Fall and winter plans

We finally signed the contract for the new apartment this Monday, I suddenly started sleeping fine again, and I found my fingers itching to start making things. I took the little time I had to read sewing and knitting blogs and I have my head full of projects to complete this fall and winter. It’s beginning to chill here and I decided to stop complaining about the cold and rain and embrace the change of season as an excuse to making proper winter garments. This 5th Fall Essentials Sew-Along seems the perfect way to get me doing this, even though I’m joining a bit late.

I am finishing the pair of shorts my boyfriend has been requesting for a couple of years. Sewing pants always takes me ages, and things always take more time with four lovebirds and lack of sewing mojo, so finishing this is passing a milestone.

wpid-img_20151008_172304.jpgI am currently knitting a Hetty. I tried to knit one just after the pattern was released, two years ago, but I fell out of love with my yarn and abandoned it quite soon. I started it again with new yarn a bit before Gerry left us, so it has been in standby for quite a while. I am working on it again whenever the birds allow me, which is difficult since I use plenty of markers to avoid getting lost in the lace pattern, and they want to steal them.

wpid-img_20150918_125008.jpgThe one in the picture is Colin, and he looks so much like Gerry that at the beginning I was deceived. Gerry turned two years old yesterday, and I couldn’t help but feel a bit melancholic. I just hope he’s alright and happy.

I didn’t have in mind joining the Penelope KAL, but as I’m getting my knitting juices going, I think I’ll try. I was not sure about what colors to combine since I usually have problems to match my clothes, so I decided to go for one of Andi’s choices, black and grey. They are not lively colors but they’ll go with everything.

This summer I wore my four Lady Skater dresses in heavy rotation, so I’m going to try something in the same line this winter, getting out of my comfort zone and see if I like it. I usually wear pants (jeans, corduroy, Thurlows) when the weather is not warm but I’ve been wanting to try merino jersey for a while, so I decided to do it now, and I purchased this merino fabric from NZ Merino Fabrics. I just hope the customs don’t overcharge me.

The jeans I made don’t fit me anymore. I went paleo three months ago (AIP, in fact), and my health as improved a lot, but my weight has also gone down quite a bit. I’m stable (I think), but many garments I made don’t fit me properly anymore. Maybe that’s why I’m leaning towards knits lately.

I have some corduroy in my stash, and I think I would like to make a Hollyburn skirt.

I had some beautiful knits to make more summery Lady Skaters but alas, it couldn’t be.
And I would like to end the year knittng the Rolling Thunder sweater, gifted by my friend Michelle.

I have off course a lot more projects in mind, but being realistic, I don’t think I will accomplish a lot more, taking into account that I take care of six birds, Christmas is around the corner and we’ll be moving around that time.

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Life is still changing here. Marvin, another rescued lovebird, joined Billy, Daisy and Colin. The group dynamics still need some more time but they are progressing favorably.

Billy is being treated right now for a bacterial hepatitis. He was not himself lately so we decided to pay a visit to the vet, and after an X-ray and a blood sample he confirmed the diagnose. He’s been on antibiotics for almost two weeks and he’s much better now.

And Colin, the most lovable bird in the world.

Colin says hi #lovebirds

A video posted by @elena_knits on

We will moving soon again. If you remember, we moved about a year ago but this apartment never lived up to our expectations, apart from being freackingly expensive and quite far from Koen’s work. Also the landlord is the most irresponsible person I’ve ever known. We had continuous toilet clogs since the beginning of spring and had to wait days with the whole mess in the bathroom. So we’re leaving. Soon. We went yesterday to see a beautiful apartment. It will be available at the end of the year, but we don’t mind waiting since we need to give a two months notice at the current apartment.

As I’ve said before, my sewing and knitting mojo left with my beloved Gerry, but I made an effort for two important babies:


Koen’s newest nephew



And of my friends from university’s first baby

I used the Peekaboo Lullaby bodysuit pattern. As I made them already some time ago, I don’t remember a lot, except that my sewing machine chewed up one of the sleeves when hemming it, so I decided not to topstitch the neckline to avoid making a mess. I do this more and more with knits, as my machine is quite unpredictable on them. Probably I will get a new one when things are settled down (I have my eye on the Elna 3210).

And as I had quite some fabric leftover I made another Kitschycoo Barrie Briefs. I barely wore the other two I made this summer because the double fabric made made me sweat (we had the hottest summer in the last 10 years), but for fall and winter they are nice and cozy.

Aren’t they nice with their knights and dragons?


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Changes and the show must go on

It’s definitely clear that my summers are doomed. Last year I lost 8 kilos and was quite unhealthy, and this one I lost my beloved Gerry. I see now that my last post is from exactly two months ago, but I haven’t sewn or knitted for even longer. It’s been almost three months since Gerry left. Sometimes if feels easier, but then a sudden sadness strikes me and I cry until I have no more tears to cry. I guess the worst is not knowing what happened to him or if he is okay. Just after he left I had to buy a new mobile because its battery died, so it helped me to avoid looking at old pictures. Sometimes I just ignore the facts, think that I’m healed and then I stumble and fall again. Well, I guess nobody is perfect.

Some things have happened lately. As a silent house was like hell for me, we adopted two baby lovebirds, which we fed with a syringe several times a day. Between the insomnia due to missing Gerry and the birds feeding, we almost became zombies.

We tried to recover and went to the Screamin’ Festival we had planned to go months in advance. The plan was that Gerry was going to stay with the breeder who gave him to us, but things were different now. We had to babies to feed, so we took them with us, and even had to feed them in the car since it was a seven hour ride.

And we tried to have fun and wear some me-made clothes.

Then a month and a half after Gerry was gone I got a call saying that a bird like him had gotten inside a girl’s house through one of the windows. I had false hopes already four or five times before that, but that didn’t make it hurt less. She couldn’t keep him, so we decided to adopt him and look for his family. We never found them, so Colin stayed here. He looks so much like my Gerry that I spent hours looking at him and asking him “who are you?”.

It was love at first sight for both of us, and he follows me everywhere in the house.

After the quarantine passed I could introduce the birds, but it seems Colin is afraid of the other two. I guess he was an only child and never learned to interact with other birds. My initial plan was to look for a mate for him but I don’t think it will work.

We had vacation and visited my family on the coast.

And we off course took the birds, which my niece Paula quite enjoyed.

And I finally got to wear my Soma Swimsuit, sewn last year and never blogged.

And when we came back home I started sewing again. I had promised a pair of Jedediah shorts to Koen two years ago, but as my summers are doomed, I didn’t fulfill my promise until now. They are not finished yet, so I can still fail. And if sewing with one lovebird was difficult, with three it’s almost impossible. I have two stealing pins and pooping on my fabric, while the third is biting my neck demanding attention. Oh, well, I love them anyway.

It seems Colin adapted quite well to his new home, I just hope we can make him happy, and that Gerry is somewhere out there happy too.



It’s been a while since I wrote something here, and also the same for visiting your blogs, my dear readers. I have a good excuse, something that has prevented me from knitting or sewing, and I can say that not even a single stitch has been produced since then. On May 27th, due to a neighbor and a plumber, Gerry escaped through the bathroom window. He was inside his cage when the plumber was at home, but then I was asked to go to the neighbor upstairs to request him to flush, and then it all happened. Gerry escaped from his cage, crossed the stupid curtain that we installed in the living room and went to the bathroom looking for me. He found two strangers and left.

I was able to see him perched on the window of another neighbor, but when I tried to get there he got scared and flew away. A couple of hours later I heard him on a tree on the square in front of our place so I asked some neighbors in the building closest to the tree if I could go upstairs. I could see him there, overexcited about all the images and sounds. He screamed at me a couple of times and flew away over a high building. That was the last I saw from him.

We walked the streets with birds sound, played birds sounds on our terrace for more than a week and put papers on the street. It was kind of hard because the street cleaners remove them almost everyday, but we at least try. There were a couple of false alarms, but Gerry did not appear.

I can’t express with words how all this made me feel. It still hurts in a way I didn’t experiment for a very long time. It may sound very strong, but I felt like I was losing a child. My child. My beloved child. He was already with us when I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. I couldn’t go out a lot but I didn’t care because he was with me. I usually work from home, so we spent all day together. I spent more hours with Gerry than with my own boyfriend. He was wild in his own way, but he allowed me in his little world in a way that he didn’t allow anybody else. He was a mommy’s boy, my mommy’s boy. And now he’s lost. And time goes by, and I’m losing hope.

The first think I wanted, of course, was for him to come back. The second was losing my memory, because continuing with my life remembering all those moments together was unbearable.

There are a couple of parks in Madrid where escaped parrots live, but I can’t know if he made it there. They are about 2 km from my home. I also don’t know if somebody caught him of if he got inside an apartment through an open window (it’s very warm here). I don’t know anything, and the uncertainty is killing me.

I guess I can only expect to heal from this but for now I can’t imagine how I’m going to do it. The first week I couldn’t stop crying, and I didn’t sleep a night without waking up with a racing heart at least three or four times. I was prepared to share at least 15 years with him, but that is not happening.

My baby is gone, and I don’t know how to cope with it. Who’s going to scratch his head in the way he likes?

I can’t even bear to watch pictures of him, so I won’t share any in this post.

The house felt too empty that we decided to adopt two baby lovebirds. We need to feed them several times a day and they keep us busy (and sane, I hope), but they can’t replace my Gerry, because Gerry was my baby, my love; and we shared so many things that I couldn’t even start to write them down. Every day there was an anecdote that made the day special. We had a special connection, and now I’m lost.

So if you don’t see me commenting on your blogs, please excuse me, I am not even able to function normally, and I can’t knit or sew because I miss my sewing buddy. Even nowadays I surprise myself from time to time with some cry bursts. We installed a door where the stupid curtain used to be. But it’s too late. Too late for me, too late for him.

How to mend a broken heart?


Another Lady Skater Dress and a new cardigan

During Me Made May, making the effort of wearing many different garments will teach you why you never wear some of them. But if you’re lazy like me, you’ll recognize a pattern and may even find your uniform. We are just over two thirds of the month, and I’m almost embarrassed when I realize that most of the time I’m either wearing either my Angela Wolf Bootcut Jeans or one of my Lady Skater Dresses. Going for one or the other it really depends on the weather. I’m just like that: practical, basic, boring. As we are having an unusual hot May (we almost reached 40ºC – 100ºF -) I’m heavily rotating my Lady Skaters. I thought of wearing once my Cambie Dress, but since I just go out to the grocery store (I work from home), I felt like I was going to be overdressed. I wore one my the Lady Skaters instead. Why? Because they are so easy and comfy to wear, almost like pajamas. But they are also very flattering, and the A-line skirt is ideal for pear shaped gals. Being made with knit fabric means that they won’t wrinkle, no ironing, and you can fold them to a very small size. And they are so easy to make. No interfacing, darts or zipper. Little pressing. It’s really a win win (no, Amanda hasn’t contacted me to write a post about the Lady Skater Dress).

So with all these reasons, it’s just natural that I was going to make at least another one. Let me introduce you to my new favorite dress.

I bought this fabric during my visit to Vigo around Christmas. I think I paid €4 for a meter and a half, it’s what you get buying fabric by the kilo. It’s a stable knit that would have been much more expensive in different conditions. I didn’t know what I was going to make when I bought it but I also got the same fabric in purple tones for the same price. This May it was clear that this had to be a Lady Skater Dress.

I didn’t try matching the print, but I did try to place it carefully so that the result would be harmonious. The print is centered in the bodice and skirt in the same way. Even the sides look good. What I did was using a skirt piece to cut the other one.

I usually turn in the instructed inch (2.5 cm) for hemming, but here I reduced it to 1.5 cm, and I like this length a lot better. The bodice is shortened like my previous Lady Skater dresses and that length was added to the hem of the skirt.

It’s incredible how the fabric can transform this dress from casual to something more elegant. I usually pair my LKD with a belt but this one I like it just like this. Maybe a thin belt would be nice. Black or matching color with a cardigan.

Not sporting a belt here but you get the idea. This is the Marion Cardigan by Untangling Knots. I love Andi’s designs, and it seems this year I’m only knitting her sweaters.

I like how it looks from the back combined with this dress.

I knitted the smallest size with no mods this time, apart for including an extra buttonhole. It took me ages to finish it, part due to my own mistakes and forgetting to count, and part due to this little prick ;)

And what are your current knitting/sewing plans? What’s your TNT pattern?

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