Tuesday, 29 March 2011

A different Star Trek jacket!

I have three of these to fit, on a long ago promise (7 years I think.) The first one was awful, and when I recut it, it was improved but not brilliant. This second one was better, but none of the ladies is slim, and it is mighty difficult to get smooth "uniform" in both senses, fit. However, once the toiles are satisfactory, I only have to cut out the fabric - no sewing - that is down to one of the girls. (I use the term lightly - they are all in their 50's and 60's, but my contemporaries - hence girls!)

As for the Diana dress, I am on the last stretch - the last facing is halfway done. Then the jacket goes together, the seams are checked for loose pearls (the worst bit) and the linings get hand sewn into the dress, aready finished, and the jacket. It is still a nightmare, but I can see daylight at last.

Also last week I made a small 18th century cap for the customer in the above picture, and repaired her pocket hoops - she is not the most careful of wearers. (Incidentally I shortened the lace falls - way too long for her arms.) I have some ready quilted gold silk to make a petticoat/skirt for the outfit, and I am sure there is some suitable fabric for another jacket - stashbusting you understand.

Off to pearl some more.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Nearly there!

The Diana dress is nearly finished after way too long! I finally finished beading the jacket outside, just the facings to do, sew it up and put in the lining - the zip is already in place. Then pehaps I can get on with some of my more interesting projects.

Just to interrupt things, I have a couple of small 18th century caps to make for the lady who had the red outfit - she is not good with doing her hair, so these will help.

And the second of the Star Trek Jackets needs a toile - I'd better go and start something, I think. (The button boxes are nearly done, though!

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Tiny steps!

I am working really hard to finish the Diana dress. I've finally found something that helps me work. I have an hourly chart, where I write the plan for the day, factoring in tea breaks, computer time, lunch, exercise as well as sewing. So far (three days) it's working - nothing else ever has, except a looming deadline!

As well as that, I am turning out my wardrobe and throwing out old, tired, non-fitting clothes as I recently updated  my clothes, almost all via E bay, and had no space. Taking out all the coat hangers that had nothing hanging helped, plus getting rid of clothes that I had never worn, still with price tags, T shirts that don't "go" with anything and so on. It's been a very interesting place, the back of my wardrobe!

As a treat I bought myself a great book for my stash busting quilts, when I get to them. It's not entirely helpful, as mine isn't a quilter's stash, but has some great ideas, along with the instructions for my half-finished Japanese folding Quilt, which I had lost.http://www.play.com/Books/Books/4-/5449616/-/Product.html

Friday, 11 March 2011

Small back log? Pfui!

The small back log of work to be done before I can start on the quilts just got bigger! Refurbish an 18th century dress - an annual task- for a regular and long term customer, who literally cannot sew a button on.
I can't link directly to the pictures, but there is one on the second page of the Gallery, on my web siteright hand side, 2nd down, I hope. (www.suziclarke.co.uk/photogallery/php
Make a 19th century suit for a gentleman. Make a Tudor all purpose outfit for another long term customer. Teach a friend how to fit clothes on her husband - and fit her - how did that happen? and, eventually, make an outfit for my dear DIL, for World Book Day in 12 months - Little House on the Prairie, or Little Women sort of style. And those bloomin' Star Trek jackets!

This is exactly what happened 8 years ago, the first time I tried to retire - suddenly I got busy, and the husband was made redundant. I chose to stop now as it was no longer fun, and there was no work about - good time I thought - and suddenly....work! Hah!

Friday, 4 March 2011

Back to work - soon!

Well, we had a lovely time on holiday, and the holiday blog will be started this weekend, for anyone inteested. The black/white plaid skirt was a great success - I even had to tighten the button on the waist! However, I shall take an inch or two off the hem length, which will make it more practical - it's overlocked/serged, then turned and machined, so easy to do.

As for sewing while I was away, I am delighted to say that I did actually get a lot done, although it might not appear that way. It is slow work! (My excuse!) After breakefast most mornings, we needed to stay out of our room/cabin/stateroom to allow the the "attendant" to clean and so on, so we found ourselves a corner in one of the smaller spaces, with reasonably comfy chairs. I took my sewing, and he read. I managed two long threads, most day, but it is very small back stitch - 12 to the inch or less if possible - and getting it neat is now no longer easy for me. However, progress was made, and I plan to try and do a little every day, once we clear up the odds and ends and start "back to work" . (For new readers, it is the quilted white silk lining for a work basket for my patient DIL.)

Next "new" project might well be another simple 1/2 circle skirt - I really love the way the black/white one hangs. I still have a small back log of orders to finish before I can properly close the business, but no major rush for any of them, I hope.