Monday, May 14, 2012

An unlikely pair

I got a fair bit of sewing done over the weekend -- four items made!  Well, three of them were Renfrew variants (aka two-hour projects), and one I started on the weekend before, but I'll be impressed with myself nevertheless.   You probably won't be, because of my lazy documentation of said work:

When poorly styled dress forms attack.

There are two of the four finished garments.  Didn't get a shot of the other two.   Maybe later.  Or maybe I'll just let you use your imagination:  one is a white sleeveless Renfrew, and the other is lavender, with a white neckband to keep it from being totally boring.  It's sleeveless too.  Both are made of rayon-type knits.  I tried making the bottom band half the usual width on the white one, and I think that'll look nice for wearing with skirts.  (The pants that fit me best  tend to be lower-rise styles, like it or not, but skirts are more accommodating, not least because I make them myself.)  You may ask why I didn't pair the skirt with the white top: it's because at the time I took this it wasn't made yet.  And by the time is was made, it was dark outside.  Anyhow, seeing the black and white one tucked into the skirt like this gives me some confidence that my underwear won't show through this flimsy white fabric!

The black and white sleeveless Renfrew haphazardly pictured above was made from a remnant purchased at JoAnns a million years ago.  I'm not sure of the fiber content, but I'm guessing polyester tops the list.  It's not so bad, though -- it has a slinky feel to it but isn't shiny.

To make the sleeve bands, I just made strips the same width as the neckband, and a little shorter than the armhole size.  On the white shirt I made a 1/8" deeper seam allowance for a narrower band -- I like the look but it barely covered the serged edges, so I sewed them down in the same way the pattern instructions have you do the neck seam allowance.   I might try just trimming it really close next time -- serging is probably overkill anyhow.

The other thing on the dress form is yet another version of my "New Moon" skirt, this time made from fabric I bought at Roop Sari Palace.  Houston has a small row of Indian fabric stores, which I visited a couple of years ago -- I should really go back!  Anyhow, the fabric is very sheer, so I lined/underlined. What I did is a mish-mash -- I probably should have just underlined since the pockets show through since they are sandwiched between outer fabric and lining.   I made the back pieces a little longer so that the hemline would hang straight -- adding the length to the top of the pieces works just as well as adding it at the bottom ... maybe better.   I intentionally made the fit sit close to the waist -- not my usual choice, but I added some fullness to the outer layer (an extra 12 inches more than my "stock" New Moon) and some proof of a waist will make that poufyness more flattering.  The lining is not as full, which helps the fabric to be all airy and sorta float away from it.  And yeah, with all these white sewing projects, I had to re-thread my serger with white.  No more rainbow serging for a while -- bummer.

The fabric's a bit on the cheap side, and has some imperfections in the weave.  I'm not sure how long it will last, but in my experience white clothing seems to have a special attraction to calamities so this skirt is almost certainly doomed in some way anyhow.  But while it lives it certainly oozes summertime, and despite its Indian origins has a bit of a Greek feel to me.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Uh, is this thing on?

Hello there.  I've been having so much fun, I forgot to post.

OK, not really.  I've been kind of caught up in work and life and stuff, and while I have been sewing (because sewing is great therapy, as I'm sure you know) I haven't made time to write about it.    But I am ready to fill your newsreader with mindless babble catch you up on the output from my sewing room.  Which is not insignificant -- five shirts and five skirts!  I must have needed a lot of therapy.    

When I last posted, I had just finished up a new Pacific Moon skirt for schmeebot.  It took me fully another month to make traveling companions for that one, but I finally made two more Pacific Moons and got them in the mail last week.   I forget how many of these I've made now, but I have it pretty much down to a science, and they're quite Zen to make.

The fabric for all three Pacific Moons (the two below and the rainbow one in my last post) all came from a big box of Ikea fabric that schmeebot sent.  She was eager to have a skirt made of this creepy face fabric, so I tacked it next:

The waistband facing came from leftovers from this dress.  I'm pretty pleased at how well it coordinates. (Scrap-hoarding: justified.)   Though I am not as sold as schmeebot on the wearing of large faces, I had a lot of fun working out the positioning of the faces on the skirt.  

The final Pacific Moon was made from my favorite Ikea fabric -- is it any surprise that it's a bird print?

I tried not to decapitate any birds -- I mostly succeeded, except for the greenish guy on the front waistband.   I will make myself a skirt like this eventually too, with a different selection of birds from the print.  There are so many great ones, and it's such a shame that they don't all fit on one skirt.  (First world problem, I know.) The waistband facing is a leftovers scrap from a dress I made just a few months ago.   In this case it wasn't exactly what I wanted, but it'll do.

I'll try to post more later about what I'm making today, which is as many sleeveless versions of the Sewaholic Renfrew as I can possibly manage.   And here I thought sewing basics held no interest for me!  (In related news, a pair of pigs were spotted soaring among the clouds along the Texas Gulf coast.  Eyewitnesses said it was not clear where the pigs were headed, but they seemed to be having a lovely time.)