Monday, December 30, 2019

A Tale of Two Angels....

Once upon a time, some time ago (6 years?  8 years?  I don't even remember...)  I watched something on stage at church (I don't even remember what that was, either) that involved an angel.  Said angel was wearing the typical satiny night-shirt looking thing that passes for an angel costume in most all church-related theater.  And, for whatever reason, at that moment, I suddenly realized that I was DONE with angels in nightgowns.  It was time for something different.

But what?

I pondered it for a while, thinking about the Biblical descriptions of angels...what few there were.  "Man in shining raiment" seems to be about the summation of it.  Not much help.

But I eventually landed on the idea of angels dressed as knights, with a rampant Lion crest.

I even found a pattern to use.
I would need to find something cool to use for the crest; the included one wasn't quite right.  And I wanted to find basically gold and white metallic knit...where could I find that?

I chatted with our incredibly creative Children's Pastor, Pastor Dave, who also happened to be something of a scholar of all things chivalrous, just to see if he thought it was a good idea.  He loved the concept and said he had some sources for me for swords, armor, etc.

With the assurance that I wasn't totally off the wall, I began a search for suitable fabric.

A trip to Sir's Fabrics up in Fayetteville, Tn netted some very unusual fabric.  They had a bit of thin white poly knit printed with a pale gold foil.  It was subtle...and I suddenly thought it would look fantastic under stage lighting.  As I recall, I bought all they had left.  But it was kind of sheerish, so I also got a knit w/ a kind of burnout ribbed texture, thinking it would show through the goldish top fabric slightly and give a look of depth, movement, hinting at multiple dimensions.  I figured I'd make the trousers and top from the two of them paired up, and bought some snow white poly woven for the tabbard, as well as some gold lame' for the crest.

I took it all home and, by piecing it a bit, managed to get two shirt/pants sets from the gold knit and the lining, and easily got the two tabbards with a good bit left over from the white.  I bagged it up and began playing around with a lion crest, intending to put red beads in the paws and side.  But I was having trouble getting it right, and then I got involved with other stuff and the bag of cut out pieces just got shoved to the back of the sewing nook.

Where it stayed for the next 6 - 8 ish years... Since this was costuming, I didn't add it to my yardage or note when I bought it.  So I don't even know. To be honest, I kind of even forgot about it.  We weren't doing productions at church and it just dropped off the radar.

Ok, fast forward to October of this year.  Our original script idea was to have two lady angels do the  basic narration of our Christmas production, but after the auditions the decision was made to switch to guys...and we had two guys who were sharing one of the roles; one would do the role for the two morning performances and the other would do both evening performances.

My first instinct was to put them both in blazing white tuxedos, but in our first costuming meeting that idea was rejected; Pastor Dave had worn a white tuxedo (with a fair amount of red accent pieces, but still a white tuxedo) as the Angel of Christmas Past in both our productions of The Gospel According to Scrooge 15-ish years ago and they didn't want to repeat that concept.  They actually wanted something a little modern, a little jedi-like, even.

Suddenly I remembered those cut-out things from years past.  That would work...or, rather, I could make it work...if I could find them.

They were interested, so I came home and began digging.  The bag turned up fairly quickly, and I did a quick construction of one of the trousers...no elastic waisline and no hem...and took it in to see if that would work.

The fabric was a hit, and I had the green light.

But I didn't have a lot of chunks-of-time.  I worked on them off and on for a couple of weeks, and got the bottom layer, the tops and trousers, assembled to the hems...and brought them in for the guys to try on.  I pinned up the hem for the guy who would be playing his angel character all weekend, but one of the two double cast guys needed just the edges turned under.  His alternate actually needed some hemming.  BUT...they were going to wear gauntlets that were being made by another lady on their forearms, and we decided to have them wear painted army boots, so the legs could just be stuffed into the tops of the boots.  Sleeve and leg length became much easier at that point.

One of the angels could wear the tabbard pretty much just as it was; but the other needed a wrap style, with a bit of shoulder emphasis.  I had enough of the white fabric left over; I cut the front that I had in the bag on an angle and shortened it to the short-tunic length of the pattern, then flipped it over and cut out a mirrored piece for the other side and cut two football-shaped pieces for the shoulder extension.  I also made an obi waistband from the white, with a gold overlayer made from the remnants that I had saved.  I had JUST BARELY ENOUGH.

Brought the costumes home and found that my sewing machine did NOT play nice with the fabric when the right side was out.  The right side was almost sticky...definitely kind of tacky...and my sewing machine does not have a variable pressure on the presser foot.  I did a lot of unsewing.  I knew they would be hidden THIS time, but who knows what will happen in the future, so I wanted them, well, at least, not horrible.

I had to have them done for a photo shoot that was scheduled for Dec. 7.  It was a close squeak...but I got them done.  (Then they decided not to use the footage with the angels but have them do that scene live).
Poor hanger shots before delivery:



After the folks saw the costumes on them, they decided they weren't quite edgy enough and ordered some white overgarments from a trendy online vendor (yes, they were MENSWEAR).  We also added a long tie belt to the one on the left, which had to be pieced from several scraps, and an actual purchased Jedi-costume belt to the one on the right.

I looked at the result at dress rehearsal.  I felt like the amazing shimmery fabric was just so covered up it wasn't even really showing.  One angel had on a long kimono type garment...only with short, non-kimono sleeves.  The other was a cascade-type jacket with long sleeves.  As I looked at them the day before the show, I suddenly realized that I could remove the sleeves from the toppers.  I approached the director, who said she liked the longer garment just as it was, but gave me the ok to remove the sleeves from the other one.

I hung out about an extra half hour after the rehearsal and performed a double sleeve-ectomy.  I could live with that.

Here are the morning-performance angels in makeup (although you can't see the gold glitter on their faces in the gym / backstage lighting), courtesy of Wayne T., who is the angel on the right:

Actual army boots proved to be cost prohibitive, so, well, the painted barn boots were good enough on short notice.  Maybe next time for the better boots.

The guys did a fantastic job.  And I'm delighted they weren't in nightgowns.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Curtain Tomorrow....

Well, well, ready or not, tomorrow is IT.

I stayed after this morning/afternoon's dress rehearsal to alter up a costume piece...in my opinion, it would look better without sleeves, so after some discussion I actually got permission to perform a double sleeve-ectomy.  I hope the directors like the results; I know the actor will like it because it will make his costume cooler, lol.


The show has come together nicely.   It's been over 10 years since we did a major production; we're kind of relearning the ropes.  If you're curious...it will be online at 9, 11 and 6 PM tomorrow, and 7 PM on  Monday, at https://www.facebook.com/therockfamily.tv/.

I will hopefully post some costume shots and talk about them after Christmas.


So... it's only 5 PM and I am home with no costume sewing to do.  It feels really  weird.  But, you  know, I think I'm going to go on a search for the bottom of the laundry hamper...and at this point, I have to start by unearthing the hamper, lol.

I need to wrap a few Christmas presents as well...like, all of them...LOL

Still don't know if I will get my December Outfit made by the end of the month...although I did order some black stretch velvet from a certain vendor's moving sale, lol.  I could POSSIBLY sew it up in the week off between Christmas and New Year's.  Possibly.


Friday, December 20, 2019

Bummer, man

Ok, blogger has changed the way they display the comments on the moderation/ manage screens, and I didn't realize it.  I have gotten a boatload of chinese-looking-character spam comments this evening, and whilst deleting those I also deleted all the comments going back to June of last year.

Because I didn't realize they were all showing on the same page now.

So if I deleted your comment, I'm sorry...really, really sorry, because it's not like I get a boatload of comments. 

I am taking myself off to bed before I whack up something else...lol...

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Down to the wire...

I still have two pieces to finish before dress rehearsal on Friday...and today, I had a rather unexpected sewing project....

Right after our staff Christmas luncheon, I got called to the auditorium; there had been an accident.  My heart was in my throat for just a moment, but turns out the only harm done was that while the stage was being adapted for the weekend production one of the wing curtains had been damaged by a falling beam (I still am not sure quite what happened).  There were about a dozen corner slashes from starting about 10 feet off the ground and going almost all the way to the top (I don't even have a guess as to how high 'the top' was...).

Being the resident seamstress, I was called in to do a quick mend job.  With the production 5 days off, there was no time for a real repair.  My suggestion to slap gaffe tape on the back side was not accepted...only sewing would do.

But, my sewing box was in my office, so I fetched it, climbed up in the lift and, with a little instruction, raised it all the way up to the topmost gash.

Now, a little backstory.  I actually am afraid of heights.  One of the most terrifying things I did as a teen was to 'cap the grain bin'...pull the lid down and lock it after it was filled.  There was a ladder up the side of the bin, and another set of rungs along the roof, so I had to climb all the way up to the roof, then onto  the roof and up that ladder, pull down the access hatch  and secure it...then back down the ladder to the edge of the roof and rather blindly find the  top rung of the ladder going down the side.  Scared me spitless every time I had to do it.

I have nightmares about climbing ladders or rickety stairs and getting vertigo and freezing, unable to go up or down, that have recurred from my early 20's (I actually think that is a subconscious fear of aging, but it always is climbing up beyond my comfort zone and then shutting down).

And the lift rocked a bit...which was normal...but very unsettling.

So, I carefully knelt down and opened my notions box, which was sitting on the floor of the lift, threaded a needle, and slowly stood up and grabbed the curtain and began to whipstich the cut edges back together.  I focused on breathing slowly, looking only at the work in front of me and NOT looking down.  I was terrified I would drop my needle or my scissors.  I wasn't worried about falling, really, but just the sheer height of it was enough to make me a little giddy.   I could have touched the conduit that runs just below the ceiling if I had tried at all.

I had lowered the lift back down to about the third slash from the top before I felt stable enough to even pull out my phone and take a photo.

We have an LED wall that can be lowered; it's currently in the raised position; that's the bottom edge of it that you see beyond the edge of the curtain.  If you look closely, you can see the needle and thread and the edge of the gash I was working on here.

I think it took me about 45 minutes to get a poor whip stitch done on all of the cuts.

Faced my fear and conquered it.  Booyah.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

A Snowy Afternoon....

Well, well, well, there are visible flakes in the air in the Rocket City and, despite the fact that the whole system is going to blow through really fast and the ground is crazy warm as it's been in the 60's for the last few days... one of the local school systems closed early, which mean my office also closed early, as we follow the schools.

There are perks to working for a ministry, even if the salary might be below industry standards.  I got to come home at 2 today.

So I thought I'd take a minute and catch up on some stuff.

Like, where I have been for the last...month...lol.

I have been appointed the head seamstress (NOT the costume mistress, lol...I am only in charge of the costumes being sewn) for an original production we are doing at church the weekend before Christmas.  I've held off on posting pictures, because, well, I don't want to spill any beans.  But I have made a couple of angel costumes unlike any other angel costumes we've used in the past.  They did some video taping Saturday, and the only change I have to do is add a wee bit of velcro hook to the hem of one of the guy's britches (yeah, britches) so the pants will grab his socks and not work up out of his boots (yeah, boots).  I will post some pics after Christmas and you can see what we had, lol.

But that wasn't the end of it.  Spent Friday and Saturday at church, working on the Tiny Sheep.

Four years ago, we did the first version of this production, and we had some tiny sheep who were, like, 4th graders.  This year, our tiny sheep are, like, kindergarteners.  The costumes from the previous show are way too big, but I didn't want to cut them up in case we needed bigger ones in the future.  So we got some more of that crazy curly poly fleece and made 8 little v-neck vests for the current crop of tiny sheep.  Remembering the mess from the first set, I  was determined to make them at church, instead of either a) bringing the mess home or b) sending it home with someone else.  So we had a workday and a friend cut them out.  I gave her my coverall apron and a construction filter facemask...she was puzzled but wore them when I insisted.  She soon saw what I meant.  'This stuff is worse than styrofoam!' she said.  We swept the floor about a half dozen times but there was still feathery fluff on it on Sunday morning.... The fleece did NOT play nice with my serger, which seems to be having knife issues again, and what I thought would take 90 minutes took all day Saturday and then some...I still wasn't done.  Grumble grumble grumble.


Fortunately, I have, like, 17 hours of sick leave to use or lose by next Thursday, so I am going to burn sick leave...in order to avoid getting sick by staying up until way late trying to do stuff.  I got a good bit caught up yesterday afternoon, and should be able to do the last bits in a couple of hours.  The other ladies worked on alterations and ironing all the Bible costumes we have for the nativity scene at the end; unfortunately, we seem to have lost a number of our Bible costumes pieces over the years.  I'm short a few robes, but I am REALLY missing the head drapes that we use.  I like to use two for the ladies and I don't even have enough for one apiece at this point.  The guys wear smaller drapes and can actually go bareheaded if necessary, but the ladies MUST have something on their heads.

So, I will be hitting my stash this evening at some point to see if I can find some 'why did I buy this?' fabric that will work for head drapes...our cheap fabric sources have gone away and I can't do $5/yd for the head drapes that get lost so easily.  So maybe I have something up there that will work... I hope.

I haven't forgotten my 12-months - 12 outfits challenge, either.  This month Janice posted dressy outfits...mostly sweaters and skirts...with accessories.  I'm not sure I'm going to get anything done on it; certainly not before Christmas.  Maybe after, which is a shame since the dressy outfits are intended to be worn to the Christmas festivities.  And I really, really want some black stretch velvet pants. Cross your fingers for me, lol.  I actually HATE sewing stretch velvet, but after that sheep fleece, it should seem simple...

Saturday, November 09, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - November

I am way ahead of normal this month...because I didn't actually sew or make anything.   But that works out well, since my sewing time is pretty much consumed with costuming at this point (I will have a post on that...eventually, lol).  But I would not have made this stuff in any case.

If you recall, this month is Outerwear month. I knew it was coming and I debated over what I would do.  I kinda thought I'd just use the trench coat; after all, I used it in the SWAP collection and it worked really well with everything; I had the whole deal to go with it.  BUT...I have needed a new WARM, semi-dressy winter coat for years; I've just kept making do with the old one that had a broken zipper and looked dingy.

If nothing else, this exercise has pushed me....more than once...to buckle down and add something to the closet that I had been postponing...mostly because I wanted to lose weight, lol.

So. Anyway.  I gave up looking for the perfect coat and got a coat from Lands' End that, while not elegant, will keep me warm in Alabama's coldest days.  We get very cold days...but the cold spells don't last long.  More like 3 - 5 days of really cold weather, and then we're back up into mild temps...or at least, mild compared to where I grew up.  Single digits happen (rarely, yes, but they do happen!), sometimes with below-zero windchills, so I need a warm coat for those situations. They happened to have a 50% off outerwear sale going on, so I feel like it was a good time to get it.  I downloaded a picture...they didn't have any of JUST the coat without a person in it...and then just today discovered that it was a very small, low resolution picture.  Tried to get another one, but LE apparently sold out of the coat and the image is gone.  So I'm putting the picture in this month's outfit slide, but I'm not going to try to squeeze it into the wardrobe collection.  It's a black coat. LOL.

You will notice I didn't add a hat; I have a black beret that I could throw in, but the coat has a hood.  Between the scarf and the hood, I didn't think a hat was necessary.  The gloves are  from some past offering at Lands' End...I know that from the tag, but I honestly can't remember if I bought them or if I got them for Christmas.  The scarf is a sentimental thing; it was hand crocheted for me by one of the girls in the high school class I taught at church for a season a few years back.  She worked on it in class, while we were having our discussions, and then gave it to me for Christmas.   The boots are definitely for wearing in the weather; from Propet via Zappos;  there's room enough for some substantial socks.  You can bet this stuff will get hauled to northern Indiana next month when we visit.

Here are the accessories to date:

When I started this journey, I planned to use royal blue as much as possible for the accessories and accents.  Red has been MUCH easier to source...

I haven't changed the garment slide, since I'm not putting the pitiful coat picture in , but just for a reminder, here are the garments I have so far:



One month left...wow...


Monday, November 04, 2019

Thinking about next year....

In the home stretch of the 12-months-12-outfits challenge, I'm finding myself thinking about next year.

I have a scarf that has colors in it that I would like to use to make an entirely different sort of wardrobe than I have this year but I don't think I want to do the full on 12 months.  I just don't think I need to add that many more shoes and bags to the closet, lol.  Maybe I could pick six outfits through the year and add them? The colors in the scarf are navy, gray, white, turquoise and jade...I think it would be lovely, to be honest, but I'd have SUCH  time finding those shades of turquoise and green...The white I already have from this year, and I have a fair amount of navy and gray already in the closet.  So I would pretty much just be adding the accent colors.  It appeals to me because I think my favorites of the wardrobes Janice creates every year are the ones with the soft gray in them...even though this year's gray, with the orange and coral, wouldn't suit me, I still like the aesthetic.

The SWAP rules have been announced over at Stitcher's Guild (note to self...send in that yearly membership fee!!!).  I'm just not feeling SWAPish this year...and I think it's because I've basically done a year-long SWAP and I'm kinda ready to be at least a LITTLE spontaneous.  Plus, this year includes a 'stretch' challenge...as in, work on a technique that is new to you, or that you need to improve.  While that's certainly a worthy goal, it doesn't fit with my concept of SWAP...which is from the original Australian Stitches magazine and involved using TNT patterns and planning your sewing so that you created all 11 new garments in about two weekends worth of sewing.  Hard to sew fast when you're working at perfecting a new or tricky technique or pattern or working with new fabric or whatever that 'stretch' goal is.  Not to say it won't work for the contest; the SWAPs over the years have evolved and they are no longer the 'use a TNT pattern and sew fast' variety anyway.  With 4+ months for sewing, there's lots of opportunity for folks to create wonderful stuff.  But my past history has shown that I. can't. finish...unless I'm using TNT's.  So I will cheer from the sidelines this year...and sew for fun, maybe.

So...no SWAP, but maybe a scaled back version of the 12 months exercise.

On the other side of the Christmas Production costuming, which has started.

I have some Angel outfits that I'm working on...unlike any Angels we've used before.  But that's a story for another day. ;-)

Saturday, November 02, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits...November Assignment

Janice posted the November outfit selections yesterday; no surprise; she's included a coat virtually every November since she started doing the series.

Let me tell you about my winter coat.  When The Princess was in 5th grade, my sister in law gave her a hand-me-down down coat.  It was too big for The Princess and she didn't really care for it; after a couple of years of it hanging in the closet, I tried it on...and lo and behold, it fit me pretty well.


Conservatively speaking, that was 20ish years ago.

It's a beige-y color that doesn't suit me well, but, you know, we don't have a lot of BITTER cold weather here so I only really wore it during the coldest days.

The zipper broke several years back; it's a below-knee coat with a one-way zipper, so it got a lot of stress. The tape behind the bottom anchor tab just shredded and the thing came off, along with the slider.

I made do with the buttons.

It's picked up some stains here and there...not bad ones, just enough to make the beige look more dingy.  It really needed replacing.

But I did like the vertical quilting; it was about as slimming as a puffer coat could be.

But, y'all, it was way beyond needing replacement.

So, prodded by the 'add a coat to the wardrobe' requirement for this month, I opened up my trusty Lands' End page and discovered that they had coats on sale for 50% off.

I waffled.  I put a coat in the bag and got cold feet and logged out.

LE sent me an email to remind me I had something waiting check out.

That process repeated itself for two days, y'all, before I finally just steeled myself and ordered it.

It's not at all flattering, I'm sure, but it will be warm.  It will zip.  Hopefully...it will fit, lol.

I have boots and a hat; probably have gloves as well.  And there is a scarf I could use, if I want.

So, no sewing is likely this month, either.  But that's probably a good thing; costuming work has finally started for the church Christmas production...and we are not having folks jumping up to volunteer. So my sewing plate will be full anyway.

OH...I had better go download a pic of the coat, just to make sure I have it when I'm ready to do the post, lol.


Tuesday, October 29, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - October Outfit



If you want to refresh your memory , here's what Janice picked out for her hypothetical owners of exquisite Hermes scarves....

So, I've managed to hang in there another month, lol.  It was dicey; I didn't sew anything, although I did make the necklace.  Caught a sale at Lands' End and added some red to the wardrobe:


I have learned my lesson; if I order something from Lands' End, I need to download the photo immediately; they pull the pictures of sold out stock way faster than I thought they did.  Anyway, I have a red plaid shirt that I actually wore to work today...and, while it fits pretty well, if I had made it I would have positioned the buttons differently.  Like, so one of the buttons would have been right at the line of the full bust.  Sigh.   It is actually a good match for the sweater; the blouse looks darker, due to lighting, and the sweater looks lighter, because, well, probably lighting, lol.    The jeans are standard blue denim (despite the dark picture) boot cut jeans...from the Lee outlet down the road.  

I didn't put my crossbody -strapped wallet in the set after all; I bought the back pack from Amazon earlier this year and I've been carrying it for a couple of weeks.  It's the PERFECT size.  Finally.  I've been squeezing my stuff in a just-barely-big-enough backpack for ages.  I probably need to invest in a true crossbody bag that that would hold more than my phone and my checkbook.  Someday.  This is working well enough for now.

The necklace, well, there is a story there.  I have mentioned that My Sweet Babboo is part of a frontiersman's reenactment-type group; one of the things he's been sort of interested in and slowly accumulating is trade beads.  About a month ago,  a set of about a dozen or so ceramic trade beads he'd ordered arrived in the mail.  They were really cool; denim blue, with a spiral white viney pattern around a rope spiral pattern  in white, red and royal blue.  They were huge...about 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 inches long.

I managed to beg three beads off of him....and put together the long necklace with some red glass and lapis beads from Hobby Lobby.  It might look better with a leather cord, but it's ok with the chain.  Took me a couple of evenings to put the bead sections together.  It was nothing to add the chain.  Since it's so long, I didn't have to add a clasp.  It works well with the sweater; I thought the necklace needed to be rather hefty to not get lost in the texture.  This one certainly came out hefty! 

So, with two months to go, here is the wardrobe to date:


I am really hoping I can squeeze the last two months on the slides, lol!

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - October Assignment



So, here we are at mid-October and I am just now getting around to discussing the wardrobe picks Janice posted 2 weeks ago

I have been THINKING about it a lot...as we've been driving around and spending our weekends places other than home.

That makes it really, really difficult to get any sewing done, y'all.

So, the October outfits are, in a nutshell,  a pair of pants (ranging from funky to corduroy to denim), a button-up shirt (mostly dress white shirts, but there are a couple of plaids in the mix), a pullover sweater, a crossbody or shoulder bag and a necklace (no feetwear this time!).

But Janice did say that she considered each wardrobe...and what it, individually, needed.

So I'm kind of using that as my basis.

I'm going to go with jeans as my pants for this go round; I don't have any listed in the wardrobe and they will just be pulled from the closet.  As will my cross-body bag...smallish thing that's actually a wallet with a long strap. Actually, that's just going to get pulled outta my everyday bag; I carry it as a wallet but sometimes pull it out and just wear it as a crossbody if I'm just making a quick run somewhere. I have LOTS of options for a necklace. So that leaves me with the sweater and the shirt.  Or some kind of equivalent.

Now, I have a crew-neck pullover sweater that I think would go with the color scheme well.  But...y'all, they have turned off the chiller at work and now we are, um, warm.  By the time it's full on winter and the boiler is going full blast it will be a sauna.  I could pull the sweater from the shelf and put it with the wardrobe for non-work-related wearing, but...is there something I would wear more often if I had it?

Likewise the button up shirt.  I have two white shirts in the wardrobe already...one rather casual and one quite business like.  Should I add another shirt?  A pattern of some sort...or, maybe just a black button up?  I have been wanting to add  a black shirt to my closet for a while and even have some fabric stashed to do it. It wouldn't go with the sweater I have in mind, but it might go with another one.  Or I could find a patterned fabric and sew a shirt that would go with the sweater.

But what I don't have is time.  The running around hasn't quite ended and the costume sewing for the Christmas production is about to kick into gear.  My sewing time for the rest of the year is likely going to be consumed by costuming.

So, what shall I do for this month?

I'm thinking, I'm thinking....

Sunday, October 06, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits -- September

Oy.  I know it's October 6th; I've been out of town.  I had the whole outfit well before Sept 30; but this has been a CRAA-- ZEE fall and I've had problems getting pictures, let alone posting them., lol.

So, anyway, just to refresh your memory,  HERE is the link to the outfits Janice picked for September based on the selected Hermes scarves.

And, here is my interpretation thereof:



The actual new additions to the wardrobe are the flannel shirt and the stretch corduroy pants, both purchased on clearance from Lands' End in mid-September.  But I was so short on time when I purchased them that I didn't download the website images...and when I tried to do so today, I found that those particular selections are both sold out and no images available.  So I had to do the ol' hanger shot.  And, as per usual, the colors did not come out true.  The corduroy pants look navy but they are a deep royal blue...pretty much a dead match for the darker color in the scarf, which is a wool burnout from Novica (also sold out) and was my travel scarf to keep me warm on the airplane flight to Israel earlier this year.  The pants had to be shortened 3"; I have learned that, while Lands' End petite pants fit well when they arrive...it's not too long before they have shrunk to high water stage.  So I ordered regular inseam length and washed these first, then shortened them.  It was the only sewing I did on this grouping, lol.  The down vest is at least a year...maybe two...old; I've had the lined leather gloves several years.  The short boots were purchased on sale at the end of last winter to replace my previous short boots that popped a rivet on a decorative button.

So, here's the total collection now; I split it into two slides as I was having to make the individual pictures just too small to fit on one:

I will weigh in with my thoughts on the October outfits in the next day or two.


Tuesday, October 01, 2019

A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away....

(I have my September outfit but I don't have pics yet. It's not terribly exciting...the only sewing I did was hemming a pair of pants.  So while I wait for the opportunity to get pictures made, here's a story for you).

42 years ago Luke Skywalker was given a lightsaber and took off across the galaxy to fight the Empire for freedom and a bit of revenge.

There was an 18 year old girl in Indiana who happened to go watch his adventure late in July and was completely swept away by the story.  She wanted to grab a lightsaber  and go fight the Empire as well.

Nevermind that she was susceptible to motion sickness and threw up on airplanes.  Details.

She went back to see it again in less than a week.  Whoever heard of going to a movie theater to see the same movie TWICE!

Well, that movie played in some theaters for a solid year.  One was walking distance of the university she moved to about a month later, and that theater was a tired little place that charged a dollar.

One. Dollar.

By the time the one-year anniversary rolled around, she'd seen the movie on the big screen about a dozen times.

She could drop the needle anywhere on one of the two LP's in the soundtrack and tell you what was happening in the movie at that point.

She wrote fan fiction.  Never finished it, but she wrote it.

She had the bug but bad.

For the first movie.   The second and third movies...yeah, repeated viewings of those, but not quite as many as the first.

Years later, when the extended versions were released to theaters, she took her kids and felt a  little bummed that Han, Luke and Leia still looked the same.  She sure didn't.

A new trilogy came out...and she watched the first movie, confusingly called 'Episode 1' even though it was the 4th movie, once, and would climb on a soapbox and rail at the obvious plot manipulation.  She didn't even see movies five and six.   (Deletes small rant).

But she loved the Original Trilogy. And, while the third trilogy has its issues (don't get me started on the Bridge of Solo's Doom), the starquesting 18 year old geek has awoken.

And, now there's an actual place where that 18 year old finally has the chance to grab a lightsaber and hop on the Millennium Falcon.

She's still there,  deep in the recesses of the 60 year old lady who didn't take nearly enough pictures that day.

May the Force be with you.

:-D





Friday, September 27, 2019

I walked 56 miles last week...

Family trip to see the mouse in Florida.

Walking is what you do.

I took my phone and my camera, but, you know, I ended up taking very few pictures; and the ones I got weren't good.

Besides, my kids were taking pics all over the place, and we had that photo pass thing, so I thought there would be plenty of pictures taken with devices better than I had.

Which is true.  But I haven't yet gotten access to them.  Save for a few in which the kids tagged me on Facebook.

We had a grand time.  Dunno if we will do it again or not.

Maybe I will get some pictures later, but by then the moment will have passed.

So, here's the best pic I have from the Halloween Party...and the final version of the costume...BTW, Brer Bear had fun letting me know he recognized me, flapping his jacket to get me to say, 'No capes!'

It was fun to dress up and interact with folks.  I actually got a photo with Jack Sparrow, but my posture was terrible and the pics don't look very good.  I was surprised not to see anyone else dressed as E.   I had several comments, mostly from Disney cast members, but a few from other party-goers.  The best was after the night was over and we were waiting at the bus stop for the ride back to our resort.  A little boy who looked to be about 3 pointed at me and told his dad I was from the Incredibles.  LOL.  If a little kid recognized me...it was good.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - September Assignment

Janice's selections for the  6 Hermes-Scarves wardrobes are up on the Vivienne Files today.

In a nutshell...corduroy pants and a long sleeved shirt, with an insulating vest, a scarf and a pair of gloves/mittens and short boots.  No jewelry this month!

I followed up on most of the links, looking for details.  I did find out that all the pants are corduroy, so...hm.  I have no corduroy in the wardrobe at this point.  I *used* to have some corduroy pants that I loved wearing with pullover sweaters...here's a pic of me and My Sweet Babboo, back in 1983....and I'm wearing corduroy pants, a shetland sweater over a button up blouse.

Been a long time since I dressed like that.  The squishier my old body gets, the squishier I want my clothes to be, lol.

But maybe I could add a pair of cords.  Break out of my fashion rut a bit.

To go with the cords, Janice has added a long sleeved blouse....cotton flannel in most of the outfits, but there are a couple of exceptions.  I treated myself to a  cotton flannel shirt from Lands' End a couple of years ago, and enjoyed it so much I bought a second one last year. Of course, neither of them co-ordinate particularly well with my hummingbird scarf.  I have a bit of black-and-blue flannel in the stash, which might do if it weren't for the fact that I already have a puffer vest that I can use in this month's outfit...and it's winter white.  So I really think a flannel shirt will need some white in it so I can pull in my already-in-the-closet insulating vest.

I have some short black boots, bought on clearance at the end of last winter's season, to replace a pair I'd worn for about 4 years that popped a riveted button. (Hm.  maybe a cobbler could fix that?  If I had the button...lol).  I think I have gloves and a scarf I can pull, depending on what I use for the shirt and pants.

And, you know, this is a crazy making season...I think I have only 2 free Saturdays between now and the middle of November.  Not much time for sewing.

I *might* have poked around on the Lands End site  whilst I was link checking...you know, just to see if there were any deals to be had.

I'll let you know if the deals work well enough with my scarf once I see them in real life....

Monday, September 02, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - August

Just for a refresher.... HERE is the list of August wardrobes from the Vivienne Files.

And, per my typical dithering, here is what I came up with for the August outfit:

The blouse is a new purchase from Lands' End...my intention to lose weight this summer has backfired; so I bought a couple of blouses a size up.  Because that's what this whole exercise was intended to do...force me to get clothes that fit the body I have now.  It is, in theory, one of their no-iron blouses, but I found it did need a touch with the iron after coming out of the dryer.  Next time I will try taking it out slightly damp and see if that helps.
After dithering about the skirt...I pulled the wool twill out of the stash, began working on the pattern and then got busy with other stuff.  Time was running out so I reconsidered the whole thing again.  Years ago I had a straight rayon blend black skirt that I wore to absolute DEATH.  When it got too small I never got around to replacing it.  So I decided  to make a basic skirt after all.  After making the January pants and the February dress, I had slightly over a yard left of the Very Nice Telio Jockey ponte...perfect for a knee-length skirt.  I used the pattern for Loes Hinse's Swing Skirt; the short, unflounced version and, of course, I added pockets.  I used the pockets from the Oxford Pants in her pattern line and they worked great.

The sweater came from the closet -- very  light merino wool from Lands' End, purchased in something like 2016.  Long enough ago that there were no longer pictures of it on the website, so I had to just make do with a hanger shot.  You can tell it's black, that's about it, lol.
Rockport boots that are a job to get zipped over my rather full calves...they may very well make a trip to my local shoe repair guy for some wider elastic goring in the back. I actually had ordered them before the August assigment went up; my previous tall black boots were failing and they needed replacing.  Caught these on a significant discount, so even with the cobbler's modification they won't be as much as the 'wide calf' boots would have been.
I don't often wear brooches; I have a leadership badge that I wear to church so brooches seem kind of redundant.  I did find a cute little hummingbird brooch that I liked because it referenced the scarf, but, well, I don't wear brooches so I hated to buy it just so it could sit in the jewelry box.  I dug around in the jewelry box and found one with the scarf colors in it that I had forgotten I had; I'm thinking it was a Christmas gift some time ago.  Maybe I'll wear it to work, lol.
I didn't select a ring; I did do a bit of internet shopping and actually picked out a couple, but, well, I don't wear rings (lost the diamond from my original engagement ring about 8 years after we got married; I apparenlty caught the prongs on something and I am now paranoid about losing settings/snagging them on stuff) so I decided to save the bucks and just pulled some earrings out of the jewelry box as well.  I do like these and wear them quite a bit; they have a vintage vibe that I like.

I will wear it with black tights, and turn the cuffs back over scrunged up sleeves.  And tell myself I will get serious about watching the diet after our trip to see the mouse.

Here's the whole collection to date; I'm kinda suprised I'm still able to squeeze it all on one slide.  I will probably have to break it up next month.




Thursday, August 15, 2019

A Little Frivolity

So, the Princess has finally managed to get the family to schedule a joint vacation to see the mouse down in Florida.

And apparently the mouse hosts a halloween party that starts in August.  So it will be happening whilst we are there.

So, of course, the crazy crew are all discussing costumes because the mouse actually allows adults to come to his halloween party dressed up.

My Sweet Babboo is just going to don his frontiersman gear.  The Flute Player is rounding up items to look like Rapunzel in the hang out in Wreck it Ralph 2.  The Artist is adding touches to his pirate personna. The Princess is going to be Sally from Nightmare before Christmas.

And, after much deliberation, I figured my best bet would be a icon of the industry.

But there's no way I'm going to recreate that dress...which looks like a it was made from a sleeping bag, lol.  The sharkstooth leather sleeves are beyond me in more ways than one.

So, instead of trying to recreate E's dress....I thought I'd see about creating something she might wear.

Here's what I have to start with; it's the 'wearable muslin' for the Burda dress I made for the February wardrobe challenge (wig and glasses were Amazon finds):

It would probably work as is, but I'm thinking it needs a bit of red on it somewhere.   Thought about a red grosgrain ribbon running from the left shoulder down into the pocket, crisscrossed with another going from armsceye to armseye at the upper chest.  Or I could just do a little V at the neckline, which would be more reminiscent of the original.  I also think I need to shorten the dress about 2".

So I am open to suggestions.  Anybody have any ideas that would be a lot of bang for the buck (and time, as I don't have much?) LOL. 


Saturday, August 10, 2019

August Outfit Options

Ok, I've been pondering all week what I want to do for this month.

I could totally pull it from clothes already in the wardrobe.  And, if I run into a time crunch, I might.

But I am pondering a new skirt.  I have a pattern (out of print Butterick) for a bias cut skirt w/ a side godet...it would be swishy and look cool with boots.  Of course, I would have to add pockets, because, you know, that's what I do.  But that would let me move the side seam zipper to the interior of the pocket and hide it, which I always consider a good thing.

And I have some black twilled tropical weight wool that I bought a number of years ago that I have been stewing over.  Because of the black/white threads (it was sold as a 'wool denim-look'), it has a pretty noticeable diagonal on it, which made it really, really hard to decide what to use it for...and how to use it. 

But it occurred to me that, with a bias cut, I could run those twill lines vertically and they would look like pin stripes.  And my little brain went Hmmmm....I could add a kinda quirky skirt to the wardrobe AND make use of a tricky fabric.

The pattern is just  a front and back piece (one piece) and the side godet...it shouldn't be too hard to fit.  Oh, and it's lined.  Or, at least, there are instructions for lining it.  I will add a waistband with a touch of elastic (instead of interfacing) so that it has a bit of stretch.

At least, that's the plan.  About 10 years ago, I made a really cool black wool boucle up into a Sewing Workshop Plaza jacket that would look great with that skirt and boots.  Not sure about a blouse under it, though, it works better with a turtle neck.  so we'll see.

And I have a brooch that I wear with that particular little jacket as a closure, so that would work well, too.  I'm gonna substitute earrings for the ring in the accessories; my stubby little fingers do not take rings well.

So, now it just depends on how much sewing I can get done in the next three weeks.

Friday, August 02, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - August Assignment: Do I really want to do Fall yet?

Heaves a big sigh as the reality that it is August 2nd slaps her face...

Here are the August outfits over at Vivienne Files.   Janice stayed with the pattern in previous years, but this month she built the outfit around tall boots.  Last year's August picks included a range of boot styles, but this year it's all about the tall boots.  And every outfit includes a skirt, a blouse (woven)(ETA -- no, there is one Eileen Fisher t shirt in the mix.  I thought it was a soft woven until I clicked through), a sweatery cardigan, with a ring and a brooch for accessories.

Now, I will be straight up honest with you; anticipating this, I was already preparing my little commentary of how, in Alabama, we don't need fall clothes until October.  When my kids were growing up, I didn't even do the seasonal clothing switch until Fall Break...which was usually the first full week in October.  Didn't buy new clothes for the school year until I saw what still fit...and what didn't...from the previous fall/winter season.  There just wasn't any point in it if the temps in the daytime still made it up to at least 80 degrees most days.

But my arguments have dissolved in the face of those tall boots.  See, I have Very Wide Calves, and tall boots that will zip all the way up are like, the Holy Grail of shoe searching.  I bought some a few years back; the style was kinda stodgy but they zipped so I just worked with them...and I really didn't wear them that much.  But, despite the fact that they were made by Maine Trotters, which is supposed to be a high-quality shoe, they have not held up.  The leather is tearing along the stitching lines...just like a perforated piece of paper.  One of the decorative tabs on the back has come off, and the zipper guard is flapping on one of the boots and really won't last much longer before it tears completely off.  So, after last year, I told myself I would need new black boots for this year.

About two weeks ago, looking through Zappos site, I saw that the sandal selection was dwindling.  Several of them I had flagged as favorites were no longer available in my size, or were only available in a few colors.  Suddenly, it hit me that if I wanted the best selection of boots...maybe I should start looking now.  I cruised through and found one style with a wide foot...and what looked to be a reasonably wide calf, although it wasn't marked as a wide calf boot, there was a significant gap between the boot and the calf of the model in the video.  And it did have elastic gores in the back.  So I put it in my favorites to watch.

While writing some reviews for shoes last week, I went to my Favorites page and saw that those boots I had put in the Favorites list were on sale for less than $100.  So of course, I ordered them.  Immediately.

They have arrived and I have tried them on.  I had to WORK to get them zipped, but they just. barely. did. zip. I was wearing moderately thick socks; if I were to wear thin socks or tights it wouldn't be so bad.  The wide width foot fits well and is cushy...I'm just now trying to decide if I want to keep them and wrestle to zip them.  I may try another pair with a wide calf...but there are only a few in my size and price range.  So I'm likely to need to order quickly.  At least it doesn't cost anything to try them on, other than the hassle of returning the ones that don't fit.

All of that is to say....maybe it does make sense to build an outfit around tall boots in August despite my earlier plans.  Even if I don't wear any of it for two months, lol.  So I will be pondering the skirt/blouse/cardigan options while I make up my mind about the boots.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

12 Months12 Outfits -- July

As a reminder, here are the outfits Janice picked to coordinate with the 6 Hermes scarves for the month of July...  Basically, a pair of shorts, two tee shirts, a pair of sandals and a necklace.

I debated the shorts.  I really don't wear shorts outside of housecleaning/yardwork, and I do have one pair from last year that serves the need if I'm just in a situation that requires shorts in a public setting.  So I decided once more to forego the shorts and just use summer pants.

And I just so happened to have purchased a pair of white jeans from Lands' End back in, oh, April or so, and they just so happened to be the very pants featured in the Vivienne files post on White Jeans, and I was really glad to have already bought them because by the time that post came out LE was sold out of the white jeans in my size.   Unfortunately, I didn't snag an image from the LE site before they took them down for the fall colors.  My bad...I will be more pro-active in the future.

No more layout on the bed pics, since my facepalm moment last month when I realized I could use the same pics I'm taking for the year-to-date collage for a monthly collection. It only took me six months to have that epiphany (snort).

 Here's the July set:



I used two different patterns for my T Shirts; the blue cotton/poly/lycra one is the slight modification of Jalie 2566  and the red rayon/lycra one is, I think, a modification of Vogue 9057.  Maybe.  I traced a full pattern some time ago, so I could do a single-layer cutout on stripes, but I forgot to write the pattern number on the full size pattern and it doesn't exactly line up with the 9057 pattern.  So it's a Mystery Pattern, lol.  With an added dart.

Shoes are SAS Pampas...crazy expensive sandals by my standards but by far the most comfy ones I own.  This is actually my second pair; I have one in red, too.  Finally, the sweet little hummingbird necklace is from Novica; I was tickled to finally find something that referenced the scarf.

So, squeezing everything in the slide, here's the wardrobe to date:


This is progressing nicely.  And you know what?  I'm already thinking about a scarf for next year, lol...

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Flea Market Find -- and a Giveaway

One of the things My Sweet Babboo likes to do is poke through antique stores, looking for things he can use in his frontiersman reenacting group.

So, when we found that one of the things available in the small town near our vacation lodging this past week was a large antique store...I suggested we spend a rainy afternoon there.

I really didn't expect to find anything for me, but there was one booth with a bunch of buttons (if only I had an idea of what I needed, lol)...and some patterns.  There were the cardboard storage boxes full of McVoguerick stuff, sold for a pittance, but I spotted a plastic bag containing a Sandra Bezina Today's Fit (that really didn't strike my fancy), a Nancy Erickson 1945 jacket (I've already got that pattern)...and a Cynthia Guffey princess dress, size 12.  My little Guffey Groupie heart did a pitter patter; the three patterns were listed at $4.50.  Totes worth it just for the Guffey dress.  So I snagged it.

Imagine my surprise when I opened the sealed up bag and found this inside:

There were TWO MORE Cynthia Guffey patterns hidden between the visible princess dress and the Betzina pattern.  And they were my size range...or, erm, close enough, lol.

I don't know how the booth owner missed that; the label clearly said '3 sewing patterns $4.50'.

But, you know, I'm feeling like I oughta share the blessing here, so I'm going to give away the Erickson jacket pattern (being as how I have one already, lol).

So...if there is anyone out there who is wishing they had Nancy's 1945 power suit jacket pattern (sizes 8 - 18 included I should have checked first; the pattern has been CUT OUT on the size 10 cutting lines.  So sad.  I've been tracing my patterns for so many years that it never occurred to me to check and see if the pattern had been cut; none of the others are.  So...if you are size 10 or a boss at adjusting pattern sizes...), leave a comment here and I'll draw a winner next Saturday!

Update:  Well, to my utter lack of surprise, no one left a comment to win the Nancy Erickson already-cut-on-size - 10 pattern.  I will figure some way to give it away elsewhere, lol.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

The denim dress...

Ok, just for grins, here's what I started with.  The pattern is for a shirtdress, with a copyright date of 2001.  Um, Yeah.  2001.  It's been in the stash a while.  But I have always liked the lines of it, so when I was looking for a pattern to use for my denim shirt dress, it was the one I ultimately pulled.  

Here are the pattern pieces I had to work with:


There were optional fisheye darts in the front and back; the sleeve length options were full length, elbow length or sleeveless.

I cut the dress off at the 'lengthen/shorten' line, which ended up being right at my knees...pretty close to the length I wanted to end with.  The first muslin showed that I needed to move the bust shaping down about an inch, and shorten the dart considerably as the point wrapped way too far past where it should.  And I needed to give myself just a pinch more ease.

Because it was going to be a wide, fairly short dart, I decided to rotate that puppy to a princess seam.

I will add that this is the first time I have tried this, and I did learn a lot.

I had to lengthen the center front section...and this was after it had already been lengthened once for a full bust adjustment.  I thought that was odd, but walking the seam after I closed the dart clearly showed that I was going to have to lengthen it.  Also, the top buttonhole was pretty much at full bust level, so I moved the collar shaping up about an inch and a half.

Wouldn't you know, the next muslin showed that the bust shaping was now about an inch too low.  So I moved that back up to where it started, basically.

Hind sight...maybe I used the wrong pivot point?  I might should have researched that a bit more.  I didn't put the sleeves on the first muslin since I was just checking bust dart placement and girth, but the second muslin showed that there was too much ease in the sleeve cap; the sleeve had to be slightly gathered to fit the armsceye (not shown at all in those lovely smooth sleeves on the pattern photo...).  So I shaved down some of the curve, and cut a bit of the length off the front underarm so that it matched the dress (not sure if the mismatch was my fault or the patterns at that point).

And, of  course, I added an inseam pocket.  I also eliminated the front facing and just cut the center front pieces twice so I could sew the facing into the princess seam. Plus, I wanted a shirt tail hem, with the back slightly longer than the front, so I curved the hemlines accordingly.

However, I was somewhat short on fabric and I had to shorten those curves a bit from my original plan just to get it to fit on the fabric.

Here  are the pattern pieces I ended up with:


The fabric was an indigo blue cotton/lycocel from JoAnn's.  Not at all cheap, either, at about twelve and a half bucks a yard.  But I'd bought it for one thing and ended up using something else for that project, so it was available.   I was disappointed to see that it wasn't square; I tore both ends for a straight edge and when the fabric was laid out with the ends even there were terrible ripples down the fold.   I had to offset the selvege ends by about 2" to eliminate that rippling.  So I am attributing any wonkiness in the hang to that little issue. 

I had to change up the sewing order considerably; I sewed the CF and CB together at the shoulder seams; added the collar and put the facing on and pressed it well; basted together the raw edges on the CF seamline.  Then I put the pockets on the side front...putting on the facing piece, then the pocket so the pocket opening is finished off and the pocket becomes the sideseam. Then I sewed the side front/side back together at the shoulder seams, then sewed the sides to the centers.  Then I did the side seams and inserted the sleeves.  Hem, button holes and buttons.

Sounds simple, eh? LOL. 

 The dress, emphasis on the added pocket:


 The June outfit, bracelet, earrings, shoes and bag as well:



The bust shaping still feels a shade low to me.  Not enough to really worry about, but I'll probably adjust it if I make up the pattern again.   The sleeves bind a bit if I raise my arms, but that is just something I ALWAYS deal with on woven garments.  I haven't yet figured out the magic combination of ease here and fitting there to keep that from happening.

And you can't tell about the shaped hem at all; it's just not pronounced enough to show, although it does look just  a wee bit longer in the back if you look close.  

These pics were taken very late last night, after birthday festivities, so it is a bit rumpled.  But it was very comfortable to wear.  I expect to wear it at least a few times this summer.

Sunday, July 07, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - June

So, here we are, a week into July, and I've just now got the June outfit ready to post.  But, considering I completely lost the first week of June to jet lag, AND I completely worked over a new pattern, rather than using TNTs, I don't think I did too badly.

 Just for a reminder, here are the June picks at Vivienne Files.

The denim dress does not want to photograph well.  It just sags on a hanger and rumples lying flat.  I think it's because of the shaping;  it just has to go somewhere.

But, anyway, here's the June collection:


And, you know, it JUST occurred to me  (like, as I'm typing all this up) that if I am collecting images for the 'whole wardrobe' picture I could make a better collection to see the month's outfits.  Oy.

(timeout while she goes and builds a slide for this month...)





Dress:  Much modified out of print McCall's 3254 made from indigo blue cotton/lyocel 'denim'; I will do a whole blog post on that later in the week.  Shoes are Rockport/Cobb Hill Hannah from the closet; I've had them for about two years and absolutely LOVE them...they are very kind to my picky feet.  In fact, I may have just talked myself into ordering a pair in another color.  I hunted and hunted for a tote bag with a hummingbird motif but had absolutely no luck...they were either gaudy or just basically reusable grocery bags. But I found this one that looked like a good denim color, and it's about a dead match for the shoes...and the turquoisy color in the original scarf.  I actually purchased a bracelet...since I had a reward that needed using at Novica.  And a light beaded bracelet is not nearly as annoying to wear as a clunky bangle.  The earrings are some that I bought years ago...at Kohl's, maybe?  They are my favorite wear-with-denim earrings.

AND...here's everything so far.

Now, on to July's T shirts...


Thursday, July 04, 2019

12 Months 12 Outfits - July Assignment

Ok, you have no doubt noticed that I have not posted my June outfit yet.  Well, there's a reason for that.  It's a denim shirt dress that needs about 10 5/8" buttons.  I dug through my button stash but could not find 10 matching suitable buttons.  I'm not sure I have 10 matching buttons, period, actually.

So, given the disappointment that my last foray into retail looking for buttons turned out to be, I pulled up WAWAK and ordered two 1-dozen packs of buttons...one of which should work.  Since they were only about $2.50 a package, I thought it would be worth it.  Also ordered some serger thread, since it was on sale, to make the shipping worthwhile, but $2.50 for a dozen buttons is so much less than I would have paid for three or four cards of buttons...IF I could find them...that I didn't mind the shipping; it may still have been cheaper, lol.

So, I'm waiting for the buttons to get here. The dress needs the final top stitching pass around the front and the collar but, aside from the buttons (which are to arrive tomorrow) and buttonholes it's done.

Quick slip-on seems to indicate that the dress is going to fit well...except for some binding in the armsceye/sleeves.  The bane of any kind of fitted upper body.  If its truly annoying I will pull off the cap sleeves and finish the armholes with some bias binding.  I didn't notice it on the muslin, but there was an excessive amount of ease in the sleeve to put into the armsceye; it was kinda puckery.  So I shaved off a little bit of the outer curves on the sleeve cap...small amounts, really.  I didn't think it would make that much difference.  But, apparently it did. We'll see if it's an actual problem once the buttons are on and all.

But, I'm 4 days into July and Janice has posted the wardrobe picks for July....as she has done in years past, July's picks are shorts, two t-shirts, a necklace (well, earrings for one outfit) and sandals.

I could totally pull items from my closet to cover July, but I have been in sore need of some T shirts with red in them; that's a definite wardrobe gap that needs filling.  I've recently acquired a couple of pieces of red and white stripe knit, so one of those will get made up.  I'm waffling on the second T...I have a royal and white knit that would make a good T and would work really well with my wardrobe...or I could sew up a woven red T that's been cut out since February.

It probably depends on what I decide I want to do for the shorts.  My first impulse was to use white jeans; I have some that were added to the wardrobe back in the spring...as it turns out, it is the same white jeans Janice featured in her 'Ten Ways to Wear White Jeans' post back in May.

Can I admit to a slight smug feeling to realize I was ahead of the curve?  Which is a good thing...I clicked through to make sure it was the same pants as the ones I'd purchased and discovered that my size was sold out.

So there's that option.

But...I may scrounge around and see if I have a remnant of fabric that would be suitable for shorts.  Just because, well, that might be a good way to use up a bit of something.

So...if I go with white pants (or shorts) , then the two stripey fabrics will do nicely.  If I opt for something else, well, that may change the second one.

And of course, if I run short of time (short of time!  hahaha) I can always just go to the white Lands' End jeans.  So...decisions will be made after I get the buttons on the June dress.

July's necklace and sandals will not be a problem.