The Definition of Obsession

True to my word, I haven’t had time to sew. In two weeks I have lived through an earthquake (interesting), a hurricane (blessedly undwerwhelming) and now this week a street race! This weekend Baltimore is hosting our first Grand Prix.  An actual Indy style street race in our downtown.


This has been in the works for over a year an I can’t believe it’s FINALLY here. I’ve spent most of the weekend at the race working and can’t wait for Monday so I can sleep. I think my ears are still ringing…. If you want to see what it’s like, it’s airing on Versus and ABC today (Sunday).

My friend Catalina (the owner of Frida) is back from Espana. While there she picked up some Patrones as a little gracias for taking care of her pooch.

This Mango cape absolutely caught my eye (click to enlarge)! I have two Burberry wools that I’m contemplating. I just hate the thought of matching big plaids on the exterior (shudder).

It’s no longer on Mango. But, is for sale on ASOS for $102. Only the Large available. And, it’s not even wool! I can definitely do this for less than $100 and it will be a better fabric.

I haven’t had time to try and suss out the description. Can we seriously talk about how my sub par Spanish has deteriorated? I was barely able to order papusas last week.

This week, I also got some bra laces I ordered from RainCrazy133 on  Etsy. I bought these to coordinate with some packets I have from Summerset.  The prices are very reasonable and shipping our of Hong Kong is great. Again, I just don’t know of a resource like this in the US.

If you ask, she’ll send you mirror cuts if they are available.

Oh, and I’ve put in paperwork to adopt a dog. I’m SO SO nervous. I love the idea of a pet, but what if I don’t like being a pet owner? What if I feel tied down? What if it’s too much responsibility for me? What if it gets expensive? What if I want to travel? Why do I feel the same way about a dog as I do about having children? I kid. Well, not really.

I’ll hopefully start meeting candidates this week. I’m in NO rush. I want to make sure I do the right thing.

That’s it. I have no sewing in the actual works and don’t expect to get anything done for a while. But, still think about it every minute like I’m sewing for my supper. That my friends, is the definition of obsession.



  1. Here is some dog advise. When we got our dog I was completely overwhelmed. All of those what ifs you are worrying about will happen. It is a huge adjustment. Our first year was very tough to get through. We preserved and we got through it. Fast forward 6 years and I couldn’t imagine my life without Peri, the sweetest Yorkie in the world. He is such an important part of our lives. It is an adjustment but if you stick with it it will turn out great in the end.
    One more tip. Dog training. I can’t say enough about going to training classes.
    Good luck in your search.
    PS. Having a kid was easier.

    • I’ve been warned that a dog for a single person is too much work. I guess that’s one reason I’m panicky at the thought. But, I find myself looking at dogs every six months! And now my roommate is moving out and I don’t have a really good excuse anymore. HAHAHA on having a kid being easier 🙂

  2. If you have friends who will take your pooch when you travel you avoid the expenses of boarding. Key to this is a well socialized animal both with people and dogs or no one will want to take your pooch.
    If you’ve never had a dog I strongly suggest a training class. This is as much for the owner as for the dog. The rewards of having a well behaved dog far exceed the cost of training. Most important dogs really do give unconditional love to their owner. Last, you get the satisfaction of not only adopting a pet, but of providing space for another unwanted dog. We adopted again a few months ago. I missed having a dog after our last one died of old (18 years) age. Yes, it’s work, but so nice to have her curl up near me when I am working.

    • That’s what I loved about having Frida. She was so sweet and excited when I came home. She would just sit and wait for me and follow me around. I’ve been reading about training to avoid small dog syndrome. But, the dogs I’m looking at are older. I wonder / worry if it wouldn’t be too late for them….

      • We adopted our mutt 6 yrs ago, age indeterminate. His 1st vet guessed a year and a half based on energy and behavior. Then upped it to “3 or 4” based on teeth color (yellowed). 6 years on, the covering vet thought he was 2 years old, then upped it to “3 or 4” after seeking his teeth. (that is us, so not tending to his teeth.).
        Moral of the story? Where there is life there is hope.
        I for one endorse the lower energy of an older dog. A greyhound even, as they behave like couch throws. A puppy is a LOT of work.
        Good luck in your quest for a furry lifeform.

  3. On another note, what a great source for lingerie fabrics. I agree I haven’t found anything here even in NYC for this. I am still resisting making lingerie, but every time I see some gorgeous set that Sigrid has made I am tempted.

  4. Oh my god!!!! Ilove this cape, thank’s for give me this information!!!
    Excuse me for my poor english, from France 😉

  5. The lingerie fabric is beautiful and thanks for the link to the resource. I’m still not ready to make lingerie but it’s nice to know that there are places available to get such pretty laces. I understand about the working thing…I’m getting ready to enter a period of that and I’m scared because I won’t be able to sew…how will I not go crazy especially since sewing centers me so!

  6. I have had 14 dogs over the years and only 3 of them have been puppies. Adopting an older dog is far easier than taking on a puppy. Don’t worry about retraining an older dog, they are amazingly adaptable, for instance, when I am eating the dogs are no allowed within three feet of me, period. My husband doesn’t care, so the dogs crawl all over him and leave me alone when there is food around. They absolutely recognize there are different rules for different people. Just be clear before you bring the dog home what your rules are and stick to them, the dog will adapt to you. As far as bonding with an older dog, my most special dog was 7 years old when we rescued her, I had a connection with her that I have never had with another dog, and she was totally bonded to me. My husband’s dog was 9 or so when he arrived here, and as far as he is concerned all humans other than my husband are furniture and beneath his notice.

    I only have a couple of suggestions, do your research on what you will feed your dog, I highly recommend, they rate the food by stars, depending on the ingredients it contains. Feeding your dog a high quality can save you fortune in vet bills, and brush their teeth, especially if you are getting a tiny breed, they are notorious for having bad teeth, and contrary to the commercials milk bones don’t clean the teeth, in my experience all they do is make the dog have really stinky poop.

    Congratulations on your decision to become a dog mom. Enjoy!

    • Thanks for the advice! The dog I’m currently looking at is between 8 and 10 years old. Which I’m fine with as I understand smaller dogs live a bit longer and are harder to adopt out. I did read in her profile that she has some teeth issues, but they have taken her to the dental vet to address them.

  7. I adopted a dog 3 and a half years ago, after wanting a dog of my own for literally 20 years. I would check out dogs on the street and feel jealous of their owners. I noticed pretty much every single dog I walked by. Finally I just did it. Now, in retrospect, I do think it would have been easier if I had gotten an older, mellow dog. I didn’t shop around very thoroughly, I went on impulse, and got a relatively big, high energy, young dog who turned out to have some issues. I am crazy about her, but she’s difficult. So, I would say if you are nervous about it, choose accordingly and take your time. There are definitely lots of dogs out there who are easier than mine and I’m sure you can find a great one! It sounds like you have put some research into it already, unlike me who thought about it for a long time but then acted rashly.

    Depending on how much exercise your dog needs, it can change your whole routine….when I got mine, I immediately lost 20 pounds without even trying and have kept most of it off. I always mean to go running with her, but my running regime has been really off and on. Even when I don’t, though, just the walking is really good for both of us. But it does take time away from other kinds of exercise, for me, anyway.

    I don’t notice the expense, usually. Unless she needs to go to the vet, which she did a lot the first year. Then things settled down and lately it’s just been once a year checkups. I bought pet insurance when I first got her and I think it was a good decision for me. It paid for itself that first year and I am planning on keeping it up, just in case. Oh, and I stopped buying her stuffed toys because she would destroy them within a few minutes and it was like watching her rip up a 10 dollar bill. Every now and then I’ll get her one as a special treat, and I’ve discovered a couple of brands that hold up longer than others. I also notice the $ when I have to go away and I pay someone to stay with her. She’s too much work to have someone do it just as a favor. I don’t use a professional service, I’ve been hiring my friend’s sister to do it, but still I like to give her a good rate.

    What is small dog syndrome? As a big dog owner, I’m not sure!

    Anyway, didn’t mean to ramble on so long! Best wishes and keep us posted!! Dogs are awesome.

    • Thank you! I’m looking at a minature poodle currently. She’s older so more calm it seems. Plus, poodles shed a little less which is something I was worried about. It does say she doesn’t like to be crated, but I’m also looking at fencing my yard. You sound like me! I notice EVERYONE’s dog and have for years. But, I get so apprehensive. I’m definitely taking my time because I don’t want to make a (happy) mistake!

  8. We got a rescued Aussie who was about five years old. It was the best dog experience we ever had. First, he was house trained and had a little bit of obedience training, so he was already in the mood to be a good member of the household. Second, he was of a breed that is pretty low of the craziness scale, so he could be left at home during the day and would not go completely bats. You probably want to look at the breed as much as the age, really. He was a great friend and member of the family for almost 8 years (which for an Aussie is very long lived); we’ve never even thought of trying to replace him.

  9. A dog! How exciting!!!! I love dogs so much and used to volunteer at the local shelter. We ended up getting an 8 month old stray 17 months ago and I love him to bits. He was for the kids but really, he’s mine. I love his company!

    There is work involved and training is 200% necessary!!!! It’ll help you learn to socialize them as well as to actually socialize them. Dog play sometimes looks crazy and seriously, if I hadn’t done training, my baby would never be allowed to play because they look like they are fighting sometimes! It’s just like kids…. They yell and tumble and get silly!

    But most importantly, it’s not work because of the love!!!!!! Just put your boundaries in place and it’s smooth sailing. I’m so happy for you!

  10. i was in your town for a day of work and saw the race course– it was CRAZY to see that in the middle of downtown! and i stopped in your guss woolens (really, i do think of it as yours). the remnant section was fabulous. baltimore kicked my butt, however.

    my 2 cents on a pet; the happiness they’ll bring you far outweighs the stress. hope you find your perfect pup:)

  11. I totally agree with everything the others have said about adopting a dog. I have one thing to add. Try to adopt from a program that gives you a period of time where you can return the dog. Three of my family’s dogs came from a rescue group that let you take them home for one month before finalizing the adoption. No money until the end of the 4 weeks. If you returned the dog, all they asked was that you fill out a very extensive questionnaire about the dog and its time with you so that they could make an even better placement the next time. A fourth dog was returned after the 4 weeks… he was just fine, but a frequent cannine visitor and he just could not work out their differences. I was able to take him back to the group with no guilt.
    My current dog is another scenario entirely. I picked the wrong dog (after 50 years of dog ownership!) and it is taking a very long time for us to sort out our differences. I am keeping her, but it was touch an go for months!

  12. Just wanted to say that I’ve been a dog lover and owner all my life. Yes there is work, expenses and aggravation, however there is no comparison to the amount of unconditional love and devotion you’ll receive in return. Keep in mind that although long haired dogs are beautiful, they do require more attention and scheduled matainenence by a groomer. But you may decide to learn to groom them yourself. Do your research as to what kinds shed, or not. You will be doing a wonderful thing in adopting one. I’ve had many, many wonderful experiences and just can’t imagine what I would do without my three little boys.

  13. We have adopted two dogs at different times in the last 20 years. (Both Boxers) Both who I am happy to say outlived their average life span so we got to enjoy them for several years longer than that breed usually lives. Both very good dogs, they both needed some love and training and soon settled in to be wonderful family members. I love giving dogs in rescue or shelters a home! I think its wonderful you are looking at adoption. Most rescue groups are very upfront about a dogs personality and if it has issues. Neither of the dogs we adopted were puppies. Both were grown dogs about a year or a little over a year old. . Our Kota who is getting very old now will not be with us in the near future. That is the part of dog ownership that is the worst in my opinion. When you loose them it rips out your heart. But you get so much from them. Its good to know what type energy level you want in a dog. Boxesr are high energy dogs which is what we wanted. Getting a dog with a energy level that fits your lifestyle can off many issues in itself. I agree with one of the other comments. Most rescue groups will take the dog back if you find its a bad match and isn’t working out. That is a huge plus because you then know that dog is going back into a loving environment.

    Having said all of that. You are right in that dogs will tie you down to some extent, arrangements will always need to be made for them when you travel if they cannot go with you. Boarding is not cheap. I have found large dogs cost more in pretty much every respect. Dogs medical bills are not cheap, annual shots and heart worm etc. I agree on training being important whether you do it on your own or go to a class.

    But they are just the best things! They are such great company, they give sooooo much love. They will always listen to you happily and do what you want to do when you want to do it LOL. They are the ultimate friend in those respects. You want to go for a run or walk they are always ready to go (assuming they are still young enough and a breed that can do this) Just looking for company in the sewing room, give them a bed/rug and poof they are happy to hang out in there all day with ya. Want to garden all day, their your helper. :O) Good luck to you :O). I hope you find a furry friend. :O)

    The lace is gorgeous! I like the cape as well.

  14. Did you know you can be a foster mom for the SPCA or whatever organization? Then you can get a good try at what it’s really like to have a dog. And if you fall in love, eventually, you just adopt. Very low-commitment way to dip your toes into the pet waters.

  15. Yes, it’s been an interesting couple of weeks here in Baltimore, hasn’t it? Although we were on the Outer Banks, on the beack, during the earthquake, so, while it was felt there, we missed it. And then said hurricane kicked us off the Outer Banks after only 4 days of vacation. Sigh… At least, like you said, it was seriously underwhelming. My house didn’t leak in nearly as many places as usual. And we were some of the lucky ones who kept our power.

    I will tell you, as a long-time dog owner, that getting a dog is a wonderful thing. I’ve always had large dogs – Retrievers, and a current Lab/Pit rescue puppy – and while there are days they can drive you absolutely nuts and make you wonder just what you were thinking, those days are far outweighed by the joy they give you. I sound so cheesy, but it’s true. And I’m speaking as someone who’s had several dogs who died young, one at only 19 months, and as someone who’s spent an awful lot at the vet over the years. It’s totally worth it. Angus, our rescue, is a total brat, but he’s only 6 months old, we’ve only had him for 2 1/2, and my favorite part of the day with him is when I climb into bed and he promptly hops up and curls up next to me for the night. It’s called fuzz therapy. It does help to have a network of friends and/or neighbors who are willing to sit for you when you need to be away. That’s what we do – we generally swap with our next door neighbor – our Labs for her mastiff. It’s sort of a fair trade 🙂 And good for you for looking at an older dog. Most people aren’t willing to adopt them, but your chances of getting a dog that’s more chill are better. Can’t wait to see what you end up getting!

  16. I am LOVING the coverage of the race on tv. Baltimore is looking good and I am feeling pride in my city. Even if I do have a Rockville mailing address.

    I would love to have a dog too, but have all the same fears.

  17. I take care of the dogs of several friends. Nearly all of them have multiple dogs. For not being a dog freak, it’s interesting that I work with so many different situations.

    Watch the Dog Whisperer or get the DVDs. You will learn a lot about energy, being a pack leader, dog behavior, and how to choose a dog that is compatible. It is so worth it. I watch some of the episodes several times.

    Good luck!

  18. I had two dogs as a single woman and loved every minute of it. Not too long after I remarried we got a 2nd dog and still have her – she has her 15th b’day this month! Two of the dogs I got were not puppies, but still younger dogs. Our current dog was 3 months old when we got her. With all three dogs there were days early-on that I wondered what in the world I’d done. I haven’t thought that in years, but probably will soon as we are planning on getting a dog soon… 15 is pretty old for a dog and we don’t want to be w/o one.

    I’ve trained two dogs by attending classes with them and they both won top of class – just be consistent. It’s so worth whatever trouble/expense there is to have a dog!

  19. Good luck with the poodle! I know nothing about dogs (though I do like them), so I will just comment on the lace :-). It’s beautiful! And the cape is very nice as well, looking forward to seeing your version.
    I just came back from a congress in Bern, Switzerland and dragged back a 1959 Bernina 530 sewing machine.. I slightly underestimated how heavy it was, but in the end I got it home without too much trouble :-). Very pleased to have another machine to fiddle with and get to know!

  20. We watched the race and I thought of you the whole time! Nice work my dear, John just got back from Charm City (he goes there a lot on business) and he was very impressed

  21. Can’t wait to meet your new family member! I adopted a foundling 2 years ago and she’s my best friend. The reason I don’t have time to sew is because I/2 my life is spent at the dog park. (Just kidding!) Just make sure you set your boundaries and be consistent. Since she doesn’t like a crate make sure you keep all your fabric, shoes, etc. out of her way. She may get anxious while you’re at work.

  22. Just got my new Patrones, am loving that cape, too and capes usually aren’t my sort of thing!

  23. Like the others mentioned having a dog is a joy. However, it does involve time, consistency, expense and aggravation, but their unconditional love is so worth it. We have 3 dogs, Roco (German shep/chow) we adopted at 6 months from a friend that couldn’t have a pet in his new residence now 11 yo, Evie (German shep/collie) adopted from a shelter at 1 yo, now 10 and Savannah (yorkie) at 3 months, gift from our daughter, now 11 months. At times I question my sanity…lol

  24. I fostered Biscuit before I officially adopted her – for the same reasons. I’d never had a pet before, I wasn’t sure if I was ready/willing/able. Granted, she’s a cat, and therefore a lot less work than a dog – but getting her was the best thing I’ve ever done. As a fellow single person – being greeted at the door by your pet is the most amazing feeling.

  25. Two things love the lace and let me know how the dog thing is coming along. I want a dog but I dog sat for a friend for a week. The dog was sweet but my friend told me the dog was house trained turned out he was not . The dog was a puppy so I should have known.I had to go out every three hours and the dog still pooped and peed in the house. He felt more comfortable doing his business in the house when I was not looking than outside. You can guess what impression this made on me. So please keep me informed on your experience good or bad with the dog thanks so much.

  26. my dog is an adopted hound too, and since he came to us at 2 years old some of his bad habits weren’t possible to break (pulling on the lead, a bit agressive to other dogs from a lack of socialisation) but on the plus side he came toilet trained and past that whiny needy puppy stage! Having a dog in your life is so much fun, but yes a lot of work like a child – cleaning up vomit and droppings, confiscating things that are not toys, comforting them when they are sad and taking them to the vets when they have eaten something they shouldn’t have!

  27. Hi, can I talk bras? I’m having a huge clear out of my sewing room and have 2 bra making books. Contact me over at PinQueen if you would like me to send you one. I’ve been watching your great progress – stick with it. I know it costs a lot to practice but once you have the shape right you really won’t look back!

  28. Hi everyone: How do obtain a copy of the feature magazine, Patrones? Love the cape but internet searches haven’t yielded anything.

  29. Hey Cidell, I just read an archived post where you were in China. I just wanted to say that my husband spent a year there and constantly heard people referring to him as “Big Nose” and that I went for a week by myself ten years ago and had all the same experiences as you. I am Scottish and my hair was dyed a bright auburn red. Many people asked to touch it. I’m just glad I live in the States, where we all look different from each other. I wonder if they were calliing me “Big Nose” too, now I think about it. I do have kind of a big nose – only I didn’t know any Mandarin at the time!!

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