Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Of UFOs and upcoming projects

Yesterday I decided to finish off my very first attempt at sewing, a very old UFO* as old as my son. The back story is that I cut out my old dress (can't seem to find any picture, but it's a navy colored empire waisted long maxi dress with a faux wrap top - how's that for a description?) to make into a tunic top from a pattern (the only pattern I had at the time). The fabric of this dress is slinky, silky-ish polyester I think. I stop at cutting out the fabric pieces and then put it away for a whole year. Took it out August/September of last year when I became a SAHM, and turned it into a loose Sorbetto top, but never finish it. Didn't want to turn and stitch the armhole and hem (coz by this time the fabric has frayed like crazy), didn't have enough fabric to make self fabric binding, and didn't have anything in stash that matches or complements it too!

But 3 thrift store trips ago I found a white fabric (difficult to know the types of thrifted fabric unless it's noted on the tag, printed on selvage or I take time to do the tests that I do not know how to do, or that I do not have the tools/time to do ---> lazy...). Initially I envisioned something else for the fabric, but when I took out this UFO, they just go together so well!

Okay, technically this Sorbetto is not yet done. I've done the hem part and the length now is more of a tunic than a top which I prefer anyways, but have not yet stitched down the binding on the neckline and armhole. I probably will handstitch it as usual.

One reason why I'm not done with this is because of this boo boo:

My pinking shears accidentally got caught out with the front part of the top when I was trimming the seams where I attached the white to the bottom of the tunic. See the "small" hole on the purple fern in the picture above? As the Bean would say, OH NO!!!

So, last night was spent making these in the hope to cover up the mishap:

That's my very first attempt of making a fabric rosette (this morning I glued on safety pin on the back, so that I won't ruin it in the washer like I tend to do without fail...). I used the same white fabric, and hand sew Czech beads from my stash to the middle parts. Tutorial to make extravaganza fabric rosettes can be found on this site.


Talking about UFOs, a most recent project that is being put on the back burner is a refashion of my favorite Massimo Dutti wool & angora tan coat that I shrunk in the washer fall of last year. I think the shrinking of that coat really made me so upset that I am trying my best to watch my laundering... I've never sent anything to the drycleaners here, so I am not sure of the cost, frankly I am being very conscientious of pricing and cost now that I'm here in the US/with a baby. I did it every month back in Malaysia because we wear a lot of silk/lace etc traditional outfit for events/work and so on.

Here is where it's at:

The coat shrunk from a European size 16 (US size 14) to a child sized one! So it was quite brutal for me to rip up the seams, as there was a lot of puckering (to the many many interfacing) and the wool and angora hide a lot of the stitches too.

My plan is to make a clutch, incorporating the collar and so on to the design. The black fabric with gold, white and bright red flowers is a thrifted fabric that I am using as the lining.

I will only go back to this project once I'm done with at least one of the following upcoming projects:

1) Sporty dress with exposed zipper - I've wanted to make this dress for a while now, but only got the right fabric for it last Friday. It's a Sangria-colored (like darker hot pink) Sophia ponte knit that I bought from Vogue Fabrics. I haven't decided on the type of zippers yet, I bought several types from Joann's but the only gold colored ones are for Jeans and they are stiff... :(

Pattern for this dress is McCall's M6395, and I want to make the long sleeved red version (on the pattern).

2) Kimono-esque style top from purple stretch poly charmeuse bought from FabricMart (provided that I have enough yardage will follow pattern M6204, or else will have to wing it). Beading/embellishment will be optional.

3) Making a 3-quater sleeved version of the Date Dress from pattern M6518 from this thrifted cotton fabric:

This fabric I think was my very first thrifted fabric that's not cut out fabric for quilts. I have 3 yards of it. For the dress, I will leave out the ruffles from the pattern and this version will incorporate the tweaks I want to make for the pattern. I might need to make another muslin for this purpose... hmmm...

4) Top - long sleeved/3 quarter sleeved version) out of this floral knit also from FabricMart using pattern M6513


Anyways, time to hand stitch the tunic and officially close it's chapter as a UFO.

*UFO = unfinished object

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