Camp Clothes, Part 2
BWOF 04/07, #140
Before you get to see the latest pair of trousers and their story, I've got another Q/A for you. Suzy wanted to know,
"Which comes first - the idea for the garment, or the thought that you'd like to enter a contest?"
Good question. Most of the time the idea comes first, with the intention that it will be entered into contests. I always have many general ideas floating about my head at any one given time; right now, I've got 3 major gown ideas and one child's ensemble processing. As the garment's details pop into my head, I write them in my journal. Most ensembles take 4 to 6 months of percolating before I even start art drafting or sewing. Sometimes, I have to wait until I find "the right fabric" or "the right pattern" before I start something. American Beauty happened because I stumbled across some white nylon fabric flocked with red roses on eBay. The whole ensemble took shape after that.
Once in a while, I'll run across a challenge type competition that specifies what type of garment or particular fabric, technique or colors must be used; I then design the piece around those things. Waiting for Spring is a good example; it was part of a vest challenge. Vests aren't usually at the top of my list of things to make, but I liked the challenge and made one.
Now for the trousers. Here's BWOF, 04/07, #140.
They're not quite finished in the pictures above, my daughter had to leave for a daytrip with her grandparents so, I had her try them on for the elastic waist thing (another one of those!) and snapped the pictures. They are cute and different, and actually made for some interesting sewing. Let me explain.
These were a bit more tricky than usual. First, no where in the instructions do they tell you to sew the inside leg seam. These are the sort of instructions where there is a similar version of the garment (in this case, full length trousers, #134 or so) and you follow the instructions for those. I couldn't find it in either instruction set, but obviously, you're going to sew it along the way somewhere!
Next, the directions for the fly zipper/facing combo were difficult to visualize for me. I like to read my instructions ahead of time and figure out how it all works. This one I had to acutally pin out, fold and pretend like I was sewing it to get it straight what I needed to do. I've installed many fly zippers in my time, but I think this one wasn't straight forward due to the fact there was a yoke and facing, not just a smooth front and waist band.
Here's what I ended up doing:
I sewed the waist facing on first, as per the instructions.
This is the right front of the garment - the seam allowance is turned back, the zipper is layered under that, and then the underlap is underneath the zipper and all the way to the top of the waist edge (keep that in mind you'll see it again later). It is easiest to baste the zipper in place, baste the underlap in place and then do one line of machine stitching down the folded edge of the fabric. Note the flowered fabric at the top of the photo - this is the waist facing, which will be folded down to the inside later. I probably shouldn't have cut off the zipper there, but shortened it from the bottom. It doesn't affect the outcome - it just looks a bit weird to me.
Now for the left front of the fly, there is a facing piece which is stitched to the seam allowances, rather than a cut on piece as is found on some patterns; you can see it below before everything is turned right side out:
The left zipper tape is then stitched to the left fly facing piece *only*, not to the garment:
You can now see the result when the waist facing is turned down in place, creating a zipper stop at the top on the inside. You can also see the underlap from the right front being held out of the way. After this step, I top stitched the fly as usual - you can see that in the full front pictures above.
Another unusual thing is that the bottom portion of the waist snap is attached to the right fly underlap. This is why I told to you to keep this piece in mind. This is usually attached to part of the waist band or there's some sort of extension, but not in this pair.
If you're thinking of making this pair - take your time and figure out exactly when you need to do before you start sewing. They'll be cute, but they are time consuming due to all the top stitching and fly construction.
For the rest of the day, I'm going to start work on BWOF 08/07, #101, the bubble dress. This will be part of my school wardrobe. Tomorrow, I'll introduce my new large project.
Parting Shot: Today it's sunny! The black-eyed susans definitely say "sunshine" to me.