16 May 2012

Me Making Me-Made-May

Back when I signed up for Me-Made-May I thought it couldn't be too hard because I was wearing me-made clothing most days of the week anyway. Of course, what I was actually wearing was the same three knit dresses, all made from V8575, over and over again, punctuated with the occasional long-sleeved top when the weather turned chilly. But that wardrobe won't get me through me-made-May, first because the warmer weather has pushed the long-sleeved tops out of the rotation, and second, because I'm not interested in posting pictures of myself in the same three dresses all month in the MMM'12 Flickr group. So I've been sewing.

First up was V8499, the Marcy Tilton pants that I started here.
They were finished long enough to wear them on MMM Day 2,

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but I have to go back to take them in a bit and re-engineer the elastic waistband. The waistband instructions are pretty simple, but they rely on more accurate cutting than I seem to be capable of. The elastic is only in the back, in a casing made by folding over the top of the back pieces (there's a separate pattern piece for the front waistband, but not the back). Which means when the pants are put together there should be extra fabric at the top back. Which, somehow, there wasn't. So I stitched some more fabric onto the back and tried to improvise a waistband using Melissa Fehr's helpful tutorial on elastic waistbands. Which, it turns out, I didn't really understand. So I cut that off and tried sewing on a regular-old tube of fabric to run elastic through. But somehow that turned out to be way taller than the front it had to meet up with. So I set them aside to let them cool.

Two things I learned from this effort: 1. Everyone on the internet has a great method for how to rip out serging easily. None of them work; and 2. I should learn how to do something well the ordinary way before I try to adopt brilliant shortcuts and alternative methods developed by you nimble-fingered experts.

Next up, I made my first Sorbetto in the same fabric as the pajama pants I made for Karen's Pyjama Party..

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Now, to be honest, I could fulfill my MMM pledge by never getting out of my pajamas for the rest of the month, as my semester is over, Commencement has commenced, and my job now is to grade, grade, grade. Which I can do in my jammies. As long as someone else goes out to buy food now and then. Or delivers. But, again, there are those pesky pictures. So I decided to take on Shams'sGarment-Formerly-Known-As-The-Tablecloth-Skirt.

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Which turned out remarkably well. It's shorter than I'd like because, in following Shams's instructions, I compensated for my lesser height but not my greater girth. But I like it.
Believe it or not, there's more sewing to report, including my first successful foray into Burda Land, but I know how tired you are.

12 May 2012

Unique LA: It's a Small World

I mostly use facebook to keep track of my extended family. I was going to say "distant relatives" but actually my facebook connections are mostly first cousins; they are just geographically distant. So I was browsing facebook this morning and saw that my oldest cousin on my mother's side, recently retired to Florida, had wished good luck to an artist displaying and selling her work at a booth at Unique LA's Spring Show this weekend at the California Market Center in downtown Los Angeles.
The artist, Christina Tonges Korn, is my first-cousin-once-removed-in-law. I believe I'll swing by and introduce myself tomorrow on my way home from my law school's commencement. You might want to check out the event, which includes free diy workshops and crafts and free drinks with distressingly healthy names.
Oh, and apparently a prime draw at Unique LA is Caine's Arcade, transplanted from its home in East Los Angeles. I had never heard of Caine's Arcade but a short film about it by Nirvan Mullick has been viewed by almost 3 million people on YouTube and liked by 34,000, including one on-line friend of mine from Toronto. Small World.

01 May 2012

That Lovely Month When Ev'ryone Goes Blissfully Astray!

Tra la! It's May!
The lusty month of May!
That darling month when ev'ryone throws
Self-control away.
It's time to do
A wretched thing or two,
And try to make each precious day
One you'll always rue!

Well, there's nothing like a Me-Made Month for that!
Here's Day One, but I don't plan to do this everyday no matter how much you beg and plead.

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And speaking of ruing, here is my new aquisition:

$ KGrHqNHJEgE92Hbmsv BPhyTdB ew~~60 57

She's a 1956 (I think--between 1956 and 1958) Elna Supermatic I "won" on eBay (these are the seller's photos.) And she came with 16 cams! plus some feet, bobbins, and the accessory box.

$ KGrHqR jQE9NoNEh7oBPhyRLCFpw~~60 57

Plus a cord, knee-bar controller (I grew up with a knee-controlled Singer) and a case that turns the free arm into a flat bed. Made in Switzerland, she will run like a Swiss watch--once I get her going.

Meanwhile I've done something awful to the elastic waistband of my Vogue 8499 and will have to cut it off and try again. So I've downloaded and taped together the Collette Sorbetto pattern to make a top to go with my new PJ Party jammies. I think I will be the last person on the interwebs to make the Sorbetto, but you know, I wanted all of you to work out any bugs first.