Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Bug Off with a Hoodie

Every time this year, there are tiny little bugs that fall from trees here at Tahoe basin.  I'm one of those lucky few that bugs, any kind of bugs, just seem to LOVE.  If I don't cover up myself and take a shower after a walk in the woods, I'd be covered with bug bites.  They are so tiny, size of a pin head. I don't even know their proper names, different people had told me different things. I'd get clusters of dozen bites from each bug that fall on me.  Unlike mosquito bites that go away after a day or so, these bug bites marks last for months. I'd wake up in the middle of the night and itchy all over. I usually get the bites around my neck, and arms, areas that are exposed on the upper body.I don't seem to get them on my legs. So I've deducted like Sherlock Holmes would that they fall from trees. Seriously they're so tiny that I have to really look for they to notice.  They're even smaller than fleas, and no they're not fleas, because we don't have fleas at Tahoe, elevation 6500 feet. So I have a love and hate relationship with the outdoor this time of year.  It's wild lupines time.  There is nothing like walking in a field of wild lupines, but these damn bugs!

And we go out to eat, everyone is sitting outside except for us. Otherwise is both meal for us and meal for the bugs.

I've learned to slather myself with sunscreen when I go for my jogs. Seriously there is no better place to jog than trails through blooming wild flowers, and through the woods for shades.  There is just no way I'm going to jog on treadmill when the weather is so beautiful outside. I take my risks with a thick coat armor of sunscreen.  That and moving faster seem to work. But when I go for a bike ride or a walk, I like to wear a big hat, not exactly the size of sombrero, but fairly large brim hat, and a thin, long sleeve shirt. And I look more like a farmer than the outdoorsy style of the Tahoe look.

Last week when I went to Reno I decided to stop by Mills Ends. I found these beautiful teal cotton gauze fabric for 4.50/yard.  I knew immediately I had to get them and make myself a nice long sleeve hoodie for going outside, walking around town or walk in the woods.

I drafted the pattern quickly on Monday. The front and back were identical except the extra hood connected to the front so I didn't have to cut separate piece for the hood. Yes, because I was lazy. I wanted a very loose shirt.  There was no dart, super easy project. It turned out to be a super quick sewing using my serger for most seams except for top-stitching the binding strips around the front and hood, and top-stitching the hem and cuff. I was a bit worried about the hood part wouldn't work out as I'd envisioned, but it did work out, and exactly as planned.  The only thing was the fabric was 45" wide, so I wasn't able to make the part from waist to hem a bit wider as I was trying to save fabric by cutting it the most efficient way possible. After trying the shirt on, I cut and added triangular inserts to the side seam area for roomier fit .

I absolutely LOVE this top.  I love the color, I love the material, and I love the loose fit.  It's exactly something I'd wear.

I also bought a remnant piece of cotton to make a skirt to go with it when I was at the store.  I couldn't remember the exact yardage.  When I laid out the pieces of pocket skirt pattern I drafted last summer, I realized I had exactly the yardage for the skirt and the pockets but not the waistband.  After digging through my fabric stash I found a yellow muslin fabric to make 1" band to finish the top edge.  I like the diagonal striped pattern on the skirt. It came as diagonal stripes so I didn't have to deal with bias cutting. Nice skirt if I may say so myself.  I seriously can sew all my skirts with that pattern.  It's the exact cut I like, and with pockets in the right places.

Few more weeks and the bugs should be gone.  They're usually gone by middle of July.  In the meantime, I think I'll make another hoodie with the same material in different color I bought.  


  1. Wow, they both turned out so cute! I know those bugs, we have them here to, so awful! Tiny spec bugs. That's what I call them. :)
    Would love to see a picture of the lupines in bloom!

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