Monday, September 24, 2007

Organizing & Sewing

I went crazy on Saturday - I decided to organize some of my fabric. Whatever possessed me, I don't know. I have four large tubs of fabric scraps, plus any number of piles in various places in the house . . . I had to drag the tub up from the basement, then I proceeded to dump the contents on the great room floor (in view of the TV, of course.)

This is the mess I had to contend with. I folded and folded until I had to go to bed. After three hours, this is all I had to show for my time:

Three neat piles of fabric folded into 6" x 13" rectangles, and balanced precariously on one another.
And this much is left to sort and fold, which I worked on Sunday evening, but I was tired and didn't get much done. The mess still sits there, gathering dog fur!

I had planned to finish a shirt on Friday night, but discovered that I had sewn one sleeve in upside down. It's hard to tell the right and wrong side of the fabric, but still, I should have noticed that the notches for the front and back weren't in the right place. Of course, I had serged the seam - it rarely happens that mistakes are found before doing so! Today I decided it was time to undo that seam and finish the blouse, which I did. Here is the finished shirt.

I've made three other shirts from this pattern, and have one to go. The pattern is by Lois Hinse - the CasaBlanca blouse, pattern #5707. What I like about Lois's patterns is that they fit well and are relatively easy to make; in addition, they can be made from a variety of fabrics. For this shirt, I've used cottons and silky fabrics. One change I did make is to use bias tape on the neckline instead of serging the edge, folding it over, and top stitching it. I discovered that was nearly impossible when working with silky fabrics. The bias tape gives the neckline more stiffness and I think it looks better.

The next blouse is pink, and I want to do machine embroidery around the hemline, or at least part of it. I have some ideas from the November/December 2004 issue of "Designs in Machine Embroidery." (I bought that issue when I was trying to determine which machine embroidery magazine I preferred. I finally settled on "Creative Machine Embroidery" after realizing that "Designs in Machine Embroidery" assumed that everyone owns a top-of-the-line embroidery machine, which I don't.)

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