crochet, embroidery, sewing
Member Since: 04/06/2010
I sew because I like clothes that fit ME in colors that flatter ME.
How mortifying! Since I started sewing as a very young child, I've always seen it as a very solitary pursuit. Of course, in the beginning I didn't get very far without running to Mom for advice, but that was my sewing "circle' - the whole thing! I didn't even know most of these organizations existed.
When I joined a medieval re-creation group, I did a LOT of research on the Internet for embroidery and blackwork patterns (up to about 1550), but paid absolutely no attention to the organizations that posted them.
Now that Mom is losing her touch (and her mind?), sewing is even more solitary for me, especially since I have only three sons and no daughters (the boys could care less - it's easier to ask Mom [in this case, ME] to sew on missing buttons and sew forth) to whom to pass along the skills and the interest.
Maybe it's time to check out the organizations!
Being the obsessive type, there are actually two dream projects on my list. Like Skymom above, I have (on paper) planned the essential wardrobe that would cover about 80% of the occasions I would ever encounter, and making that wardrobe from high-quality natural fabrics (classic, never-dated styles, naturally) is one of them. The other is to make the Bear's Paw quilt I fell in love with as a teenager, completely by hand, the way my grandmother did - and using her quilting frame! Of course, that presupposes that my sewing table magically transforms itself into an actual room in which the frame will fit comfortably (still can't quite figure out where she put the darn thing to work on it!).
This is all very cool, but . . . I don't wear dresses! How are you supposed to fit pants on this thing? Yes, I know I'm "short" but I still want both pant legs the same length, preferably the same length as my own legs; that's easy enough, I suppose, just make sure the stand puts everything at the same height as me. But I can't for the life of me figure out how to fit the hips, crotch, rise, etc. This is a major issue, since commercial ready-to-wear pants end up looking almost like strapless jumpsuits. Any ideas or tips?
OK, so other than asking my mother to cut out a Renaissance gown from 8 yards of velvet (she "approximated" the pattern pieces so that none of them were the same size - and nothing "went" together!), my worst sewing disaster happened years ago when I was in high school - and wanted an appropriate dress to wear to the annual Barn Dance: fitted bodice, really full ruffled skirt. All went well (even adding a "midriff" piece to lengthen the waist), until I realized that the piece in the center front of the skirt was stitched to the bodice and the lower ruffles with the seams - on both ends - were on the outside! Solution? I wadded it up and tossed it in the wastebasket. Mom rescued it and ripped out the offending seams - but I still refused to wear it to the dance. Talking about cutting off your nose!
I guess I'm too much a child of the digital age. My printer has a scanner, so (when the uncontrollable urge struck to organize my stash) I scanned every piece larger than a breadbox and entered length, width, content, color and reference number into a database, linking the scan. Then (unfortunately) I had to seal the whole kit and kaboodle into mouse-tight packages (marked with the reference numbers) since the only place currently available for the (formerly) 37 boxes of fabric is (OH, NO!) shelving in the garage. At least it won't suffer from sun damage (we get a lot of that, here in Phoenix)! I also scanned pattern envelopes, front and back, so I have pictures of potential garments along with yardage requirements (another database!). Now if I only had a sewing room to store it all in . . .
Deadlines! Yes! I can't sew without a deadline! And as a (very) recent college graduate, my calendar at the moment is the creation of an entire "work-friendly" - as opposed to online-student - wardrobe. Fortunately, I have a stash! Several years ago I found a "by the pound" store, and spent a small fortune (I was in a medieval re-creation group at the time, so a LOT of my stash consists of 10-yard or more lengths) there. But I also bought several pieces of really, really nice fabric online - silk, wool crepe, real linen, and the like. Since I'm allergic to absolutely everything, and I live in Phoenix (with 6 months of 100+ temperatures), I can't wear synthetics. Anyway, my deadline at the moment is April 27 - the start date of my first "real" job as a graduate. I have to get out of these jammies . . .
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