Saturday, February 9, 2013
Our plucky heroine has spent most of the last several weeks either working or doing visity things with her venerable parents, which has left little time for personal sewing projects, hence progress on SWAP 2013 and the Springtime 6PAC has slowed to a crawl. Add in the learning curve on a different sewing machine, and a project that might usually take three evenings has taken almost three weeks. As the fable says, though, slow and steady will get you there in the end...
The second of the six tops for 2013 SWAP (which is also top #1 for Spring 6PAC) is now finished. I adore this fabric, a printed Alexander Henry cotton voile, it is almost comparable to Liberty Tana Lawn, and the print design "Trios" has a wonderful mid-century feel to it. I chose to take my TNT dress pattern and cut it off at blouse length, which gives a sort of peplum effect to the top. Having never made or worn such a style before, it was one of several experiments that this particular project entailed. The top fits comfortably, but the style is not one that I feel is particularly becoming worn as an outer layer, the same flared bottom edge that allows it to fit my curves, ends up cutting my figure in half, which makes me look even shorter and stouter than I really am.
Fortunately, that is not my intention as to how this will fit into my wardrobe... blouses and tops are almost invariably worn beneath a pinafore, and in that way it ends up adding a delightful splash of color to my everyday style. The colors in the print will coordinate easily with black and grey, there is a kind of dusty aqua that will look well with indigo, and the odd yellowish grey will probably end up being friends with brown. Overall, I call this a win.
Working on this project was a chance to begin to become familiar with "Nina" (the new sewing machine) There are quirks to every machine, and I am still figuring out what makes her happy and what sewing habits I will need to change. One thing that I am really loving is the ease of changing presser feet on the Bernina; they use an entirely different system than my previous machine, and it is absolutely easy-peasy! I have never had a foot before like #5, the blindhem and edge stitching foot. Combined with the ability to change needle position incrementally from right to left, it has made some aspects of stitchery soooo much easier. One example is that I decided that hemming the bottom edge of this top so as to create minimal bulk was important, as that would show the least whilst it was worn underneath a pinafore. Because the #5 foot allowed/guided me to stitch amazingly close to the folded edge, I was able to successfully and quickly create a "stitch and turn, twice" micro hem, a technique I have read about but never been able to do easily. It will be a pleasure to continue to learn my way with the new machine, which has so many capabilities beyond those of my stalwart everyday former machine.