Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Memory Lane

I was doing a little tidying up in the sewing room and ran across these UFOs again. I've been planning to deal with them in one way or another but I had wanted to take pics first to show how really bad they are. I finally had the camera in hand at the right time and now we can all get a good giggle. (Remember to click on the photos for the bigger versions so you can see all the ugliness in full detail.)

First up, a now-OOP Butterick (too lazy to dig out the pattern number) from years and years ago, when I first started sewing and knew nothing about fitting or FBAs.

Look at the shoulder points falling off of mine! The bust dart is about 2 inches too low for me, the armholes are too big, and it's just a sack all over. That's because I picked the size using my full bust measurement, before I knew better. This fits me exactly like a RTW plus size blouse would.

But look at how perfectly executed that wing collar is, inset square seam join and all. It's pure linen and a beautiful color for me too. Sniff. I'll never wear this one, obviously, but I've kept it around because all it needs is buttons and the sleeves hemmed and it will either fit my sister (who is much more broad-shouldered than me and is 6 feet tall, and used to RTW), or it will go to Goodwill. I still have the pattern but I'm pretty sure I didn't trace it so I really ought to get rid of that too. I wish I had a replacement for that collar.

Next, Silhouette #600. Now that years have passed, my memory has faded about exactly what went wrong with this one. I sort of remember that all I did was my usual square shoulders alteration and choosing the D bust cup bodice piece but whatever went wrong, it was horrible and unfixable. And I wasted wonderful rayon fabric that I'm still not over. I can't say for sure that it was the pattern and not me, especially because the 4 reviews of this pattern on PatternReview all rave about it, but I do know that Silhouette patterns have completely symmetrical sleeve caps and they just do NOT work for me in a blouse. I did re-sell the pattern so all I lost was some time and that great piece of rayon.

Judy Jetson shoulders:

Last up, a McCall's top (again, too lazy to go look it up). It fits perfectly, so that's not the problem. But it's a clown top. Literally. All that's missing is a red ball nose. The combination of the bright colors and that very ruffled neckline is Just Not Right. I should hem the bottom and sleeves and donate it. To the Ringling Museum just down the road in Sarasota. ;-)

DS#2 is on his way to football camp, which leaves me the rest of today and most of tomorrow for sewing.

I've got a 5:30 PM interview tomorrow, but I'm not optimistic for a number of reasons. Not about getting the job, but because there's a good chance I will and I don't think I want it. Isn't that always how it works? ;-) But I'm going to try to keep an open mind until I hear the details and actually meet the principals, and hope that I'm pleasantly surprised. I also have a second interview on Monday for one of the jobs I *do* know I'd like.


  1. Debbie - Thanks for doing this particular post. It's right up my alley right now. I am getting back to sewing after a 10-year break during which my body changed dramatically. I now have a 38DD cup and need to do FBAs - never done one before. Last weekend I cut out a size 16 blouse thinking it would fit. Well,it fit around the neck and shoulders but the sides would not meet in the front. I didn't think I'd need the FBA as the pattern had tucks in the shoulder - wrong! Also, I was shocked it didn't fit over my hips! :(

    Your orange blouse above is the same as RTW looks on me. I've been reading your blog for a few weeks now and your clothes look very nice on you so the difference must be the FBA! I need to learn how to do it.

  2. Isn't it so fun to see how far you've come? I know I feel that way about my sewing. I have *so* much more to learn too, but that is what life is all about, learning as we go.

    Hope the job turns out to be better than you're expecting.

  3. I actually like the clown blouse! Really!! I know what you mean though, I'm not really a ruffle girl at least where tops are concerned. Too much "stuff" by my chest.

    I hope the interview turns out however you'd like it to.

  4. I like the clown top, too!
    Good luck on Monday!

  5. I like the Ringling top fabric. Maybe you wouldn't hate it if you took off the ruffle? It fits very nicely. Yeah, listen to me. I made a dress I knew I'd love a couple of months back, in a fabric I loved, and after I put it on, I ripped out the zipper and tossed it. Too much pattern. It worked great as a sundress, though. Good luck with the new interview and the second interview; hope you get exactly what you want in a job!

  6. This post makes me feel a lot better about my failures!

  7. You look so pretty in the ruffle blouse! Maybe you could save it until some day you're feeling girly.

  8. Good luck with the job interview for the one that you *DO* want! I hope it goes well!!!!

  9. I have to say that I like the clown blouse on you...sorry....

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  11. Sometimes things just don't work and its good to know that everyone has those moments!
    Good luck on the interviews.

  12. Oh, joy! There's hope for me again. Just when I'd given up on the notion that I'd ever be any good, I learn that Debbie was do I say this...lousy at fitting. ;) Proof once again that it is possible to learn the ins and outs of garment fitting.

    I like the clown blouse, too. Too bad you don't like it because it's very flattering.

    BTW, good luck on your interview with the principals!

  13. Debbie, I like the clown top too - but I agree about the ruffle! Coule you be bothered to take it off and put on a simple binding? The colour really suits you!

  14. They all look like normal plus sized rtw to me as well. Perhaps there is hope for me in time to fine tune the fit issues. I did not even know what fba meant until fairly recently and wowser did I ever need to know. I thought one was forever doomed to a tent or to keep pulling the jacket fronts back into place.
    Good luck with finding the perfect job that you will love. mssewcrazy

  15. I love to sew, and I so enjoy reading your blog, pattern reviews, and about your sewing projects. Most of my sewing is for my children-easy to fit! I have been getting up my courage to do some fitted sewing for myself. What would you recommend for learning to do a FBA, fitting books, ect.? What patterns are true to size? Where do I start, realizing that I have limited time, and don't want to waste it fiddling about? You do a great job with the fitting and altering of a pattern. I like the clown blouse too!
    Thank you, Tami

  16. That third piece has a nice fabric, I think it's the ruffles that make it over the top. You can still salvage it if you like the fabric though. The other two pieces can be a gentle reminder of how far you've come with your sewing skill. I've had the ocassional piece that doesn't work and I like to look at it and go "ha" I've learned better now.

    Good luck on your interview :)


  17. Debbie, I've always found that it was the jobs that I didn't want were always the one's that wanted me! I learned to say no thank you and hold out for something that really interested and excited me. As long as we have to work, it should at least be an enjoyable experience. We spend to many hours a day working to settle for anything less. I know that you'll find the perfect place for you. I got a kick out of the clown top. I feel the same way about anything with a ruffle. I'm girly enough without adding all the frou-frou!

  18. Another vote for rescuing the "clown" top. Binding would do it even if you need to move it to the inside. That fabric really suits you.
    Good luck with the job search.
    Best wishes

  19. Debbie,
    You need to keep that first blouse around just to show how far you've come in your fitting expertise. Kind of like I keep that pair of size 6 pants I used to fit into *after* I had my 4 kids. I keep thinking if I could fit them once I should be able to fit them again. Maybe I should toss them and stop torturing myself. Too bad though about the beautiful linen - it's definitely your colour.

  20. Not looking for a horse blanket to go with your clown top, are you? LOL!


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