Wednesday, February 20, 2013

On The Couch

The plan for today was to post my observations from reading Over-Dressed and then sew like crazy and finish the blouse so I could post it tomorrow. There are two problems. The first is that I'm freezing, sniffling, sneezing and the second is that I'm more likely to spend the day on the couch than in the studio. I have a cold.

The blouse didn't go in any wearable direction. In fact, it's now in a pile and I'm starting over but I learned a tremendous amount and spent a delightful day in the studio. Good. Enough.

It was easy to slip into quilt mode - my last experience with mixing up prints. I found myself whacking off edges and overlapping them and forgetting that I needed to finish those seams if I intended to wear the blouse. My subconscious was thinking backing and batting as previously trained to do.  I need to be careful. I don't want to look like I'm wearing a quilt.

The challenge of working with these three prints is... well... challenging and I'm having fun and I'd chose differently next time now that I have a little more experience. Varying the scale would be one thing. Another would be to choose fabrics that have identical weights. These are similar but not similar enough. The floral is a very light-weight silk-cotton, the plaid is a seersucker, and the grey is densely woven. It's perfect as the button band and collar but when it's pieced into the body, it pushes the other fabrics around and dominates.

I tried NUMEROUS variations for the back and built a beautifully pleated section where I spent a lot of time making sure the proportion of the un-pleated area balanced the proportion of the pleated area only to hold it up to my back and realize that the pleats started at my shoulder blades and that would look stupid. It'll make a cute little girl outfit.

After that, I tried three other configurations before accepting that a pieced back has non-flattering, skunk stripe down my back, overtones in my head. I've decided the back, sleeves, and side front should be floral, the center front plaid, and the button band and collars grey. At least that's what I'm going to try next. PLUS...

... I need to redraft the redraft of the pattern. I'd read that you could adjust for the shoulder width through the princess seam but there probably should have been a caveat about how much of an adjustment you were making. An inch is too much. It creates a tightly darted section over the shoulder blades and back boobs. I'm going to return the seams to the original shape and make the narrow shoulder adjustment at the shoulder point and hopefully I have enough of the floral left to cut out the new pieces. If I have enough energy that is. Right now, back to the couch.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - I could feel that I was getting a cold but even so I really REALLY enjoyed the energy of tossing ideas around and experimenting with this blouse. While it's unlikely I'm going to be a block printed fan, it did illustrate once again that less knowing and more experimenting is a direction I thoroughly enjoy and should do more of. YES YES!


  1. I'm so sorry to hear that you have a cold - (hug) & a virtual mug of hot tea.

    Personally, not so sorry you wadded that mixed print project. Caveat: I don't even really care for color blocking, much less mixed prints ;-) I applaud you for having the wisdom to know that it wasn't happening like your vision - applause for that & I can't wait to see the next project - in a week or so, after you "whup" this cold!
    JoyceP in WI

  2. Thanks for the good wishes. I'll take that tea.

    LOL - evolved not nixed. It's moving in different, less here she comes, directions. I think it's going to be okay. Let me know what you think when I'm all done. I'm sewing between sniffles and naps.

  3. Glad to hear you're not so sick that you can't play in your sewing room :-) I look forward to seeing what you come up with next.

    Mix the juice of half (or whole) lemon, honey to taste, 1/4 to 1/2 tsp powdered ginger, and a dash of cayenne in a mug. Top up the mug with hot water, stir, and enjoy. I tried this the last time I had a cold - can't say for sure that it helped or worked, but it tasted good!

    1. Some images of my five minute segments tomorrow. Possibly the finished blouse the next day but don't hold your breath - LOL - actually I can't breathe so maybe I'm holding mine.

      I'll give the mix a try. Thanks.


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