Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Many Happy Returns

I have a love hate relationship with blogging.  Before I Went back to work full time, I sewed A LOT for my kids and did casual wear for me and the Pilot.  Blogging allowed me to do detailed reviews of the projects in a forum that I could link back to in a couple of sewing sites I frequented.  As I got busier with volunteering and working part time, I found I wanted more to sew and less to write.  I wanted to maximize my time available to me but mainly I realized that I was writing more for me and not for anybody else.  Therefore my notes to self can be written in a book on PAPER with a pen if needed. It is not like I am famous, or have clients that follow me religiously, so I stopped blogging.  As I changed to full time work and even more full time volunteering, I discovered that I really had no desire to sit and write about my sewing.  I stopped writing reviews and just plodded along when I was able to sew.  To get that community feel I used to have online, I joined a few select FB groups.  For quick one offs of posting a project or a question, that served me fine.

What has not changed is that I am still not famous and don't have a huge following.  Not sure I want one, to be honest.  I have a few select friends and followers that I know will read and may or may not comment.  Maybe more will show up (especially if I link to said FB groups).  Who knows?  What I do know is that I am no longer volunteering.  It was becoming to stressful as I could never figure out how to stay on the sidelines and not go all in.  So, this year, I am out.  Of it all.  My nights for me and the occasional work session when required.  I. Can. Sew!!!  I can attack my stash of fabrics that I have acquired thanks to my dear friend's store (Darrell Thomas Textiles).  I am determined to make myself that work wardrobe that I have been dreaming and chatting about for years.

While I do have that nice wool boucle jacket still on the table, most of the hand work on the bodice has been completed.  Now it is stalled at the facings.  I have to be in a good place to do collars, cuffs, closures and waistbands or things go wrong fast.  So I am plodding on that one, but have started a faster one - the HP Fast & Furious Four Seasons Kimono Jacket to get me into the swing of things.

I started with this for a couple of reasons.  We are into late summer here in the Capital, which means any weather goes, but it usually muggy.  I am in a new building at work with a much more reliable HVAC system and sit in front of a window.  I figured this could be perfect for coolish mornings and AC in the office.  I also wanted to use up some lovely linen I bought from Darrell.  I think this was through one of his charity sales, cannot remember.  It also coords nicely with the print I recently used for two other recent projects (a top and a dress) as well as other extant wardrobe pieces.  Three Pieces.  Cannot get much faster than that.

This is where the blog comes into play - I am not sure if I like the pattern ON ME or not.  So, rather than focus on the FB groups where there are HUNDREDS of viewers who will gladly opine, I am going to focus my thoughts here and then see what/who pops up to give added value to my projects.  Blogging is more of a conversation than FB can be.  Especially for sewers.  Will this turn back into a full recital of everything I do and each detailed step I take?  No.  There are others far more skilled than I taking up your blog time.  I want to chat about the projects that mean something to me at the time of construction and get some feedback/encouragement when needed.

It goes together quite easily and I like the shaping the vertical darts give the pattern.  The facing being top stitched down gives a sporting look and could be switched up by doing an external facing with piping easily.  Lots of play room.  I tossed this together very easily, forgoing the bound seamlines and serging instead as this was intended to be a semi casual topper.  What is not to like?  I received lots of "Likes" on FB when I posted the pics today - both on me and on Mindy (my dressform) and received nice comments.  The thing is, I am not sure about the style on my frame.  I am not sure if it because I added some extra to the sides just in case (I am fluctuating on my weight distribution again, going the right way this time) or if it was the fabric or the sleeve cut.  This is where I think my blog will help.

I wore the jacket to work and discovered two things that I need to do for the next version.  Sucker that I am, I am planning another one in a firmer fabric, with mods added and some held in reserve in case I still feel iffy about it on me.  First of all - for those who have a curvy shape, ADD BELT LOOPS.  Or stitch the belt to the s.s..  Otherwise it rides up or feels too lose.  Having a loose belt leads to the front opening, which I don't like under a belt.  So, I am adding buttons.  Probably only three (if I can find the match in the button box to that perfect button that jumped at me this morning at 7 am).

Here are the two shots I posted.  The green is not as light as pastel as shown here.  Blame poor lighting in the workshop.  It is the shape that I am unsure of.  I think this style does not do me any favours, although I seriously think fabric had something to do with it?

What do you think?

Mindy wearing the jacket.

Here is a "Seflie" of the jacket.  Again, sorry for the lighting.