Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Hitting Walls -- Climbing Walls

This has not been a particularly productive sewing week. Mostly I've fussed and fidgeted over things that gave me trouble earlier. It seems, though, that the fussing is gradually moving things forward toward the finish line.

The Beige Blouse: I tackled the sleeve alterations that I had been procrastinating. I had moved the shoulder seam forward, and ended up with a twisted sleeve. I could not alter the sleeve much as it was already cut. Ultimately, after several failed attempts to figure it out, I had to pull the back portion of the sleeve cap up a fair bit to get rid of the twistedness. This was strictly trial and error, mostly error. Many bastings in and out. Many coffee breaks. I ended up eliminating most of the fullness in the sleeve cap. All-in-all, it does not look bad, especially as I am not all that crazy about full sleeves anyway, fashion not-with-standing.

I did some fashion consultation with my daughter, and decided to leave the redesigned sleeves as is, but shorten the blouse an inch or so. This is a lovely design, but definitely should not have been made in a sheer fabric - (nor modelled as such with a black bra underneath). I actually thing the muslin is a better job -- though it is also a very soft cotton, and it also is not finished yet.

What's left: Re-do the hem, hem the sleeves, buttons and button-holes. So far, this shirt has hassled me at the shoulder seams, the collar, and the sleeves - so presumably, I have a few hassles left before I can kiss it goodbye -- or should I say 'hello.'

One-Seam Pants: These were cut out in December, but not made up - waiting on a friend's pair to try on. Last week, I re-cut from Medium to Small --which took far longer than it should have, and changed from patch pockets to elephant ear ones, which were too bulky for my fabric. The EE pockets require a slit to be made in the side of the pants. This is definitely a good thing to procrastinate -- no second chances.

I got one pocket almost finished and stumbled head-long into confusion over the directions near the end. It was only about 4 hours before Louise Cutting herself answered my plea on the Stitchers forum, telling me to do what made perfect common sense. The directions on the pattern have more recently been revised to eliminate the confusion. Did you know -- there are 40,000 OneSeam pants pattern out there scattered around the world.

Now I need to decide whether to put in the second pocket or leave it at one. Personally, I like to have a pocket in pants, but only for a kleenex -- so really, why do I need two?

Without the second pocket, I should have these whipped up in a couple of hours according to some online comments. Well, maybe no the first pair.

Jean Jacket: My wonderful jacket is fully done except for the snaps. I bought snaps. I tried a test snap using a cutting board on the kitchen counter for a hammering base. The result was hideous. This is where I learned that there are decent snaps with hard little pokey things on the underneath part; and there are idiotic snaps with little round springs, and bulky unattractive underparts. I checked out some of my store-bought clothes and lo, they all have the snaps with the little pokey bits. Off to the store, only to find they have only one package left....more waiting for me! But I am glad I did not compromise on the fasteners, because I really am quite thrilled with the way it turned out.

Reversible Jacket: This will be the second jacket of my SWAP. My friend Lynn and I have been planning to take this course for awhile. It's a stippled, reversible jacket, and I am using a Saf-T-Pockets pattern, sans appliques. I have no color sense, so I went to our local quilt shop and got some assistance picking good quality cotton for the 2 sides, and the binding. Not only did the 3 patterns have to go together, but they had to go with my SWAP pieces. It is amazing how many things won't work, and how few will in a case like this. $84 later I had my fabric, but not the batting or flannel for inside the two layers. I need to talk to people about that to decide what is best. At these prices, it's good that this will end up being 2 jackets. Comparatively, my lovely jean jacket of which I am so fond, cost a maximum of $20, all bits and bobs included.

It's good to have the fabric decision made on this. The first class is Feb 9. Between now and then, I should do some checking of the pattern for fit, maybe whip up a muslin with something in the stash -- or a vest perhaps to go with the SWAP.

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