The special order cammie purse is done! Yay! Every single bit of the cammie fabric came from the blouse that was sent, and almost every single bit of the blouse was used. I couldn't "cheat" and use my flat MARPAT fabric for straps since the cammie I received was pretty faded and my new fabric is … well … new. I like the way pieced straps look because you get characteristics of the original cammie that way, but they take at least twice as long to make and allowimg room for them on the cammie blouse makes the pattern layout more of a brain twister. This style for a cammie purse is definitely the most labor-intensive. On the others, I learned my lesson and made them simpler from the get-go.
I had a major brain fade yesterday when inserting the zipper. It's done 100% by machine, because ya'll KNOW how I hate hand sewing (especially in purses). It has been many months since I made my same-pattern purse. Do you think I took notes on how I did the zipper? If you guessed Hell No!, you would be correct. This means I made a couple of wrong passes with the machine which had to be frogged. But once I walked away for a while, the solution came to me. And it was so obvious (after the fact), that it was almost irritating. lol But I did take notes this time, in case I actually do make up an official pattern for this.
This one is almost exactly like mine, except for the last names, lining, and better interfacings. I used fusible fleece on all the outside pieces, except the two strips right next to the zipper. For those, I used Decor Bond which made them sturdy but not too bulky next to the zipper teeth. I trimmed the fleece so it would be caught in the seams, but only by a hair. This worked great to keep seam allowance bulk down. I also used the fusible fleece in the straps, except I did not apply it at the ends, again to keep the bulk down where I needed to fold the strap over and attach it to the purse or itself, around the hardware.
The main features I couldn't find in any commercial pattern (big guys or little ones) was (1) the center divider pocket in the middle, which is not as wide as the outside so it "cinches in" the sides of the purse, and (2) the outside zipper strips which are curved and part of the purse body, and sewn entirely by machine, of course.
With the improved interfacing, this purse is more rigid so hopefully the feet will actually do something on this one. ;-)
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Moving ahead to my wardrobe dilemma …
I'm not complaining on the reason, but with the continuing weight loss I really do not have much to wear to an office. I have my 2 interview suits and a couple of dresses, none of which mixes/matches. Everything else is too big. Yes, I can sew some things but (1) not enough in a short time and (2) I really don't want to, because it's not going to fit for very long and I need to re-do pretty much all of my pattern alterations. TNTs are a thing of the past for now. Wah!
I think I will make one or two Vogue 1250s in a print, and one or two unstructured jacket/cardi somethings to coordinate with them, plus a simple and plain top or two. I think I can do at least 3 out of those in a week. (The "week" deadline is if I get the job — I still don't know yet.) In the meantime, I will need to shop so I can fill in with RTW. But I am going to limit myself to really inexpensive stuff, since again, I don't plan on it fitting for long so I don't want to waste money needlessly.
Let's start the mega-photo section of this post, shall we? Pardon goofy eyes, dorky smiles, bare feet, mismatched prints, blurry focus and dirty mirrors. I was going for quantity and basic shapes. Also pardon my rambling thoughts. None of this is very organized.
After my interview yesterday, I came home and changed and headed out to Walmart for some household stuff and while there, I browsed the clothes and pulled some to try on. I had lots of success fit-wise, and in sizes that pleased me immensely. Yay! But everything is black, black, black. Or gray. Boo! I hate those colors on me. Especially near my face.
This is in the Walmart fitting room, taken with my cell phone. Even crappier quality than usual, which I would've thought wasn't possible. ;-) The basic shapes are good (I have a similar cowl pattern, which I'll get to below), although the top is tucked up because it's too long. But that solid black is just not me. And even if YOU think it's OK, I don't, so I'll never wear it. Ask my mother. I'm stubborn that way and have been since I was 4 or 5 and she wanted me to wear stuff I hated. Guess who won? ;-)
This one is too boobalicious, I know. But it was the ONLY top in earth tones, except it was a size 10!! I tried it on just for kicks, though, and, amazingly, it's actually not too far off from fitting. There is an underbust seam, which hits me under the bust. What a concept. This means either I'm loosing boob or the Walmart "designers" (I *had* to put quotes on that idea) use more ease these days. Probably both.
I didn't buy anything in the pics above, but I did buy this skirt below which is the same style as the skirt above but what looks black is actually brown. Yay for brown! The top is my unfinished McCall's some-number. It's way too big, but I can take it in, hem it, and add some sleeves easily. Fixing it up is on the agenda.
But white is too stark next to the skirt, so I want to make a short-sleeved jacket/cardi-something from this putty-colored doubleknit I've got slung over my shoulder.
Here are the three fabrics together. The skirt print has a putty color in it which is more evident IRL vs. the pics.
I also bought these pants.
In two sizes, because I couldn't decide which one would be better. The 18 fits but is a little loose. The 16 fits but is a little tight, but only about 5-6 lbs worth of tight — which should be gone in a couple weeks. I decided I'd do some mirror shots to help me decide because while I wouldn't care about keeping both money-wise, since they're only $20 a pair, I really don't want to hem the same pants twice in month, you know?? And I don't love black anyway. I've pretty much decided I'm keeping the 16s.
Those are the 18s above, with a belt that is riding way too high. It's hard to hold a too-big shirt in at the back and balance a belt and camera shutter button all at the same time, while trying to smile pretty and not blink. Imagine the top fitting better, and with sleeves.
In other words, NOT like this. lol
Still wearing the 18s here, with a shirt I thought might work. Until I tried it on. Don't let this shot fool you …
… it really looks like this:
More grabbing of excess fabric in the back, just to get an idea of shape. I *know* the jacket doesn't go with the pants.
This one kind of bums me out. I loved this jacket and the fabric even more. Maybe one day I can alter it down. For now, it's unwearable.
This pic below is the pants in 16 and a top that fits better, although it's really too low and my bra straps show if I don't pull it up like I did for this pic. Maybe some Hollywood Stay Tape will let me get by for a while longer.
And here's something that hasn't been seen in public in YEARS — a side-view pic of me. As you can see, the belly is still there in plenty of form. So is my butt. ;-) But it sure is nice to see a lot less of both.
Finally, what I'm really wearing today. Which I can also wear to an office if I trade flip-flops for real shoes. I want to make a short-sleeved brown cardi to finish this look and others. I will take in the sideseams and CB seam of this dress (and its sister) for as long as I can. It kind of needs it again now. Sigh.
I'm hoping to hit up the cheapos: Target, Kohl's, JC Penney and Sears (some or all, depends on what I find) this weekend. It's a scary thought, though, because I'm now fitting into so many more things and I may have a hard time leaving things at the store. On second thought, I should probably skip the stores and chain myself to my sewing machine. Unfortunately, one of the benefits/curses of losing weight is that I actually like shopping for clothes again.
"Planking," on a tree knocked down by Hurricane Irene. Can you see the clenched fists, like he's standing at attention? ;-) By the way, one year ago today Tyler left for boot camp.