Monday, January 24, 2011

And I Know Better

Sometimes, well I get sucked in by a unique artsy pattern with lots of possibilities and I forget the basic rules about what looks flattering on me and what doesn't. One of the most unflattering things for someone who is short, ample and wide shouldered is something that accentuates the shoulders. I mean really, I might pass for a stunted line backer in certain clothes. Essentials for flattering garments are shoulders that fit and fit well. Shirts with a non set-in self sleeve (one that is cut with the bodice of the garment) rarely look good, and when they do, it's because the fabric is very light weight. A good set in sleeve is a must when tailoring for a less than ideal body shape. So, what the heck was I thinking with this vest pattern and it's volume of shoulder ???

Beats me and I spent a fair amount of time fitting the body. Nothing and I mean nothing is going to change the basic design of this garment. Not only is it unflattering due to the added width, but also, it puckers going under the arm. I used chalk on the pattern to follow the pucker lines.

It is going in the box of shame. Simple as that. It wasn't a complete loss. I spent a lot of time with some different seaming treatments.

This pattern was written to use with felted wool, which can have a raw seam. In all fairness the softer line of the wool MIGHT have been a bit more flattering. I also made a wonderful little quilt to go on the back.

After all was said and done, I didn't like it on the vest because the piece (sized according to the pattern directions) was too big and certainly too wide to be appealing. I took it off and will save as I rather like it alone anyway.

Gene had a good time poking fun at it, saying that it would look great at a Star Trek convention. I told him I would be happy to complete it and give it to him to wear. ;)
Klingon costume anyone?

Other more successful endeavors include towel 5 which is using a deep green linen single and some spinning. In fact I am going to head up and do some more of it.

Parting shot: The Criminal Line-Up, They are Guilty of Something, I just don't know what...


  1. How fun to see your cute face -- but Gene's right; the vest has a definite Star Wars look to it.

  2. Love the "line up" at the end of the post! What's next...a "perp walk"?

    You know, I don't know anyone whose figure would be flattered by the lines of that vest. However I fall prey in the same way.

  3. the parting shot. "I don't know HOW that happened, Mom! The cat did it!" And, just when I was loving the vest, you showed me the error of my ways! I guess I should have taken home ec after all.....

  4. At least it wasn't handwoven fabric! I tried a vest of similar style once and don't think that armhole style works for anyone. My vest still sits in the "can I salvage this fabric box".

  5. Ugh! Is there anything more frustrating than spending hours making something for yourself that doesn't fit? But your pants last week were gorgeous!
    Your animals are hilarious! That they all stood still for the photo is some kind of miracle!

  6. Hahaha those dogs!!!

    The thing about those patterns is that they make them so artfully appealing! I love them too. I have no shoulders to speak of so maybe I should give it a try. It might balance my knitter's bottom!

    A seamstress friend of mine told me that she never sews any garment from a pattern that does not have a photo of a real person in the garment on the pattern envelope. Like those adorable vintage patterns for 1950's dresses that only have drawings? Never she says.

  7. oh dear, I'm so sad for you. this is how I've been feeling about knitted items which is why I'm sticking to socks, scarves & shawls right now.

  8. I am so bad at knowing what looks good on what body's a big sewing fear of mine. (Plus, I'm not a good seamstress!)

    I'm sorry you worked so hard on a project you're not happy with. That's a bummer.

    But I know you will not be like will immediately get back on the horse and create something else will not use this as a reason to get stalled or stuck. Right???

    As always, love your pups!


    PS: Cool that you lived so near Concord at one point. I don't know that area well at all, but it seems quite beautiful. I'm looking forward to heading back in warmer weather to explore more.

  9. well, lesson learned, or perhaps more "reinforced"? But so nice to see a pic of you :)neat parting shot too. they always bring a smile to my face.

  10. With those sweet faces looking up its hard to imagine the criminal line-up could be up to anything other than devotion to you.
    So the vest turned out to be a trail and error... perhaps it could be salvaged for another purpose.

  11. All of you, thank you for your kind words on the pattern and for making me laugh out loud at some of the comments on the line-up trio!

    Michelle, I might just finish it for the sole purpose of handing it to Gene on Halloween.

    Valerie, I almost choked on my coffee thinking about a perp walk and laughing.

    Evelyn, I'm glad it wasn't handwoven either! Nice to know I'm not the only one who fell prey to a pretty picture on the pattern cover. Why do they keep making them I wonder.

    Maggie, it is frustrating, but in all fairness, I had an inkling this pattern and this fabric just wasn't going to cut it. I like to see things through and I did to my satisfaction.

    LOTL, It might be a fab pattern for you done in the soft wools they recommend. Should I send it? It's cut to a large but very generous so you're only missing one size, the XL. Let me know....
    You're seamstress friend is right. No one even on Pattern has made it.

    Cindie, you make beautiful socks and shawls. I really think a well chosen knitted sweater would be wonderful. You should do one in all your spare time......;)

    Sue, I knew when I started sewing again, I wasn't going to make my sewing a do or die thing. Have fun with it, learn and if I end up with some nice working patterns all the better. All ready planning the next sewing project. As to finding clothes that flatter, it's hard for everyone but the tall skinny size 4 and I'll bet even they have a challenge at times. If you put it on and it makes you feel good, chances are it's flattering.

    Denise,d I went through my pattern stock and found another artsy vest that has the same wide shoulder thing. I will be culling that one too, however, I might try modifying the pattern, just because it would be a good challenge and sooner or later I will have to do it to other patterns. Glad you enjoyed the pic. I have no qualms with posting my picture, just rarely bug anyone to take one and of course, sometimes the outfits look pretty darn sloppy...The dogs are always well dressed!

  12. What a nice line up of canine buddies-they do look like they've been up to something, don't they?

    Nice seam work on your vest! Was that a French seam? I haven't done any clothes sewing in a while. It's always challenging sewing clothes--sometimes the pattern/fabrics work out and other times, not so well. Weaving seems to be like that too....

    I like your quilt!

  13. The line up looks to me like they are using their canine mind control abilities- give us treats! Or possibly, "who us, WE did not do it, you didn't see us do it so you can't prove it!" "WE are innocent I tell you, innocent! Now, give US a biscuit or the cat gets it!"

    Ah, the frustration of sewing a garment that we do not like - been there done that. The construction and fabric are lovely. The vest will be appreciated by someone somewhere, put it out into the world and forget about it. Get back on the horse as they say and make yourself something new. Enjoy the creative process! Cheers!

  14. You're right, the vest doesn't flatter you. But I love seeing the incredibly kind woman who mailed me FREE YARN!!! My gorgeous wool-silk yarn arrived yesterday, and it is more beautiful than can be imagined.


  15. I gotta tell you, I absolutely love the looks of that pattern. On a 6' tall, small-chested person, of which I certainly am not, it would probably be stunning as sewn. However, for us shorter people, the shoulder needs a bit of re-cutting. I have a pieced vest, half finished, in my stash that has a very similar shoulder line, on me it is straight out of Star Trek. One of these days, I need to get it out, take the shoulders apart, and re-cut them.

    I'm inspired by your incredible

  16. Wow! everyone's comments are great and good for you for not tossing it out earlier. That is soooo frustrating! There must be somewhere it would redeem itself...maybe a local theatrical group?!

    I think those pups are guily alright...of loving you!

  17. You and me both, I have the same stock, 5'2" wide shoulders (I hated the padded should style of the 80's 90's), 38D's for lady bumps. My cousin and I always joke that we were built to carry these shelves.. I can wear vests if they are fitted, stretchy material and taper at the neck sort of halter style.

    The kiddies look guilty, like they're hiding something.

  18. Theresa, I feel your pain, no, I know your pain. I too have been seduced by an artisan pattern with beautiful lines completely forgetting that I am 5'2" and you need to be 8' 2" and have an ample bust line to wear the style gracefully. I too look like a football player in anything that so much as whispers shoulder pads.
    Thanks for sharing and as always, love those beautiful dog faces!

  19. Theresa, my lovely yarn came in yesterday's mail - A million thanks! Thinking the pink yarn would make a lovely short sleeve sweater, now where did I put those knitting needles? Oh and before I forget, the shelter loved the dog food Stella brought in for them '-)

  20. Okay, you are adorable and that pattern is not. I wish there were a fashion magazine out there what knew what mature American women really look like so we could get ideas, but whatever you were looking at, that's not your best look. Okay, I have an evil viscous cold and am even scaring my dogs - perhaps I speak too harshly?

  21. Hey! Star Trek fashions are in! Somewhere. Where no woman has ever gone before.

  22. Have you decided where your quilt is going? It needs to have a special place :-)