Sunday, March 14, 2010

Weekend Project: Sewing with a Friend

True happiness is of a retired nature, and an enemy to pomp and noise; it arises, in the first place, from the enjoyment of one's self, and in the next from the friendship and conversation of a few select companions.
--Joseph Addison, The Spectator, March 17, 1911

I am leaving for a big work trip tomorrow (Monday) and I had a TON of work that I was supposed to do this weekend, but I said the heck with it all and spent the afternoon sewing with Ana. We haven't really sewn together (leisurely) for a long time, and it was really nice! She has 3 friends who are either pregnant or new mothers, and so she is working on baby clothes. For the 2 baby boys, she is making the short sleeved onesie from this pattern:

She wanted to use my copy of the pattern and I had previously cut out size "small" (6 months), but she wanted to make "medium", so we extended the pieces appropriately onto tracing paper. I thought that was a good exercise for her and she got the hang of it right away.

This is an asymetrical pattern, so there are TEN pattern pieces to be cut out. She discovered that she had more fabric than she needed, so she is making the booties too. Between extending the pattern pieces and cutting everything out, that took up most of the afternoon. But it relaxing and peaceful and fun. I hate how busy I've been lately and wish I could have Sunday afternoons like this every week!

Here is the fabric she picked out for the two baby boys:

While I mostly worked with Ana on her stuff, I did do a little bit on my peasant-hippie-flower-power blouse. Remember that I put on the neckline binding and then decided that it hung too low and took off the binding and took up the shoulder seams?

Well, I decided that it was still a little bit lower than I was comfortable with and so I took off part of the neck binding again and am in the process of increasing the gathering around the front center - hoping that will take up just enough extra for modesty's sake.

I hated taking the neck binding off again, but I decided that I want to wear this blouse, and I won't if it hangs too low, and there's no point in making it at all if I end up with something that I don't wear! So, it was out with the seam ripper... ;)

I also worked on the sleeves. It has drawstring sleeves, using ties made out of the same fabric as the blouse as the "drawstrings". The pattern uses 2 buttonholes to pass the tie through on each sleeve:

I basted in one sleeve - but I think I'm going to pull it out and re-do it, to even out the gathering around the shoulder.

Here's a side view of the sleeve.

One nice thing about this style is that it accomodates my slightly large upper arms (due to rock climbing muscles, I keep telling myself - note that this works better for upper arms than it does for the stomach). Hopefully next weekend I will have enough time to finish it. It's finally getting warm enough here in Florida for a top like this! :)

I'm still planning a give-away for my blog's 2nd year anniversary. I was going to post the details this weekend, but I'm waiting to hear from a company whether or not they offer gift certificates... So, my new plan is to announce it next Wednesday, when I announce the winner for my 400th post give-away. It's going to be a big one, so make sure you check back! :)

I hope you had a wonderful weekend too! :)


Lori said...

Sounds like a fun sewing day with your friend. Your blouse is coming right along. Good luck with the sleeves and the neckline.

Becky said...

It's good to see that you and Ana are still sewing together! She picked out some cute stuff. And I'm glad to see that you got some more work done on your blouse, even if it's taking longer than anticipated.

Unrelated sewing question... we've discovered there's a rock climbing gym not far from my house, and one of my friends and I went a couple of weeks ago. It was fun and I'd like to keep doing it, but I really need to find a way to exercise my fingers to get some more strength in them for gripping the handholds! (I wasn't belay-certified, so we had to stick to the bouldering wall, and I couldn't grip very well.) Any suggestions? (I'm thinking that will be of benefit to my flute playing too, having stronger fingers!)

Julia said...

I love the baby layette pattern! Sewing with a friend sounds like fun!! Your blouse is coming along very nicely!

SunnyQ said...

Now that the booties (penguin) fit Andrew, I've found them to be AWESOME shoes!! Soft-soled shoes are better for baby's development AND they don't cause him to trip and fall. I also love that they are not leather (most of the commercial soft-soled shoes are). And the best part is how much love is sewn into them! We will be making some more of these awesome shoes! :)