Saturday, April 13, 2013

Keep Me in Your Prayers

Remember the best job ever? Yeah, me too. Except it ended unexpectedly April 4, two days after returning from my staycation. I'm in severe emotional distress. And, if I don't find a new job in the next month, I'll be in severe financial distress too. And homeless. I'm genuinely clueless on this so there really aren't any more details either on-blog or off. I'm only posting this depressing news because I'm selfishly hoping for tons of cheer-me-up comments. At this point, I still want to throw up about every 5 minutes.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Quick Pic

Does Dani think I'm nuts? (Don't answer that!)

I'm too tired (after a day a work, a stop at the store for some dinner items, cooking dinner, cleaning up, and then walking the dogs) to make it into the sewing room tonight to continue working on my dress tonight. Maybe tomorrow. Or maybe the weekend. I'll have to see how it goes.

But in the meantime, here's my new top and skirt as worn to the office today. You can see that one of the things I did NOT do while on vacation was get that long LONG overdue haircut. I'm a shaggy windblown mess. Partly because the weather is so nice right now that the car windows need to be down, but mostly because it's just too grown out. I thought I wanted to try longer hair again but every time I get to this point, I give up. I really think the shorter styles flatter me more, so I'll likely be calling for a hair appointment soon. Plus, who wants all this hair in Florida summer?

Monday, April 1, 2013

A Wild Hair

Yeah, of course the mojo came back on the LAST DAY of my vacation, in the form of the Metropolitan Verano dress from Hot Patterns. It's a quick sew, made quicker by the shortcuts I used (more on that later), and although it's nearly done, it's not quite all the way finished. I still have sideseams and hems to stitch, but I'm not in a hurry because this fabric screams summer and I'm not yet ready to don the bright prints. Although with the weather we're having now, that feeling may only last another week ... and a tube of self-tanner for the fish underbelly legs. ;-) 

I'm not happy with the neckline. I really need to remember this with Hot Patterns and do some slight redrafting before I cut fabric as I seem to usually have problems with their neckline widths and facings. The depth of the vee is OK here, but the facing wants to roll out. I'll probably end up topstitching it into submission and make a note to eliminate the facing altogether next time. (Hopefully topstitching will work and I won't have to eliminate the facing ... i.e., frog stitch ... this time.) I'll also draw the shoulder edges closer to the neck and have them meet in a more round shape rather than forming a "corner." I'm using a straight size 12 here, which really should not be too wide for me. And technically, it's not. It's just not shaped the way I prefer. But really, if that's the only thing I have to adjust, I'm not going to complain.

As for my shortcuts ...the line drawing below shows CF and CB seams. Totally not necessary as the seams are 100% straight up and down, so I eliminated them and saved myself some layout width and sewing time. Speaking of the cutting layout, the envelope calls for 2-3/4 yds of 60" wide knit. I had 2 yds of this print and ended up with enough scraps for a cami or a couple pairs of undies, which means I used far less than 2 yds for my size 12 pieces. I never believe cutting layouts and fabric recommendations for any pattern line so this doesn't bother me and I'm only noting it here for posterity.

Other "shortcuts" involve changing the construction order to make twisting the front come later so I could keep everything flat and easier to handle for the earlier steps.

There's only one review of this pattern on PR and both the reviewer and a commenter mention that the pattern runs big and the waist seam hits lower than expected. I think I've solved this by (1) cutting the straight 12 instead of morphing to 14 or 16 below the chest and (2) using a 1" seam allowance to join top and bottom pieces. I'll also be using that 1" seam allowance for an easier and faster elastic casing instead of following the instructions.

I haven't actually tried it on yet so all of this may be wishful thinking, but I didn't want to end my sewing time today on a bad note so I'll save that step for the next sewing session. Maybe tomorrow night if I'm not too exhausted after catching up at work.

Last Day

Today is the last day of my vacation. I know I needed the time off because I haven't really done much of anything. All the best laid plans, etc., but what I did the most of was nothing. A signal to my body/soul that I needed time to just vegetate. I'd been going pretty much non-stop for a year and a half.

Alex started a new job today I helped him get with a printer we use regularly for my job. It's weird to be home while HE is at work. LOL I've been thinking about him all morning and can't wait to hear how it all went when he gets home.

On the sewing front, the mojo just hasn't been there. Oh well. That's just how it goes sometimes. I did manage to eek out a couple of things and rework some others, and there's still the rest of today and, who knows, I just might get a wild hair. ;-)

I made this top, shown last post, and then made this skirt morph between my beloved Magic Pencil and the Neue Mode.

Instead of being pegged inward, using the NM shape flares out the hem a little. I again incorporated slits into the flare and topstitched the side seams with a triple straight stitch. It's still a boring brown skirt, but it has a little more visual interest now. And I wear brown at the office like NYers wear black so it's nice to have YABS in a lighter shade of brown.

Here's the one pattern piece, after morphing the two patterns together. If you have the MP, you can see how easy it is to change up the shape a bit.

Next, I "fixed" this HP Butterfly top that I made to wear on my last birthday. I wore it that day and then never wore it again because it was just too low and I felt like the middle of my bra was on display. It wasn't really, but every time *I* looked down, I could almost see my navel.

Originally, the tie was only attached at the back neck. I slid it under the neckline stitching and stitched on top of the coverstitching to hold the tie bands in place, effectively raising the neckline two inches. I think this will get worn now because I do still really like the shape of the top on me.

Next, while straightening up my closet, I found this wrap top that I made a few years ago. I always liked the fabric, which is 3D/textural - the "print" is a print but it's also separate little pieces fused to a black background. But I was never really fond of the top on me. And since I made it when I weighed a lot more, it certainly wasn't doing me any favors now. I tried it on and completely by accident noticed that when untied, that half looked a lot like a waterfall cardi.

So, I snipped it apart where the inside wrap was sewn to the sideseam and then snipped off the ties. And, voila! A waterfall cardi that I like a lot better. Since the fabric is 3D, the raw edges where I snipped don't even show. I think this will actually get worn now, even through summer as my office is always on the chilly side. A/C does that to us Floridians. We freeze when it's not 80 degrees.

I also resewed a CB seam on a skirt that needed reinforcement above the walking vent and I want to hem a pair of black pants that have been waiting in my closet for a year. Yeah, I'm bad with repairs/mending. I have good intentions but never motivation to do these tasks that take 15 minutes. Pitiful.