Saturday, November 21, 2009

4th generation...

My grandmother, born in 1902, sewed on a treadle machine, clothing her 8 children, and hand-basted every garment first, to perfect the fit.
My mother sewed on a Singer (that I broke when I screwed up the timing) and made her daughters doll clothes, even for my cabbage patch. She taught me how to sew when I was about 13.
You know my story...
And now, I'm teaching my daughter the ropes. She's great at working the pedal, and stopping to remove each pin as she sews. She's starting to get the hang of keep the edge of the fabric on the seam allowance line, and does a mean "runway" walk!

This week we worked a little each night on her nightgown, and today we finished it. I did all the gathering of the sleeves and the hem, but she ran the machine for the rest of it. It's our own version of Butterick 4647, and the fit is good (with room to grow). If the print (Strawberry Shortcake) wasn't so big, I'd make a matching one for her doll for Christmas.
I got creative with the back closure, as thread loops aren't very easy for a little fingers to handle. Instead, I used a short piece of beading elastic, knotted it into a loop, tucked the ends into the neck seam allowance, and stitched it in by hand.
Today, as we were finishing it, we had this conversation...
Her: "Momma? How far away is New York?"
Me: "Well, just an hour if you take an airplane."
Her: "Really??? That's not long at all!"
Me: "Yes, well... airplane tickets are expensive, though."
Her: "One day when I'm old like you, and have lots of money, I can go to New York and buy you some fabric, okay?"
Out of the mouths of babes!!!

*****************************************
When I finished this sweater vest, I emailed a "thank you" to Sandra Betzina (via her website) since I really enjoyed making it so much. A week later I got an email asking permission to post my photo and today it showed up at the "Garment Gallery"! Here's the link, it's part of Sandra Betzina's Power Sewing website. Kinda cool. Took her class at the Expo and she is so funny. I would love to really learn more from her first hand...
*****************************************Now that the nightgown is finished, I can finally re-thread my machine with blue and get some serious work done on my wool jacket. I looked at Claire Schaeffer's "High Fashion Sewing Secrets" and decided to add interfacing to the top of the back pieces. Burda showed strips of interfacing just around the back neck and armscyes, but after reading the book, I understand the purpose of the back interfacing, so went in that direction. I think I'll take an interfacing class next year at the expo, as there are so many different ones and so many ways to apply them.
I spent most of tonight hand-stitching the seam allowances down to get the seams to lay nice and flat. The wool is thick, even though it's not a coating, and I'm trying to reduce bulk. The shoulder and side seams were last to get sewn tonight, so I'll catch-stitch those this week. Here's another view of the front, all closed up. I bought some great snaps in NYC at Pacific Trims that are a perfect match, but I'm tempted to go the "normal" road and use buttons instead. Hmmm....
Hope you are all enjoying productive weekends and I'm looking forward to seeing what you're working on! I've made a new rule for myself: no sewing unless I've done my exercise for the day. So far, it's working. All week, I've only missed one work out this week, and I'm making exercise a higher priority than sewing. The soreness is also helping to keep me on track with lots of water and healthy food choices! No pain, no gain...
p.s. Salinda: Your fabric is going in the mail on Monday!!! Thanks again, so very much!

12 comments:

Salinda said...

love the nightgown! my BG hasn't tackled garments yet, but she makes a fabulous pillow case!

Sewfast said...

Oh Kristine! Your daughter is so sweet and looks so proud of her new nightgown...another one converted!!! :)

Gail said...

That jacket is so well made. You've done the right thing teaching your daughter young. I left it too late with my eldest - she just has not interest (other than receiving hand made dresses).

Sue said...

The little nightie is just about as adorable as your little girl! Tell her well done from other sewists!

Michelle said...

Your daughter's nightgown is adorable! And your jacket looks fantastic! Another blog-friend of mine just finished hers, and actually covered large snaps with fabric. Look here at her post and see what you think: http://okie2thfairy.blogspot.com/2009/11/finally-finished-bwof-8200-119-jacket.html

gwensews said...

It's super that your little girl wants to sew and learn from you. Mine never wanted to sew. At all. Period. Congratulations on getting your vest on Sandra's website. And good luck with your jacket.

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Its wonderful that you are spending quality time with your daughter sewing and the nightgown is very cute!

The jacket is also looking good...but I'm thinking you should use those snaps. It will add just a touch of funkiness to the jacket!

Julia said...

My grandmother taught me. My mom stopped sewing when I started. I taught my girls to sew. They don't much, but they know how. My oldest grand (9yrs. old) is learning!!

Your daughter's gown is wonderful!
So is your vest!!!

amber said...

That is so great that you're teaching your daughter to sew now. I really wish I would have learned as a kid, but c'est la vie. The nightgown looks great and she looks so happy wearing it. :)

Marji said...

It's wonderful that you're getting your daughter started.
And the jacket is looking fantastic. Did you happen to pick up Kenneth Kings video on making a jacket when you went to the sit and sew?

Summerset said...

Good for you and her! You're giving her such an important skill!

Anonymous said...

I think you should make the nightgown for your daughter's doll. I think she would be absolutely thrilled to have a matching nightgown for her doll and it wouldn't matter at all to her that the print is too large.

Lois K