Friday, September 30, 2011

Mysterious Laundry problem

For the last few months, I have noticed, from time to time, some discoloration on woven garments.

But only on POINTS of woven garments.

Latest example:

I had pre-treated similar spots on shirts in this load and washed them, then checked before they went into the dryer and I didn't see anything.  But these two shirts came out of the dryer with spots; one on a collar point, one on one of the lower band points.

So the dryer seems to be implicated

But I don't know why this is happening or what is causing it.  So I sort of crawled in and took a look.

We purchased this dryer when we bought the house in 2005.  There is one odd spot on one of the vents that MIGHT be a rust source; I can't tell really what it is. But it wouldn't explain why the spots are only showing up on points, not other parts of the garments; I had some rust spots in my old dryer that would leach if damp clothes sat in it.  But those spots would show up anywhere, not just on points, and besides, these shirts were put in, immediately dried and removed.

Could the points be slipping down into the juncture of the turning drum and the back (or front)?  Why/how would they do that...and how can I either clean that part or prevent them?  I suppose I could make a really big mesh bag to hold them...

Anyone else ever had a problem like this???

Thursday, September 29, 2011

A 'What Was I Thinking' Giveaway

Now that The Wedding is past and we can begin to head back to what passes for normal life around here, I decided I'd just stay in dressmaking mode for at least a little bit and began the search for the next Serious Dress.  I want a (possibly bateau neckline?) sheath dress w/ 3/4 sleeves that will be good for dressy fall events.  I purchased some deep red wool tricotine just because I loved the color last February, and I'm determined to get it made into something wearable for this fall/winter season.  Since I just ordered some burgundy rayon lining from Gorgeous Fabrics current sale (along with a couple of other pieces that have been literally haunting me for months...more on that when the fabric arrives ;-) ) I thought I'd get rolling on the pattern search.

 In the course of digging through my stash of patterns, I pulled out the famous Vogue 8280 'Galaxy' dress and discovered, to my utter astonishment, that I' purchased the smallest size range - 4/6/8.

But, my stupidity has turned into my reward for one of you dear folks who drop by here, because I decided to give it away.  Just leave a comment on any post on the blog between now and, say, noon central time on Sunday, and I'll throw all the comment authors' names into a  hat and post the winner on Sunday's Choir Wardrobe post.

Meantime, I'll be checking my Hancocks/JoAnn's sale flyers for the next Vogue sale so I can pick up the pattern in a more reasonable middle-aged spread size range. ;-)

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Choir Wardrobe 9/25/11

First, a bit of news:  the decision has been made to not use the full choir on Saturday nights; our pastors felt it was beginning to be a little too much to ask of the volunteers; we were having problems keeping a full choir on both Saturday and Sundays.  So Saturday night will just be a small praise team, like the 8 AM Sunday service, and we will just be using the full choir on 2nd and 3rd service Sundays.

So the upshot of this is that I will only be posting one choir photo per week instead of two for at least a while.  That takes a bit of the pressure off; while it didn't bother My Sweet Baboo to wear the same thing on Sunday morning that he had worn for a couple of hours the night before, I just wasn't feeling good about that.  So my wardrobe requirements have just been halved.... LOL...
So, for the last weekend of muted green, cream and brown, I wore the mossy green rayon/lycra jersey  Jalie 2682 top, Lee denim bootcuts and a tweedy linen jacket that was very likely my first mail-order Cold Water Creek purchases about 10 ish years ago.  It has some black in the mix, but the other colors in it are spot on, so I fudged and wore it today.  It just looks taupish from a distance anyway.

This may be the last time out for that green top; the fabric at the bottom of the v really is wearing out; it's ripped through the stitching, even though you have to look Very Close to see that!   I have some olive green rayon/lycra jersey to make a replacement, but I'll still be very sorry to see it go.  The new fabric is a little more yellowy than this is; this color has been good to me and I'll miss it!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thowin' up some photos

...because I'll link to these from reviews later! LOL!

I put on the MOB dress last night...sans makeup, jewelry and P*ntyhose, just so My Sweet Baboo could snap a photo that I could use for the review.   The just-barely-visible bruise on my right leg just inside below the knee is, I think, from climbing up and down and leaning on the big aluminum ladder on the platform at church, using a steamer to get the wrinkles out of the background curtain.  Prince Charming joined me with a second steamer after a while, and the two of us got that thing fairly wrinkle-free in about an hour and a half.  But the bruise made P*ntyhose a necessity for the wedding...

The Butterick top pattern lines the garment to the edge on all the edges; I thought the neckline would stand open enough for the back side to show, so I made facings for the neck edge: 

All in all, the dress worked, although I didn't think about the petite adjustment I made through the upper chest and upper back also raising the waistline and the hem.  I'd've caught that in a second muslin...and if I ever make the dress again (and that's quite possible; I love this basic pattern), I'll add that length back in between the bust and the waistline.

And I just *might* aim for the length to be mid-knee, rather than the top of my knee.  Not sure I'm wild about that short of a length on me.

Here's another photo, which is not a very high-quality picture, but I love the composition once I cropped it.  It makes me smile...

The other wedding -related sewing I did was a surprise gift for the Princess's L*ingerie shower (such trouble I'm going to so that creepers won't land here with creepy searches!).  I hustled (and failed to have a clean house for the weekend) to make her a tap and cami set from Vogue 7837, from raspberry-sherbet colored silk charmeuse and some fancy lace I'd picked up a number of years ago at a serious Hancock's sale.  The only problem was shaping the lace to the edges; I ended up cutting the motifs apart and reconnecting them to fit the necessary curves.  Plus, the lace had no vertical symmetry, so it is just a wee bit uneven from side to side.   I had to shorten the top about 3 inches to get the lace to work right..but, to be honest, I think it was probably longer than she would've liked anyway:

Unfortunately, due to some glitches and goofs, she didn't actually GET the set until they were in the ready room preparing for the ceremony.  So I don' t know if she liked it or not or if it fit or not.  Guess I'll find out when they get back from the honeymoon...I don' t even know if it made it to the suitcase or if it got sent back to the apartment.

So, now to find some time to write the reviews! ;-)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Then and Now

I thought I'd do a little reminiscing...the first dress I reviewed for the Flute Player (she was, I think, 6) and the most recent dress I reviewed.

Sigh.  Time flies.

I will post more about the things sewed for the wedding as the week progresses.  Unfortunately, I did not manage to get a good shot of the MOB dress at any point Saturday, so I'll need to put it back on and have someone point the camera at it.  The pictures I did see, though, revealed some fit issues that the mirror did not.  I really could've benefited greatly from one more muslin; it's a pity I didn't have time.  But I did learn some things about drafting and fitting...and it probably fit at least as well as something bought RTW would've fit.

I read back over the wedding posts and realized I never mentioned what happened with the bridesmaid's dresses.  At the very point at which I was ready to dig in and start the manufacturing process, the Bride decided that it would be easier on me if each of the girls all just went out and bought a grey dress that she liked.  So long as it was sleeveless and knee length, she was happy with it.  So we had an eclectic mix of dresses in a couple of different shades of gray (one had some black accents, which went with the overall color scheme) that actually looked very nice together.  Made the guys, in their rented suits and matching ties, look kind of cookie cutterish in contrast.

And I suppose the best thing is that none of the girls will ever wear their dress in an 'Ugly Bridesmaids' pageant...

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Choir Wardrobe 9/18/11

September colors are muted green, cream and brown or oatmeal but, due to the festivities yesterday and enjoying the company of our  out-of-town guests, we skipped church last night.  And this morning, I skipped contacts and makeup and went for easy with the CWC knit bootcut jeans,  Christine Jonson's Sleeveless Basewear 2 top from olive rayon/lycra jersey, and my ever-useful heathery brown rayon jersey Jalie 2566 cardigan and my creamy balsa bead necklace and plastic door-hanger earrings from the late '80's. 

It has occurred to me recently that we in our choir were color blocking before color blocking was cool...never been ahead of a fashion curve before... LOL!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Even the Mascara Survived

I may have to put on the dress again for a proper photo for reviewing, but you can sort of see the finished product.  It was a lovely  day for a wedding, and a lovely ceremony, and I think I want to sleep for two days now...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pictures and Reviews are Coming...

Crunch time on the wedding now; T minus 39 hours (give or take...) and counting.
I have finished the MOB dress, after making every. single. bone-headed mistake. in. the. book.

That puts my wedding sewing at:
1 bridesmaids dress (jersey knit...not too tricky)
1 bridal veil (very very very plain and simple)
1MOB dress (simple does hair-pulling)
1 surprise present for the Princess's bridesmaids/bachelorette party/lin*gerie shower...a Vogue 7837 tap-and-cami set.  She didn't know I was making it and I snuck it over to the hostess this morning; wish I could see her open it but, well, maybe it's just as well I'm not.  I did get a 'floor pic' of that and I'll post it in a bit, too.

After things settle down. :-)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Moment of Silence

I am not posting my choir wear this weekend.

Instead, a moment of blogging silence in memory of September 11, 2001.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

'Rock of Eye' drafting

All I have to report on the MOB progress is that I have obtained the necessary zipper and hope to get the dress cut out this afternoon before the leadership meeting this evening that precedes our  women's conference, which starts at 9:30 in the morning.

So I thought I'd share something that showed up in my burn feeder today.  I've subscribed to Thomas Mahon's blog, just for the fascinating glimpses he gives into the life and business of an English bespoke tailor, and to my delight found he'd linked a video of himself hand drafting a jacket front.

Like many Americans, I enjoy listening to the accent, but the video (imbedded in his post) is fascinating.  Using the previously drafted jacket back, a tape measure, chalk, and at one point a 'stick', Thomas drafts the basic outline of his jacket in about 12 minutes.

I was especially intrigued by the shape and placement of the armsceye.

Definitely worth a look if you're interested in such things.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

The MOB Dress - part 2

I spent most of Labor Day working on the muslin.  Unfortunately, because the cheap fabric I was using was far too sheerish to put up on the world wide web, I don't have any photos to show you.  But I
1) Petited the upper bodice on both the front and back

2)shaved a wee bit off of both the side front and the side back where they went into the armhole, to reduce some gaping there

3) Added a bit to the armsceye; the raw edge was about where I wanted the seamed edge to fall from the bottom all the way around the front to the top, so I basically just added a seam allowance

4) took a bit off of both back princess seams below the high hip

5) shortened the length 1" (I plan to use 2" hem allowances) and

6) drafted neckline facings; I think the wrong side is going to show a bit and I'd much rather see the face fabric than the lining.  I also plan to reduce the seam allowances on the neckline so that it stands a bit higher.

I may not get back to it until Thursday...and this weekend is our annual Women's Conference , so, while the conference will be wonderful and I'm really looking forward to it, it's going to be a wash as far as time available for sewing.

And I don't think I have a suitable zipper in the stash...looks like a Hancock's run is is the works.

You see why I decided I wanted a simple style. ;-)

Monday, September 05, 2011

The MOB dress - Part1

I fully planned to make my dress last, after everything else was done, because I figured that if I had to wear a dress hanging in the closet already the world wouldn't end.

However, the tulle that the Princess had purchased to make her veil has been determined to be too yellow, and I've placed an order for some 'light ivory' tulle from fabricdotcom that will hopefully match her creamy white dress better.

But, it's a holiday weekend, and even with FdotC's typically speedy delivery, it'll be the end of the week before it gets here.

So...I figured I'd start on my dress.

I pulled down the Vogue Kay Unger dress pattern that I'd had pinned to my bulletin board for ages and found that I just didn't have the oomph to do it. I wanted something simpler.

However, I had this picture torn from a Coldwater Creek catalog (who knows HOW long ago) also pinned to the bulletin board:
That features one of the most flattering necklines I can wear; I've been looking at it and looking at it and it's been growing on me.

And it looks Very Simple...especially as I have Butterick 3843 in my stash, which includes a sleeveless top that is basically just the top 2/3 of that dress.

So I've pulled that out, traced it off, and added length to make it 22" long from the waist.   I traced a larger size than my heart wanted to trace, and my gut tells me it will be too big, but it is a VERY slim style and I definitely wanted room to move, sit and breath.  So I pursed my lips and went with the larger size.  The first alteration I made was to lower the bust point, which is just a requirement, and then I redesigned the armhole, following Alexandra's example.

It looks a little odd to me, but I'll give it a go and see if it makes a difference.

Now to make up the muslin and see how much I need to adjust before cutting the Good Stuff...

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Choir Wardrobe 0904

With the new month, the colors have changed.  September colors are muted green, cream, and oatmeal or brown.

Last night, I decided to go with an old Loes Hinse City Dress shell made up in a crinkly rayon print, and topped it off with Jalies 2566 cardigan, made up in that yummy heathered brown rayon knit that I would love to have in about a dozen colors.  I put them with Lee bootcuts that, even though they are labeled 'short', need 2" heels if I'm going to wear them.  They are definitely Saturday night pants...

 Today, I pulled out my original Jalie 2682 green rayon jersey top.  I made it to wear in choir over 3 years ago and have literally worn it to death; the fabric at the v of the neck is beginning to rag out a bit.  I've got some green fabric to replace it...after the wedding! ;-)

It's teamed up with Coldwater Creek: a taupey sweater that was close enough to 'oatmeal' to work, even though it looks grey in the photo, and the knit jeans again.

And flat sandals.