Monday, May 26, 2008

McCall's 5144 - Completed

Well, I've really been sewing my little heart out the past couple of days! The first thing I did yesterday was to sew a lining of unbleached muslin into my James Bond skirt so I could wear it in public without showing off the brand of my panties. I wore it once with a slip, but the slip is an elastic waist so it kept sliding up to my belly-button where I'm more narrow. Simultaneously, the skirt kept floating down to my hips since it's a bit roomy. Not the most attractive thing; 4 inches of slip above the waistline of a skirt! All fixed.

Next, I finally finished the black shrug to go with the tank dress, so I can post a picture now:

Not sure if I really enjoyed the shrug pattern - seemed a bit fussy for a knit. I had to ease in the sleeve - which, why in the world would you need ease with a knit?! To compare, remember the brown cardigan that went together fabulously (but I won't wear)? That sleeve had no ease. Can you see any difference? No, me neither - but it sure makes a difference in how difficult it is to sew! I hemmed the shrug using my narrow hem foot, and I think I could really get to like that foot. The hemming looked beautiful once I got going, but, despite some great advice from my mother, I still had a hard time "getting it started". Oh well, practice makes perfect.

The tank dress was very easy - just a lot of hemming like the shrug. I didn't use my fancy foot on this one, I did a rolled hem, which meant a LOT of folding and pinning.

Once that was done, I started working on my next project which will be a silk skirt with a tulle overlay inspired by a project from this book. The only difference is that I'm building it from scratch instead of modifying something RTW (ready to wear).

First, I made a muslin from a BurdaStyle skirt cut on the bias, and it turned out great. It was the first pattern I've ever downloaded. I printed it out on regular paper, pieced it together, and then traced it onto pattern paper. Quite the project!
Those are Ryan's hands, by the way. Weirdo.

Anyway, I thought I had found the perfect pattern for the project, but thankfully I started messing with the tulle before I cut out the silk. Turns out, tulle doesn't work well with a fitted style. When I made the overlay with the same shaping as the skirt, it had these weird horizontal wrinkles in front. More disastrous, the back stretched over my bum, and that caused it to tuck itself under... underneath my bum - hard to describe, but highly amusing to see!

So, this morning it was back to the drawing board, thankful that I had bought lots of tulle! (It was cheap.) This time I used my self-drafted skirt pattern from which I made these 2 skirts. I modified it by narrowing the A-line a bit so it wouldn't be so wide at the bottom, and added 2 inches to the length. The muslin turned out great, so now the next step is to try it out with the tulle.

I did emerge, pale and blinking, from my sewing room yesterday to go with Hannah and Ryan to see Iron Man at the theater. We all loved it - very exciting! And that Robert Downey Jr... [sigh] I might have to get that on DVD when it comes out.

This afternoon we are heading over to Ryan's folks' house for a Memorial Day BBQ and probably a grudge match game of Scrabble for Alida and me... (guess who's got the grudge! lol) Hope your day is/was wonderful and I will post a progress report soon.


  1. wow, you have more patience with fabric than anyone else I know....Good for you. I love the dress and shrug - looks so good on you - A great model you are! :)Keep sewing -

  2. You are GOR-juss! Love the finished product, even if I don't understand all the sewing technical stuff! :)

  3. The shrug definitely makes that outfit. The dress is darling, but the shrug gives it that extra pzazz. Good job on that outfit. Alida