Thursday, September 29, 2011

Just Realized

I never put up swatches of the fabrics so you could all drool and be jealous of my forthcoming beautiful jacket.
I finally got started and have the back put together.
Here are a few pictures as I'm fusing and marking:

Lining Fabric:

Jacket Fabric:

Fusing and marking:

Thursday, September 22, 2011

My Excellent summer sewing adventure Part 3

So I finally figured out I was afraid to cut into this beautiful fabric because I didn't want to ruin it. Duh! I've had it around for about 10 years plus waiting for the right project. This is it. Time to get moving. Even if my sewing isn't perfect, at least it will fit right, and I'll have the best fitting jacket I've ever owned.

So I started cutting and fusing today. I'm going very slowly and deliberately.
Part of perfect sewing is perfect marking. So I have taken each pattern piece, and punched out the dots with either my sewing hole punch, or a darning needle for the small holes. The diamond got cut out. All darts are marked. I'm trying to be as precise as possible. Then I am cutting out a piece, fusing it, then pinning the pattern back to the fused fabric and doing as precise of tailor's tacks as I can. This should be enormously helpful in getting pieces put together exactly right.

Onward and upward!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Finally! Back to Vogue 8333

Okay. Work got extremely busy, as happens when the interest rates drop. I've worked the last 14 or so days straight, so didn't get to sew. The sitting really bothers my knee so I'm wearing a brace most days and icing it at least a part of each day.

But I worked like crazy yesterday so got a half day off, and FINALLY I got to get started on my jacket. Finished up some alterations and figured out that I'm going to do fusible for my first one due to time constraints. I promised I'd have this ready to wear for our ASG Fashion Show in mid November. That means I need to get on the stick so I can do this carefully and follow directions well for a change. That means being deliberate and hopefully not having to do frog stitching. Rip it, rip it, rip it!

Today I realized I'm kind of scared to start this project. The fabric is a beautiful silk tweed, and I have a silk charmeuse for a lining. I really don't want to mess it up, but I figure I need to get moving, so here I go. If I do something not exactly right, no one will probably know but me. If some of my ASG friends see it, they will know because they've probably made similar mistakes! :P}}

So I'm starting on the back as there were fewer alterations and I can get that moving fairly quickly. The back always has a separate piece for the lining as it is done differently with an ease pleat at the top. This particular pattern calls for using the side back and the side piece for the lining and just cutting them shorter. I did make a separate piece for the lining for the side back and will probably continue making the separate pieces throughout the jacket parts just so I don't have to remember to cut them differently. The front and side front have very different pieces for lining, so the front lining needs alterations to match the front that I altered, and I'll copy the side front piece for the lining to be separate too. It's pretty different and would be easy to mess up.

Had to search for a while for my interfacing, but got super lucky. If you're doing the fusible jacket, she calls for fusing a lightweight knit interfacing to most of it. I found some old interfacing that is much better quality than you can buy most places now. It's from Handler Textiles, when they still had Stacy brand, and it's Fusi Knit. It was good quality stuff. I usually buy all of my interfacing from Pam Erny's web store, but I was out of the white knit, so was happy to find the Fusi Knit in my supplies. I have another box of interfacing somewhere, but that has yet to surface. So I have parts of the interfacing cut out and ready to go. Hopefully tomorrow I'll get to cut out the matching jacket pieces so I can get moving forward to this project.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Excellent summer sewing adventure Part 2

Well, the summer got off to an interesting start. We had been looking at areas for our "pre-retirement" home for a while. We knew we wanted to be near water so we could launch our boat fairly quickly, and I knew it couldn't be in Sonoma County as I really like to breathe and the allergens here are more than I can handle. So in a quick fit of insanity, we found a house, packed, downsized by 1/3, and moved. During the process, I wrenched my knee, which turned out to be a pretty major sprain, and we're looking at about 12 weeks for full recovery, about 6 of which I've already completed. We still have way too much stuff crammed into our house, and tubs of fabrics and boxes and boxes of other things remain in the garage. I am periodically trying to find something, and realizing, "it's in a box in the garage." Unfortunately several of my helpers were not terrific about labeling, and just shoved anything that would fit into the same box. It's going to take a while!

Right now, I have sewing things in a couple of rooms and my garage. I don't think I realized how much I had acquired over the last ten years, but it is considerable. If you think about moving your sewing stash, sewing equipment, and all the rest, it can be a little daunting to say the least. At this point, I'm more or less set up and ready to sew. I get to start with the additional jacket alterations today, on a limited basis.

At the June meeting, as Billie Jane looked at my muslin, we knew there were sleeve issues as well as collar issues. The sleeves were split at the elbow because I also needed a bit at the elbow, two slashes made to the sleeve cap so it wouldn't be too much in one area, and additional width was added into both slits from the elbow to the sleeve cap. The collar adjustment was fairly straight forward with just removing some height due to my short neck. She finished those adjustments, stood back, and asked the group if there were any other adjustments needed that they could see. Lo and behold, there were some additional adjustments needed.

For my particular body, I had done a full bust adjustment adding 1/2" length to 1" in width as I'd learned in a class on a totally different subject. For the jacket, I needed a 1:1 ratio. So some length was added from the center front across to the side princess seam in a wedge. Billie Jane also noted that the lapels on the collar were gapping a little at the neckline~ more so on one side than the other due to a slight size difference. She indicated that I could pull it up with a tape along the roll line, or ideally, cut the lapel in a wedge, eliminating a slight amount from the outside edge in to the roll line of the lapel. Voila! The gapping was gone. I'll also need to shorten the sleeves quite a bit once the other alterations are completed. That will be done at home on my own. Due to my height, I have done a lot of shortening over the years!

So today starts the alterations. I'm going to have to be deliberate in doing my alterations as there are separate patterns for fashion fabric, interlining, lining, and interfacings. That's going to be a lot of alterations before I get done. I will have to rest a bit throughout the day as the Physical Therapist indicated that I shouldn't stand for extended periods of time. I'll let you know how it goes!