Saturday, July 23, 2011

Have camera...will shoot! (LONG)

Yes, finally have a working camera once more.  Gave up on finding the old battery charger and ordered a new one.  Of course, that just about guarantees that the old one WILL now show up!

And so, I can catch up on photographing garb to show, good, bad or otherwise.  I'll also be posting pictures of some past projects, as well as some things that are going to be leaving my studio in search of new homes.  My camera and I will be busy this week!

For now, my most current project - a Persian coat in the works.  I'm debating how to finish it and thinking that a partial lining - facings really - in a blue/green silk will be the way to go.

No, the pictures don't do justice to the shape of the coat, but I'll figure out a better way to photograph garb eventually.  Here is the full length of the coat.  The two shots below show the lining/facing fabric stuck into the front.  I feel that the contrast lining/facings are necessary as the printed fabric is white on the back and not attractive at all.  The facings will be on the front, around the neck, and around the hem, with the hem facings deep enough that the white won't be noticeable in most wearing situations.  Sleeves will get hem facings too.

The fabric that I used for this coat was on a sale table, quite cheap, and I was using it to test the pattern for this coat.  I got in a bit of trouble over that as some people felt that it was too nice to use for pattern testing!  The pattern turned out so well though, thanks to Lady Adelicia, that I can absolutely finish it!  Even though I was cutting without regards for pattern matching, I ended up with some surprising matches!

Once this coat is done, I'll be cutting the fabric that I considered to be the 'good' fabric for this project.  It's a home dec fabric - more upholstery than drapery, so a bit heavy and warm for Arizona, but I'm sure that I'll get some opportunities to wear it, like in January maybe!

Back side of fabric

Recently completed is the corset that I started at Costume College 2010.  A bit less than two weeks ago, I was looking for some hand-stitching with which to wind down for the day.  There were no projects ready for hand work, at least none that I felt like working on.  It was probably 9 in the evening when I walked over to the drawer where the unfinished corset was waiting.  It needed all of about 4 rows of boning channel stitching before I could machine stitch the bias to the edges and have it ready for the hand-stitching to finish the bias on the inside.  I gave it about an hour that evening, and finished it by lunchtime the next day, after 11 1/2 months of avoiding it!

Within 2-3 days after that, I got an e-mail from Marcia, my carpool partner and roommate from CoCo last year.  She wanted to know if I would be interested in buying a CoCo membership, as her roommate had cancelled just 2 weeks before CoCo is happening.  I had decided months ago that I would not be going this year - budget issues - but when this happened, how could I resist!  So, just 2 weeks before CoCo this year, my project from last year got finished!  Good timing.

The corset fits me better than my dressform.  The dress form is smaller than me, so the bust area is gaping, and the foam is not compressible, so the waist can't be laced in any smaller.  Still, it doesn't look too bad on her and it does fit me.  That's the importing thing - it fits me.  I can fit other people, but I can't fit myself, so getting this fitted in a class setting was a necessity.

I was so excited about getting the corset finished that I immediately cut another one from remnants saved just for this purpose.  The fabric was just a synthetic brocade from JoAnn's.  But the pattern was so pretty, I loved it in spite of the polyester content.  I had originally bought it to line a coat from a Donna Karan pattern, the coat that has been in the works for about 20 years!  hehehe

It's a cocoon-type coat, with dolman sleeves.  The sleeves were originally cut so low in the underarm that it just made me look even shorter and dumpier than normal, so I scooped the underarm/side seams upwards some.  Once I did that, I like the coat well enough to want to finish it, but did not like the way the interior was looking.  The fabric is 'ribbon' fabric, with 1/8 ribbon woven to form loops on the surface.  The pattern did not call for a lining, but the inside looked so bad that I knew I had to add a lining.  The pink brocade was my choice - a perfect match for the ribbon fabric and such a wonderful pattern. 

The coat is still awaiting a last bit of finishing - hand-tacking the sleeve hems, and coming up with a really wonderful closure.  Then I just have to wait for the weather in which to wear it.


The rest of the fabric from the lining will make a scruptious corset, lined in a cotton-candy pink faille that I found in my stash.  There won't be much left in the way of scraps!

Hmmm...Coco Chanel lined jackets in fabric to match the blouses for the suits.  So a corset to match the lining of the coat - following in some impressive footsteps, hehe.

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