Friday, December 5, 2014

The Well Of The Sleeve

Yesterday was a long and full day in the studio - and a VERY fun day. It's such a gift to have this time with my friend. The Vogue 1410 dress is finished only by the time it was done, it was too dark to get a good picture so I'll post one as soon as possible. Although I'm sewing for Millicent - my dialed down dress form - I sewed this dress from the same pattern pieces as the earlier version and it's snugger which I assume is the fabric factor since the other dress is not tight. And that's okay. I intend to be smaller soon too and when I am, it'll still fit me only better.

All of the seams are serged to the right side. With the shoulder, sleeve, underarm, and side seams, I stitched down the seam to hold it flat in place. With the seams at center front, I tacked down the first inch from the shoulder and left the rest free so the seam would be able to fold to the middle with the button closures.

Top stitching the underarm seam means sewing into the well of the sleeve. I've learned to be very careful backing out of this type of situation after catching and damaging a leather sleeve a couple years ago. With this "torn" fabric, I really paid attention so the foot wouldn't catch and create an unintentional and bigger tear.

I packed an assortment of buttons even though I was leaning very heavily in the direction of this triangle and I'm glad I did because after basting the triangle to the dress, it wasn't nearly as flattering as I'd hoped. I think the best application for it would be a heavier fabric but I'm not sure. I didn't like that the button ended up so far from the center of the triangle.

I also brought these very shiny buttons with rectangular holes that seemed to mimic the fabric. If they had been smaller, I may have liked them better. At this size, they seemed too big and too heavy and too shiny. Basting the buttons to the garment is a great way to audition them. It gives you an opportunity to step back, take pictures, and evaluate.

What I liked about the spiral button on the left was how its lines mimicked the lines on the black fabric at center front. In the end, I thought it was the best choice PLUS... it had a shank which made it a lot easier to tie the buttons together with...

... self cording. To make the cording, I folded a long strip of the black fabric in half and then serged it closed with the fold against the far left side of the presser foot. Then, I folded that strip in half and stitched down the middle and then I zigzagged down the length with a wide stitch. It made a neat, well matched cord that works great.

Today, I'm starting on the brown challenge project. When Sheri and I first talked about this challenge, I had plenty of time so I finished up other things first only I wasn't expecting to go on a ten day holiday. That eats up - in a delightful way - quite a bit of the remaining time. I can make a start here in my friend's studio but I don't think I'll get it finished until I get back home... which is probably good... since having a project to finish will transition me back into the studio quickly. BUT...

... I won't worry about that now since I have few more days to sew here first. A beginning is a beginning and I can jump right in since I've done the samples and  know what the first step is - tucks - although I have absolutely no idea what the second step is. I want the dress to grow organically step-by-step. More next week.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - good food

Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the 'Titanic' who waved off the dessert cart.
- Erma Bombeck


  1. What a great description of the sewing. Can't wait to see the finished product!

    1. ASAP. I'm really enjoying working with the fabric. It's "yummy".


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