Thursday, June 26, 2008

Chaos continues....

Well, I did finish my bathing suit to match my baby daughter's bathing suit. It turned out great and I was very happy with the results. I still need to take a picture of me in it and write a pattern review. I'll post a picture on my blog later when things aren't so insane.

Right now I'm working on an unexpected project: a top and skirt for a friend of mine to wear to her son's wedding. I think I'm insane because I really don't have time at all to work on this, but so far I'm getting it done. She is tall and was having such trouble finding a great dress for the occasion. As she's a really great friend of mine, I wanted to help out. So we went pattern and fabric shopping and I got to work. These are the patterns she chose:

For the shirt, we're doing the version with the short sleeves and narrow collar. The collar, sleeves, and peplum are all in a cocoa color chiffon to contrast the lighter color crepe fabric of the shirt. For the skirt, we're doing it in the cocoa crepe fabric and we're doing view A without the sash.

The deal was that if my friend Janine doesn't like this outfit, she has to tell me honestly and also not be mad that it didn't turn out the way she wants it. In turn, I have to promise not to be mad if she doesn't like it. Having said that, this is still really nerve-wracking and a lot of pressure. However, I'm happy to do this for a wonderful friend.

It's a whole other ballgame sewing for someone new. It took me quite a while just to figure out how to get clothes fit on me. So working with a new body and all new fitting issues is quite daunting. We tried the top on Janine yesterday and it looks like a good fit, which was a relief. My main concern with this project is getting a proper fit.

Also, I had never worked with chiffon before. While I love the feel of chiffon I absolutely hate sewing it. Really, really, really hate sewing it. Especially hemming it. I tried all the methods suggested out there: narrow hem (both with and without the special rolled hem foot), rolled hem on serger with and without fishline. No matter which I used, it took away the airiness and flow of the chiffon. This was especially the problem with the collar. The collar needs to stay light so it folds and ruffles nicely. So I hit PatternReview and Google some more for research and discovered a hot knife method. Since I'm working with polyester chiffon, I could melt the raw edges of the hems slightly to seal them off and keep them from unraveling. This worked perfectly to keep the fabric nice and light. Then my collar wasn't lining up right and I discovered this is due to chiffon being evil to work with. Also, a mystery spot appeared that I couldn't get off. No clue how it got there. ARGH! So I cut a new collar out and plan to get it put on today.

Once I get past the shirt it'll be smooth sailing. My goal for today is to finish the shirt by tonight. The shirt has more fitting issues and the chiffon is difficult to work with. I'm pretty mad at Vogue right now because when they say "semi-fitted" on the envelope, what they really mean is "not even remotely fitted". The shirt muslin was SO LOOSE on Janine. It made no sense whatsoever. Why pay good money for a pattern if it's wrong?

Ok, now I lost track. A Kim Possible commercial just showed up on tv and my IQ plummeted. So anyway, I'll keep you updated as to my progress for anyone interested in following my insane adventure.


Keely said...

You're a wonderful friend to do this - and chiffon too! You are a really, really wonderful friend! Good luck!

Janine said...

Thanks, so much, for doing this for me! You are such a blessing. I've written about the dress and the jewelry that I will be wearing with it on my blog. We are going to have me lookin' good!

Anonymous said...

haha- YES, Chiffon is EVIL incarnate. Ripping strips of tissue paper and then placing it on top of the seam helps alot.
When cutting it out, pin both fabric and pattern over butcher paper or wide freezer paper and then cut it. I rarely work with chiffon - too much work! Good luck