Thursday, February 22, 2024

Summer Tranquil Nightgown

Last year I sewed a long-sleeve nightgown for my mother, using Love Notion's Tranquil collection. I am still fascinated with the interesting details of the pattern, so this year I made another nightgown, but a short-sleeved one for the summer. The fabric is a lovely viscose-cotton knit, light and soft, extremely pleasant to wear.

I used the same size as last year, I only tried to make the neck opening less gaping, as my mother complained of its width in the previous nightgown. I believe the problem with larger sizes is, that people can be large at different parts of their body, and as my mother has actually a fairly small stature, the upper part of her body, above the bust, is quite small. I could have made the opening even smaller, I believe the neckline at the back is a bit too wide, but that only occurred to me after I had already made the nightgown. Now I'm just crossing my fingers, that the fit will be alright this time.

Size: M, elongated by 3 cm
Fabric: cotton viscose knit, 2 m
Time to make: 4 days

I bought a fairly large piece of fabric and I've got still plenty of it, so I'm thinking of making myself a pajama set, using the same pattern.

Friday, February 16, 2024

Polovrak on a Sunny Day, 2024

Another gorgeous sunny Friday! Husband and I chose for our hike today peak Polovrak in the near Lozen mountain.

As we were here only two months before, today we chose partially a different route. The weather was definitely very pleasant. The northern slopes of the mountain, which face the village and the start of the trail, had some frost and the air was not very warm, but the sun was strong.

Hike info:

Destination: peak Polovrak (1182 m)
Mountain: Lozen
Total length: 10.5 km
Elevation gain: 420 m
Total duration (plus picnic and rests): approx. 3 h 20 min
Average difficulty: 3 / 10

As soon as we crossed the ridge to the southern slopes of Lozen, the temperature and the terrain changed - the air was warm, the grass dry and there were purple crocuses - the first spring flowers we saw this year.

Me-made items, worn on this hike:
Husband: men's boxers, Knip Mode cargo pants, green Burda blouse, socks (scarf in the backpack)

I:  socks, lingerie, Plantain Top, "Page" hoodie (CC copycat hat, Borika gloves in the backpack)

We had a long and leisurely picnic on the peak, basking in the warm sun and enjoying the view to Iskar reservoir and the snow covered peaks of Rila. We drank our fresh-made rose-hip tea and relished the silence and solitude - this must be one of the most lonely hikes we've made recently, for the whole duration of the hike we met only a man and his dog at the beginning of the trail :)

After our long picnic, we went down the peak along the southern slope and then took a different path back to the village, following our maps on OruxMaps. We explored this track last year for the first time, it is an interesting alternative.

Unlike the sunlit southern slopes of Polovrak, the tracks at the foot of the peak in the forest were dank and sunless, alternating with sunlit open areas and south facing sunny paths. Considering, that we are only mid-February, I simply can't complain of the weather - we are lucky to have so much warmth and sun at this time of the year and I hope the nice weather will keep.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Cherni Vruh - a Real Winter Hike

This week we took advantage of the sunny and relatively warm winter weather and planned a second hike - a genuine winter hike to Vitosha's summit - peak Cherni Vruh. 

Unlike the hikes in the low mountains, hiking above 2000 m in winter means cold, wind, lots of snow and ice. Despite the bright sun and the blue skies, the temperatures above Aleko hut were low and the wind was brutal and during our ascent it was headwind, which clearly made climbing even more difficult. Still, there were at least a few dozen fellow hikers up and down the track.

We started from Aleko hut along the winter trail to Cherni vruh and it took us approximately one hour and 45 minutes to reach the peak. Despite the strong wind, which quickly covered the hikers' traces, the trail was very well maintained with the help of snow bulldozers by the local services.

Hike info:

Destination: peak Cherni Vruh (2290 m)
Mountain: Vitosha
Total length: 13 km
Elevation gain: 480 m
Total duration (plus rest): 3 and a half hours
Average difficulty: 6 / 10

Me-made items, worn on this hike:
Husband: boxers, socks, Knipmode cargo pants, Knipmode blouse, sharf
I: lingerie, socks, hat, chocolate Hipster shawl, Grasser blouse, reserve green gloves in the backpack

We had our quick lunch at the station on the peak, where we drank our homemade rose hip tea, with rose hips we picked on Tuesday during our hike to Manastirishte. We liked it so much, that this year we plan to pick more local herbs for our tea during our numerous hikes.

The descent was much easier, and though the wind got even stronger, it was blowing in our backs, which was so much preferable to the headwind upwards.

On the way back we chose the longer summer trail by peak Goli vruh.

I wouldn't place this hike among the mountain monster hikes, like Vihren or Ruen, but it was definitely an adventure:)

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Purple Burda Blouse

After our hike to Manastirishte, husband and I drove to the Buddhist stupa above the village of Plana and took a few pictures of my latest blouse. 

The pattern is the same Burda 108 12/2023, that I made for my mother, but the smallest 36 size. The piece of fabric I had was less than one meter after I washed it and its print, though not very discernible, it is directional and striped. Despite my limited fabric, I tried my best to match the design and to follow the direction of the print.


Apart from my usual shortenings of the pattern, based on my height, due to my limited fabric, I also slightly shortened the sleeves and made the cuffs a bit longer. However, I think I like the wider and longer sleeves of my mother's blouse better, so next time, if I can, I'll make my sleeves longer with shorter cuffs.

For my version of the pattern, I tried the original neckpiece, found it terribly floppy and shapeless and removed it. Thus I had to design a new neckpiece out of my remaining fabric - a form of cowl collar. I like it a lot, but if I ever make this blouse again, I would raise the neckline a bit and would make the cowl collar much bigger.

Size: 36, shortened
Fabric: soft cotton jacquard, 0.95 m
Time to make: 3 days

The fabric is super soft cotton jacquard, uniquely pleasant to the skin and this blouse is easily my most favourite blouse as of late :) Pity, that the store had no more of this fabric, I believe Gaby would have liked a similar blouse too.

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Manastirishte on a Warm Winter Day

The weather on the weekend was cold and with strong winds and husband and I decided to postpone our weekly hike and clear our schedules for Tuesday. The forecasts were right - today was a perfect day, warm and calm, and we had a most brilliant hike along the completely empty trails in Plana mountain.

Today we took a short detour from our traditional trail and went around this secretive small hill.

Hike info:

Destination: peak Manastirishte (1338 m)
Mountain: Plana
Total length: 9.7 km
Elevation gain: 160 m
Total duration (plus picnic): 3 hours
Average difficulty: 3 / 10 

To our pleasant surprise, the snow on Plana had almost completely melted, the tracks were fairly dry, with an acceptable amount of mud and ice.

The chapel on the peak

Me-made items, worn on this hike:

Husband: boxers, Knipmode cargo pants, knitted socks, hat
I: lingerie, Sinclair Lotte Blouse, Houndstooth Hoodie, CC hat, gloves, knitted socks

Vitosha across the valley

We had our picnic on the southern slopes of Manastirishte, with a breathtaking view to the range of Rila mountain. It was so sunny and warm, quiet and peaceful, that we were immensely happy for being able to enjoy all that.
Back to the car along an alternative track.