Monday, October 28, 2013

New Look 6000 - This Year's Knockoff Boden Dress

New Look 6000 - This Year's Boden Knockoff

When I saw this argyle fine-wale corduroy on, I knew it had to be mine.  Once I received it, the design was a little busier than I had anticipated, so I chose a simple line for the dress.  This sheath from New Look has several variations for sleeve and neck.  I used version E and the only changes that I made were to:

1. use an invisible zipper vs adding a flap (mostly because I already had the invisible zipper on hand.)

2. change the cuff - the pointy cuff looked funny on my muslin, so I opted to square off the ends and have them overlap, topped off by decorative buttons.

3. top-stitch the hem.  The pattern called for edge finish and slip stitch, but the fabric was so thin that I worried my stitching would show.  I could have finally tried the blind hem stitch on my machine, but I was in a hurry, so I just top-stitched and am happy with the result.

With regard to alterations, I cut a smaller size than usual (turns out I have been cutting 1-2 sizes too big on past dresses...) and just reduced the seam allowances slightly at waist and hip at side seams and reduced the back seam to 3/8 all the way down. (I made no changes to darts.) This way I was able to avoid all of the usual work that is involved when the shoulders and neck are way too big... I still ended up taking in a fair amount at armholes to reduce bulk around armholes and eliminate some bagginess across the back.

I did my best to cut the fabric in a way that would allow for the design to be straight L to R and top to bottom. (Took forever...) Due to curves and darts in the pattern, I could not always line up the pattern so that the argyle fit together perfectly at the seams, but I am fairly pleased with the results, especially at the sleeve cuff where the pattern flows from sleeve to cuff pretty nicely. 

I would definitely make this dress again.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Cross Stitch for a Dear Friend

Cross Stitch Housewarming Gift

The text is a line from Sam Walter Foss' The House by the Side of the Road

The House by the Side of the Road

THERE are hermit souls that live withdrawn in the place of their self-content;
There are souls like stars, that dwell apart, in a fellowless firmament;
There are pioneer souls that blaze their paths where highways never ran-
But let me live by the side of the road and be a friend to man.

Let me live in a house by the side of the road where the race of men go by-
The men who are good and the men who are bad, as good and as bad as I.
I would not sit in the scorner's seat nor hurl the cynic's ban-
Let me live in a house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.

I see from my house by the side of the road by the side of the highway of life,
The men who press with the ardor of hope, the men who are faint with the strife,
But I turn not away from their smiles nor their tears, both parts of an infinite plan-
Let me live in my house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.

I know there are brook-gladdened meadows ahead, and mountains of wearisome height;
That the road passes on through the long afternoon and stretches away to the night.
But still I rejoice when the travelers rejoice and weep with the strangers that moan,
Nor live in my house by the side of the road like a man who dwells alone.

Let me live in my house by the side of the road, where the race of men go by-
They are good, they are bad, they are weak, they are strong, wise, foolish - so am I.
Then why should I sit in the scorner's seat, or hurl the cynic's ban?
Let me live in my house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.

Sam Walter Foss


 Getting Started - used old sampler as pattern, first time using waste canvas

Removing Waste Canvas - this was a chore.  Best result came from lightly moistening with a spray bottle, then using the eye of the needle to separate threads before pulling out individually.  Also recommend (carefully) cutting away excess waste canvas for easier removal.  Beware the instruction that states "Then simply pull the threads to remove..."

 Back of Piece after removing Waste Canvas

Finish and Framed (the framer added a pouch on the back to hold a copy of the poem)

Fabric is Osnaburg
Embroidery floss, hoop and needle
Waste Canvas