Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Workwear 16

Another jump-in-front-of-the-camera selfie.

Note to self:  look the other way next time so your glasses don't reflect the lamp...

The Zig-Zag Jalie 2566, teamed up with my much-loved-but-wearing-out Jalie 2919 cardigan and RTW black jeans.

I added a bathroom mirror selfie of the T shirt; I really wasn't sure what to do about the band.  There was no way to get a nice solid stripe.  I thought about doing a plain black or white band but decided that would be kinda standoutish.  So I just let the band do its sharktooth thing.  I could switch it if I decide to...but I think it's ok as is.  Any opinions?  Would you go with a solid color?

As the Governor of our great state has declared a state of emergency due to expected snowfall...in an area with primarily solar snow removal...our offices, as well as pretty much all of the town, are going to be closed tomorrow.  So my plan to post the new t's daily is not going to happen.

Not sure if I will get any sewing done.  I neglected housework and all last weekend; I might see if I can catch that up just a bit.

Or I might chuck it and sew anyway.  You never know with a snow day. ;-)

Monday, February 23, 2015

Work Wear 15 and a Goodie

I just may document each of the new tops as I wear it...

Today it was the long sleeved black Jalie 2566 T   (ahem.  You did notice that I FINALLY REVIEWED THAT BABY!)

It was worn with black/brown striped Loes Hinse Oxford Pants (and the stripe is not nearly so pronounced when it is not in front of a flash...)  and Burda magazine's 'waistcoat' from May 2009.

And my spontaneous infinity scarf purchase, just because it has black, brown and denim blue in it.  I felt way spiffier than the photo looks.

Two of the three outstanding fabric orders arrived today and one of them contained a goodie I've been trying to snag for years...  Emma Onesock actually carries those Pantone color guides!  I found out because she mentioned that it was excluded from her recent sale.

Now I can be spot on my choir colors! LOL!

Actually, I bought it so I could reference the numbers to get a better idea of what the actual colors of fabrics are from the retailers who cite them.  My monitor is NOT the most color correct thing out there.

I've marked two of our upcoming choir colors ...Lucite Green,just under the tab on the left and Scuba Blue, which is just above the sticky note on the right.

I will say that Lucite Green is considerably lighter than I thought, and Scuba Blue is more intense than I thought.

Two of the fabrics that came in today's boxes were ordered because I perceived them to be close to what I thought was Lucite Green;  neither one was...although one was the next-door-neighbor color to Scuba Blue and will probably pass for that.

So.  Hopefully the guide will help me actually pick the right colors going forward...lol...

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Choir Wardrobe 2/22/15

Last Sunday for the February colors of Black and white; I grabbed  a black-and-white striped knit Jalie 2566 (still unreviewed) t-shirt and put it under the Vogue 8305 drapey cardigan. Black jeans that need overdying in the worst way...

And, just to pat myself on the back, I did it!  5 t shirts in one weekend.  The diagonal stripe is The Sewing Workshops' Helix T, and the others are...you guessed it...Jalie 2566.  The solid black T's and the zig zag stripe are cotton/lycra, the blue/white stripe is a mystery knit from the flat fold table at Hancock's, and the Helix T is a really, really nice rayon lycra from EmmaOne Sock that has actually been sewn up in the same calendar month that it arrived.

6.75 yds out.  But, oy, the yards coming in...too many cold weather sales going on...

My goal for tomorrow...write up that Jalie 2566 T shirt review...

Thursday, February 19, 2015

My Challenge: A 5 -T Weekend

The  only event on the schedule this weekend is a breakfast meeting...that might or might not happen, depending upon the weather. 

I have 5 t-shirts cut out and queued up.  Gonna see if I can get all 5 sewn up.  4 of the 5 are my TNT Jalie 2566  that-still-hasn't-been-reviewed, and the 5th one is my first go at the Sewing Workshop's Helix T.

I want all of  'em in the wardrobe, and I want some yards out recorded.

I might or might not have fabric on order from one or two online vendors who had sales last week... (whistles a little innocuous tune...)

So!  Here goes... :-)

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Are you watching the Bee?

I'd put up links, but they seem to only be actually good for a few days.

But go to Youtube and search for 'The Great British Sewing Bee season 3' and, if you're quick enough, you'll get some results.

Once again, Judges May and Patrick and host Claudia challenge, question, encourage,  rank and remark upon the sewing of a weekly dwindling number of home sewers.

Once again, I'm amazed at how well these folks perform under pressure.

Every week, my jaw drops at the 90 minute transformation challenge.  They complete incredible transformations -- I'd still be trying to make up my mind what I wanted to do.

The show is charming.  The folks are warm and friendly, and the only hint of drama comes from a camera shot of a somewhat stony face when one contestant hears that another has chosen to do the same creature for a kids' costume challenge.

If you watch in the background, you'll see the contestants joking with each other and helping each other out.

Five out of nine didn't even finish the little boy's lined, welt-pocketed vest.  Real people, real sewing.

Of course, I would've constructed it differently, so as to not have to 'sew blind'...and probably would've lost points for not following directions. :-)

I've heard that a pilot for an American version was actually filmed, then broadcast on some obscure cable channel with no promotion and so faded instantly away. 

Wonder if some kind of challenge could be wrangled around the Sewing Expos that travel the country...recorded and posted to Youtube, they'd go viral around the sewing community, if they were well done.  And it would be great promotion for the Expos.  But it would add the expense of a production crew.  Dunno if the ROI would be worth it.

So, I'll watch the rest of the season...and see if the stereotype shattering Lt. Col. will keep his string of creativity and excellent needlework running to the end, or if the continually-second-place retired air hostess will kick her game up enough to end up on top instead of runner-up.

Such fun... ;-)

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Choir Wardrobe 2-15-15

February's colors are black and white; it was cold this morning and I was chicken.

The pants were not as warm as I would've liked; RPL woven stripe, in a modification of Loes Hinse's Oxford pants...ie., I took the stovepipe shape and turned it into something of a flare.  It sort of works; worn these pants for years.  Dunno if I will ever try it again; I've got a Jalie flared leg pants pattern that works pretty well and seems to fit better through the thigh.

RTW white knit top and the hemmed gray-scale scarf panel.

And a RTW wool flannel jacket.  Because I was too self conscious to wear the hippie caveman vest.... I had it on, with an appropriate necklace and...I chickened out.

Fun...yes...but maybe a little too out there for choir.  For me, anyway...

Friday, February 13, 2015

Right there in plain sight...

If I had actually paid attention, I would've seen the problem when I traced the pattern.

Look at where that circle to match the end of the collar is located.

Right slap on the CF line.

The pieces matched up beautifully, just as drafted.

Only...the light has finally dawned on me... no shirt EVER should have the collar on that CF line.

I looked at every RTW banded collar shirt in my closet (I only have about 3).  Every one has the collar set back from that CF line between 1/4" and 3/8"...just like all my hubby's.

So why does the home sewing pattern industry not recognize this?

And why has it taken me so long to pay attention enough to realize that it is NOT my fault that the collars always look wonky?

So...I will be adjusting the collar pattern so that it hits about 1/4" short of that marked dot.

I've also got an idea for a little tweek for that 'painless placket' to actually turn it from a slit/dart into a placket and still be pretty painless.

So, yeah, I will be making another go at that shirt very soon.  :-)

Monday, February 09, 2015

Finally...something 'done'...

It's done, it's pressed, it's in the closet.

I need to go check a couple of things on the pattern before I write the review up, but my first iteration of McCall's 6436 finally gives me something to put in the 'done' column.

So, it's the pre-review photo discussion...

Not horrible, but a LONG way from TNT status.

The fabric is a lovely shirting that came from one of Michael's crazy sales about 12 years ago...but it's 100% cotton and so has no stretch whatsoever.  

This pattern comes in muti-cup sizing; I cut out the D cup and still need a wee bit of a FBA,   The darts are about 3/4" too high, too, and maybe just a bit too long.  Hard to tell, since they're not quite pointed right.

The shoulders fit fairly well, which is something.  I believe I did a little work on those, but I'll have to check my notes.  I cut it out before Christmas and now I'm not sure what I did to the pattern...

I left the back darts in and it's just a hair snug in the back.  I think I'll add a wee bit to the side seams, though, and leave the dart shaping there.  It at least gives the suggestion of a back waist...

I took a good bit out of the circumference of the cuff; it was huge.  But I think I need to put about 1/2" back in, just in case I want to wear a wristwatch. 

And I will change up that sleeve vent.  I've finally figured out what is wonky with that Palmer/Pletsch 'Painless Placket' that is used in virtually all their long-sleeved garments.... There is a seam along that vent line, and the opening is actually just a finished off bit at the bottom, not a true placket at all.  So, when the cuff is buttoned up, the sides of the sleeve are actually pulled into an overlap...creating a dart.  And, like all darts, it makes a bubble. Which means it's really just a gappy slit.

So, before I make it again...I'ma gonna tape the sleeve pattern up along that seam, which is perfectly FINE, as there is no shaping in it whatsoever, and put a true placket on it. 

Even a continuous lap lays flatter than the PP slit... and there was no mention of easing the sleeve cap, which was absolutely necessary.

The other issue is the collar bit that I pointed out a couple of days ago.  But I still need to verify that it was a problem with the draft and not my error.  Either way,  I'm not terribly happy with the collar directions...too much handwork, and it still doesn't have that professional polish I'm looking for.

But I'm not awfully disappointed.  I like the overall shape of the shirt and the fit in the shoulders is better than I've had in earlier shirts.  It's definitely wearable under a vest or a sweater.   I may very well make some pattern changes and give it another go before too long.

But first I think I'll sew up some quick knit tops.  I want to get some 'yards out' recorded...

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Choir Wardrobe 02 08

 Black and white means I get to wear this jacket; it was the first one off of the Vogue/Todays  Fit 8043.  I had a slight matching problem with the plaid on the sleeves....put the match line on the wrong plaid line...but I'd forgotten that until I re-read the review.  So it obviously doesn't bother me much now.

RTW jeans and sweater...and it really was a bit too warm for this combo today, being as how it got into the low 60's, but I wore it anyway. 

Saturday, February 07, 2015

Maybe it's not just me...

I have had a very  common experience when making banded-collar shirts.

If you'll excuse the blurry photos, I can show easier than I can explain:
The collar wraps so far around that it overlaps when the band button is done up.

Of course, I will never wear it done up, but it's annoying just the same

Since I was doing laundry today, I had one of my hubby's RTW shirts handy, to photograph for contrast.
Not only do the front collars not overlap, there is a substantial gap between them.  

For years and years, I have assumed it's because I'm such a mediocre seamstress that I just can't get the collars right.

But I'm coming to a different conclusion now.

I think the drafts are bad.

You'd think I would have figured this out by now, and started walking that seam to make sure it's going to work.

I will be pulling that pattern out and giving that a good check before I write the review.

But first I have to pick out about 4 buttonholes.

The 'this ought to be a good idea'  buttonhole foot.

You put your button in the little space at the back and it automatically makes a buttonhole to fit it.

Except it makes a buttonhole that's a bit too big, so I actually have to use a button that is slightly smaller than my intended button in order to get one the right size.
I made buttonholes in the neckband and sleeve cuffs, then tried it on to mark the rest of the buttonholes on the band.  Well, actually to just mark the button that goes at the full bust, since that 's the one spot that there Must Be A Button.  Then I marked off the rest of the buttons from that.

And I thought that those buttonholes looked awfully big...but I hadn't moved anything so I just shook my head and kept going.

I had to refill the bobbin...that's when I noticed that somehow the little slider that holds the button in place on the foot had gotten jostled or somesuch thing and was not holding the button securely.

So it was making buttonholes about 1/8" too long.


Sunday, February 01, 2015

Choir Wardrobe...February 1st. Already.

One month down in 2015.  Staggering.

But February is the EASY choir month...black and white.  Which means I can pull any number of things out of the closet. 

Today I found clean in my closet: 

The Vogue 8305 Drapey Cardigan, in soft drapey shape-shifting  rayon/lycra jersey,   very stout cotton/lycra blend knit done up in   Burda Magazine's Boat Neck top from Feb 2010 .  That black and white stripe actually has a hint of gold Lurex outlining the stripes.  Nothing major, just a hint, and I didn't know it was there when I ordered the fabric.  I think I have about a yard left; I need to make myself a shell top out of it.  Cause it's just that cool.

Black Lee straight leg jeans that are really looking more charcoal gray these days.  I've heard of folks overdying faded jeans...I may give it a go sometime.

I fought with the unblocker this afternoon and managed to watch the recap of the 2014 Great British Sewing Bee.  The folks who were in that group of sewing enthusiasts were just charming. 

I think I'll go spend an hour or two in my sewing room tonight. ;-)