Adventure is what sewing is each time we begin a new-to-us pattern, or work with a new-to-us fabric. You plan and train for an expedition to the Antarctic, and this isn’t much different. An example . . .
Ad*ven”ture, n. [OE. aventure… fr. L. advenire, adventum, to arrive, which in the Romance languages took the sense of to happen, befall…”] 3. … bold undertaking, in which hazards are to be encountered, and the issue is staked upon unforeseen events…
The above dress came into being mentally when I found a pattern and remembered a fabric in my collection. I’d mentally tagged this fabric for an office/church outfit, maybe with a loose jacket.
The fabric itself is buttery soft, doesn’t wrinkle, has stretch across the grain (the way stretch jeans have stretch), and a forgotten designer’s name. Not a bad pedigree, and I wanted to be true to that heritage. Plus the overall colour is black, with vertical lines = slimming. Can’t get much better!
OK. Pattern found. But there can be many a slip between a dream and reality, so I decided last summer to begin a test… And sewed up a different fabric. Much wearing during the remaining hot weather showed me the overall design worked, with a few tweaks.
Success. So I made another dress out of another fabric from my fabric stash. That dress also required a few tweaks, and is much-worn this summer.
Cut it out and began sewing. All systems working. Then an urgent mend came along. Then another… then something else… And the dress sat. July went, and most of August.
Last week I decided I really needed to finish it, and asked myself why wasn’t I? The pattern wasn’t difficult… the fabric was behaving itself, and so was the machine… It’s the right pattern, ’cause I tried out others whilst deciding (here and here).
Trying to see black stitches on black cloth, it dawned on me: Black thread on black fabric is hard to see. And that was the hang-up.
The dress got under way again, until time to bind the neck and arms – the finish. How to handle the problem in the trickiest spot?
I held up various ways to finish, including white piping, and contrasting binding. And wasn’t happy. No detail besides all those white lines!
I finally decided to stick with the black & white fabric colours, and use white rayon seam binding with black thread. I know the pattern calls for a large front and back facing to be used, but 2 layers of any fabric is too hot in extreme heat & humidity.
Call it a short-cut, or total disregard for the designer nature of the fabric (and pattern, a DKNY!), but I remain adamant: I must be comfortable or it won’t get worn.
And that’s the purpose of the adventure, isn’t it?