Fiona & Ink

A few years ago, I decided to start a blog. I decided to call it ONA INK, which is a bit of a play on words, if you speak German.

Ohne Tinte = Without Ink

Ohne Ink= without Ink

ONA = from my daughter’s name Fiona

INK= sounds like Inc., as in Incorporation,  and although creating a blog is not legally forming a new entity, for me beginning a blog was embarking on a new personal enterprise.


ONA INK – referencing my daughter’s name, and a hidden meaning to me–a nod to this new form of journaling without ink & the beginning of expressing myself in a new medium.

I originally started two blogs, one for personal family things and a second for my hobbies/interests.  I was planning to call the family blog “ONA INK”  and the interest blog “OHNE INK.” The obvious problem here is that if I ever was to talk to a family member about whether they had read a post on a blog, the names sound exactly alike.  So, I figured the OHNE was just confusing.  I also didn’t have time to post on my interest blog, let alone my family blog! So, Ohne Ink fell by the wayside…

…until now, when I have once again decided to revisit a second blog.  There are many reasons for and against doing this, which I will not bother with discussing here–I will just leave it at this and hope for the best possible outcome.  That being, having a second blog will actually help me to have both blogs more up to date!  I can’t promise that my blogs will be chronologically accurate, but I can promise that my family blog will reflect what is/has been going on in our life, and this blog will reflect what is going on in my head.

Bear with me perhaps though, as I catch up on past projects I would like to document here, and as I figure out what content I should have on which blog.

Enough of the blog talk- I don’t like the word well enough to have had to type it 17 times already.



I have been fortunate enough to find time here and there in the past 3 years to get out my mom’s sewing machine and create some clothes for Fiona. I’ve done a few other things as well- however she has been my main inspiration.  I’ve also discovered that I’ve somewhat unconsciously developed a method for how this process develops:

Whenever I start a sewing project, there are a couple things I like to think about.

Motivation-I tend to not finish it unless I have a specific goal. Luckily, since I am sewing something for Fiona to wear, I naturally want to finish the garment before she is too big to wear it. This is why Fiona has a few skirts, dresses and tops I have made for her, while her doll only has one skirt.  Lately, I have been helped by the online sewing community, which have “sew alongs,” “challenges” and “themes”  with fun names with or without puns like, “Linky Love Monday ” or “It’s Sew Cute” or “I totally sewed this three-piece-dress with matching hair-bow while my daughter took a nap, did you?” or  “Ruffle everything and your kitchen sink too Friday.” Mostly I just ogle everyone else’s creativity online from my comfortable chair  while nursing my baby, but there has been one blog (Project Run and Play) which I follow which has been really fun to actually participate with. More on that later.

Inspiration– this usually comes from a lot of different directions. I have been inspired by a time period (Regency/Jane Austen- Fiona’s Easter Dress), a landscape (A field with wildflowers- Fiona’s Meadow Skirt), cities (Paris, Venice) and  even an object- this dress was inspired by the huge community chess boards at the park we often walked through in Stuttgart:

Chess Dress

This has been my favorite part of the process- coming up with an idea and the challenge to see whether I can actually do it.

Technique– try and pick one or two new techniques I’ve not done before to include in the new project.  Since I am new to garment construction, I have an endless array to choose from!

I really should add the category MISTAKE to this too- it seems that almost every time I have made one or several mistakes that have proven fortunate in the long run in bringing my creation to a different yet interesting place than I originally intended. There are also many many mistakes that I make on a regular basis that bring my creation only to the seam ripper- usually this is  a result of me not wanting to take the time to pin the fabric together when sewing or not thinking through the step thoroughly enough and sewing the armholes closed or some embarrassing error like that.

I also should mention that I see this blog as a resource primarily for myself. I feel uncomfortable calling something a “tutorial,” since there are so many well-documented tutorials for practically every technique out there.  I somewhat like to take pictures while sewing to remind myself of the order and process by which a garment was created, however I’d rather link to a great tutorial that helped me than duplicating their tutorial myself. I’ll leave it at that for now and see how this process evolves. My goal is to write another post by Friday so that I can have Fiona’s Dr. Seuss dress documented for the PRP circle-skirt sew along!