Sunday 28 July 2013

Blue dress, accessorised with a tomcat

These are not exactly the best quality photos: I took them at half past eight, PM, when the temperature outside was 30 degree Celsius. Make your best guess as to what it was like to step outside earlier... and how Kuusi survived in that black furcoat of his!

(I only grabbed him at the last moment before the self-timer went off; before I positioned myself there, he had been eagerly examining the legs of my tripod.)

I actually did step outside earlier, dressed like this. Minus Kuusi, though he ties my black sandals in nicely. I met up with my friend; we wanted to go to our favourite café again, but it was closed today because of a technical issue (said a sign outside), so instead we went to the patisserie, had an ice cream each and bought some sweet things to eat and went to my home instead and had mint tea from that mint I do not want to get crushed under the TARDIS. Blueberry milkshake would have been better, but mint tea is good.

The point of these photos is my supportive undergarment. That's right: I wore my wrap stays.

With a lightweight, loosely-woven cotton top underneath acting as my chemise, I was (and am) still much less hot and sweaty than I get after just a while with my foam-cup bras in heats like these. No other bras than underwire foam-cup give me enough support, but they're absolutely dreadful in summer. No more! I'm now a short jumps convert. :D

Seeing as the forecast is for heats to last till the end of August (we'll see about that...), I'm very, very happy about this discovery!

Oh, the dress was made by my mom, for my sister, years ago (back in 1990s, actually) - it's Burda Super Easy 3243, rather similar to the famous vintage Butterick Walkaway dress in its concept. I tie it in the back instead of the front, though, because I like the look of that better on me. It's a bit too short for my liking, so normally I only wear it around the house, but that particular feature in combination with its relaxed fit made it perfect for this weather... and the relaxed fit was good for my undergarments.

Thursday 25 July 2013

Bučovice - Part 1: The Town

Back in June 2011, me and my sister visited a little Moravian town with a special little chateau, which turned out to have some very interesting other buildings as well... and I never posted about it. Maybe because I took well over a hundred photos in there (namely, 185), and before I worked my way through them, there came the long Baltics trip I never finished posting about either.

The first thing I photographed in Bučovice was the Catholic rectory/vicarage/whatever do you call it? (Lisa, could you please help me out here?) I had a hard time fitting the whole thing into the photo from across the street.

This is the town hall. It helpfully tells you so, but in Czech. Now you can say "town hall" in Czech. (Or at least, now you can recognise the word in a text.)

If I am not mistaken, it is a cubistic building.

In case you didn't know, yes, there is such a thing as cubism in architecture.

(As an aside, though, I'm rather annoyed with the Wikipedia article; it lists Czechoslovakia as one of the few countries that experimented with the notion, but fails to mention anything else about it in the rest of the article. Even though the little town of Pečky in the Czech Republic now boasts the only cubist church in Europe and, according to this Czech site, the only cubist church interior in the world. Hello!
Come to think of it, though, I am annoyed with the Czech Wikipedia article about Pečky as well, because it also fails to mention the church.)

But back to Bučovice.


On your left, the Czech national coat-of-arms (with the words that literally translate "town office", meaning the town hall and related bureaucracy), on the right, Bučovice's.

Next to that marvel of modern architecture stands a very classic (classicist?) house.

I have a feeling this green house probably used to be a pharmacist's, but now, I believe it houses a bank.

This mixture of styles was one of the things I loved most about Bučovice. You never knew what came next.

Well, next came the town square. On one side...

... a house dating to 1913. On the other side...

... one dating to 1733.

Housing a tobacconist's and a drugstore.

There was also this building that could have been awesome had it been renovated.

On the upper end of the town square, there is a church. It sits across a busy street, so it was rather impossible to photograph it without some pesky streetlamps getting in the way...

There is this smallish statue of who I believe to be St. Cyril and Methodius, really popular in Moravia (for obvious reasons).

"Donated by the Civic Savings Bank in Bučovice".

The church is rather simple, which I liked...

... even though it has an elaborate altar, so typical of Roman Catholic churches in the Czech Republic.

And then, on the lower end of the town square, you can see the chateau. But since that ate up most of the 185 photos I took that day, and this post is long already, I leave the chateau for Part 2.

One of the last photos I took in Bučovice was of this pub/restaurant - it did not look particularly like the kind of restaurant we would enjoy (we had our lunch in a pizzeria instead, another fairly stable fixture of small Czech towns these days) - but it looked fairly pretty in its own right. And somewhat fun: the name of the pub is "At the Green Frog".

You can see the rest of my photos from Bučovice - well, still somewhat more carefully selected than 185 - here. Chateau photos to be added at a later date.

Wednesday 10 July 2013

Look what I've got! - The tin and bulk of fabric edition

For some reason, I don't remember anymore what, I started scouring Aukro, the Czech version of eBay. And I splurged on some things.

The first thing was this tin box:

I'm always short on pretty storage options, and this fits so nicely with other things in our house:

(The colours are more true on this photo.)

It houses my fusible interfacings now. Well, those I've managed to unearth so far. That is enough of an explanation of why it houses them.

Another thing was - wait for it - 15 meters of lining fabric.

Well, I did not bother measuring it and trust the seller; it's quite the bulk. For about 26 CZK per metre. That's like a dollar per metre, I believe. Nice, sturdy, reversible lining fabric, most probably acetate (burn test proved it not to be a hideous melting kind of artificial, but the ash is dark, so it's probably not rayon) - certainly much better than those various odds and ends of dubious fibre content that made up my fabric stash up till now. You see, I was very short on lining fabrics as well. Very short. I think this purchase can be excused in my attempts to use up stash and not add to it, because I have fabrics in my stash that I could not use without lining. Like that burgundy red for a jacket.

The warp here is black or very dark blue and the weft is a gorgeous bronze colour, resulting in a changeable quality on both sides. Admittedly, the bronze colour is not exactly my colour, or my family's colour. But the other side has just that little tinge of gold that works for me (think overcast grey, grey skies with golden rays pouring through - those are my best colours) and will do very nicely.
And I have something else in mind for two special fabric remnants... but that's a vague idea that has to wait.

It's pretty enough to be tempting as a fashion fabric, but it does not behave properly for that (the frou-frou is somewhat wind-breaker-y, if you know what I mean). I know better now, and am looking forward to pretty insides.

Other news: Now that Flickr has made their free space much larger than it used to be, I'm gradually putting up those German pattern magazines - the first one is here. Rajče, the Czech site I'm using, is a fine one, but it resizes the pictures, and I don't want that.