Blue Yoke, put an X in that box. Completed! Done! This is a pattern I drafted from my bodice & sleeve blocs so it bears repeating:
“Haute Coutre looks better on the body than it does on the hanger, Ready To Wear looks better on the hanger than it does on the body.”
(In this case, I’m using the phrase ‘Haute Coutre’ for hand made, not ‘High Fashion’.)
The first time a garment went off without a hitch, start to finish. I did pick out some seams or stitches, but just because afterwards I thought they could have been done better, not because they were done wrong. I’ve made this pattern twice before so this time, as I moved thru the construction, I was hyper aware of every pitfall. Except for the cuffs. I ended up having to cut sleeves twice and going back to watch videos. The first time, I kept making the same mistake and the sleeve placket slit ended up stretched out of shape to much to save. I debated cutting the sleeves down to a 3/4 sleeve but I really wanted another long sleeve shirt, so I sighed heavy and cut them out again…THEN….watched the video before I sewed the second set of sleeve cuffs. Other than the sleeve placket, this shirt went like this:
“Yeah…I need to sew this before I sew that….to better join these two items, press well …wait and trim this down *after* joining here….” The blessings of making a pattern more than once. Here they all are:
The flannels are mega warm and I can only wear them in extreme winter conditions or they’re too uncomfortable and I’m forever pullling on them.
I really, really enjoyed this project. Every moment spent on it made me happy. Every night I went to bed with the a satisfying sense of accomplishment and a feeling of “competency”. I was calm and relaxed thru this entire process, even tho both Big M & myself came down with horrible colds.
So, Lessons Learned:
1. The interfacing was the right decision. Laundering the shirt softened it the right amount. Without the interfacing, even on the thicker quilting cotton, there would not have been enough structure for the buttons and collar. It would have been very weepy. And that would have given me the sadz, pun intended.
2. The hand embroideried button holes…glorious. Even for a first attempt (and they are far from perfect), I’m absolutely in love with them. I love hand stitching, anyway. Hard for me to believe a good seamstress would avoid hand stitching but to each their own. A needle and colorful thread is my favorite way to settle down in the evening watching TV. I used silk thread for the buttonholes and wow…just…wow…what a luxurious feeling, running waxed silk thread thru my fingers. Comparable to petting puppies. According to the professional tailor video I watched on hand stitched buttonhole, I need to do 100 buttonholes before I can do it adequately. So far, I’ve done 20. Every night, I’ll do some practice ones to get to the 100. I considered picking all these out and doing them again but decided not to, not because I’m feeling lazy but I thought leaving these will be a good measuring stick. As I get better at them, I can pull this shirt out to compare progress. And I have a feeling that this shirt is completed, it’s done. Time to move on.
~My son told me his father made him rope a bucket on the ground 100 times before he’d let him rope from a horse. 100 must be the Goldilocks number to hard wiring muscle movement memory.
3. I essentially “bound” the center front left side button band front and back. I have the contrasting fabric both inside and outside of center front left. I won’t do that again, at least when working with a heavier quilting cotton. I did that on both the flannels and never so much as considered it afterwards. I’m guessing it won’t be a problem with regular shirting, either. From now on, if I do this shirt again in heavier quilting cotton, I will sew contrast onto just the front so it’s only on the outside. It’s just one layer of fabric more than I need, plus the interfacing.
Today, starting the jeans to wear with this shirt.
Just as soon as the hot water heater heats enough water for my shower.
Things work differently here in the DC apartment than they do back home in Idaho. We’re both flying back Nov 19th. A switch flipped on me yesterday. I walked to the corner Harris Teeter store and coming back, I had a simple feeling come over me…it’s time to go home. I’m ready and looking forward to it.