Saturday, December 6, 2014

Saturday snippets

Progress at last on my winter 6PAC: have been turning the dashiki borders, now overdyed with blue, into hemline trim for a new slip-dress. A shaped piece of tagboard is the basic pattern which gets used whenever a curved decorative hemline treatment is needed.  Tiny "pintuck darts" every five inches, centered on the brown/black striped sections, will shape the straight bands into a curve that will fit the salvaged dress.
Took my black chambray dress, finished in 2010, and am re-using it as a layering piece for extra winter warmth. Four years of wear in fairly close rotation; the edges are the most worn parts, in places the binding is threadbare, but the neckline will be re-cut lower and slightly larger, the sleeves will be cut off and loose armholes take their place. The sleeve fabric will provide enough fabric for bias to bind those edges. The hemline bias, also too worn to salvage, will be cut off and the stripey new hemline bands stitched to the bottom of the dress and hemmed...should be able to get another year or two of use from it, before it will be worn to a raveling and the hemline band will be removed and added to another garment.

Using the fabric (and my sewing efforts) this intensively makes me feel respectful and grateful rather than pitiful... A lot of effort went into making the fabric in the first place, before it ever reached my hands: workers tended the cotton, and harvested it, factory workers wove and dyed it, longhaul truckers, dockworkers and longshoremen transported it back and forth, store clerks handled it... there are a host of hands that brought it to me in addition to the fact that it is a gift of the natural world that helps keep me warm, and the work that allowed me to purchase it, and the effort and time to sew it to suit my life.

"Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without"

Am about 75% done with Solitary Foxen, but will need to put knitting aside temporarily whilst using my handwork time to stitch up some more custom kitty-face needlebooks... have a few custom orders for holiday gifting... should make a note to self  to make up some needlebooks maybe during the summer, when small handwork instead of knitting is welcome.

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