Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Autumn Crafting: What's Next?

Remember sewing and knitting, those things I used to do? I don't want you to think I've forgotten them. As it happens, my machine has been in the shop since the beginning of last week. I ended up sending it far away (to the other end of the city) by special courier, to the place where I bought my cover stitch machine earlier this summer. The store has a good reputation and an on-site mechanic. FYI, I don't know what the final bill will be, but the shipping (all in), will have cost me 60 bucks. That's going to save me upwards of 3 hours in transport time (2 trips, and back, to the other end of the city). Money well-spent, I say. IMO, it shouldn't take a week and a half for a tune-up. Alas, a  once-yearly, travelling amusement park - the CNE - is in town for the last 2 weeks of August and the shop owner runs an exhibit booth at the craft show. Quite a going concern, apparently. My call coincided exactly with the annual occasion that the sewing shop runs on skeleton staff. Figures.

In truth, I've been happy enough to stay the hell away from the sewga room, though last night my thoughts did start to wonder about what to do next.

I've decided my next thing has to be a) fun b) not complicated and c) practical. It's probably best to follow some kind of capsule formula, like the Five in Five. Not that I really need five of anything for the autumn. Autumn's a time I've got SO covered.

Some ideas I briefly considered:
  • Jeans - either Jalie or Vogue ones, which I somehow bought the pattern for (and then I realized that I have so many pairs of RTW jeans that I enjoy so much. Why make them just to make them?... Oh, and you may remember this.)
  • An elegant work dress (V1252):

(and then I realized that this pattern has but 5 reviews - from only advanced sewists - and they all say variations on: This dress is really hard and you should stay the hell away from it. Advice taken.)
  • A pair of pants (and then I realized that I don't think I like pants right now, only jeans).
Then, in a (presumably) useful turn, while looking through my pattern archive binder, I found a tiny little bug larva stuck to one of the pages which FREAKED ME THE FUCK OUT whereupon I scoured my entire sewing stash (and yarn stash and book stash) to ensure there was nothing eating my textiles. That took an hour. Did I mention I had a vile headache throughout this process - which was not brought on by fear of moths. Amazingly, and to my huge gratitude, it appears to have been the only one of these evil things. Nonetheless, I shook out everything and sprayed it all down with cedar water. And my guard is highly elevated.

This did give me a very useful opportunity to review what things I've got at my disposal.

On top of the zillions of (stupid) lingerie supplies I've amassed, I've got a variety of shirt-weight, drapey wovens aka georgette and silk charmeuse. You'll be pleased to know I could make 20 t-shirts with all the knits I've got stashed. Not that it's in the cards. Furthermore, I've got enough heavy ponte to make at least 2 pairs of yoga pants (aka the things I wear the minute I get into my house and don't take off until I leave). I've been loath to buy more yoga pants because a) they cost a lot and b) the rise is always wrong and the length is ridiculous. Mind you, the idea of making black yoga pants seems so drab. I mean practical.

On more careful consideration I'm leaning towards the following capsule collection - though I don't know if I have it in me to give this a fancy name. Fancy names make things so serious:
  • Kwik Sew 3115 yoga pants x2 - yeah, in black (cuz that's what I've got).
  • My bespoke T shirt pattern using one of my numerous shirt-weight knits - like the end of that great Modal I used to make the Coppelia wrap. While I'm at it, I might as well make two of these... (Note: the tops and yoga pants are terrific opportunities to get to know my cover stitch machine better.)
  • Another go-round of culottes - made in denim, perhaps. I mean, it's the only bottom-weight fabric I have lying around at the moment, so it's that or go buy stuff:
  • And, finally, I'd like to revisit this terrific top, V8323, of which I've made the green style (and to which I've added 3/4 sleeves). I've worn my current version many times but it really doesn't fit me in the shoulders as well as I'd like (just a bit too wide):

It would be really nice to make this in a fabric having soft properties (the wool jersey I used to make the first one is a bit stiff).

So, you can see, with this capsule "collection" I'm not reinventing the wheel. I'm in a phase where comfort and mobility are rather important to me. Chic comfort, natch. I'd like a couple of slim t shirts (in slightly dressy weight), some yoga pants (because truly my other pairs are dead), some culottes - cuz I didn't really nail those last time but I think I might do better on a second try - and a dress-up/dress-down princess-seamed top.

And lest you think I've forgotten about the triangle shawl or the knit jacket, they're on the agenda too. The triangle's almost done and I need a good weekend with the jacket, to sort out some fit issues in the shoulders and to seam/insert buttonholes/attach petersham binding.

Each of these projects will happen as it happens. I can't give time frames cuz my head-happiness must dictate the schedule. 

Today's questions: So what do you think of all of this? Do you have any of these garments on your sewing agenda for the fall? Any advice? Thoughts or feelings? Let's talk!

PS: Just realized that this may well be the second round of garments I'll make (not including the latest lingerie attempt) using stash fabric. That means I'll have made 12 garments out of stash fabric (and still have a reasonable amount left to spare). And my stash fits into one cupboard. Amazing how these yards add up.

20 comments:

  1. I like your plan, especially the part about fun and not complicated. I'm thinking of making a couple of shirts and some yoga pants. I can't really get into the culottes, but to each his own. Go for it.

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    1. I know - I want some fun! The culottes are a bit out there, but I like odd sometimes.

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  2. I think you have a great plan!

    I have it in my agenda to make 4 tops and 2 dresses for the fall. I had it for summer,but all I ended up doing was 2 muslins for a dress and a real dress. Then a muslin for a top. So my plan to make work clothes has been pushed to fall. Which means all of the tops and dresses will now have sleeves either 3/4 or full. This time around, I'm planning to do it 20 mins a day. Maybe that will work.

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    1. Thanks K! And, hey, as long as you can adjust your summer projects to meet your winter needs, sounds good to me :-)

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  3. sounds like a good plan! i love that tracy reese dress, but given the reviews...hmmm. although i'm curious what could be so difficult about it! i could do for some yoga pants as well, can't believe how flipping expensive those things are to buy! and for me they're always too short in the leg. i did just buy some black fabric to make leggings with (RTW are always so thin, can't make it over my bum, and too short...). about the same level of interest as you--boring but oh so needed!

    and ohhhh bugs in the sewing room, not not cool! i always fear spiders and recently all my fears were realized... i grabbed a piece of fabric to wash, opened it up, fussed with it, pinked the edges, wadded it up, put it under my arm, transported to the laundry room, tossed it on the floor and out crawled a ginormous spider. aaaaaahhhhhh!!!!

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    1. I know, those reviews scare me!

      Hilarious that RTW leggings are always too short for you. I have (relatively) long legs and they're always, like 4 inches too long!

      I did have a centipede issue in the sewga room a couple of months ago and, seriously, I was so scarred I can barely spend time in there without looking out of the corner of my eye. The crawly bugs are HORRIFYING to me.

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  4. What wonderful Fall sewing plans. That Vogue dress is going to look wonderful on you.

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    1. Ha! I don't know if I'm going to venture to the dress. Maybe in a little while. But the other stuff seems doable.

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  5. Sounds like a good fall plan. I love making yoga pants, way cheaper and they fit right.

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    1. You make it sound more exciting when you put it that way.

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  6. uggh bugs in the sewing room. I'm a Home Ec teacher and have spent the past two days cleaning my classroom (moved to a new school)...found a bug/larva in a fridge. YUCK...just YUCK!
    I have a question for you re head health - will send it to your e-mail.
    As I'm in "back to school" and "new school" and "kid in high school for the first time" stress, I'm all about sewing things I know fit. I have limited time/energy and I don't want to put the time into something that won't work. Not the space I'm at right now. So it's work pants (which I need and have sewn before) and some fun knit tops, which I love and have several patterns that I've used often. Make what works in fabric you love. I'm there too!

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    1. EEEK. Never go near that fridge again. Really.

      On the topic of your new gig - sounds like lots of fun to teach home ec! Talk aobut a valuable skill...

      But comfort, when sewing and teaching is key.

      Feel free to email anytime.

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  7. V8323 is my TNT knit top. I had been focused on getting the scoop-necked version just right (I've now got 2 versions of the pattern for the 2 main types of knit fabric I have access to). Now that I've got it the way I like it I'm going to do up one or two of the green version (with sleeves).

    And in an unrelated note, you heard about the 34 people who got food poisioning at the CNE? Public Health is blaming the Cronut Burger stand.
    If you can't trust the stalls filled with deep fried goodness at the Ex anymore, WHAT CAN YOU TRUST?!

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    1. I did hear about those people! Lord, eating cronuts does seem crazy though (not that it should ever lead to food poisoning). I think the waffles are fine, though :-)

      Re: V8323: I love the cross over version of that top, but I should expand my horizons to the scoop once I've got a version of the surplice that I like well.

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  8. I've found that I prefer sewing the "boring" stuff because it's stuff that I really wear regularly. Oh sure, I might wear a dress once in a while, but if I live in yoga pants, that's what is going to be what I feel the most gratified in making.

    Anyway, will be looking forward to seeing your new creations. It sounds like a great wardrobe plan. :-)

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    1. It's true. I wear that boring stuff into the ground! That's why denim pants are so useful. They're kind of like pants. They're kind of like jeans. I can wear them in zillions of scenarios (many of them work). I'm sure the new yoga pants - made with the help of a cover stitch - will be extra exciting.

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    2. Oh, they probably won't be terribly exciting to sew (though, I don't have a coverstitch, so I could be totally wrong!) but that whole "hot DAMN! These fit WAY better than the ones I spent $40 on last time!!" makes it all worthwhile. ;-)

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    3. Ha! You're right, no doubt. I don't know that the cover stitch makes the process as exciting as I suspected it would... :-)

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  9. Yay for not sewing another tricky pattern! You've had enough sewing drama recently to last for quite some time.
    I'm loving the yoga pants...I need some of those so will be waiting for that post...no pressure!
    I'm actually parking sewing for me for a little while as we kick off the Crossfit on Saturday and I'm hoping my shape is going to change/diminish over the coming weeks. But my little ones are growing like weeds so I have autumn sewing to do for them. Once they're back at school, of course!

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    1. Oh I know. Drama finds me. I swear. But I'm trying to send it on a vacation. My shape has been on an interesting journey for the last year (moreso recently) and I'm not really sure what to make of it. Of course, I'm aiming to address it with the naturopathic remedies and I've cut back on crap food. Thing is, it's about tone more than anything. Which is to say an utter lack of it abdominally. I wish you lots of lean muscles.

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