Monday, April 27, 2015

The State of Sewing....

So, fired up about the SHB sewalong,  I was full of plans of Baby Ranger outfits---analyzing how to make baby ranger boots, and baby hauberks.....

And baby elven dresses....

And ofcourse, the Arwen-Inspired nursing dress for myself.

And then I got the flu (again?). At least I think that's what it was. I was so sick, I sort of just crawled around with a cold-pack on my forehead, chugging kool aid, begging God that I wouldn't throw up (I didn't!) for 5 days while my mother in law watched the (sick) kids.
All in all, I lost over a week, and I didn't even have energy left to look at the sewing machine for a bit. But my strength is returning, slowly.

So, no SHB sewalong updates yet (hey, I've got 3 days!)

Like this. Except floaty and white and chiffon and lace....
On a different sewing front (and much more important) I had promised a very dear friend I would sew Lord of the Rings inspired sleeves onto her wedding jacket, and with her wedding coming up, I had to just do it and stop planning. I had cut out mockup sleeves, and played around until I got proportions that I thought worked. (Note to self, chiffon kind of re-defines itself after you cut it. So cut conservatively, and then take off more from there....)
(I ended up doing oblong semicircles 25" by 35" long. The sleeve hole was 4"x4". Seam allowances, plus allowing for some "reshaping" of the chiffon as it hangs, make this about right)

So I had a pattern. That was the first hurdle.

Tonight, I just knew I had to cut out the real thing and do it before I psyched myself out.

Pretty circular hems on chiffon!!
I got through the second hurdle, sewing circular hems on chiffon that are actually pretty. I got the tutorial from this website (which for some reason is having trouble right now? It really had the best tutorial for sewing with chiffon....) Here is my pin with the picture that is important. It's just a simple circular hem, folded over and sewn a second time to enclose raw edges. The key between this and my previous, somewhat sad, circular hems on chiffon, was folding over a fat 1" seam allowance, but sewing close to the edge (like in the picture). The fat seam allowance, ironically, allowed me to trim the seam very close to the stitching, which is what ensures and nice even second seam.
(normally I hate making fat seam allowances, especially when I'm just going to trim them off and throw them away, but here it is essential. I tried doing this with just sewing "thin" seam allowances to start with and it didn't work)

I also finished the interior seams in the chiffon, by sewing a thick seam allowance, trimming one side close, and then folding over the other and sewing the edge with a zig zag, also a tutorial on that website. TUTORIAL PICTURE HERE.

See my pretty finished interior seams!!!
So, now to the third hurdle, sewing the upper and lower sleeves together and onto the jacket.

Then will come the fourth and final hurdle, which will be hand sewing lace to it. That's going to be the fun part :)

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