Saturday, April 30, 2022

Pancharevo - Bachun

Spring is such a beautiful season for hiking - the forests are now green, the meadows are covered with grass and flowers, the trees are housing lots of songbirds. I suppose it's the mating period now, as the birds seem especially vocal, which is gorgeous, of course!

Today we hiked from the lake of Pancharevo to peak Bachun and back. This is our second climb of Bachun this year, but from a different starting point and along a very different trail. However, we have climbed along this trail before, a year ago, when we traversed the Lozen mountain from Pancharevo to the village of Dolni Lozen.

Hike info:
Destination: peak Bachun
Mountain: Lozen
Total length: 15 km
Elevation gain: 530 m
Total duration (plus rest): 4 h
Average difficulty: 5 / 10

Me-made items, worn on this hike:
I: lingerie, Sabrina Slims, Houndstooth Burda hoodie, socks
Husband: men's boxers, Knipmode cargo pants, grey sweater

:On peak Bachun (1150 m)

Friday, April 29, 2022


Probably the most ambitious of my latest projects - a Tyrolean dirndl for Gaby. This is also my No 3 of my Make Nine  sewing challenge.

Of course, I don't imagine Gaby walking in her dirndl along Graben street :), but she and her boyfriend are fond of medieval festivals, there's Oktoberfest in neighboring Bavaria, so there might be a chance to wear her dirndl. But even if she never comes to wear it in public, I am very happy that I made it.

I've been a big fan of dirndls ever since I began to buy Burda magazine and I've been vaguely intending to sew one one day for at least eight or more years.

Several years ago I bought two Burda issues with dirndl patterns, last year I bought an electronic pattern from the Burda site, but still none of these was the exact style I was looking for. And then I found another dirndl pattern on Burda - Dirndl 7057 from Burda autumn-winter catalogue for 2015-2016 - finally I could start buying the materials and making the costume. 

First I started with the fabric for the dress. It is a cotton, wool and polyester mix I've had in my stash for years and I wanted to use it up. I thought it was perfect for the style with its petite gingham weave and I love the combination of off white and dark teal. 

So, I bought some white cotton poplin for the blouse, but on second thought the poplin fabric was on the rather simple side and I wanted the costume to look festive. So I bought the above white viscose poplin and I am happy with the lustre it gave to the look of the blouse.

Then came the main course - the dress. I modified the gathering of the skirt into pleats, as they've always seemed to me to be more elegant and less voluminous around the waist. I adorned the neckline with the traditional  gathered band (which took forever!!!) and then added the corset fastening at the front. I couldn't find the original corset fasteners, but the ones I found work as good.

Size: 34, modified here and there
Fabric: viscose poplin, wool/cotton/polyester gingham, satin bands
Time to make: three weeks

The upper part of the dirndl dress is fully lined with the same white viscose fabric i used for the blouse. The dress fastens with an invisible zipper at the front.

And lastly - the apron. This simple item took actually the most visits to the fabric store. First, I bought some forest green viscose poplin, but it didn't go well with the satin bands of the dress. Then I bought this teal viscose poplin, which is the perfect color match of the bands - hurray. But it turned out I hadn't bought enough to make the ties long, wide and double sided. 

So I revisited the shop again, bought some half meter of the fabric and some additional satin band to embellish the apron. And when everything was done and finished, it turned out that the double ties were too thick for a nice butterfly knot at the front.

I ran to the fabric shop again in search of the widest satin band in the teal color they had. However, I did not like the look of the apron with satin band ties, so I undid the ties once again and finally made the ties single layered. Now I like them enough and, after almost a month, I can declare the dirndl done and finished for good :)

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Vrana 2022

This Sunday it was the Orthodox Easter and husband and I decided to replace our mountain hiking with a stroll (7.5 km, 2.5 hours) in Vrana park. Late April - early May is the best time to visit the park, but it is always different on a different year. This time the magnolias were in their prime and just about to wither, the rhododendrons were at least a couple of weeks from blooming and carob trees were on the verge of blossoming.

The day was very warm and sunny and we had an extremely pleasant walk. Luckily, though there were people at the park, it was not like everybody and his grandma had decided to be there on Easter, so it was actually pretty quiet and calm, especially along the less popular alleys.

:A song thrush

:The biggest magnolia tree I've ever seen in blossom

:Common finch


:An interesting grafted tree