever try it again.
While I would normally expand on the make more, at this point in the evening, I had better go and help my Ma – I will be wearing the dress tonight for a drinks party at my parent’s house with the same people we have spent Christmas Eve with since we were mere youngsters!
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!