Thursday, October 04, 2007

All's well that ends well

Or, Why I should not be allowed to screw with a pattern

I have the sense that the blog is getting a big heavy these days, what with thoughts on parenting, breast cancer and the like. Here's a quick change of pace. For the majority of you not interested in the details of my (un)crafty life, forgive me. This may be just a post for Stephanie, in lieu of calling her up at 2 on a Saturday afternoon and blah-blah-blahing at her.

I started with this pattern from Amy Butler. I'd previously made the a-line skirt and apron from this pattern. Finding some great orange silk I'd gotten on deep discount, I decided to experiment a little with the layered skirt. First, I wanted the skirt to be a little less wide of an a-line. Not quite an H, but you know. Then I thought, with such a fun fabric, why make such a long skirt? So I started to measure, and scheme. I bought pattern paper and fiddled a bunch with the original pattern to make a 3 tier skirt with less flare out than the original (a four tier). All was going well until I sewed the three tiers together into the outside of the skirt. I tried it on and decided that, although in its unhemmed length it made a nice sexy little skirt, once I hemmed it I'd have a skirt that left sexy and moved into embarrassing. Maybe not Britney embarrassing, but close.

Having bought way too much fabric (my one saving grace here), I cut out pieces for a fourth tier. Great, but I didn't notice until I'd done the cutting that I didn't leave enough for the seam allowance. So I cut out new pieces again, making sure to leave extra room for big seams. Great. I sewed the back two pieces on, then tested it against the main part of the skirt. Everything works, so I proceed to sew the front and back of the tier together. Done with that, I notice that I have managed to sew the seams on the opposite side of the fabric from the side on which the back pieces are joined. (This means that either the side seams are inside out, or the back one is.) I grab my seam ripper and start to tear out one of the side seams, before realizing I'm doing twice the work by not just ripping out the (one) back seam. Sigh.

Meanwhile, I wonder why my eye keeps twitching.

The layers are supposed to be fray-y like that, really.

the skirt, the whole skirt, and nothing but the skirt

We'll see how this whole raw edge layered thing wears

Oh, and while we're on the subject, I also recently made this purse:

9/10/07 I made it myself

It was from a lazy girl pattern. I never would have made the purse if I had only seen the pattern, which used an ugly fabric for the example shown on the cover. I was done in by a cute version on display at the fabric store.

The inside looks like this:
The green is a lazy but effective way to make pockets.

And I made a skirt this weekend, but no photo because I didn't plan ahead, it is upstairs and I'm pooped.


As long as we are talking crafty, there is an article in the Willamette Week about Portland's crafty women.


  1. oh, YAYAYYYYY! that's my old neighbor, Robin, in the photo! how awesome! yay Robina!

    oh, I'm so glad you posted this, N. I have to call her. GROOVY! :)

    oh, and p.s. that handbag? looks like it's worth about $300. I'm so not kidding.

  2. The Portland Writer10/04/2007 2:13 AM

    LOVE the purse! Honestly - you should make some more and start selling them.

  3. I love that purse! And making your own purse, no matter how the pockets are fashioned, is NOT lazy.

  4. the skirt saga sounds like any one of my sewing projects. why is it that i am not very good at sewing but always insist on making adaptations. i swear a lot when i sew. yours turned out great though. the purse is amazing! i want one.

  5. Delurking to say,
    Great job on the skirt and purse!

  6. You MADE a purse? I didnt even know people were allowed to do that. I thought only machines in factories could do that. I am very impressed

  7. So, where did you find the Bag-E-Bottoms?

    The skirt and purse are both awesome. Nice job. I am surprised that seam rippng on silk worked at all, so you must have been really, really careful. Nice job. Can't wait to see both in person!

  8. What Binkytown said.

    I am always sewing things together, backwards, upside down. It's why I don't sew.