Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Just TRY to look at this fabric without getting motion sickness

I think that it may be more fun to do the whole "Oh! Look at this awesome thing I made while nobody was looking! It's completely finished and there is nothing wrong with it!" thing for some people, but I enjoy humiliating myself at all levels, all the time. In that spirit, here's a progress report on Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenge #1: Something Thirteen This Way Comes.**

**not remotely the real challenge title.

I'm not going to say what I'm making. This is for two equally important reasons. One, I enjoy some element of surprise even with an in-progress report; and Two, I would like to retreat to a place of "Costumer's Plausible Deniability" if necessary. You know, in case this thing must be quickly and surreptitiously made into some other thing.

What you see here is my incredibly precise draping method. This requires sacrificial fabric (done and DONE!), a sharpie pen, a mouthful of differently sized straight-pins (so that no matter what, you're always dropping some of them onto the floor to step on), and a dress-form or sacrificial human. Since I'm all out of sacrificial humans this week, Headless June stepped in as the draper's assistant.

After referencing seam lines on my inspiration garment, I draped the back center panel and front with allowances to trim the bottom edge. The side panel was challenging due to a lack of firm visual evidence of one of the seam lines, but I think it's oriented properly at this point. The side panel was cut to fit in the negative area left after the front and back were established to my satisfaction. Areas where I felt the need to document critical seams are marked directly on the fabric.

Since I'm not using a pattern of any kind, and I've never made... one of these things... before, I'm relying on past draping successes and a few experiments. The sleeve is cut in two pieces, like the original. The seam lines should fall close to those on the inspiration garment and I made the general shape with the curve of my arm in mind. I took the sleeve in 3 times after I initially cut it out, and will likely do another trim after I get the fashion and lining fabric cut. (This exquisite material does not adequately convey the 2 or 3 thicknesses of material for the finished piece.)

A particularly critical juncture. The back seam, sleeve cap, sleeve head and armscye will share some real estate in the vicinity of the pink triangle.

So far, the sleeve is working. I will probably re-drape it in a heavier material before I get into the "real" fabric to see if it is still successful.

And there we have... it! A word on the fabric: this was among several boxes of material that were bequeathed to me by a friend's mother in anticipation of a move. She bought it at a thrift store in Florida in the (you guessed it) 1980's. Isn't it just amazing? 99.9% of my childhood wardrobe was made out of fabric like this. Add a side ponytail, an over-bite and couple pairs of coordinated socks and you get the picture.

Hopefully I'll have something more to post in a few days. Hopefully. Good luck to everyone who is doing the Challenge this week!

1 comment:

  1. Ohmagosh that is some wild fabric! I feel like my dad had bedding very similar to that... way back... he lived by the beach... ah the 80's.

    I'm excited to see what it becomes! You should use that for lining and no one will ever know...