Friday, July 30, 2010

Ack! Full Speed Stop!

At long last, I get to sit down and sew a project for myself.

Still not up to the 'just for my pleasure' projects...I need some tops for choir this month; our colors are brown and teal. Brown I have...teal, not so much.

I altered up the cap sleeve longer version of Simplicity 3624 and cut it out of some yummy soft teal rayon-blend jersey, then charged into the sewing room thinking I could whip it up tonight, only to find that, um, all the teal thread in my thread stash was a green-leaning teal; my fabric leans more towards blue. It doesn't match.

Hancock's is closed for the night. So I'm bummed. So guess what I'm gonna do first thing in the morning... ;)

But I'll talk a moment about the alterations. Aside from the 'drop the bust' and the fba, I had to do a bit of style adjusting. Click through on the above link and use Simplicity's nifty little magnifying glass to compare the line drawings of the pattern to the photo of the garment. Notice any difference? I've skimmed a few times through the reviews of this pattern and didn't come across anyone who mentioned this in the review.

The line drawing shows all the front gathers to be directly under the little vertical band on the bodice. It's a nice vertical line. The actual garment, though, as shown on the photo, has the gathers extending for a couple of inches on either side of that center front band. To my eye, that loses some of the impact of the vertical.

The finished band is one inch wide, so I took my fabric, before I cut anything out, and sewed a couple of ease lines on one end for about 8", going across the grain as it would be on the top. Then I pulled the ease lines up to gather the fabric as tightly as I could, measured one inch of the gathered up fabric, then pulled the gathers out.

I can gather 4" of fabric up to 1". So, I went back and adjusted the pattern so that 4" on the lower front would be gathered up into the very center only. Since I needed to add a pinch of ease to the overall width (doggone that middle age spread!), I just used the un-gathered width to add it in.

And I was all pumped to whip it up and see if it worked. Oh well. ;)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Back from Camp

...and the dress fit.

We had a great weekend and the girls had a marvelous time. The honors ceremony was very pretty; the three girls from my class who graduated all pulled a joke on me. The Flute Player was the first one; as they're escorted in for the ceremony, a little biographical blurb is read, based on replies the girls wrote on a questionnaire about themselves and about their class. Her favorite part of class? "When her teacher would go on tangents or 'Rabbit trails' ". Two girls later, M. was escorted in. She put down that her favorite part of class was "When her teacher would go on tangents or 'Rabbit trails' ".
Finally, the last girl to go up on stage was K., and she had a long list of things she loved about Friends club, finished off with , "When her teacher would go on tangents or 'Rabbit trails' ".

I think I'm gonna need to get a little stuffed rabbit to put in our classroom as a mascot....
Now I need to get a shower and a nap!!! ;)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Honor Dress...In The TA-DA! Nick of time...

I had the Flute Player try it on before I added the sleeves; it may be a tad big but I'm not going to sweat it. It's at least as good as something we could buy, and, well, she might wear it for Easter next year if it still fits... ;)

That's three layers thick...the eyelet (which is almost as sheer as batiste)face, underlining and lining, both in white poly/cotton batiste. I was sooo afraid it'd be transparent, but, when she tried it on, it looked ok.

Now I'm just waiting on the last load of laundry. We're supposed to load up at church at 8:30 tomorrow....

Monday, July 19, 2010

Head down, shoulder to the wheel, forge ahead...

Ok, so it's after midnight. What's a few more minutes to pay attention to the sorely neglected sewing blog at this point?? 'Cause I do have some things to report.

Almost a year...or maybe over a year...after first being asked to do it, we're finally getting some new baptism robes made for church. Partly because we have had a few disappear (???what's up with that??) and partly because we never had any in very large sizes and found that we do, occasionally, need some very large sizes. So we're making a few; 13 to be exact. I cut them all out on Thursday, put zippers in 7 on Friday and sewed the shoulder seams and finished the necklines in those same 7 on Saturday. I was working at church and helping my Girl's Only class student finish her tote bag (unfortunately I forgot to take my camera; no pictures yet...). I kinda figured since she needed coaching but not constant supervision I might as well work on a project, too, so I pulled out the fabric that had been ordered on sale last fall and stashed under my desk since about the first of November and set to work on the robes.

Miss A took the Larges home with her to put together; I bagged the rest and stashed 'em back in my office. For the 7 with the zippers in and necklines done, anyone with any sewing ability at all could put on the sleeves (flat), run up the side seams and turn up the hems to finish them. We'll see if I get any takers. ;) If not, I'll work on them as I get the chance. The final four are still just in pieces. But, having been cut out, the chances are good that they'll get sewn before *too* much time passes. At least hopefully before another year goes by!

It's a good thing I worked that way; as it turned out, my student needed almost twice as much time to make the bag as I'd originally allotted, so she was able to work quite a while while I was cutting out and assembling baptism robes. She finished the bag really at the end of our last available session; the arts/crafts competition that she wants to enter it in is at camp, which is this coming Thur-Fri-Sat.

That's also the camp for which The Flute Player needs her white dress. I finally got the lining cut out and whipped together this evening; it looks like the only adjustment I need to make is to take in the shoulder seam right at the neckline just a bit. I'll mark that adjustment and then cut out the main dress fabric tomorrow.

Shoot, she doesn't need it until Thursday; dunno what my hurry is...

Oh, and did I mention we're shorthanded at work this week?? Nope, probably not...

I'm off to see if I can get some good sleep for the next, oh, four and a half hours... ;)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Changing the Honor Dress. Again.

I finally sat down with The Flute Player and told her what I thought would happen with the dress she described to me...raised waist, puffy sleeves and a gathered skirt to below her knees.

It *might* be cute, but my expectation was that it would look like a little girl's dress. Not exactly what we want.

I dug around and found Simplicity 9130, which I made for her sister about 7 years ago. It is *designed* to be made from a border eyelet, and it's a little more sophisticated than what we'd talked about.

She agreed...providing I made it down to her mid-knee and put sleeves on it.

I took some measurements and determined that she's pretty close to the size I cut for her sister; I'm going to make the lining up tomorrow and see if it'll work.

At least I know the dress won't take forever to make... which is a good thing, because we're cutting out baptismal robes tomorrow and sewing them on Friday and Saturday.

Sometimes I really wish my right brain and my left brain would communicate! :rolleyes:

Friday, July 02, 2010

Slow Fade

I had to pick up a few things at Wal-Mart yesterday, so while The Actor was at his weekly drum lesson, I scooted into the Wal-Mart just down the road from the music shop.

As it happened, that is the Wal-Mart of the bodacious dollar (ok, now dollar-fifty) table. So I picked up the items that I had to get and, because I still had a few minutes to kill, went back to the fabric department.

Alas, it is a shadow of its former glory. The discount table is gone; there's a rack there that has *some* discounted fabric but it also had fabric marked at higher prices. I decided to check and see if I could find something suitable for a tablecloth, and while I was looking things over the long-time department manager cut a piece of fabric for another customer, and I heard her say 'Oh, no, I don't know anymore. When I was doing the ordering, I knew what was coming. But I'm not ordering any more, so I never know what's coming or when it will be here. Stuff just shows up."

When she cut my fabric a few minutes later, I asked her about it, and she verified that she's no longer ordering merchandise for her department. "That explains a lot." I commented, looking at the noticeable stock reduction that had taken place since my last trip.

"I knew it was gonna go away the first time my manager told me to reduce the shelves by four feet," she said, "In fact,'she added, gesturing towards the edge of the fabric shelves, "I just took four more feet off those shelves today."

Hence the higher priced fabric on the shelves with the discount stuff. She had to put it somewhere.

I remember going in a year or two ago and hearing a story that one of the frequent customers of the fabric department there had written to someone at the corporate level and gotten a response that the fabric department would stay.

So much for that.

She sighed, "It's going away. It's going slowly...but it's going away."

Guess I'll be making more frequent trips to the discount fabric store in Fayetteville in the future...

But I did get fabric for a nice tablecloth; it was $3/yard but the selvage says 'soil releasing'...which I thought would be good for a tablecloth! ;)

Thursday, July 01, 2010

The Baker's Dozen

13 garments in, um, about 18 weeks; some of these photos aren't the one of the green Jalie 965 tank top; you can just barely see it under the black Simplicity wrap...but it's there!

It was an interesting challenge...I'm sorry that Ann had to go through what she did in order for me to get the idea to do it, but I'm very glad I did. My sewing for myself had been pushed down the priority list a bit...and even two of these were for my daughter...but it was the push I needed to get sewing again.

I'm hoping to maintain that momentum after I finish the Honors Dress and get back to making some things to put in the closet!