Vicki meets Jonny : )

Where to start….

I received an email from Vicki of Another Sewing Scientist back at the end of September – she was thinking of coming to town at the end of October to see Tom Waits perform at the Bridge School Benefit concert and would I like to get together with her? Would I?? Took me seconds to reply “YES!!!” and it was ON.

Since I was in the middle of some detailed dental work I made sure to make an appointment for the early morning of October 27 so I could spend the rest of the day with her, showing her our fair city and fabric stores. We met at Britex in San Francisco and shopped the morning away. No photos, alas, mainly because someone OTHER person was in the store taking photos without permission (they’re picky about that sort of thing) so I didn’t want to push my luck and get tossed for trying to get a snap of us. I did pause just outside Britex to grab a photo of the clothing store next door that had dozens of antique sewing machines in their windows:

After Britex we headed over the new Bay Bridge (I’m not impressed), had lunch at my daughter’s place of work and then I dragged Vicki to StoneMountain & Daughter and L’Acis.

Again, neither one of us managed to take a photo of anything except a fabulous piece of fabric that I think Vicki needs:

And that’s her hand : ) We did buy “stuff” before we ambled down the street to L’Acis. If you’ve never been in that store the amount of detail to take in can be OVERWHELMING. I was flagging and she was still on eastern time so I can only imagine…

However, we had made plans to meet up again on Saturday late afternoon for a VERY SPECIAL event (to me)! I called this the “quintessential California experience” as it was the BAD RAP fundraiser featuring a Zydeco band, crawfish boil and Ken Foster of “I’m a Good Dog” doing a reading and book singing. Art, culture and a little dancing weirdness, what could be better : )

*Jonny Justice is one of the rescued Vick dogs, now a therapy dog and, as his owners say, one third dog, one third cow and one third pig : ) I love him.

Did I get photos at the event? Only a couple, so before we get to those here are pics my daughter took of my SPECIAL Jonny Justice coat! The theme for the fundraiser this year was Gund-a-palooza “We’re doing the happy dance in honor of Jonny Justice and the release of the GUND doll created in his image.” I had bought 2 Jonny’s, just because…
So to honor him I decided to make a black/white Katwise-inspired coat to wear once the sun went down. Wow, last year it never got that cold but this year I was SO glad I had this!

We found these murals on the side of a vegan restaurant in Oakland. There were people eating inside that I’m sure wondered what the strange lady in a top hat was doing out front.

Here’s a close up of the Jonny purse : )

It took me months of searching to find a few black/white sweaters. You could search for YEARS if you got really OCD about wanting the “perfect” prints. The checkered parts on the hood and sleeves came from an enormous 80’s sweater that had huge blocks of red and mustard yellow around them. The sweater was actually on the floor at Goodwill and I snatched it up like I’d found some rare gem. You learn to stop caring when people look at you funny when you KNOW you’ve found a treasure : )

I felt like a tiny top hat was the perfect accessory in amongst everything else. I used one of my Jonny buttons to fasten the feathers down.
(Sunny out? It was so bright I could barely hold my eyes open. Modeling is HARD!)

As we walked back around the corner to the car look at the amazing tile job we passed! We were both tired but I INSISTED on doing some twirls in front of the circular goodness!!

Not quite dizzy yet…

Not quite…

Ok, now I’m done.

Then we turn around and there is the PERFECT car to go with my outfit!

 Details of purse:

I took the Jonny toy and sliced him down the top center back, pulled out the stuffing and filled his legs with those little plastic beads that come out of other stuffed animals your my dog chews on. Yeah for recycling : )

Once the legs were stabilized so he wouldn’t fall over like he’d had too many mojitos I hand stitched a zipper in there and added a pink lining. The handle I bought at Britex with Vicki and I whipstitched it onto Jonny’s back. It just fits a few business cards, my drivers license, the car key, some cash and a lipstick.

Time for custom buttons for the coat:

These are so ridiculously easy that if you tell your kids how you can do this you’ll end up making hundreds of these : )

1) Buy or dig out some Freezer paper. The real old fashioned stuff that is white and has a shiny side. Naturally I didn’t think to photograph THIS part of the process but I found a great link that has good instructions here. There is a link at the end of the instructions to a product you get at Dharma trading that helps keep these images permanent. I heat set mine but if they come off I’ll just make new buttons.

I will make on caveat to their instructions. On MY printer, which has a tray feed on the back side so the paper feeds in upside down, I trim the fabric down from one edge about 1/2 inch. Then I tape the fabric to the freezer paper so there is NO problem with the printer pulling the fabric through, separating and wrinkling. Print as usual.

I ended up with six Jonny faces on an 8 1/2″ x 11″ piece of fabric (and some cat hair from Max who found this whole process fascinating). You need to remember to leave spaces between each face for maneuvering around the button form. Using the lovely covered button kit you can get at any fabric store, cover your buttons. I did cut a small circle of the same fabric to put in between the Jonny face and the silver button so I didn’t get weird silvery bleed through.

These buttons are 1 1/8″ so button holes for these would be a little gappy. I sewed snaps on under the buttons in the frantic 15 minutes before I ran out the door with mobile mojitos. I was literally running a little later than usual today because of this:

I promised a friend of mine, a two-time cancer survivor, that I’d do the Dirty Girl 5K run with her. She decided not to do the obstacle bits where you get REALLY dirty but I indulged. See my socks? They WERE white. And I’m covered with a pretty good layer of straw filled mud, including my shoes and places where sand or straw ought not go : )

Took me longer than I planned to get the mud out of my hair for the party. I had also promised my friend Aimee that I’d bring mojitos to go with the crawfish boil.

By the time the band started playing the sun had gone down and coats were pulled on. This is the Rescue Barn at BAD RAP’s facility, a very posh hotel for the dogs as they get acclimated to other dogs and learn some manners. Tim and Donna know how to throw a party and the dogs love the extra attention but like little kids at Christmas they crash pretty early : )

Because we spent so much time talking and laughing we got almost NO photos of the two of us, just this one at the very end of the evening:

I had a great time. I hope she did too : ) She’s just as fun and funny as you would hope from her blog. Be sure to check out the post up right now, she’s highlighting a dress one of the Project Runway challengers made out of pipette tips. As soon as I showed my co-workers that pic I started getting boxes of pipette tips donated to the cause… Seems that will be on my to-do list soon!

It was SO NICE to meet you Vicki, I had a great time! Come visit California again : )

For everyone who asked how the leaf dress is doing, here it is Thursday, 4 days after completion:

5 thoughts on “Vicki meets Jonny : )

  1. What a treat to see two of my favorite sewer/bloggers having such a wonderful time in SF. Love the coat you made, Loren, and the cute little doggie purse and buttons are awesome!

  2. Thanks for posting the GOOD photo of us; I only have the blurry, flash photo outtake with our mouths hanging open, which will go up on my blog, bien sûr. It was lots of fun, especially getting over to Berkeley for the fabric shopping. I never would have ventured all the way over there alone, and I would have missed it! Next time, Buttons for sure!

    I just have to let everyone know that your Jonny sweater coat is even more spectacular in person. Everyone at the party was asking about it. 🙂

  3. Lauren, I love Jonny Justice coat! I am also so proud of GUND for doing this. They have been my favorite when it comes to stuffed animals. I have to get my daughter a Jonny Justice now! I miss talking to you my friend, and I am so proud of all the amazing work you are doing.

    • BETHANY!!!! I’ve been reading your blog posts (loved your 20’s dress and the outfits for your daughter? Precious!!) but every time I try to comment I can’t (I’m usually reading them at work so that might have something to do with it…shhhhh….). I’m so glad you guys are doing well this year and once of these day, when I get to LA, we’re going to have to go fabric shopping : )

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