March 4, 2013 - wip's

Work-in-progress is steadily progressing on both the sewing and knitting fronts.

Yesterday I worked on my Sew for Victory project, a Vintage Vogue pattern (V8811). My home made pressing board proved to be quite useful as I prepared both the pattern pieces and fabric. (See my how-to post for instructions on making your own). 

Most of the afternoon was spent referring to my vintage dressmaking book, Simplified Home Sewing. First, I took detailed measurements and then attempted a tissue fitting. Much of what Ms. Hall had to teach me went a bit over my head, as the dress I have selected does not have set-in sleeves, so the armhole/shoulder attention she pointed me to did not apply. It will certainly come in handy for future projects.  

There was no surprise I needed some additional ease in the waistline. I was able to follow Professor Pincushion's "Increase Waist Video". Making small adjustments to the outside seams of the waist front/back and skirt front/back took care of that inch and half! Then it was on to pressing my fabric and performing a trial layout of my pattern pieces. I am so glad I did for two pieces were cut different than the instructional layout! Thank you Helen Hall! 

Helen drove home the importance of grainline. Testing her points I found the crossgrain of my woven material did indeed have quite a bit of stretch compared to the lengthwise grain. She notes 
...the crosswise thread has an elasticity that often causes the material to twist and thus to form an ungraceful line when on the figure.
 A belt should be cut on the length of the material and its cutting should be planned when the other sections are laid out. If the cutting of the belt is left for the last, it is usually necessary to either piece it or to cut it on the crosswise of the material. The latter will produce a twisted belt and a belt that will stretch.
Take time to lay out the pattern in a trial layout. Place all the sections loosely on the goods so as to test the amount of material. Do not pin the pattern down for the trial layout. Roll up the goods as the material is covered with the pattern...Never cut one piece of a pattern until all of it has been laid out...

Armed with this sage advice, I found that piece 8 of my pattern was on the crosswise thread and I changed it accordingly. I also found in the trial layout that I did not have enough material to cut the belt on the lengthwise thread, so I modified things again. I will still have to piece some of the belt, but not because the pattern piece did not fit "as is" on my fabric...I want some extra length for my waistline size. Note to self: start blogging about fitness journey for motivation to stick to clean-eating plan! :-) I spent quite a bit of time cutting out my pattern pieces and decided to save my basting and fitting for another day.

Headlining my fiber arts work is a baby bonnet completed for a colleague:

Using some fantastic "farm wool" from Jenny Jump Farm I am working on a puff-sleeved jumper of my own. It is an adventure-in-the-round as my first bottom-up raglan sleeved pullover. Not following any pattern in particular I get the feeling that it is nearly done. I'll take it off the needles for a fitting this week.

Last month I joined in a knit-along for socks. They are still in the works and are my go-to project for the many subway rides I endure:

That gold cardboard tube is a nifty way to keep double pointed needles in check when not in use. You can get them over at NordicMart, where I often find nice values on sock yarn.

One area to improve on is my sketching. It seems I have been starting too late at night and the quality of my work and the drive to keep pressing on until I finish the sketch are both below average. I may change my strategy and start sketching in the mornings instead.

The week ahead should see me make progress on sewing the dress, finishing the jumper and making steady progress on the socks. If the pullover is completed I plan to get back to one of my hibernating projects: a pillbox hat I'm knitting on the fly with vintage styling. I also would like to write up my pattern for a hat - it matches my Triandia Neckwarmer (free pattern).


  1. Wow, you have been a busy bee :) It makes me laugh because your list of things sounds a whole lot like mine. Sew, knit, draw... :D Lose weight!

    1. There is a never ending need to "be productive"...but when it comes to the creative side it is not work at all, I love it! (Eating clean is, however, a bit of a challenge more often than I'd like to admit). Thanks for dropping by my blog!


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