Monday, December 29, 2008

Some Random Junk and Proof that Sewing is Hard

I pretty much totally wussed out on Nopantesmber Week 4.



...and that's it. On Sunday (the one before xmas. I'm a little late in posting.) I wore a skirt that I made. We went to Dickens Fair.

Here's me.

I didn't use a pattern. I simply folded my fabric in half and seamed the ends together. Then I gathered one of the selvage ends and bunged it onto a piece of elastic. Instead of trimming the hem to the right length, I folded over the bottom end and stitched it in place. Because I made no cuts, I can use the fabric again by simply ripping out the stitching and giving it a good ironing.

Here is the husband who, I must say, does look rather dapper. I didn't make anything he's wearing. He's just cute and I like to show him off.

I got pretty lucky. The husband not only doesn't mind dressing up and going to these silly costume events that I love so much, he actually seems to enjoy it. Soo.... I joined the Greater Bay Area Costumers Guild. They put on several costume events during the year ranging from SciFi events to Tudor gatherings and everything in between.

My interest lies mainly in the mid-twentieth century, but it seems like GBACG is a lot more welcoming and dork-positive than, say, the Art Deco Society. GBACG also puts on mid-century & art deco era events AND since there is some cross-over with the two organizations, I'll still be able to attend some ADS events using my GBACG membership discount. Win/Win!

- - -

Here are some patterns I picked up lately in the thrift stores.

This 1970s dress could either be cute, or end up looking like a maternity dress but, at 69 cents, it was hard to pass up.

I realize this is a horrid 80s pattern, but I thought it might work well for a Gatsby dress. We shall see.

- - -

...AND NOW: Proof that sewing is hard. Those who faint easily, have heart conditions, or are in any way prone to hysteria may want to turn away from the computer. The following image is rather graphic...

Yes. That is a mouth. My mouth. Notice the jaggedy missing piece of tooth in the front there? I broke my tooth sewing.

I was attempting to turn a belt right side out and it was stuck. No amount of pulling, tugging, rubbing the fabric between my palms or stabbing at it with a chopstick seemed to work. So I took a bit of the fabric between my teeth and pulled. The fabric stayed stuck and slipped out from between my teeth which then snapped together with enough force to send the cap on the end of my tooth flying. Where it landed, no one knows.

This happened on Saturday night, of course. I had a small tantrum and went to bed, skipping out on various meetings with friends that I'd planned. (Sorry guys!) I didn't speak or eat until about 2pm on Sunday because I was so mad/ashamed/embarrassed. I'm getting it fixed today, thank goodness.

Will I tug at fabric with my teeth again? Probably not...maybe...

Remember kids! Sewing IS hard!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Nopantsember Week 3

This week was raining and cold. Not really skirt weather but thanks to a stockpile of sweaters I didn't know I had, lots of layers, and the magic of tall boots, I managed to stay warm. I made the Sat night dress and the skirts I wore on Sun, Tues, Wed, Thu and Fri night.

Next week I'm only working three days and then I'm taking the week between Xmas and NYE off. I'll still post the pictures at the end of each week, just don't expect a lot of them. I will wear skirts if I go out, but if I'm just lounging at home or running errands it will be jeans.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Nopantsember Week 2

I survived a week of wearing a skirt each day. This week I even wore stuff I made (M, Th, F). Yay! I learned some stuff.

1. I really should consider at least trying to do something with my hair every day. Its scraggly.

2. Flat shoes, while comfortable, don't look all that great with skirts on someone with short legs like mine. I may want to invest in some mid/kitten heeled shoes.

3. The mid-calf skirt length is best with heels OR I maybe might want to wear skirts that are just below the knee instead. I am short.

Here's the damn slideshow.

In other news.

I cut out a dress this evening! Woooo! It seems like its going to be hard. Its got a lot of pattern pieces and I am a girl with very little patience. Plus its a vintage repro pattern and they always seem to fit me strangely. I hope it works. Can't wait to start working on it but I have no time this weekend, sigh.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Nopantsember is Killing Me.

1. Not wearing pants in December is hard. Its cold. I don't have enough tights or sweaters or WARM SHOES. I know its only fogtown. I realize I'd be SO much colder and more miserable if I lived somewhere with actual snow. But its all relative isn't it?

2. I tend to be highly self-critical anyway, but I've discovered that posting these crappy pictures of my crappy outfits everyday is not as inspiring as I'd hoped. Its kind of the opposite. If I don't have enough time to work on an outfit till I get it right, I see every little mistake in the photo and it kind of drives me nuts.

3. I think that posting all this other junk is diluting the purpose of the blog, which was to document sewing projects.

I'm not giving up completely. I'm going to keep going with the Nopantsember project, but I'm not going to post every day. I'll post a slideshow and comment at the end of the week instead.

Expect to see an actual sewing related post sometime soon. Before the end of the month, at least.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Nopantember Day...4

Better! I need to start planning my outfits ahead of time. I barely made it on time today because I took forever getting ready.

In other news. MD and I did a little flea market shopping a week or so ago and I came home with a bunch of new patterns. Gorgeous new vintage patterns!

The seller hadn't checked them and so was having a little trouble moving them. We bargained for the whole lot at just over half price and she seemed happy to get rid of them. I sure was happy to get them. They were ALL in my size. Clearly the universe wants me to get back to sewing.

When I got home and took a look I was happy to discover that about half of the patterns were uncut. Of the remainder, all the ones I checked were complete. The only bummer is that one of the sundresses (#3488) has no instructions. Naturally its got a complicated bodice. I figure if I make a muslin first, I can prolly figure it out.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Nopantsember Day 3

I have some work to do in the cute work outfit department. I guess I kind of suck at this. So far, everything looks basically the same. Its all (as my friend's mom would say about dressing up in 1970s Marin County) "a step up from blue jeans but still laid back and casual". Yee.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Nopantsember Day 2

I wore a bed all day yesterday as well, still sick, so no picture. This morning I dragged myself out of bed and trundled off to work, coughing and hacking. This is what I wore. Notice the scraggly hair. The sturdy calves. The short neck. Perhaps no high neck sweaters for me? I like the skirt though. No Pants!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Dressember is NoPantsember

I will post a sewing project soon, I promise. Its been really hard to sew without full access to the sewing room, but I do have something I could post. I just need to write it up and photograph it. Soon. Really.

In the meantime, in order to keep the blog from dying, I've been posting random junk. I'm trying to keep it vintage/sewing/fashion related. Its something, right?

So, in that vein...

The lovely livebird has declared the month of December to be Dressember. The rules: You will wear a dress each day in December and post it to the flickr group. No skirts no pants. Just dresses.

I'm going my own way with the concept. I will try to not wear pants to work for the whole month - NoPantsember!

Working for scientists is definitely a no-dress-code kind of a thing and so I've fallen into the trap of jeans and a t-shirt every day. I like to think that my work-a-day look is sort of toned down vintage-girl styley: cuffed jeans, cardigan sweater, converse. Probably, I look more middle-aged lady boring than I'd like.

In order to force some change, I will try very very hard to NOT WEAR PANTS TO WORK all this month. I'll post a picture of my (probably crappy) outfit on this blog every day during the week. It will help to keep me honest. But I'm taking weekends off! Who wants to get dressed up to lounge on the couch or clean the bathroom? Not me. I'll post a pic if I fluff myself up to go out.

Here's yesterday.(I'm not posting a pic of today because I'm wearing a bed. I'm sick as hell and plan to spend the entire day right here under the covers.)

Its almost as boring as pants. I'm pretending its cute like Audrey Hepburn in the first part of Funny Face when she's still a beatnick-bookstore-empathicalist. But its not. A brown Givenchy smock trumps black-on-black thrift store wear every time.

But I am a work in progress! After wearing the same thing day in and day out for almost 10 years, its going to take a while to get back into looking nice during the work-week. Hopefully by New Years Eve I'll have my fashion mojo back. I'll be able to quickly come up with something fun to wear every day, not just when I'm going out.

I'll do my best to create a cute outfit to wear tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after. I'm really out of practice, so I can't guarantee cuteness, but there will be no pants. Nopantsember!!!