A-Colourful-Canvas, Danielle-Donaldson, Creative-Girl
A-Colourful-Canvas, Quilted-Gingham-Skirt, Vogue-V2911
A-Colourful-Canvas, Quilted-Gingham-Skirt, Vogue-V2911
A-Colourful-Canvas, Quilted-Gingham-Skirt, Vogue-V2911


A-Colourful-Canvas, Quilted-Gingham-Skirt, Vogue-V2911

Hey you!

So very happy to see you again.

I am still here. I had an unplanned {they’re never planned}, but not entirely unexpected, creative pause. I fought against it for a few weeks…making record use of my seam ripper in the process…before acknowledging the need to put sewing…and anything else involving the use of scissors…on a brief hiatus. Thinking back, it was serendipitous…I mean the timing was really just right for….well…setting not only my 2016 sewing goals, but all those other nifty new years intentions. The truth…keeping it real that I pretty much couch crashed…reading, watching, hanging with friends…it was all deliciously decadent and completely non-productive.

On a very positive note, one of those reads made a most favourable impression on me. Titled Creative Girl, and written by artist Danielle Donaldson; it’s a book that really speaks to my painting style. My leading image today is artwork directly inspired by one of Danielle’s exercises. And, to answer your question, yes…my blog remains primarily a sewing blog. I haven’t given up sewing, nor do I have any intention of doing so. I just find it a really fun concept to try out…integrating artwork into blog posts. And, I’m nothing if not optimistic, there will be future blog posts…

Now. Today’s make. My first of 2016 and intentionally simple….well…sorta simple. I machine quilted the fabric, and, although not a difficult task, it certainly added to the time factor. The pattern is Vogue V2911. It’s a Today’s Fit by Sandra Betzina. The skirt pattern pieces are laid out on the diagonal and Sandra provides helpful instruction on sewing bias cut fabrics. Because my fabric is a thin layer of cotton batting sandwiched between cotton gingham and bemberg lining, it behaves less like bias cut fabric and more like corrugated cardboard. Yep….there were zero issues with rippling seams and drooping hemlines. This baby stands on it’s own. The pattern was easy-peasy; elastic waist, no zip, no buttons, no lining. The hemline is finished with bias tape made from the gingham. I added inseam pockets, because, pockets. So….why the quilting? It’s a trial method of making a spring/summer weight fabric suitable for winter. This make was definitely a success. I love my gingham skirt; it has the fabrication I love, but it’s also warm and cozy…at least as long as the wind ain’t blowing a breeze right up my arse.

Okay kiddos…I have a couple of sewing projects in the works…and by works I mean I’m thinking about them. The door may be open, but I’m not exactly galloping out of the barn. Yet. Have you been there? How did you get going again?

Photos on Location: Vancouver Public Library Main Branch


  • Reply Sheila January 18, 2016 at 6:48 pm

    Lovely! You know I love a nice gingham (and that skirt I wore to the blogger meet-up is yours…when I tire of it).

  • Reply Melanie January 19, 2016 at 2:02 am

    I love the opening painting you've shared here and I hope to see more of your work later – no pressure, no pressure!

    The skirt is fantastic. And this seems to be on trend right now, skirts with body that will stand on their own, above the knee. It looks cozy and perfectly fresh. And your over-the-knee boots with rear zipper go great with this. I thought quilting was born that way – I see now that it is born of labour. Amazing!

    Haha – I know that location and was thinking of heading down there tomorrow if there's no rain.

  • Reply Sew, Jean Margaret January 19, 2016 at 3:32 am

    Such a great idea to add warmth to the gingham. Your skirt is a complete success and looks very cute with those gorgeous boots. Love your artwork too. It's so bright and happy.

  • Reply Flo January 19, 2016 at 4:43 am

    That is very cute, and I bet it is super warm. I could use that here right now, it is brutal cold.

    I hear you on the creativity break, I've been doing that myself. I think it's necessary to “recharge the creative batteries” once in a while.

  • Reply Val S January 19, 2016 at 8:52 am

    So nice to see you, Sue! I'm also on a creative break, although it feels more like a slump. My excuse is all the sorting and packing required to move across the pond, so, a pretty good excuse.

    Your skirt is cute and looks like it will become a good standby for days when you need a break from your usual rainbow of colors. I love it with the boots! I also love your art, and the addition of little daisies on the side. You're inspiring me to make some time with some paint and paper and glue.

  • Reply Shirl January 19, 2016 at 10:02 am

    looking very cozy in the new skirt. And…….those boots. Wow! searching for words, lol…..absolutely smashing! Oh, and your artwork, another wow.


  • Reply amy mayen January 19, 2016 at 11:07 am

    What a smart way to warm up your fabric!! Love the pockets. Glad you had a relaxing break. I take regular breaks from sewing…I have to break up with it once in a while to remember that I love it:)

  • Reply Louise Perry January 19, 2016 at 1:42 pm

    Great skirt, I like the idea of a warm quilted skirt, and this one looks very stylish with your boots.

  • Reply Connie January 19, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    I've been thinking about you lately cuz I, too, have been thinking about sewing. It's so nice to know that just thinking about it actually counts as a creative activity. This skirt is the best. An elastic waistband? No kidding? Wow. It is so flattering. Usually elastic waists give a bit of a diaper effect but you are looking quite sleek. Is that art work yours? So great. You are a girl of many many skills and talents. So happy to see you again!!

  • Reply Kate Carvalho January 19, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    I love your art and would love to see more! And yes, Gingham is awesome!

  • Reply Suzanne Carillo January 19, 2016 at 7:26 pm

    Gah! After seeing your painting I've just spent 30 minutes down the rabbit hole of looking at art books online. This is SO INSPIRING to me! I feel like I need to go on a creative retreat. Or just walk down to my basement! Ha ha! Seriously though…I LOVE your work and I am so pumped about buying a similar book to get some of my creative mojo back. I've been feeling my watercolours calling me for a while now. Honestly I'm lazy when it comes to being creative because Photoshop and Illustrator makes everything instant but they don't do watercolour, not well anyhow. The book looks fun. Also I spotted Mixed Media Girls and Drawing and Painting Beautiful Faces. I want them all!

    I cannot believe you quilted that skirt. Talk about patience!

    I love how it turned out and the fact that you're wearing it with your fab boots.

    This was a great post! I hope you keep up on the painting.


  • Reply No Fear of Fashion January 20, 2016 at 2:59 am

    Great photos and location. That skirt turned out very nice. May I suggest to have another look at the sort of top you wear with it? It looks nice, don't get me wrong, especially with thise OTK boots (very trendy), but I think you can change the proportions and the vibe. A reader suggested to me to look for a leather top or jacket to go with me flower skirt which is also stiff and a shorter. I thought that was a good idea. Now for my figure I need to elongate my top part and create a waist. So I would love to go for a leather top with a short peplum. You on the other hand have an hourglass figure, so I think I would suggest something similar but ending at your waist, leaving more of the skirt to see. Or would that ruin the 1/3 and 2/3 “rule” of proportions? Oh what the hxll, what do I know of styling. Not an aweful lot I can tell you. So I should not try and give you suggestions hahaha.
    Our artwork is good. And cheerful. I suppose you have already got an extablished name in the art world?

  • Reply No Fear of Fashion January 20, 2016 at 3:04 am

    My apologies for the typing errors. “thise” should be “those”. “Me flower skirt” should be “my flower skirt” and “and a shorter” should be “and shorter”. You can correct it if your system has the feature to edit comments. Again, sorry.

  • Reply Lynn January 20, 2016 at 10:59 am

    The quilted skirt is a great idea.

    I do have times when I am “not in the mood” to sew and I find it hard to make myself relax and not worry about not sewing. I look through my stash a lot (and at online fabric stores, which is something I probably shouldn't do) and hope I get inspired. I always do eventually.

  • Reply Curtise January 20, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Ooh Cousin Sue – you are an artist in so many ways! Nina (youngest kiddo) just looked over my shoulder and saw your illustration and commented how great it is. (And she's quite a good little artist herself, so she should know.) And THEN she said, “I like her skirt too.” See, she's got good taste, that girl! Like Nina, I love your art work and your new skirt, and I'm very much looking forward to seeing more of both in the coming year.
    PS. Vancouver Library looks rather beautiful too! xxx

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    {SQUEAL} I'll be sure to channel my inner Judy from White Christmas! I LOVE that black and white gingham skirt she wears and I love yours too!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:46 pm

    haha…I'm kinda past feeling pressure to create, at least for the moment.

    I agree…there are lots of neoprene garments that stand well on their own. I'm sure there are other fabrications that mimic that look too.

    In hindsight, I wished we had a few snaps of the building from afar. Ah well…there's always another time. We lucked out with no rain which was great…library, QE, and Dine Out on Robson.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:46 pm

    Thanks Jean! I was a bit skeptical at first, but it really does add warmth! I'm ready to try another look.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    Yep…it really works. I am wearing those nifty fleece lined tights which helps. And I agree…the 'breaks' are necessary…all part of the cycle.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:49 pm

    I could have said schlump too, LOL. Like Flo wrote, we really need the breaks though. And you're right…you've got lots of things on the burner right now what with the major move.

    Hope you are inspired to play a little with scissors, paint and glue!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:50 pm

    Thanks Shirl! Yes…I haven't had a chance to show you my boots IRL. I wear them quite frequently, as long as I'm not planning on taking them off and on. That requires a bit of gymnastics, LOL.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:51 pm

    Thanks Amy. Love your point of view. xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:51 pm

    Thanks Louise! I think a quilted skirt or dress would be adorable for your little one.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    Ah…..yes, thinking does count…maybe even more than the execution.

    So…your comment about the fit of the elastic waist skirt. Very astute, and something I've long thought. Elastic waisted skirts are bulky. I think because this one is cut on the bias makes it work without looking too diapery, LOL. At first, I wasn't sure if it would go over my hips, but not a problem at all. I'll make it again, and maybe even make it closer to the length of the pattern.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    Oooh…thanks Kate for the art appreciation. Always a little scary putting it out there, but I do hope to show some future works.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    hahaha….only thing missing was sitting together with a glass of wine. Consider us virtually hanging out together, down the rabbit hole! I got Creative Girls at the library…I actually had to return it when we took photos…and I am definitely going to buy it. Lots of fun exercises that are inspiring to me right now! I'm going to look at the two you suggested too, especially Painting Beautiful Faces. Need so much help there!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    No apology necessary Greetje! My typing fingers are constantly doing me wrong, LOL.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Any and all styling suggestions are enthusiastically received. Thank you! This was one of 'those days'. I had almost every top out on my bed and 'nothing to wear.' And…we had to be in the city for a matinee performance of Dirty Dancing. I 'settled' for the blue and white shirt with the white sweater. I have skewed the proportions by wearing a super long sweater on top, but with the stiffness of skirt, I think I look bulky. I'll try a photo to see what I look like. I'll play around with your suggestions of a shorter top that ends at the waist!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 1:04 pm

    LOL…oooh the dangers of online 'looking'. I rarely buy online, mostly because Canada has few options that I'm aware of, and shipping from the US is pricey, especially with our dollar being so low.

    Sigh…even my stash didn't motivate me this time. Having said that, both the pattern and the gingham were from my stash, so a seed must have been planted!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 20, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    Thanks Curtise and NINA! My little artwork is pretty much a step by step exercise in the book. If Nina's interested, she probably really enjoy it too!


  • Reply writing essays for cheap January 21, 2016 at 3:46 am

    Wow!!! so cute and nice work. And your photos are just awesome 🙂 🙂

  • Reply Patti January 21, 2016 at 4:07 pm

    I love this skirt! and the illustration of course. Your talent shines though and you inspire me to do better. xox


  • Reply Hana Velvet Ribbon January 22, 2016 at 5:56 pm

    Hi Sue, I am late for comment but so happy to read your post. What a pretty skirt and love your art work.
    Have a lovely weekend!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 22, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    Thank you Patti! GAH…YOU inspire so many of us…especially me! xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 22, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    Thanks so much Hana! You have a lovely weekend as well!

  • Reply Margo B January 23, 2016 at 4:33 am

    I am so behind on my reading! Cute skirt Sue! Any your art….amazing!!! You are one creative and talented lady! Wowza

  • Reply Virtual Voyage College, Indore January 23, 2016 at 5:18 am

    Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky; in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.
    Virtual Voyage Fashion Designing College

  • Reply Sally Hanlon January 23, 2016 at 10:32 am

    Hi Sue, nice to see you back again and congrats on the art front. You're very talented. I remember you quilting cotton back in September with the exceptional job you made of your shirt refashion. This is another fun project – I should give it a go.
    Baci Sxx

  • Reply Heather Gibson January 23, 2016 at 11:26 am

    First of all – your skirt looks awesome and super snuggly! Secondly, I love those boots!! So cool! Glad to see you back on the blogosphere! I look forward to your posts as always!

  • Reply sabine January 24, 2016 at 2:57 am

    Dear Sue,
    this is such an amazing outfit! I love the skirt and how you wear it with your overknees.
    It's good that you took your rest to give new ideas a fruitful base. I look forward to seeing your pictures.
    Sabine xxx

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 24, 2016 at 3:06 pm

    Thanks Margo! I'm behind in reading blogs these days too. 'tis all good.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 24, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    Hey Sally! Yep…I did get the quilting bug back in September. I've got a few more quilted garment plans in the works! Thanks for stopping by and saying Hi.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 24, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Thanks Heather! Oh, the boots! They are from The Bay – Ivanka Trump boots. They are super comfortable and offer just the right warmth!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas January 24, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Hi Sabine! Lovely to see you. Such a positive spin on taking a creative break. We really do need the rest in order to get new ideas to flourish!

  • Reply return man February 22, 2017 at 8:32 pm

    Thanks for the great post. I liked your writing style most.

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