* String piecing is not to be confused with strip piecing, which is what my Organized Chaos quilt was. String piecing uses strips of variable sizes, for a "stringy" look, while strip piecing uses carefully cut strips of uniform sizes, in prescribed patterns.
Some people get bitten by the quilting bug; I came down with a quilting virus, which lay dormant in my system for years, flaring up occasionally, but never overcoming my garment-sewing resistance. I had enough quilting projects to justify a tag, but I didn't call myself a quilter.
No more! Just as viruses awaken when resistance is low, so my quilting virus awoke as I lost motivation to sew other things. Since June 2020, I have been happily working at a job which requires me to wear boring clothes. What's the fun in spending my days-off sewing a silk dress or pair of jodpurs, only to deck myself in polyester matte jersey pants and a tee shirt for my work week? If I never get to wear the fun stuff, why sew it? But quilts are useful always, and make great gifts...
* Karen opens door. It creaks, and a bit of dust swirls around her feet. Karen peeks in. *
I haven't been here in a while. 2020 has been an interesting year for everyone. When the USA went under stay-at-home orders to try to stem the spread of Coronavirus, I spent a few months at home, sewing and relaxing and getting a much needed vacation. I blogged a bit, then, since I had new projects to share. But then I got a new job, and though I've been sewing, I haven't been blogging about it. There are two reasons for that.
My silence can be partly explained by my increasing sewing skill. There was a time when I could make a whole blog post about a hem, but now I barely take pictures, and I find the write-up boring. When I was a beginner, I found plenty to interest me in talking about the basics. Now I'm more intermediate, I do the basics without thinking, and so I need to rethink how I approach my project diaries. For instance, I've really enjoyed sewing new shirts for my brother and sister, but not blogging about them. I've really enjoyed blogging about the Basque project because it's new territory, and I've got a lot to learn and a lot to say.
Another reason for my silence here is that there's so much going on in my world, my mind, and my heart that I can't focus to write. I feel like I'm swept away in deep water, and I need to keep my nose above the swells. Later, when the waters shallow out, I can perhaps write about the parts of the experience that make sense to me. (Or maybe, as my sister reminds me when I'm months overdue in replying to her letters, I need to just write something and let go of the need to encapsulate my whole life experience in one place! The word "essay" means "attempt" or "trial", not "success" or "perfection", after all!)
BACK TO THE BASQUE
Anyway, here I am again, to update the Victorian Basque project. To recap: I have a cool antique bodice, circa 1880's; I copied the pattern by drafting and by draping. Assembly being complicated, I broke it down into six steps:
I highly recommend David Suchet's Being Poirot for insight into the making of the series.
So to recap: I have a cool antique bodice, circa 1880's; I copied the pattern by drafting and by draping. Now I'm ready to sew!
Since the project is complex, (I took over a hundred photos), I'll streamline the blogging of it by going topically and splitting it into a few posts. The order of construction is as follows (with much stopping, pinning to the dressform, drinking tea, and so on):
It took me about two days to develop a pattern for the bodice of this basque. I wanted it to have the style lines of the reference piece, but to fit my modern, uncorseted body. (Corsets are cool and all, but I'm working on my posture and don't want to wear something daily that replaces back muscles.) Today, I pattern sleeves.
Today, I'll be making a modern pattern from a vintage collection. McCall's 7056 is a vest pattern, which can be made with or without notched collar/lapels. I opt for the collared version (view B). I wish they had the pattern for the skirt in there, but they don't. That's what I call false advertising!
Quilting, dressmaking, and history plied with the needle...
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