Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Weekend at K.Line's

Somehow my posting vacation keeps being interrupted by, um, posting. So let's say I'm on half-time posting right now. I'm continually amazed by my motivation to write (even when taxed by everything else) and to communicate with y'all. Really, I miss you when I'm not posting, weird as that may sound. I mean, I can understand missing you when you're not posting - but when I'm not posting? Hmmm. Must be very attached to your comments :-)

I seem to be in a rather sewing-fixated phase - thank goodness based on the money I'm spending on this habit - but I feel a growing urge to show you some nice interiors and maybe a new Lingerie I Own piece. So don't give up in disgust if you are totally sick of K.Line the budding sewist.

Having said that, I'm about to embark on the Sewing Long Lost Weekend (or is that Lost Long Weekend?). As I said to my friend Jennifer, it's like a regular lost weekend but with more clothes rather than fewer!

On the list of items:
  • Merkwaerdigh bra (This is a pattern I haven't tried. It seems fuller in the upper cup than the others, which is where I need the fabric. I may have to revise the sizing because this pattern is geared towards a larger range i.e. I'm on the cusp. But because I've been so disappointed with the other bras, and their lack of effectiveness with upper bust fullness, I'm going to give it a go.) Let's leave it to my kid to ask the tough questions i.e., Mummy, do you really think this one is going to work? I'm doing the upper cup in underlined lace (my new fancy products arrived and I've already fused the underlining to the lace), and the lower cups in indigo duoplex. None of the fabrics stretch (except the indigo powernet on the band), so fit perfection is the order of the day. I'd like to tell you I'm optimistic, but I strive for honesty on this blog...

  • Pencil skirt from Vogue 8640. I've made the jacket and I love it. This skirt will be in a taupe herringbone (first time matching stripes) and a yellow lining. The pattern doesn't offer lining instructions so I'm going to make them up. I know, feel free to laugh perversely.

  • Vogue 8413, retro-inspired dress in poly doubleknit. I'm going to make version B. I bought the fabric online very inexpensively. On receiving the goods, I can see why. If this thing turns out to be a muslin, it will most certainly irritate me from a time perspective, but I won't feel like I've sacrificed the world's most perfect fabric. I bought more doubleknit in the store this week - burnt orange poly blend - much nicer hand, and I'll use it for a second attempt / second garment (depending on how it goes). The dilemma with sewing stable knits (any knits) is that you can't use woven muslin to check it out for fit. You need to use another stable knit. Preferably one with similar properties because the drape is everything. I'm still debating the value of an FBA. I think there will be enough ease given the bias-cut bodice, to give the FBA a miss. I've done some measurements and I'm fairly sure. But built in ease (an element of fabric and pattern construction) is difficult to assess from a paper pattern.

The wild card additional sewing item: a Simplicity pattern I bought months ago for M. She's finally engaged with sewing and wants to make the v-neck, short sleeve, elastic waist top. I've told her she needs to trace the pattern today, including marking, for my review this eve. We'll see how that goes. We measured her last night and I was amazed to discover that she's a size 8, measure for measure. How odd to see someone actually conform exactly to the pattern numbers! Ah, kids.

I really hope she can keep her focus and work amicably with me to put this garment together. We tend to lock horns easily and her organizational skills are still under development. Given that I have so many personal objectives this weekend, I don't want to lose my patience.

In case you think this is an insane amount to accomplish in 4 days - it is, IMO - you should know that I've spent the last 2 weeks collecting the materials and tracing the patterns and cutting the muslins and the self-fabrics and considering the best methods of assembly based on pattern instruction and other sources. So my aim is to simply SEW on the weekend, not do all the lead up and prep which should, by then, be complete. Natch, sewing is largely unknowable to me, so it may be smooth sailing or a lot of high waves. We'll just have to wait and see.

That's me. Whachoo doin' this long weekend?


  1. It sounds like a highly ambitious weekend, but I have full faith that you will accomplish all you set out to do. I can't wait to see the finished products.
    This weekend I am going to meet a friend for lunch and shopping and other than that I have no plans. I LOVE having no plans. I imagine that He-weasel and I will watch some British mysteries. We might take Lily to the beach. Other than that I haven't a clue.
    Happy sewing!xo

  2. Way to go! Very impresses I keep meaning to get going but somehow my projects are all up in the air in preparation for the imminent off to school for petit garcon.

  3. Vogue 8413 B but I like C better.

    What is FBA?

    I love that your daughter is getting interested in sewing.

    This long weekend? Hmmm. Don't know yet.

  4. I'll probably be doing some research for one of my law classes. Also, go out and take pictures really early (if I can get out of bed). And hopefully get back into knitting. I've hardly done any all summer. Knitting and hot weather don't mix.

  5. I have no real plans either and hope to make something. Sunday we are going up to the Berkshire's for the first of our annual September concert series, but otherwise I hope for a really quiet and creative weekend.

    Good luck. I'm sure you will get a lot done.

  6. Good luck with your sewing weekend. I will also be sewing this weekend. I'm working on my Emma Pillsbury inspired skirt for the first day of school. I can't wait to see how your dress comes out. I may have to pick up that pattern. Have fun with your mother/daughter sewing time. :)

  7. You are a busy bee. I feel like we're going to have to launch a Kickstarter for your own line soon!

  8. Crazy impressive!
    And good luck with your daughter's sewing project -- When my youngest daughter was about 8, she took classes from KidsCanSew -- no idea if they're still around, but they had a great program, and over a couple of years she made pants, tops, dresses, working in both knits and wovens -- she even turned out a dress with a full (waist-gathered) skirt, including pockets, long sleeves, and collar -- all patience-requiring options. She didn't keep it up much, but it built some serious self-esteem at the time, and she really knows how to evaluate a garment's construction quality to this day.

  9. You are sew busy! We do not have Labour Day off, though my three children do, so I will be juggling classes with childcare (eeek!) . . .

  10. Hi, total stranger here. Also, a neophyte sewist so I may be talking utter rubbish - but I think bias is a function of WEAVE. You can cut a double knit on a 45 degree angle but I'd check a sample piece first as I am not sure you can count on the knit to give the extra room a bias cut woven might. Its an interlocked structure in a knit - does it stretch equally in all directions?

    Typically, knit bindings are cut on grain because knit bias is...too something. (As I said, beginner).

    My brain just said Red Flag when you said bias, double knit, FBA - hope I'm not talking nonsense and maybe saved you some trouble.

  11. Bel: Your weekend sounds luxuriously relaxing!

    Kate: That doesn't sound relaxing:-)

    Raven: Knitting is a winter sport...

    Mardel: I bet the Berkshires will be SO gorgeous.

    Andrea: I can't wait to see your skirt!

    Wendy: :-) Don't think I haven't thought about it!

    mater: That is such a great idea. I want to put M in sewing class. I'm trying to find something in the neighbourhood so I don't have to trek on the subway...

    Juno: Thanks for your wonderful comment! I am a newbie too, but from my reading I have learned that double knit is a stable knit i.e. it functions more like a woven (with a bit of give) than a knit. Double knit tends to stretch most on the cross grain (bias) but not anywhere near as much as a 2-way or 4-way stretch.

    So your concern is duly noted - and I'm so thankful that you spoke up! - but I'm viewing the double knit like a woven, not a knit.

    I didn't get into this in my post but the in-built ease, plus the pattern dimensions, plus the bias stretch (minimal as it is) should give me about 5 inches that I believe will account for the extra bust room I need. Of course, I could be totally wrong which is why I need to do a muslin!

    BTW: I hadn't seen double knit in real life till recently (when I purchased 2 ponte knits). One is pure poly and isn't as stretchy as the other - which is of higher quality and is a poly blend.

    I'm really curious to see how they sew. I'll let you know.

  12. i am so itching to get back into sewing some projects now that i've managed to pass my doctoral qualifying exams...but this weekend is going to be dedicated to complete relaxation and labor-day rest!

  13. Sophie: Congrats! You'll be back to sewing after a well deserved break...