Nels, 17

happy birthday, Nels!

Nels, 17 Nels David Hogaboom
a birth story Born at home to mom Kelly, dad Ralph, and sibling Phoenix 1:20 AM Wednesday April 7, 2004 8 pounds 7 ounces 21 inches long April 6th, 9 AM – is it or isn’t it? A couple hours after I wake up on Tuesday I’m having mild contractions that are only a tiny bit more intense than the Braxton Hicks contractions I’d had throughout the last half of my pregnancy. They are only slightly painful and certainly not too intense. Nevertheless, they are somewhat distracting and never truly subside, coming anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes apart. Ralph senses things are going to go into motion and comes home at noon, starting his two weeks off of work. He calls my mom at about 3 PM and tells her to head up to see us (she leaves about 5 PM). At this point I am hopeful of labor but also feeling somewhat silly at the thought I might be treating everyone to a false alarm. My mom arrives at around 9 PM and she and Ralph start writing down my contractions, calling midwives, and cleaning the house up a bit. April 6th, 10 PM – the real thing My mom and I are watching a movie together and my contractions are still coming about 10 minutes apart. I still claim I am unsure if labor is going someplace. But everyone is noticing I pause the movie during each contraction so I can concentrate on getting though it. I’m undecided if I should walk around to get things moving or lie down and rest in between contractions. I’m afraid of another long labor – eighteen hours – like I had with my first child. Suddenly at about 10:30 PM I hop up from the bed and turn off the movie, since contractions have sped up to about four minutes apart. Naturally my mom and Ralph are very excited and go about making phone calls and preparations while I pace the floor and cope with each contraction. It is going quite well but I keep telling myself these are the “easy” contractions and I try not to worry about what’t to come. Around 10:30 my midwives and my doula start arriving and I am focusing inward in the classic “Laborland” manner. I notice peripherally how efficient and friendly everyone is, setting up the bed, laying out blankets and birth supplies and getting snacks. Everyone is wonderful to me and provides me with water and encouragement between contractions, respectful silence and privacy during. I feel very protected and honored and so it is easy not to be fearful. My doula Elizabeth arrives and strokes my back and speaks softly to me. She puts me nearly to sleep in between contractions. I am feeling so grateful for the love and encouragement I am getting. I know I am coping very well and in fact since I am doing so well I don’t think I am very far along. April 7th, Midnight – silliest labor quote Things are intense but I don’t want a check to see how far I’ve dilated. I am somewhat afraid to discover all the work I am doing hasn’t gotten me anywhere. Laura (one of the midwives) suggests I get into the tub. I’d always thought of the tub as what you use as a last resort toward the end of labor so I tell her I can wait. After a few more contractions I decide she’s right. It’s time to get in, and I am hoping for some pain relief. I spend about 40 minutes in the tub with contractions edging up their intensity. Everyone is around me encouraging me and vocalizing though my contractions. Elizabeth holds my hands and breathes with me through the contractions, then puts a cold cloth on my head and neck in between. Everyone helps keep me calm and focused, as does the knowledge I have to take each contraction one at a time. Close to 1 AM I feel the urge to have Ralph hold and kiss me while I rest, and help talk me through contractions (he’s repeating something I read from Birthing From Within: “Labor is hard work, it hurts, and you can do it”). I don’t realize at the time but I am going through transition. After a few contractions I start to feel a little of that, well – grunting urge. Thanks to my study of natural birth, I know it is perfectly okay to vocalize and push a little to help with the pain and I instinctively do so. The midwives clue into what I am doing and are back in the room. Laura says, “Gee Kelly, it sounds like you’re pushing!” and I reply (silly!) “I’m not really pushing, it just feels good to bear down a little bit”. These contractions are pretty rough but everyone is helping me so much it is still very manageable. April 7th, 1:10 AM – OUCH, OUCH, OUCH! Kathy convinces me to let her check me and informs me not only am I completely dilated, but that the baby’s head has descended quite a bit. I am completely amazed at this (despite knowing I am feeling the urge to push) and even accuse everyone of just saying that to make me feel better! (I feel a little foolish about this later). During each contraction I am feeling the pain in my hips, all the way to the bone, which my midwives tell me is a sign the baby is moving. Kathy tells me later I comment that it is like a crowbar prying my pelvis apart. Despite the pain I am coping well and in between the contractions I am still calm. I comment that I am not feeling any pressure in my bottom yet and I think to myself this means I have a ways to go. Oops, I speak too soon – with the next contraction I feel the baby AT THE DOOR, so to speak. This takes me by surprise and my labor sounds change from low and powerful to very alarmed and a little screechy. Everyone is talking to me and trying to help me calm down and focus. I am amazed at the pain and pressure and overcome with an almost frantic need to push. I am pushing, pushing, pushing, before I can tune into my midwives telling me to ease off. I do the best I can and manage to ease off a bit and direct my energies more constructively. Despite the pain I am overjoyed to know I am so close and my baby will be here any minute. “I know I will feel so good when I see my baby”, I tell myself and this helps me. Kathy tells me to reach down and feel the head and after an initial hesitation I do, surprised again at how soft and smooth it is. I can feel each part of his head I deliver. It hurts! But I know I am close. The head is out and then I am surprised by the fullness and difficulty of the shoulders, which I do not remember from my first birth. April 7th, 1:20 AM – Nels is born With one final push I feel my baby being delivered and I am surprised it is already over. I have been kneeling in the tub and so immediately turn around and Ralph tells me later I am saying, “Give me my baby! I want to hold my baby!” to the midwives who are doing their thing. I have a vision of my child’s long, smooth body floating in the water, the room lit by candlelight in a soft glow. Within seconds he is in my arms and I am crying and Ralph is crying and the whole room is full of a collective soft and surprised murmur. I am holding him to my chest and saying, “I can’t believe it, I can’t believe it!” over and over, feeling so filled with surprise and happiness. He is perfect and so soft and I feel wonderful. I realize I have done it, I have given birth to a healthy baby in my own home, with my own power. April 7th, early morning – getting to know you I stay in the water crying and holding my baby for several minutes before anyone thinks to discover the baby’s sex. I hold my child away from my chest and in between squirming legs and the umbilical cord I see a penis! Of course, this is perfect. Everything feels perfect! After a few more minutes I am ready to get out of the water and get cleaned up, but I know we have to wait for the placenta. I feel like this takes forever but it probably is only a fifteen minute wait. Another surprising feeling of fullness and then the placenta is delivered. Kathy has to pull the cord a bit and gently massage my tummy to get the whole thing in one piece. My mom is on the phone with my dad and has to pass the phone around so she can cut the cord. I am ready to get out and dry off and nurse my second child. I am helped out of the tub and into some dry clothes. I am so happy to have so much loving help. I prop myself up on the bed and hold my son to my breast. He latches almost immediately like a pro. I keep asking my husband, “Is this really happening?” because it has gone like a dream and I am so happy. After some time of nursing the midwife eventually takes my son to the foot of the bed to weigh him and check his limbs and reflexes. Elizabeth brings me food – cheese, bread, apples and oranges. My pulse is checked and found to be high (100) so I am encouraged to drink a huge glass of water (this happened with my first child too). My afterpains are intense, more so than with Phoenix, but I know this to be normal. I breathe through them. Phoenix wakes up and is brought into the room, looking cranky and confused. I kiss my oldest child and introduce them to their brother; then Ralph takes Phee back to the bedroom to settle them back to sleep. Kathy checks my bottom out and finds only two tiny tears, no need for sutures. The energy of the house is settling, people are packing things, Elizabeth says goodbye. Laura leaves too and I take a shower with Kathy’s help. She stays long enough to give postpartum instructions and asks me to page her when I can pee. I am a little anxious about this myself, for vague fear of a catheter. Kathy leaves about 3:20 and as her car is pulling out I am able to use the bathroom, feeling now finally that everything is alright. My husband is looking dead tired. I am wired and unable to sleep. We send my mom off to bed. I hold my son who is still awake! He is drowsy though and wants to snuggle. At about 4:30 AM I finally fall asleep on the bed, Ralph on the couch, holding his son. We are awakened just before 7 AM to the joyful sounds of our firstborn running through the house talking excitedly to Grandma. Grandma looks like she really needs a cup of coffee.
Friday Pattern Ilford Jacket Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

friday patterns ilford jacket sew-along

Friday Pattern Ilford Jacket Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

It’s that time again! Time for another sew-along. As the seasons change and we expect a bit more warmth where I live – I thought, why not a spring, smock-style jacket?

My selection this month is the Friday Ilford Jacket – a simple garment that’s great for the committed beginner ready to upgrade to trying a sleeve placket and a collar – that kind of thing. 

Joining me once again – I am delighted to say! – is my friend Traci Kay Pryde from @pryde.hantverk and we are leading you every step of the way through this fantastic garment!

friday pattern co ilford jacket

Bust: 32″ – 60″
Waist:  24″ – 53″
Hip: 34″ – 63″

Drop-shoulder unlined jacket in two lengths; pattern comes with a few different pocket templates. Plain sleeve or placket-style sleeve.

I’ll be making the short length, and the placket sleeve. I’ll also be interlining the jacket and I’ll talk about that as I go!

Here are the materials you need!

The Ilford Jacket pattern (here)
Buttons (5 – 10; the pattern recommends 1″ – 1 1/2″)
Bottomweight woven (sewing yardages are on page five of the pattern)
Interfacing (1 yard)
All-purpose thread & topstitching thread*
Needles: denim (or heavy, sharp, universal); topstitch needle*
Buttonhole chisel*

* optional

– as well as your tuned-up sewing machine and manual, cutting equipment, pins, scissors, iron and ironing board!

I’ll be sewing on three machines: my domestic Pfaff, a White serger (for some seam finishing), and my Pfaff 130 (for topstitching). If you don’t have three machines never fear – I will be going over how to construct the garment if you are only sewing with one machine.

Our schedule! This sew-along begins 5 PM Pacific on Tuesday the 23rd, hosted simultaneously on my Twitch channel; the videos are then uploaded to my Vimeo channel if you miss out! And all dates are hosted on my Calendar (here’s a live link you can add to your own).

TUE 23: cutting & marking
WED 24: sleeve plackets* & collar
FRI 26: body, front plackets, & cuffs
FRI 26: pockets, hem, buttons & buttonholes

* This pattern has us constructing sleeve plackets right off the bat, instead of when the garment is almost finished. One caveat: you will want to baste-fit and adjust your sleeve length first, because if your intended wearer needs a much shorter sleeve (as mine does!) you could possibly end up with a too-short sleeve placket if you don’t adjust first.

And finally! The best place to ask questions about this sew-along, is right here in the blog post! This blog post serves as the master document. 

Rad Patterns Kelly Jeans Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

rad patterns kelly jeans sew-along

Rad Patterns Kelly Jeans Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

I am honored to be hosting a livestream sew-along for the Rad Pattern Kelly Jean – a rigid jean pattern in a wonderful adult size range!

The name is not a coincidence! Stephanie of Rad Patterns says, “They’re called the Kelly Jeans, named for my amazingly talented friend @bespokehogaboom who’s probably one of the most amazing jeans sewists on the planet”!

Ha ha I’m not crying, you’re crying!

Rad Patterns Kelly Jeans Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

rad patterns kelly jean

Waist: 22 1/2″ – 73″
Hip: 32 1/2″ – 83″

Rigid (non-stretch) jean in several lengths. Curved waistband, zip fly, slouchy/boyfriend fit, low pockets.

My best jean-making tip: slow down! Read the directions, proceed carefully, and don’t be afraid to seam-rip and adjust for fit!

Let’s get moving! Jeans are tricky enough I thought I’d do a quick introduction video – covering our materials but also a bit of muslin prep. You can also skip ahead and read on before watching the video (in fact, I recommend reading this whole post first before watching anything). If you see anything goofy or confusing – just go ahead and leave a comment and I will attend to it directly!

Remember: I will be sewing live, and I will embed and upload the entire video playlist here as I go:

Here are the materials you need!

The Kelly Jean pattern (here).
Non-stretch denim or equivalent (sewing yardages are on page two of the pattern)
All-purpose thread & topstitching thread*
Needles: denim (or heavy, sharp, universal); also double* and topstitch needles*
Tracing medium & tracing wheel
Paper & tape
Buttonhole chisel*

* Optional; watch the first video for more information

– as well as your tuned-up sewing machine and manual, cutting equipment, pins, scissors, iron and ironing board!

For fabric, I’m using a fantastic canvas from The Hand and Eye Sewing Supply – a fairly new fabric shop that has some absolutely fantastic bottomweights!

I’ll be sewing on three machines: my domestic Pfaff, a White serger (for seam finishing), and my Pfaff 130 (for topstitching). If you don’t have three machines never fear – I will be going over how to make the jeans if you are only sewing with one machine; however, I highly recommend you borrow and set up a second machine for topstitching.

Our schedule! This sew-along begins 5 PM Pacific on Saturday the 20th, hosted simultaneously on my Bespoke Hogaboom Facebook page and my Twitch channel; they are then uploaded to my Vimeo channel if you miss out! And all dates are hosted on my Calendar (here’s a live link you can add to your own).

If you have questions about jean construction – please ask here in the blog post. If you have questions about your specific jean muslin and fitting – ask in the Rad Patterns Facebook group!

SAT 20: cutting & marking
TUE 23: interfacing, back and front pockets
WED 24: back yoke, inseams, outseams
THU 25: zip fly, waistband
FRI 26: belt carriers, button & buttonhole, & grommets

And finally! You have the opportunity to enter the giveaway below! Please read carefully to enter. If you like, you can subscribe to my sewing emails (about one per month).

You do not have to subscribe to my emails for the giveaway!

Rad Patterns 25K Bralette Sew-Along Livestream, Kelly Hogaboom / Bespoke Hogaboom

sew-alongs & a giveaway: a bralette, & a onesie!

We are still on our extended “staycation” (all credit to Julian Collins for this reframing) and what better way to embrace the chaos than with a bit of cozy! Join me in January to sew up an adult-sized bralette by Rad, and a onesie by DIBY!

2020 Bespoke Hogaboom Holiday Stitch 'N' Bitch

the holiday stitch ‘n’ bitch is here!

Quick and easy, 5 PM Pacific on Tuesday the 15th of December and Thursday the 17th – I’ll be demonstrating how to make a lined Christmas stocking as well as the twist-top headband you are often seeing me wear!

ART HQx t-shirt clinic with Bespoke Hogaboom

ART HQx t-shirt clinic!

ART HQx t-shirt clinic with Bespoke Hogaboom

I am so incredibly excited to announce a joint venture in my hometown – a t-shirt clinic at ART HQx in Hoquiam!

Yes – I’m going to help you produce a t-shirt and you’re going to get to tour the amazing art collective that is celebrating their one year anniversary!

This event features a $5 per shirt reservation fee. W will be maintaining strict Covid distancing measures. You need to wear your mask, use the hand-washing station upon ingress and egress, and observe six feet of distance. Don’t worry, Jeanne at the studio is very used to safely navigating Covid art projects, and we have plenty of indoor and outdoor space for all!

We have four designs available (two of them customizable), and when you reserve your spot you can request a t-shirt – or bring your own blank. 

All ages and abilities always welcome.

Ready to schedule? Slots are open!

Follow @art_hqx on Instagram and Facebook for more amazing projects!

And – I’ll see you on the 12th!