Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Humongeos Error of Unknown Origin

Ok, the topstitching was a pain in the patootie since I'm using a contrast thread so it needs to be darn near perfect.  I don't know how many times I pulled the topstitching off of those shoulder seams, only to have them still not be balanced perfectly.  I finally achieved 'good enough' and moved on to the collar.

It wasn't until I came to the computer and pulled up pictures of the pattern and other reviews to check the collar that I realized that only the sleeve side of those seams was supposed to be topstitched.  So I took out the topstitching on the body side; that alleviated much of the 'not quite symmetric' problem I was having.  But the collar is covering that up, so it doesn't show at all in the 'WIP' photograph.

The collar, however, was beyond such simple fixes. Look at it carefully, then look at the pattern on Vogues's site. Do you notice the difference?  The collar is supposed to come all the way to the front edge of the jacket!  Mine is a good 3 3/4 inches short.  On both sides. That's 7 1/2 inches total (can I scream?  Just a little??)  Now, if you look at the reviews for this pattern, you'll  see that everyone else's collar comes to the front edge as well.  This is obviously an error on my part. 

But, not being able to find the pattern, I can't even begin to figure out what the problem is.

My guess is that I made bustline alterations (low, full) and somehow altered the neckline without realizing it.  I don't remember making alterations, but I can't figure out ANY way I could've generated such a whopping big error without having done that.  I don't believe it was caused by stretching of the neckline; only the sleeves weren't stabilized by something right at the start, and the error is consistent between the jacket and the facing/lining, which I wouldn't expect if they had stretched out of shape.  It must be an error in the (presumably altered) pattern that I used to cut the jacket.

Of course, no one I meet when wearing the jacket is going to look at it and exclaim, 'Oh, my goodness!  Why isn't that collar where it's supposed to be?'  (unless, of course, said person happens to have read the blog...).  It just looks like that's the way the collar was supposed to be; it'll be our little secret that it's wrong.

Sigh. I *really* liked the collar as drawn on the envelope and sewn by everyone else in the world but me.

I really, really hope that pattern turns up.  I want to know what happened here.

Friday, March 30, 2012

'Flying Blind' Jacket Progress

I have finished the lining of the jacket; it's ready to be attached to the shell when it's ready.  The next step is attaching the cuffs to the sleeves; first I need to fell stitch the cuffs into a circle, just to make sure they line up properly.  I don't know if the directions were to finish the cuffs, then hand stitch them, or do a funky clip to the seamline to sew the very bottom part of that seam by machine...I still can't find the pattern and guide.

So far, I think the only thing I have messed up is that I assumed the seam allowance on the pocket welts was 3/8"; however, once I got the welts actually pinned to the jacket it appears it was supposed to be 5/8"; my welts went a bit past the dots.  But that's pretty minor.

For the lining, I used a silk/cotton panel print that I ordered from an online vendor, thinking I could use it for a scarf.  However, the fabric was much too substantial to be a scarf and it sat around for a while while I wondered what on earth I'd do with it.

As I recall, it somehow ended up lying next to the turquoise wool and I noticed that they went together rather well.   So I decided to use it for the body lining.  The back pleat is still basted shut.

The sleeve lining is Ambiance.

I *might* actually finish this in time for the Easter services; so far, I haven't heard anything about costume sewing...

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Lookit, it's a PRESENT!

My friend, Gail, is an artist who specializes in scarves and banners.  Some time ago, she created a Facebook page for her studio and offered a little premium for the first few folks who 'liked' it.

I was fortunate enough to stumble onto it that very day...and I 'liked' it before I even read the offer for a hand painted silk scarf.  I mean, Gail is my friend and she does beautiful work that has been included in juried shows...what's not to like? 

I actually forgot about the scarf.

So you can imagine how tickled I was to get a package in the mail yesterday containing this exquisite silk chiffon scarf.

I sent her a message to let her know it had arrived and I loved it, and I had to ask about the processes.  She said it had been hand painted, then silk screened w/a discharge agent.  The phrase on the scarf is from Song of Songs 2:11 & 12:  See!  The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come...

I've heard rumors that fuschia will be one of the choir wardrobe colors again this summer; if that turns out to be true you'll likely see me wearing this... and I'll be singing... ;-)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Goin' to the Queue...

Since Turquoise/aqua is one of the colors for next month's choir wardrobe, I  pulled the  Vogue 1100 jacket out of the queue box. I'd cut the fabric, the lining and the interfacing and bagged it all up in a zip-lok bag sometime last summer, before we started the porch remodel.

For some unfathomable reason, I did NOT put the pattern in the bag with the  fabric. 

Now I can't find it.  I've looked in all the places I would expect it to be, but all the stuff got shuffled but good when we cleaned the porch off and, well, it's apparently been put in some unexpected place.

So, I'm rather flying blind on this.  But I'm determined to finish it before the volunteer sewing kicks in.  If it looks good when I'm done, I may very likely wear it for Easter.  We'll see.

Meantime, I did something I don't do often and browsed my bookmarked fashion blogs.  Normally I'm just shaking my head over what folks wear (or what designers send down the runway!) but I was completely smitten with  this Jacket I spotted on The Sartorialist.  I don't think my drafting skills are up to that...but I want to recreate that in the worst way.  Fabulous!!

Friday, March 23, 2012

WHERE is that Waistline??

A bit of Friday fun...this is a page scanned from a catalog I recently received from one of my favorite RTW vendors.

You'll likely have to click on the photo to see this, but the britches in this photo are all listed has having waistlines that sit 'slightly above the waist' (top left) or 'at the waist' (other three).

Just for grins, I ran it through Paint and drew a line where the natural waistline actually occurs on the models .  Actually, I think I botched the top ones a bit; there's really not enough trunk showing to tell where the narrow spot is. I really think the natural waist on the upper left one is just above the waistline of the pants. But you get the idea.

So, has the waistline officially moved to the high hip now?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

...and Here We Go...

The volunteer sewing front has been very quiet of late.

The calm before the storm, y'all.

A week or so ago our children's pastors asked me to lead the production of a number of costume pieces for our children's summer theme. As in, a small something for each kid participating.

In the little Baptist church we were in for something like 20 years back in the day 'something for each kid' would not be an issue.  But we have hundreds of kids in our children's ministry each week.  This is going to be a pretty major task.  Now, all of those kids won't come to the camp/day camp events that will be part of the whole 'Chronicles of the Kingdom' theme, but, well, we'll have enough to keep us hopping.  And they need them by sometime in May.

We're planning a sew-a-thon for the Thur-Fri-Sat after Easter.  The request for sewing volunteers is going in the church bulletin this week.  If we don't finish that weekend, we may schedule another or...we may just divvy the stuff up and sew it at home.  We'll have to see how it goes.

Then, yesterday I got a text from The Flute Player, saying that the Tech Theater teacher wanted to know if I would head up the costuming for the swiftly upcoming production (as in, the show opens  April 19) of To Kill a Mockingbird.  She has one volunteer who has promised to sew/alter/obtain all the ladies' costumes, and there are a number of folks who are willing to help...could I just be the One in Charge?

I didn't exactly say 'No', but I did indicate that I didn't think I could head up two major costuming efforts at the same time.  I'm willing to help, but I need to be doing it NOW, 'cause once April 12 gets here I'm committed to making little knight/squire/medieval outfits.

And I have a pile of things cut out that I really, really need in my wardrobe that I haven't had time to sew up yet.  Obviously, something has got to give.

I'm betting that something is sleep.  Housework went out the door ages ago...

Still, I have a comp time reserve.  I suppose if I need to, and if the urgent things are done, I *might* be able to take a few days off.  We'll see.

Taking a deep breath. Or two.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Choir Wardrobe 2012 03-18-12

Well, after a week of backing up and reloading, we're approaching normal computer capabilities again.  There's still a few things that aren't back, but hopefully I can be a little more active again.

I still haven't found the green for this month...I'd call it a 'bright jade green'; some other folks have called it 'seafoam'.  Maybe if I'd shop at the pricey department stores I'd have better luck, but I just haven't been able to do it.  No matter; we have folks wearing everything from mossy green to almost blue turquoise.  So my muted green scarf..from Target?  Maybe? works well enough.

It's matched  up with my Coldwater Creek knit bootcut jeans, an old  navy blue Evan Piccone poly/rayon jacket on which I nearly botched up the sleeves when I tried to shorten them.  They roll funny and feel weird, but, well, no more than I wear the jacket I put up with it.  Maybe someday I'll make a replacement with sleeves the correct length to begin with.  The sparkly gray knit on the Simplicity 2603 top is a hair darker than the designated gray for this month, but it will be perfect for next month and, under the lights, it all kinda blends anyway.

Next week I'll be tending to other church duties, so I won't be in choir, which means I'm done needing the green now. Whew.  Next month is medium gray, butter yellow and aqua, so I should be pretty much set...or I would be if I could get to my sewing room!  The vest that I began cutting...what, 2 weeks ago? still laid out on the cutting table.

If I could get caught up at work, I'd take a week off to sew.  Maybe after Easter... ;-)

And I thought I could do the SWAP competition this year.  Ha ha and ha.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Choir Wardrobe 2012 -catching up

Since I still had last week's photo in the camera, I decided to just talk about both weeks today.

Our March colors are silver gray, navy blue, and a weird bright bluey-green that defies my ability to name it.  Or to find it; I've ordered a couple of different knits  that looked close on the monitor from online vendors, only to find that one was way too dark and the other was way too yellow.  So, so far, I'm  batting .000 for the green, which is very pretty and fresh but, wow, I can't find it.

Last week I wore an ancient Kwik Sew 2948 twinset, which was my true introduction to successful knit sewing (if I counted right, it was the 16th review I did, back in '02).  The knit was an amazing high - quality navy blue cotton/lycra that I got from Fashion Fabrics club and wish I could find the likes of it now.  It would fit better if I were 10 pounds smaller, but, well, I'm making do. ;-).  The scarf is a little too grayish, but I'm fudging it anyway. I got it last fall at (I think) Target, just because I liked the color.   I can't remember for sure which jeans I wore; I think they were a pair of Lee bootcuts.

Today I *am* wearing Lee bootcuts, along with a sleeveless navy cotton interlock mock t that I bought about a hundred years ago from Lands' End, under my gray rayon/lycra Jalie 2919 pleated cardigan (slightly modified).  You can barely see the green glass bead necklace that I put on to provide the third's not the right shade of green, either, but it's small and under the lights I thought it would be ok.

I actually cut out about 5 knit tops Friday; two navy, one gray and two aqua (one of April's colors...I'm thinking ahead!)  I have the remnant of the gray satin I used for the recent wadder jacket laid out on the table with my Burda 05-09-108 vest anchored down for imminent cutting, and I have suddenly remembered a piece of green linen that has been in my stash for simply ages that *might* do that may turn into a shirt sometime soon.  Just because it's aggravating me not to have complete options. ;-) 

And, with the computer still limping along at a reduced rate, I seem to have just a wee bit more time for sewing...

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Bullet Points

Borrowing from Debbie tonight...

1. I didn't get my choir wardrobe post up this week
2. During lunch on Sunday, the Flute Player suddenly remembered that she had four essays due on Monday
3. Four.  Essays.
4.  She had written maybe one and a half.
5. So she was on the computer until, like, Midnight.
6. I went to bed at 10.
7. I logged on after supper on Monday to put up the choir post.
8. Late.
9. I scrolled through Google Reader first.
10. While I was there, we got hit with a nasty cyber thingy.
11. I didn't click anything...honest...
12 My Sweet Babboo has managed to get it all off.
13. We think.
14. We HOPE.
15. But everything is hidden.
16. All my shortcuts have disappeared.
17. We think everything important is still here, though.
18. We HOPE.
19.  Why do people do that stuff?
20. Isn't there something productive that all that creativity could be used for?
21. I haven't sewn anything since the Wadder.
22. Even though I really need some choir stuff this month.
23. But it doesn't matter if I repeat Sunday since I didn't get the picture posted.
24.Maybe I'll have a little sewing time on Friday.
25. I hope.