Sewing challenges

I don’t have a lot of crafting friends in real life.  Sure, I have friends who sew, and friends who knit, but none with quite the obsession I have.  That’s one reason why I value the online crafting communities I am a part of.  The great thing about the internet is that there is a little place for you, no matter what you are interested in.  I would never have had any idea that there were other people who loved vintage sewing patterns, or that I am not, in fact, the only one who is appalled at the lack of quality in store-bought clothing today.

Personally, I always love a good challenge as well.  Knit-alongs abound, but I haven’t seen quite as many sew-alongs.  A few weeks ago, I became aware of the Grosgrain blog, and the Frock by Friday sewalong – they’ve been sewing a different dress each month!  I’m sad I missed the coffee-fate dress, which is somewhere on my list, but this month the dress is an altered version of the Tara top from Burdastyle.  It looks right up my alley – it has a nice empire waist, and I like the flowy skirt.  It is a bit low cut, but to be honest I am not busty enough to be much bothered by that.    I’m planning to use a rayon batik print that I got from Waechter’s.

I always admire the pretty saturated colors of batiks, but in general they aren’t my thing (too much like tie-dye – my parents were all about tie-dye when I was growing up, and I just can’t go there again!)   I love this one though – the colors are gorgeous, and I think it will make a perfect tropical summer dress.

I’m also planning to participate in Self-Stitched-September, and here is my pledge: “‘I, Jessica, sign up as a participant of Self-Stitched-September. I endeavour to wear at least one handmade item(s) of clothing  every day for the duration of September 2010.”

I’m not going to pledge that everything I wear has to be handmade – just one item each day!  I’ve already taken stock of my wardrobe and am engaged in planning.  I’m going to make the pants I posted earlier this week, and hopefully at least one basic skirt.  I can get away with wearing my dresses most of the time, it’s the weekends that will be a challenge for me!  I plan to keep on making dresses and skirts – now that I have more, I find that I had really missed wearing them.  For some reason I keep imagining that it’s going to be cold here, which is ridiculous since we rarely see any cold before Halloween.  I’m looking forward to the challenge, and I hope it inspires me to wear the articles of clothing that I usually avoid!

My vintage dress hit a tiny snag this week – after underlining the whole thing, I decided it just wasn’t melding well with the fashion fabric, and I ripped the underlining out.  I know!  It nearly killed me to undo all that work, but it’s fitting much better now!  I still need to cut the lining out – I am not sewing it the way the directions instruct, so I’m taking my time.  I can’t decide if the front is twisting or not – I may end up recutting that piece only.  I also decided to eliminate the skirt vents (I will use a slit instead) so I had to redo that.

Today I’ve been working on plain curtains to cover the skylights in my sewing room – the a/c cannot keep up with the heat wave we are having, so they have to be covered!  I hope to have plenty of time to sew this weekend – I had a busy week, and feel like I’ve been running the whole time!