Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Sept. Sewing

Some readers may know that this BLOG started out as a way to track my progress on a Timmel Farics sponsored SWAP (Sewing with a Plan) contest. It was the first time I had participated. Reading other participants BLOGs and postings on the discussion board at http://www.stichersguild.com/ really motivated me. Well a couple of weeks ago, I got to meet two other participants and see their SWAPs. It was wonderful. Mary and Jodi both live in Newport News, VA so the Fashion Focus Neighborhood group of the Richmond ASG chapter set up a meeting location mid way between Richmond and Newport News in a lovely historic Bed and Breakfast. Mary and Jodi brought multiple SWAP’s, since they have participated multiple years; Jody most recently in the http://www.patternview.com/ Wardrobe Planning contest. It was wonderful to see their creations in person. Jodi had several great wardrobes of casual garments that fit her lifestyle. Wonderful knit fabrics in rich colors and textures, made into garments with interesting details and styling. She was wearing one of the outfits from her SWAP and she looked great. And I got to see that fabulous coat she made by taking apart and copying an old favorite coat. Mary makes lovely tailored garments. She is definitely an expert seamstress. Her dress SWAP was very inspiring, especially since I had a hard time getting my head around the concept of a dress swap. Each dress was unique and had as much work in it as a tailored jacket. And there was a stylish jacket that went with all the dresses, which I know from personal experience, can be hard to accomplish. We all gave short presentations on our sewing backgrounds, described how we developed our SWAPs, why we chose certain fabrics and styles, learning’s, successes, etc. I had a great time and I know the other members of the FFG did too. Photos on the internet do not do justice to the garments and fabrics. All I could think of was how much harder the voting would be if we were seeing the SWAPs in person. Thanks to the Group coordinator Judy Sutter for setting that up.

I have started on another vintage dress. A 1947 Vogue pattern described as "four piece skirt joins bodice at waist line. Darts trim the hip pockets on skirt and the deep collar. Open or closed neckline, sleeve cut in one with blouse fronts, set in armhole in back. Long sleeve gathered to cuff band and three-quarter length sleeves.” I am making it in a lt. weight wool flannel in a medium blue. I especially liked the multiple darts on the pockets and the collar. The pattern is not printed, just a paper shape, with various perforations marking the darts and seam lines. The paper is crumbling and I have to be very careful when smoothing out the wrinkles. I have to add 4" to bust, waist and hips. The bodice is giving me fits because of the front cut on sleeve with underarm gussets and a back with a set in sleeve. I am not sure where to add the additional width. I may actually have to do a muslin of the top.

I am trying to stretch my creative horizons. I signed up for a fabric postcard class club at a local quilting store. I was inspired by the postcards made by Vicki http://vickiwelsh.typepad.com/ and students who took her Fabric Postcard class. Yes I know, like I need something else to do, but I reasoned I could use fabric scraps from my sewing projects. I soon discovered Fallacy #1. Garment scraps are not near as exciting as new quilting fabrics and 2. Postcards are not going to make much of a dent in my scrap pile.

The post cards have to go out early next week and the dress has to be completed by the end of the month to be eligible for the contest. Fortunately this weekend is when the guys go off for a Boy Scout bike/camping trip and it is just Kitty and I at home. Hopefully I will get a lot done.

Speaking of Kitty, 2 different neighbors stopped by this week to tell me that they had seen a coyote in my yard. One had even verified it was not some mangy dog, by researching coyote's on the internet. I am a bit shocked as I live in Virginia, in a highly populated residential neighborhood of a big city. However, there is a 10 acre field between my back yard and heavily traveled River Road. I am hoping Mr. Coyote is munching on the teeming rabbit and squirrel populations, but just to be on safe side, I am keeping Ms. Kitty in at night.


  1. I really am sorry I couldn't come to the FFG outing. I can see I really missed a good time.

  2. How nice that your outing was so successful. I loved reading about the coyote off of River Road. I lived in Richmond for years and years and love being brought back again in any way... How's that beautiful dress coming?