Sunday, June 04, 2006

One Hit Wonder

One of the most fascinating aspects of sewing to me is taking a pattern and remaking it numerous times and getting a different looking garment each time by changing the pattern with embellishments, different fabrics and pattern alterations. I love that about sewing! I can make the same garment five or six times at least before I get tired of it. Remaking it until I have exhausted all of the possibilities that I see for it in my mind. Each version different and totally unrecognizable to a non-sewing individual.

So I thought the reason that I had not remade Butterick 6199 - the black/creme circle print pleated skirt dress - was because the dress pattern is so distinctive. It seemed to me that no matter what fabric I used or embellishment added the dress' details are so distinguishable that anyone would recognize that I had made two or more of them.

Well that was not the reason at all! The reason it was a "One Hit Wonder" is that the pleating on the skirt of this dress is a pain in the butt to make! Not a little pain but a great big hemorrhoid. Not often do I want to chuck a project in the middle ~ especially when it has the potential to be an extraordinary garment ~ but several times during the pressing of the pleats, I almost cried uncle. Maybe it was the poor markings on the pattern piece, or the limited amount of instruction on the pattern sheet (which I actually consulted!) or maybe it was even operator error but whatever it was, it made pleating the skirt bottom a horror!

The only reason I kept going is because of the dress' potential. The bodice was hanging up with some amazing buttons pinned to it and it was gorgeous. The touch of black rattail piping and the buttons that continue the circles of the fabric were taunting me to see this project through to the end. And I succumbed to the taunting of the work I had already completed.

However, I will bury this pattern back into the darkness of my pattern boxes and this time I will mark the pattern's folder with a notation, "to never make this pattern again!" There are easier versions of this pattern that I can make to achieve the same effect. I know because they currently reside in my pattern stash! *smile*

So what would you do in this situation? Do you dump the pattern or do you press on to the finish line? Opinions are definitely welcomed!!!!


  1. You are a better woman than me. It would probably end up being a UFO.

  2. I'd toss that pattern out so fast it would make your head spin!

  3. Dump it, definately! If I have a "hemorrhoid" project (I love that - I'm going to remember that for future PITA) I usually get rid of the pattern as soon as my garment is done.

  4. I always make my own pleats with my own measurements and my own decisions about depth and placement. Never met a person with my waist/hip ratio and never a pattern with a remote possibility of working on me. I might as well start from scratch and so I learned the math for determining and drafting pleat patterns. Consequently it's not something I do very often!!! But I love your work and maybe you'll be driven (like me) to getting the pleat drafting down. It was the only solution I ever could find.


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