Thursday, October 22, 2015

Blue & Gold Jacket

The last week and a half have been spent working on a jacket. I've been collecting royal blue and gold metallic fabric for some time now, with a jacket in mind. It started with a gorgeous piece of Jacquard woven Japanese fabric in deep blue and gold. This turned out to be a problem fabric, as it shredded on the seam lines and was made of polyester so it wanted to shrink or melt when touched with an iron. I got a jacket pattern last time I went to the coast, called "Butterfly Jacket" by Ricki Bremer. I think I just bought it because I liked the fabric the sample was made out of. Also the raglan sleeves interested me, because every jacket I've tried on lately has been too tight on the upper arms. The sizes went up to 3x, so I got the pattern. It began with a muslin foundation to piece the patchwork onto, I cut up a bit of my fabric into 7" wide strips. It called for squares, but I cut mine anywhere from 4" to 9" long, to give more variety to the design. These were sewn into rows and then flip and sewn onto the muslin for stability and shaping. The pattern looked HUGE. It did not have several sizes, only a 16 and a 3XL "Goddess size," and I fell some where in between, maybe "Princess" size. So measuring at the hip, I decided to take out about 8", 2" each on the front panels and 4" on the back piece. It went together fairly easily, it even had a lining and one of my fabrics was a 4 yard piece, just enough. Well it did not fit well, frowny face, It was still too big, but the main problem was the raglan sleeves, just TOO much fabric "pooching" out all over.
So, I was unhappy with my efforts and the fit, just a waste of time and GOOD fabric. Several solutions are available, I can cut it apart and slim down the raglan sleeves, or get a different pattern and cut it from the excess of fabric in the jacket. I think the pieces are big enough to just cut out new pattern pieces. So I sit and wait as I make up my mind, but I hate to waste all that wonderful fabric.
This is one of the reasons I don't sew clothes for myself, I've made skirts and blouses before, and several quilted vests, which I had to tweak the pattern to fit. But clothes sewing is NOT my forte. I am so glad I did not cut up my hand dyed silk noil for this jacket. or do any embellishing or beading. The blue was good fabric but it still was a trial run before I cut up the silk.
On Friday I will link this post to Nina-Marie's "Off the Wall Friday" click on the link in the right hand column to see what other very talented artists are doing.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Purple Frogs Under the Bridge

Several more Row by Row strips are finished. The Freemont St. Bridge in Portland, Oregon, has paper pieced trees on either side, and lots of fusible bias. The wider pieces were just ironed with a hem. Everything was held in place by lots of pins until I could get it fused down and then stitched. The difficult part was to keep the uprights, vertical and not wavy. This pattern came from A Common Thread. The Purple Frog Quilt Shop in Jefferson, Oregon, could only make a quilt with guess what? Purple frogs! Everyone wanted this pattern, the shop is near Salem, and just off of I-5.
The water lily and dragonfly is from Ruby Street Quilts in Tumwater, Washington. It is a paper pieced hexagon pattern. I love this pattern, I used a white with metallic gold spots for the flowers and a silver metallic with black net print for the dragonfly wings. The photo does not due the beautiful fabrics justice. I ran out of the backing fabric and had to steal some from the back of the applique on another row. I pieced little tiny pieces together to get enough fabric to finish the dragonfly block. The yellow duckies are from Greenbaum's Quilted Forest in Salem, the big bellied ducks are from a primitive painting that Sylvia has, and the duck crossing sign is near by. The Alaska style fish are made with a fusible laser cut pattern. Unfortunately I could not buy the kit, so I had to make my own. The Salmon and Orca were not too difficult to cut out with sharp pointed scissors, but the tiny fin pieces on the halibut took a while, and I simplified it by drawing fewer cuts. It also came out 6" longer, so I must have mixed up the measurements on the attic windows setting. I'll just remove the last border, and I think it will be ok. These are still fun to do, but I want something more creative to occupy my time.

I am linking this to Nina-Marie's "Off the Wall Friday" click on the badge in the right hand column to see what other very talented textile artists are doing.