Many months back when I had the blessing of some JoAnn Fabric’s gift card cash, I purchased a couple new patterns and fabrics. The first project became my Vogue dress that I posted about here- Selfish Saturday Morning Sewing
The second birthday gift project has taken a little longer to reach the finish line.
When I purchased the materials for this second project the transition from the warm summer months to cooler Fall temperatures had me thinking about the winter clothes boxes that would soon need to be dug out of the attic for the bi-annual closet change-over. Living in a small house with minimal closet space means that out of season clothing must be packed away to make room for current season items. Within those winter boxes were the same long sleeved shirts that were showing their age after having been worn for several years. It seemed like the perfect time to add a new long sleeved shirt to my closet, not to mention the gift money burning a hole in my pocket,
and an exciting new McCall’s pattern to try out.
After doing some pattern measuring and comparison to my favorite well-worn shirts, I made some adjustments to the pattern with the biggest change being 5 inches taken out of the length of the shirt front and back.
Once the pattern tissue changes were made, the cutting and sewing went very quickly. This shirt is designed to be made from a knit fabric which eliminates a lot of the precision required in steps like setting in the sleeve.
However, with the shirt construction completed two roadblocks emerged. The first was remedied quickly. It seemed, after holding the constructed shirt in my hands, that removing 5 inches from my shirt length was a little over zealous. Without being hemmed the finished length would be acceptable, but my shirt needed a hem and I have no interest in returning to the crop-top fashion of 1990s. To resolve this problem, I added a band of fabric to the hem line and then finished the sleeves hems in the same manner.
The second obstacle to declaring this a finished garment was choosing buttons. Buttons become a focal point on a shirt and take it from frumpy to fabulous with a careful selection. My first thought was to use snaps. But with limited color choices and the uncertainty of having an on-line snap order be the color match I was looking for, the decision of using snaps(after two weeks of searching) was scrapped and the buttons shopping kicked into high gear.
Again my vision for this blouse included matching the button color to the fabric, and again, progress was brought to a halt. You know the saying, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” Yah, that was me. Over and over I stopped at my local JoAnn Fabrics, holding up my fabric swatch with a button hole slit, trying all the dark red/burgundy buttons. And, over and over I walked away unsatisfied by the visual effect of each choice. So, I expanded my color choices to black and then finally to metal buttons, settling on silver.
And so, it is finished. I have worn it once so far…it is comfortable to wear…has long sleeves…a color I like…has buttons…BUT…it just doesn’t look like my original vision. I can’t decide if my lukewarm attitude is a result of the finished creation being different from my vision or if I just have a hard time being excited about everyday, ordinary clothes. The finished shirt doesn’t have a WOW factor. Silly, I know. Maybe when it comes out of storage in the Fall I will say, “WOW! A new, comfortable shirt, sure glad I finished that project!”