Monday, August 25, 2014

All the pins came falling out - L

Another sewing day!  We are headed to Costume College soon and realized we have nothing to wear! Yeah, we left it a little late.  I need to fix the Anteater skirt and then I can wear that.  Robin needed to take in her 1880's ball gown bodice.  We got that done.  We also worked on our Regency dresses.  Robin had her Regency dress in good shape for final fittings.  We got that done and she even cut out sleeves and sewed them in.  Her fabric is a sheer white cotton dotted swiss with an ivory under layer. Very pretty.

YES, I started this exactly one month ago.  And never finished it.  Here I go again....

We are using the Simplicity pattern based on Sense and Sensibility.  Why? Because Robin bought it a while back during one of those $1 pattern sales, and before we decided we have trouble fitting Sense and Sensibility to us.  Now we know that Robin doesn't have much of a problem, but I'm still 'challenged'.  The back was too big for both of us.  We both trimmed the side back piece.  Later, I also took a LOT out of the center back.  Both of us felt the volume of the skirt was meager.  And we each added about 4 inches.  I would only recommend this pattern for fragile young things.  For the more womanly, expect to do a few muslins.  And yes, that is frustrating when you are making a muslin dress.  Any-hoodle, moving forward...

I had my underlayer cut and sewn, only to discover that I didn't really need it.  My fabric was heavier than I remembered.  Also stretchier.  And therein lies my tale of woe.  Beware, my friends, of cotton gauze.  No pins shall stay where they are placed, if they stay at all.  I took the underlayer apart and used it as my pattern for the gauze.  Then I tried to baste, only to discover that there were no pins.  Where do they go??  All over the floor.  Once I basted, I tried it on and it was utterly unfit-able.  It just kept stretching.  Sooooo, back to the underlining and sewing it all together again.  Once I got them together the stretch was under control but the back had magically grown.  So I re-did the center back. And it STILL seemed huge.  Now we were scared.  (BTW, I did manage to get the chest mostly right.  A little too long but that was easy to manage).  
Fitting text, no sleeves
At this point we did something very smart.  We left the bodice tentatively pinned and moved on the skirt.  And woe was me again!  My fabric is plaid and while I made no particular effort to match the plaid, I really felt it needed to be straight across the horizantal line at the underbust.  The avoid causing sea-sickness in others.  The required gathering, basting, trying on, pleating, re-basting, etc etc.  It took seven tries to get it sorta, maybe correct.  At this point, Costume College was looming and I still envisioned having this dress to wear.  I would text a picture to Robin and she would text 'nope', 'better', 'still not there', and 'don't give up!'.

To keep this long story from getting any longer, we got them done except for closures.  Robin's snaps were sewn but too small, so as soon as she took a breath, her dress fell off.  My hooks got sewn but not the bars.  I needed a last fitting to resolve the 'magic' center back.  And Costume College was full of great classes leaving neither time nor energy to do fittings.  So the dresses are done, but we have nothing to wear them to.

All sewn up and no place to go....

Gatsby dress
That said, my Gatsby dress was well complimented (mostly on the vibrant fabric) so there's that.

 Here is a snap shot of JUST the hanging part of my Costume College wardrobe.

And an inadequate  picture of the pile of shoe boxes, petticoats, stays and hawaiian shirts piled on my suitcase.

Part of the reason I wanted my Regency dress finished was to wear it to my 'Quick and Easy Regency Turban' class.   It was, in fact, just as quick and easy as billed.  Except the part where I'm not finished.  User error.

I'm still coasting on the CoCo high.  I bought button molds to make thread covered buttons.  I got parchment paper to melt plastic into fabric.  I bought armor scales to knit.  I haven't done any of it.  Except a quick trial run of knitted armor.  I'm looking forward to making it into something, once I get the gauge right.

Tomorrow, probably, maybe, I'll post the other things I did in the last month.  All theatrical, and none of it paid.  And then something for ME.  And a present for an offspring.


  1. Excited to see you're doing the knitted armor! I want to try that so badly.

  2. Whoa. Knitted armor. You have resolved all my 'to-do' list items for the season. Do the kids need clothes? Dinner? Laundry? Screw em. I got to knit me some ARMOR.

    Try for easy piecing sections. the very thought of circular knitting armor makes my arms ache to think of (all that weight). How do you estimate quantity on the scales without charting the whole thing (or most of it)?

    My head is reeling; I gotta lie down.

    1. I'I am only making 3/4 sleeves to start. If I mess up, it won't be so bad to pull it apart and start over. I am thinking of making something sort of useless and nutty out if scraps and remnants.