Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Musings at the end of a good sewing weekend...

I finally spent a good weekend sewing.  I didn't sew what I'd originally planned to sew but I made three pieces anyway.  Actually I finished two pieces that were hanging around the sewing cave and made a quick and easy dress. This sewing gave me some new things to wear to work that are weather appropriate.


I'm glad that I've added some more things to my wardrobe but I'm still just banging out simple pieces to be worn right away ~ well all except my TNT dress. 

The black 'n white print is a cotton voile tunic/dress to be worn with leggings in the middle of the three pack.

On the end the blue & white seersucker dress is Simplicity 1621 - a hi-lo hemmed dress made for the unbelievably hot 90 degree weather we're currently experiencing.

None of this is challenging to sew. It's just wardrobe building so that I don't have to wear the same thing over and over again. However, I'm learning a few things about myself, which is helping with the direction that my sewing is going to take in the fall.

1. The dress/cardigan that I use to live in had become my uniform. Part of the reason I felt so lost was because I no longer have a uniform.  Yes, I made a boatload of variations of that combo, added jewelry and shoes to make each outfit individual, but it was a uniform just the same. So now I have to think about who I want to be.

2. This situation is interesting because sooner rather than later I will be retiring and would be having these challenges anyway. I guess I'm lucky because I will have the next 10-12 years to figure it all out.

3. I'm a rocker chick in disguise.  Seriously.  Don't laugh. All of the looks I'm really drawn to this fall have some sort of pleather, leather, suede and Doc Marten type boots connected to it. What the eff is that about? Cause I really like this look below and want to make the shirt...

photo credit:  Reuters

...look at the shirt not the young man in it. It's kinda funky right?! Over some slim pants or jeans...wearable even for an old chick like me.

www.chicos.com

4.  Also I'm a Chicos/JJill/Talbots kinda rocker chick. I mean I need to be age appropriate right? *LOL* Seriously though I really like the tunic, long blouse over slim pants look too. Maybe I'm schizophrenic...


www.chicos.com

5. Since I have the ability to work from home when the weather gets lousy (and if it gets as bad as it did last year that means a quite a few more days at home) for a change, I'm not so concerned about the whole standing on the corner in the cold thing. Especially since I now leave home almost an hour later (yeah I will be out in the daylight!) and return home at a decent time (no more rolling into the house at 9pm).

6. There won't be much TNT sewing going on around here. I've managed to lose another 10 lbs though I don't think you can tell it much in my last pics.  So none of my TNT patterns fit.  For every pattern I use, I will be starting from scratch. Let me tell you I'm lousy at fitting so some really ratched stuff may show up here as I work through things.  I need clothes not muslin after muslin to attain the perfect fit.  Hopefully it won't be too much ratchiness but you just never know. I perfected the fit on my TNT patterns outside the public eye. And since we no longer live in a warm and fuzzy online sewing community, there's a chance I may disappear for a minute as I work things out.

7. I have a sewing cave full of fabrics, trims, notions, etc. and I plan on using them. There are some amazing fabrics in my collection and they need to see the light of day. Look for some unusual combinations to be put together, cause I plan to play, since I have no rules. It's just learning to step outside the box I've played in for the last decade.  Learning to shed my uniform and be whoever I want to be. Gawd THIS should get interesting! *LOL*

Here are few other combinations I've recently put together...



Pictures of the garments I made last weekend will be up on the blog next week. My photographer will be here this weekend and we'll do pictures then. Can I also say something about that?  I take pictures around the complex I live in. Lately we've started walking a little further past my front door because it allows the kiddies to run along behind us.  So if some different locations show up, realize it's only a few minutes walk from my front door yet still in the complex I live in.

...as always more later!

60 comments:

  1. This is the first time I've commented on your blog, though I have been a serious (never miss a post!) reader for YEARS. I have been so inspired by your sewing and the journeys you've taken via your sewing machine. I just thoroughly enjoy each post.

    The reason I had to comment today: you said that we no longer live in a warm and fuzzy sewing community. I'm so sorry! I have no idea of the story behind that statement, but I wanted you to know that people who are warm and fuzzy do still read your blog.

    I am probably your polar opposite, but your blog has been so informative, and so encouraging to me. If you take a break, know that I will miss reading your posts......and I'll be hoping for some posts soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Naptime Seamstress - you don't have to worry I'm not going to stop blogging and I'm sorry if that's the impression I gave. It's just that I use to blog with so much more frequency and if the gaps between posts widen I don't want anyone to worry. Thanks for following along on all my sewing adventures over the years, it's appreciated!

      Delete
  2. I am very much like the above responder; read your blog with interest and admiration, both for your sewing as well as your "life" thoughts.
    I love your photos of transitional wardrobe idea pieces as well as your musings on figuring out those changes. You beautifully put into words what many of us are thinking. ....and did I mention that your sewing is impeccable?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. guest1 - I would hardly call my sewing impeccable but thank you for that. There are so many other sewists out there that sew really well with amazing techniques...me I'm just putting fabric through the machine and working it out!

      Delete
  3. Thank you so much for sharing all this. I have read plenty of 'wardrobe architect' posts, but you are touching very much on the heart of the matter: Who am I now?
    (I don't know, myself)
    I know I don't want to read another "Ten things you need to be wearing right now" advertorial. I want to know what another real grown up person is thinking, which is you. And if that includes some rockin' fringe jackets, that's cool, too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. SJ Kurtz - hey I've written those "Ten things I want for "insert the season" posts but that really isn't where I am right now...and regardless I can only be me. Me is struggling with clothing options. Me is trying to determine what I want to be when I grow up! So that's what you're getting now! All I do know is that I want to sew and enjoy it as much as I use to!

      Delete
  4. I love your blog as you dress classy but stylish and its all very wearable. I feel like ppl are thinking negatively like maybe i post too many pictures of my dog but I do it anyway!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Renata - your blog, your pictures right! Thanks for the compliments!

      Delete
  5. It can be tough for us bloggers. We put ourselves out there, warts and all, every time we post. I much prefer your honest assessments and those of other bloggers who speak truthfully about their efforts. We learn so much more from each other that way. Blog away, Carolyn, with your "ratched" attempts. ( I doubt it.) It will be a fun informative journey to follow. I look forward to watching you find your new style as your life demands change. It happens to all of us. I also can't wait to see what has been hiding in that mega stash you have!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bunny - I could say so much to this comment because it's such a fantastic one! I will see how much ratchedness I share! *LOL* One thing I've learned is that my skin is a lot thinner than I thought so I'm a lot more wary. Though I guess not too wary since I'm still here blogging! *LOL*

      Delete
    2. I agree with Bunny. And, I wish I lived close enough to offer another set of hands with fitting. I would measure you and make a moulage, then make a bodice sloper from it, which can be easily lengthened to be a TNT dress pattern. Doing this (I learned it on craftsy) has changed my world dramatically. I can sew basic garments knowing they will fit. I can't stress enough how happy I am to be approaching it this way instead of sewing muslins and then melting down in frustration as I try to "read" wrinkles, etc.
      Also, I am really glad to hear you can work from home during bad weather. yay.

      Delete
    3. Carolyn, I completely sympathize! As my weight changed, losing my TNT patterns was really hard. I love how you are open to new ideas and new possibilities!

      Also, I noticed that I click through to your blog and it sometimes takes me to other pages after a moment, like myspace. This was happening to me, too, and I learned it was from the sitemeter widget. I removed that widget and all is now well.

      Delete
    4. Shams - thanks! I've removed the offending link. I was wondering why that happened to me sometimes too and was just to lazy to investigate. So thank you so much!

      Delete
    5. No problem! It took me awhile to figure out the cause. But, as you had helped me set up sitemeter back when we took our road trip several years back, I'm not surprised you were seeing it, too. You might want to set up Google Analytics, which is more reliable and less buggy than sitemeter has been.

      Delete
  6. I can't wait to see what you'll be sewing next. I've been a blog stalker for years and you have help me grow as a sewer. You are a blessing! Keep sewing & keep posting! I love your information & your thoughts.
    Bonnie @ sewplus.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Bonnie - it's definitely a new chapter in my life!

      Delete
  7. I think your fit adventures will be just as informative and as much of a learning process for us as for you. We've all grown with your TNTs. Now maybe its time for all of us to try to be better at the fit process Don't hide from us completely now, Carolyn. Love watching you expand your horizons.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Catherine p - thank you. However, I will see. Just a little more gunshy than I use to be. Although you would think that this process would be informative for everyone, I know that for some it would just be ammunition to further pick at and criticize.

      Delete
  8. I've enjoyed your blog for some time & look forward to your new adventures in fitting . I followed you after you had perfected your TNTs . I'm sorry you haven't always received warm & fuzzy comments , you have many more supporters than detractors 😍

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary Ellen - thanks, it's not comments so much just a new buzz in the sewing blogosphere.

      Delete
  9. Oh, let's just ignore those that think us hobby sewers need to achieve 110% perfection on every garment we blog.

    They are silly.

    I, like you, will not make half a dozen muslins to "perfect" fit. It's okay. A dragline won't kill me. Especially if the overall style and the FABRIC bring me joy! Sew for joy!!!!! And to have a fun, unique wardrobe!

    I can't wait to see your new clothes rolling off the blog. And I will be glued to my bed or couch on September 23rd to see my boyfriends Hakim and Jamal!!!! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Girl - my daughter calls me a stalker cause I'm all about "The Empire" and especially Hakim. That young man's story fascinates me, it's the true a star is born kinda tale. My family's having an Empire party that evening at my daughter's and I can't wait! Watch it once and then rewatch the DVR'd version so we can all talk about what we missed!

      Delete
  10. Oh Carolyn, I loved this post and you letting us in on your mind set. I live through this process too but would never write about it it 'cause who would care ? LOL.. You make it sound so much fun to be going through a reinvention of yourself !!. Your work life sounds less stressful and that must be so wonderful for you. I'm really looking forward to what you create for this new version of you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diana - I think I wrote this post more for myself and was quite surprised this morning at the number of responses. This post will be a touchstone in a couple of months and years when I've finally gotten things worked out but I will probably write about it again since its so much a part of my reality right now!

      Delete
  11. I can't wait to see what you come up with in your new wardrobe. Even though I was inspired by all of your posts, my lifestyle is more casual (I am the Leisure Director for my church) so I am looking forward to your new inspirations. I, too, like the classic styles with a little zing thrown in. And I am anxiously awaiting Empire's return!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have no idea what I'm doing either so this is a little like the blind leading the blind here! Two weeks until Empire and I can't wait!

      Delete
  12. It sounds as if you have a less stressful, less demanding job now. I'm glad for you and for your readers too because we will get to see you make some interesting things for your new life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do have a job that is a lot less stressful in a totally different industry that is just as engaging but not as time consuming. I don't work as many hours, the people are really nice to work for and I work 8 hours and come home. Yeah and the wardrobe is definitely changing because today I wore jeans, a wife beater and a lace duster.

      Delete
  13. Like several people above, I have been a stalker for YEARS, but I think this is my first comment. I have always appreciated the honest evaluations of the patterns you chose and I LOVED the posts working with your TNT's (I have so much trouble thinking outside the box). I, too, look forward to seeing your fitting journey, as I learn so much through watching others.

    And I liked your examples of the things you are drawn to, but I prefer to think of it as eclectic not schizophrenic, lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. suezeyque - I like the word eclectic. I'm going to use it from now on!

      Delete
  14. I have worn a "uniform" for years!!! I came up in the business world at a time when women had to get tougher skins and stand up for their rights. At that time we even wore the navy suits with blouses with necklines up to the chin! Fashion somewhat relaxed as the years went on but was still a uniform and our CEO is still living in that era!

    I have relaxed my uniform over the years and can so identify with the boho chic, even "rocker" at times. I know I am schizophrenic when it comes to clothes and I am okay with that.

    As always I enjoy reading your blog and seeing you garments. Sew on!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Linda - I so identify with all you're saying. For some of my friends who've never had to wear "the Uniform" they don't understand why I'm struggling. I'm slowly but surely breaking free so here I am now wondering who am I. The Uniform has been such a part of my life...for so long!

      Delete
  15. I've really been enjoying watching your style evolve since you started your new job.

    I think that Butterick is OOP now, but I swear that I've seen it turn up in at least three people's fall sewing plans this year. Granted--I certainly understand why it's still popular, given that the neckline is still quite current and those princess seams will make everything easier to fit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michelle - that Butterick pattern has really got my creative vibe thumping! I'm probably going to work it to death like I did McCalls 6559! But that's how I came up with my last set of TNTs, so I guess instinctively I'm already building a new set!

      Delete
  16. It is so interesting to read about how your needs, values and style is changing. I am enjoying watching the story develop. And I agree the guy's shirt is super cool.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a work in progress isn't it?! Let's just hope it's not a train wreck! Hahahahaha!

      Delete
  17. Great post! It sounds like changing jobs for you has had a really big effect on your life -- in a good way. (Hello, telecommuting in nasty weather? Yes, please!)

    And oddly, it is enheartening to know that just because you had some TNTs, does not mean you're a master fitter--it means that the rest of us can gradually fit a basic pattern well enough to be able to sew from it without alterations...and not in one fell swoop of a dozen muslins.

    Anyway, looking forward to your wardrobe progress! I love me a good transformation. *grabs popcorn*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh girl please...to get those tnt patterns I asked loads of questions on sewing boards. Read everything other sewists suggested and tucked, cut and sewed my way there and probably wore some questionable stuff while doing it.

      So can I tell you what a wrinkle means - ummmm no? Half the time I don't understand why people are so crazed about them? I mean if you move or sit in a garment it's going to wrinkle...no one lives their lives standing straight up and still.

      Also fit changes...I've lived long enough that I've gone through a few different fitting periods - loose and baggy, close-fitting, so dayum close I can see stuff I don't wanna see! So to me some fit is subjective but then I'm a journey sewist not a couture level sewist and I know this!

      Delete
  18. I have that Vogue pattern and I've never made it. I still really like it-very classic. I look forward to seeing your vision of it. Maybe it will get me motivated to finally make it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Karen - I have a bunch of Tamotsu patterns and love them! I actually want to make the shirt dress from this pattern. I think it will work in a variety of fabrics and that it can be dressed up or down. It's another one of those patterns that I just want to play with and see what happens.

      Delete
  19. I understand about sewing 'ratchetness' and making muslins. Muslins made with old sheets and muslin fabric get me sidetracked. I prefer making 'wearable' muslins. The up side to that is if it works out, you've got a new garment that fits. The down side is you may end up with a few wadders along the way. I've been that way with slacks. Even cut up my favorite pair to copy them :(. Must have had at least 7 to 8 wadders, but yesterday, I finally hit a home run, almost by accident--used a pattern that I had previously ignored. Have a few quirks to work out (mainly waistband elastic). Wadders teach, but success in sewing is so rewarding.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know my position of wearable muslins is not the favored position but I sew for me. After blogging for so many years and sometimes believing the hype, I can honestly say that I just sew now. I try to do the best I can. I love fabric and making things but I'm no expert. I'm not trying to be. I'm just trying to share my love of sewing.

      Delete
  20. You are doing great work regardless of the circumstances that have changed. I understand how you feel, I had a similar problem when I stopped working. I am about to do a course for pattern making to give me more scope since my figure is all over the place size wise. I always love visiting your blog and reading your thoughts, keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Theresa for your kind words and good luck with the pattern making course.

      Delete
  21. It sounds like your new job will be much better for your mental health! May I suggest Linda Maynard's fitting class on Craftsy? You don't have to use the dress that comes with the class.She helped me finally figure out some fitting issues I had not been able to figure out, even with a couple of fitting clinics with Kenneth King. She's very good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nancy - I've finally admitted to myself that I don't really like the Craftsy classes. It's such a great resource and so many sewists are upping their game by watching them. They are just not for me which is interesting because I loved Sandra Betzina's videos.

      Delete
  22. I enjoy reading about your style change as I've been going through the same since I retired from the corporate world. I've been sewing tunics out of rayon challis to wear with leggings this fall (I live in Houston) but am drawn to all the fringe I see everywhere. I want to make the fringe jacket you picture from Chicos in a teal ultrasuede (facile weight) so I'll be anxious to see your rendition! Karen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Karen you should make it in the teal ultrasuede. I bet it will be amazing! This is one of those side effects though that no one ever shares with you!

      Delete
  23. I've been retired for four years and am still struggling to find my clothing look. I had years in very senior corporate positions, meaning smart tailored suits and heels. My weekend clothes were very casual befitting activities with families and there wasn't anything in between. I've been living in trousers and tops for both summer and winter

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Victoria - I so understand this! But even in my new casual space I love a dress or a skirt so I have to figure out how to make the two things work together!

      Delete
  24. You have me smiling from cheek to cheek regarding the career with more freedom to be you.

    Happy dance for being able to stay home when the weather gets crazy.

    I look forward to your next post showcasing your weekend sewing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks RatRace! Now I'm hoping we don't get rained out for photos since the weather is suppose to be rainy and wet for the weekend.

      Delete
  25. I can identify with you on a couple of levels. I too have lost weight, and am remaking my wardrobe. I made a couple skirts that have adjustable waist with a drawstring so that they will fit when I continue to lose weight. And I've made some pants that are relatively easy to take in. Unlike you, I need no work clothes because I wear scrubs at work all the time. But like you, I am trying to figure out what my style/look is.

    I look forward to continuing to follow your transition.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Pleeeeeeeease make some kind of fringed jacket!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. S - I want a fringed skirt more than a fringed jacket. Can you believe? So we'll see what emerges from the sewing cave!

      Delete
  27. Carolyn,

    I haven't visited your blog in a good while and I just wanted to say that you are looking beautiful! So happy and healthy!

    Donna Jeanne

    ReplyDelete
  28. Your sewing journey is my fav blog. I have learned to not be so afraid of changing a pattern up by stalking your beautiful clothing. I hope you feel the love.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hi Carolyn,
    Long time reader, first time commenter. Sorry that the reason you've got me commenting is your use of the word schizophrenic - which refers to a mental disorder characterised by hallucinations, delusions and paranoia. I think you may have mistaken it for dissociative identity disorder (formerly known as multiple personality disorder). As a psychology lecturer I am really hyper aware of how everyone uses and misuses terms like these and would really wish that their misuse wasn't perpetuated.
    Hope you have a great day,

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! It is so appreciated.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails