Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Skirt finished and jacket half done

I've been a little distracted with all that's been going on over at my puppy blog and while I managed to get a lot sewed in the last week, I haven't been able to blog about it until now.
layout with scissors
In this photo lies my secret weapon - the ancient-but-still-serviceable electric scissors my Mum gave me the last time she visited. She doesn't do much sewing any more - at least, not heavy duty stuff - and she figured I could use them. I remember her using them years and years ago but I never thought any more about them. When I wrote the last line on my last entry "oh my aching hand" I suddenly remembered the electric scissors. Well, I can say they worked like a dream. Who knew! Not me anyway. I used my shears to cut small details but the electric scissors cut through the bulk of the corduroy (and I do mean bulk) like a hot knife through butter.
sewing stack
As usual, once I got everything cut out and the interfacing ironed on, I started assembling as many pieces as I could. I don't follow the exact order as shown in the pattern instructions because I feel it's faster to "assembly line" as many pieces as possible.
jacket half done
Before I knew it, I had the body of the jacket assembled and looking pretty purple! The red jacket peeking out from behind it is there so I can compare a finished jacket with the one in progress, in addition to looking at the instructions.
pocket flaps
Unfortunately, part way through some of the top stitching, I noticed that the top thread tension had increased and caused the top thread to look stretched-out. I fiddled with the tension gizmo - thread tension is the bane of my existence - and I got it worked out. I decided not to pick out the stitching and re-do the top stitching, even though the difference is noticeable. I hate picking out stitching and I also thought that it might look worse if I did that, because of the fluff and nap of the fabric. Maybe after I wash and iron it a few times, it will become less noticeable.
skirt vent
As I wrote earlier, I decided to line the skirt. Since the pattern doesn't call for lining, I had to make it up as I went. I have lined this skirt before but each time, I do it a different way. This time, I sewed the lining to the skirt at the top and let it hang free down the sides and at the bottom. The problem arises with the vent. How do I work the lining vent around the skirt vent so you don't see the lining at the vent when the skirt is worn? In this photo, I have the skirt on the ironing board and am trying to figure it out.
vent with lining
The vent can fold either way (left or right) so that part didn't matter. In this photo, I have decided to sew the lining down under the sewn part of the vent - the angled line of stitching at the top of the vent. The opposite bit of lining will hang free and won't show because it is folded and behind the vent anyway.
skirt zip inside
Finally, the only other place where I attached the lining to the skirt is around the zipper. I don't want the lining to get caught in the zipper so I sew it down along the zipper stitching line. And it wasn't until I got home and started putting the skirt together that I realized the zipper I chose was so pink! It must have looked a lot more mauve in the store, that's all I can think. Anyway, the skirt is completely finished and now I'm onto the sleeves of the jacket.


ML said...

I love the color!

Becky said...

Very nicely done so far. And the shape of those pockets is great! Is that what the pattern was originally, or did you customize that?

Sandy said...

My mom has/had electric scissors. I remember them buzzing along cutting out fabric when I was a kid. I know use the Fiskars comfort touch? scissors. They spring back after cutting which reduces the amount of work your hand does. They help, but bulky fabric still wears my hand down after a while.

JuliaR said...

Thanks ML! It makes you think "fresh" when you see it, I think.

Thanks Becky! The pockets follow the pattern exactly. I rarely feel comfortable changing a pattern (although I don't often follow directions exactly).

Sandy, they must still sell electric scissiors, although I haven't looked for them. But that's how I remember Mum using them, when I was quite young, more than 30 years ago.

Anonymous said...

Wow! You are such a talented lady Julia!! If you hadn't pointed out the thread tension problem I would have never known. Keep up the good work! Val

JuliaR said...

Thanks Val! And this comment-to-the-comment is your reward for making a comment in the first place!