Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Leopard Jumper. Or Not. (Part One)

What to do with 6 yards of leopard baby wale corduroy? Make as many lovely things as you can, of course, starting with the one that will use the most fabric first. That would be this gorgeous jumper, view A.

I decided that I would not use the skirt that came with the pattern as I don’t care for pleats or gathers in the front. They make my stomach look puffy and no-one wants a puffy stomach. I used my usual all–purpose skirt pattern instead, modern McCalls 3830.

The jumper pattern uses a much wider seam allowance than I’m used to. I didn’t trust the pattern markings and sewed the seams in at about half an inch. I expected some give as this particular fabric is stretchy but instead of having any snap-back (like elastic or spandex), it seems to relax and get larger as you work with it. The relaxing fabric and too-small seam allowances resulted in a dress about two sizes to large. I had to re-do all the seams with wider allowances.

I had a hard time attaching bodice to skirt. Nothing really wanted to line up properly. Eventually I fudged it together but after trying it on, it became apparent that an entire leopard print dress is way too much leopard print at one time, at least on me. It was way too costume-y. I just needed a bone in my hair.

I removed the skirt section and made it into a stand-alone high-waist skirt. I deepened the darts to make it ride a little higher, added a waistband and it was done. The hips fit well and the bottom of the band ended up exactly at my natural waist. Unfortunately the band is roomier than I’d like. I could adjust it, but I’m done messing with it. Who knows, maybe I'll gain weight again and it will fit fine.

I’m very proud that there is a machined buttonhole in the back. I still don’t really understand how my button foot works so I skipped the foot completely. I eyeballed the placement of the buttonhole stitching and it worked pretty well. I am very proud that I didn’t overlap my straight line stitches, but the hole ended up being too small for my intended button. Luckily I have a giant bag o’ stray buttons and I was able to find one that matches and fits through the slot.

Too bad about the fuzzy picture...

I'll post what happened to the rest of the jumper soon!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Just Flew Home from Viva Las Vegas and boy are my arms tired

Actually, we got back on Sunday night but I really wanted to use that old joke as a headline. I’m cheesy. Sad but true.

We had a great weekend. Many newly sewn outfits were worn. Gorgeous vintage clothes from many wonderful vendors were ogled but not purchased. (I tend to ruin vintage clothes, and I’m cheap, and I’d much rather make my own stuff, if I can.) Much dancing was done, drinking too. Being the old-ish farts that we are, we were in bed at a decent hour (no later than 1am) every night. It made the days a lot more pleasant, I can tell you, but we missed out on quite a few of the bands.

I completely spaced on taking pictures. MD took lots at the car show but my plan of taking pictures of a zillion pretty dresses didn’t really pan out. I was way too preoccupied with hanging out with my girls and I plumb forgot the camera was in my bag. Oh well.

Really though, it wasn’t dresses that had my attention this year. It was eyeglasses. I saw so many girls in great glasses! A lot were wearing vintage, but quite a few had modern glasses in a vintage style. It was really nice to see well put together and stylish ladies rockin’ their four-eyes with no shame.

The only thing I bought from the vendors at Viva was a new (50’s dead-stock) pair of eyeglasses from Allyn Scura. I stepped on my favorite glasses a while back (the ones in the sidebar photo) and I’ve been very slow to get a new pair that I can wear every day. I have a few pair of glasses with the same prescription, but I don’t like any of them as well as the ones I broke. Maybe that’s why I’m glasses-obsessed?

This pair is too modern to be worn with any of my vintage-y stuff, but wonderfully lightweight and almost invisible. They are great for work or running errands but not so much for looking cute and stylish.

This pair is super adorable but too heavy for everyday. I love them but they do tend to make giant divots on either side of my nose.

I can see fine with the current prescription but it’s expired so if I want to fill the new frames, I need a new prescription. I’ve been dragging my feet because if my prescription has changed, I’ll want to change the lenses in these frames to the new prescription and the expense has me a bit worried. Even so, these new frames are so cute that they might be just the thing to convince me to get off my butt and get my eyes checked again.

See? It should be a no-brainer. If I don’t need a new prescription, I only need to have the new pair filled. If the prescription has changed, I’ll just have Lenscrafters (or whoever) re-do the lenses in my modern glasses and send the rest off to Allyn Scura. Fingers crossed that my prescription hasn’t changed.

(I’ll post a finished sewing project next Friday. I promise. ...and sorry about all the unsolicited pictures of my mush.)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

NSR: Reader Appreciation Day

Thunk thunk...is this thing on?


I heard a rumor that its Reader Appreciation Day so I thought I'd take a moment to say thanks to those of you who read this blog. I gotta say I'm surprised that anyone out there in blogsville is interested in my projects or my ramblings but its so nice when y'all stop by and offer encouragement. It really does help me to stay inspired. I've been a much more focused sewist since I started posting here. Hooray for the interweb!

I've almost recovered from my post-Vegas stupor and I'll try for a sewing related post by the end of the week.

Friday, April 4, 2008

More Great Pattern Art

You know what I love about this pattern sleeve? I keep thinking the girl in the red is talking on her cell phone.

I can hardly believe it but I have an actual BACKLOG of things that need to be posted here, both patterns collected and projects finished. Amazing! There are some things I'll be wearing at Viva before I have a chance to post them. I really hate to wear anything before its been posted, but I'm out of time!