Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Thrill of Victory, the Agony of Defeat

Now you all may think this is going to be a post about the Bruins loss to Montreal in game 7 of the second round of play-offs. And that would be a good guess, but let me assure you, I have already done all my crying over that. Well, most of it.

This is really about three new patterns, two of them failures and one destined to become a TNT (tried and true).

So care to venture a guess which ones failed and which one was a success?

These two were the utter failures. The Decades of Style Stardust skirt was a winner. Saves were accomplished on both the Japanese tunic pattern and the McCalls mock wrap pants. But first I had to identify what I liked about each pattern before I could go forward. The Japanese book pattern, it was the sleeves and the cute neckline. For the McCalls it was  the pretty drapey pleat that sarong tie made.

So, lets think about this. I went ahead and copied and redrafted a whole pattern to get a neckline and a split sleeve tunic. The body fit well after drafting but the sleeve and armhole was a bugger and the voile fabric was beginning to show the effects of taking it in and out even with basting. I recut everything to a long Scout T and added the neck detail.

 I ran out of fabric and barely squeaked out two new sleeves needing length which was cobbled on with some selvage detail as an added bonus...well maybe. As it was I used a different voile scrap for the neck binding. I had bought the last 3 yards of this fabric. It will be much easier to redraft a sleeve I know is well fitting to have that cute split detail than a whole new tunic. Lesson learned...NOT.

Now to the McCalls pattern. If I had taken the time to apply that lesson from the tunic above, I would have saved a lot of time, effort and fabric. Instead I squandered all three. The pattern as shown is a one piece leg. OMG, the whole thing was HUGE. I came downstairs in it, with a tunic over the tied and folded and rolled waist (anything to keep it up), and DH asked what clown shoes I had in mind to go with it. DH rarely comments on the clothing either good or bad. He wisely stays neutral, so we both had a good laugh and up I went to try to save the pretty but difficult rayon crepe. There was more of this at the store but not near enough for a full pair of pants. I had to take the whole mess apart. I got both backs from the old pieces and was able to get enough fabric to make new pant fronts and waistband from the yard and a bit left on the roll.

 What I wanted was the pretty fluid pleat and by taking my TNT pant pattern that is what I got. I added a front pleat. It was so EASY!

 The only reason I went with a rayon was for the McCalls pattern because after all it was only one seam...., but let me tell you, waistbands in slippery rayon are no fun. Still a good save and a pretty summer pant.

The star of the week is the Decades of Style skirt.

 I even used a knit and liked it! This skirt is thrifty, using under 2 yards of fabric, well drafted and easy as all get out to put together.

 The gores on one side give it a little style and movement.

 I did elastic in the waistband on this stable ponte knit since it was unnecessary to install a zipper. In a woven fabric I will do the zip of course.

Last week was warm and almost summer like. I got a fair amount done in the garden; daily watering for the area that was wildflower seeded, had a lovely ride on Cooper one day, said good-bye to friend Mary in Klamath Falls another day and gave all the toys back to the small and needy bunch of fur kids over the weekend. Laundry made it out to dry in the fresh air and Peter and I took a lot of short walks. It was a full week, complete with a little drama and the easy relaxing flow of the mundane. A little bit of everything.

Parting shot: My escort to the upstairs. We certainly like ears of distinction in this household!


  1. Lessons learned.....oh my! You sure have a great attitude about your sewing challenges! But it sure paid off in the end. Glad you got some riding time in this week.

  2. Oh my! I'm holding onto my sarong pattern, looking for a drapey fabric. And thinking I'll probably end up with pajamas!

  3. Oh dear. Drafting sleeves and armscyes to match are always a pain in the arse. Once upon a time I grimly mastered the trick while in school but gladly let that go years ago. I have been avoiding the need to relearn the tricks. I just remember the frustration.
    Reading about your sewing adventures is inspiring as always. I managed to pop into Fabrics of Vision on my way back through Ashland on Monday. I enjoyed a look around and was half hoping I might run into you!