Monday, March 10, 2014

The Long Way Around

Last weekend, when my friend and I came home from Seattle, we drove in cold weather and blinding snow. This weekend, it warmed up considerably, the snow melted, and my garden is fully exposed in anticipation of spring. And then again, it could snow tomorrow. You just never know although I'd vote for tulips, crocuses, or daffodils or some other cheerful sign of change. Snow is wearing thin.





I didn't get nearly as much done as I'd like in the studio. I was distracted or perhaps procrastinating. Either way, the skirt is not finished but it did make some progress. In the back, I used the button opening of one of the men's shirts in place of a zipper.





The dusty rose reminded me of a skirt I sewed several years ago that felt dull and boring until I paired it with a turquoise sweater - the compliment. At left above is the piecing before topstitching and at right I've added turquoise topstitching. WHAT a difference. And it let me play with thread which is one of thethings I really miss from making textile art. I love thread.Both it and paint have a wonderful way of blending and adding energy to a piece.





The front has another button section as an accent. It doesn't open and close. It just is. The placement is slightly off center and looks interesting held up against the body. I'm wondering now if I should have added another strip of the bright purple. Look at how much...





... more alive that black square looks with the top stitching? Isn't that fascinating? If you've never considered what thread could do for a project, it's something to consider.





When you completely change your mind about a project, it means revisiting some of the decisions already made. Above, I changed four of the strips in the back sections to get a better color and size configuration. It always surprises me with refashioning that the amount of fabric available is less than anticipated. I think I'm starting with a big piece and could do just about anything and it's rarely true.





Because of the shortness of some sections of the original piecing, I used the back from McCall's 5523 with the shorter center back and pleats. I've sewn this pattern a few times and really like it. This time I've lengthened the finished skirt to well below the knee.





I'm considering the brighter purple for the pleats only it seems a bit too loud, distracting, so I'm going to experiment with a few other options first before I sew the sections together. This is nowhere near the garment I started out to make and I have no idea where it's going. Right now, it feels like the long way around, perhaps even the wrong direction. I started out wanting to make something far more edgy and while this is pencil-skirt-with-a-twist, it's not edgy in the way I imagined. It's more like an interesting choice of fabric than a one-of-a-kind design. Which is good information but...

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - resolution

10 comments:

  1. Good morning. Spring-ish things are happening here too. I see what you mean about the purple - in the picture it looks too solid and bright compared to the rest of the skirt. What about toning the pleated area down a bit? I hate it when you have an idea in your head when you start, and then you come up for air after a creative flurry and what's sitting in front of you doesn't look anything like what you started out to make. It's like creative whiplash. It doesn't mean it's bad. It just isn't what you meant to do. Keep at it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree. It definitely needs toning down. I've just about to start working on that. Creative whiplash - great term. Kind of a how did I get here bewilderment while you're equally excited about the possibilities.

      Delete
  2. Actually love just the two pops of purple in the front, not a fan of the purple pleats in the back, I find something about them visually disturbing. I agree, I do hate when I think I'm going in one direction and find myself somewhere else entirely, but I also sometimes feel that it was a better instinct that led me there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I hold the front up, it looks far better against my body than on the design wall. Me too - not a fan of the purple pleats. I've decided they're going. I sometimes wonder what that instinct that leads me here says about the disconnect between where I thought I was and where I actually am. I'm probably - cause I'm so good at it - over thinking it but I know that many of the decisions have been around authenticity this feels like me; this does not - even though I want to go that other way. But what I'm sewing now is vastly different to what I sewed before and so a process has evolved. I've found that I stretch my creative boundaries incrementally.

      Delete
  3. I really like how this is coming together. I think it's going to be a very wearable garment with its own interest but that also plays nicely with other items (black t-shirt, colorful sweater, etc.) Often if a garment is too edgy it sits in the closet because we don't feel edgy very often. I especially like how some of the purple strips end at different points vertically— I think that creates a lot of visual interest especially from a distance. I agree about breaking up the purple pleats. RIght now they seem a bit out of place in the whole garment because of the larger expanse of purple. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I do think it'll be quite wearable. Now that I've remembered the turquoise combo from before, I'll explore a top or cardigan along that line. I tried to stagger the strips in length and width purposefully. That was some of the correcting I had to do. Working on the pleats.

      Delete
  4. I like how this is moving along. The purple pleat at the back is the bothersome part for me also. It jumped out at me when I looked at the picture. When I looked carefully at the picture, I noticed you hadn't stencil it (or am I blind?). Maybe stencilling would help make it flow with the rest of the skirt.
    I can see this skirt worn with the top you added the collar and button band to, a plain black t-shirt and a bright coloured sweater.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We're all in agreement. The pleats are doomed. I'm putting them aside for another project and trying a new possibility with this skirt. You're right. That piece wasn't painted and that might help but I think I want something far more toned down at the back so it's interesting without being demanding. I really don't need my butt getting too much attention.

      Delete
  5. "The pleats are doomed" made me laugh, as did "I don't need my butt getting more attention."

    Poor pleats. I kinda like them, it's just that they are too much of a muchness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I liked the pleats but I didn't like the brightness of that purple. Now they're the darker shade and good and enough. Pictures tomorrow.

      Delete

Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.