Archive | January, 2012

Stitches Be Crazy

27 Jan

Lining is the bane of my existence.  I just have to be honest and say that.  It bunches and distorts and adds cutting time and expense to a project, I friggin’ hate it.  I take every shortcut necessary when making something, and usually this means skipping the lining portion and doing facing instead.  But the problem is, facings may be simpler and quicker to do, but they are just as stupid looking, if not WORSE when finished.  Or at least, when *I* finish them.  That is one of the major problems with my coral dress (one of the MANY major problems), the finish on the neckline and straps is atrocious.  See pictures below for the hand stitched hem and icky facing on my finished coral dress that I’m probably-never-going-to-wear-because-of-all-of-the-stupid-things-that-I-don’t-like-about-it-but-find-it-too-time-consuming-to-change.  Phewph. 

Maybe I’ll take a class on facings and linings someday, or maybe I’ll just stick to making outfits that only require bias tape finishes, or handy elastic finishes like my new pink “bikimi” that I’m making for our trip in Feb.  This bikimi is risky on SEW many levels.  Number One, IT’S HOT NEON PINK.  Scandalous.  Number Two, it was $22 a meter.  Number Three, it’s my first bathing suit, and I’m making it without a pattern, on $22-a-meter fabric.  Oh, and I forgot to by bathing suit lining, so in an effort to save time (but certainly not money), I just lined it with itself… a wonderful use of expensive hot pink fabric if you ask me. 

For making this without a pattern, on my first try with bathing suit material and finishes, it is going relatively smoothly.  I LOVE THE ELASTIC FINISH.  Holy sweet baby Jesus it was SO fulfilling to sew this kind of hem.  I see many bathing suits in my future, for this reason alone.

I’ve had a test run with one finished piece held up to my bewb, and it does look kinda wonky, but livable (I have low bathing suit standards).  It’s not going to win awards by any means– it has its weird puckers and pouches, and I definitely know where I will improve next time around, but it’s still wearable, and if that’s all it is and all it will ever be, I’m okay with that.

It fit better before I put the gathers in.  I have NO idea why.  It will bug me until the END OF TIME.  Or until I test it out again.  Stay chuned for the finished product.  Or not… whatever.

99 Problems, But a Stitch Ain’t One…

23 Jan

I’ve got about a thousand hundred things to do, but all I can think about is making several hundred new bikinis and beach outfits (dresses) for a trip to meHico in 23 days (BUT WHO’S COUNTING)? Here is my most recent (almost finished) coral linen a-line dress. A-line? Did she just say a-line?! I did. Gross. But not this time… This time the pretty little flounces and a-symmetrical skirt make sewing (and wearing) an a-line dress totally worthwhile. The dress isn’t completed yet (hem to go), but my pattern review is below.

Pattern Sizing:
I cut a size 10, and aside from taking in an inch here or there on the torso, it fit well.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?Kinda. My shoulders ended up more narrow than the picture, and the back of the dress looks waaay longer in real life. It feels like a tail. And the lines aren’t as smooth as I had imagined they would be, the transition from front to ‘tail’ is pretty severe, and I hope to alter that with the hem, once I decide on how much I should remove.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
It was okay. The shoulders were a little weird, and the description/picture for underlining the facing is ridiculous and would throw off a new sewer who hadn’t encountered it before.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Princess seams make getting and excellent fit uber easy.  I don’t like how severe the tail looks. 

Fabric Used:
Coral linen… Mistakenly marked to 4$ a meter!

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I’m going to fix the back a little by taking in the back side seams. Pattern suggests linen but this isn’t a lined dress, so be careful.  I’m wearing it on a beach, probably with a bathing suit underneath, so I don’t care *as much* about my ladies bits showing.

Would you sew it again?
Maybe! The style isn’t that flattering on me, so it may not happen. Also, this baby is a fabric monster because of the looong princess seams and fat cuts on the bottom of each piece (which is too long anyways).

Conclusion:
This is a sweet dress, and if I can get the proportions right without screwing up the skirt, it might just be one of my new favourites! I will post a finished picture when I get to that point!