Saturday, December 18, 2010

More info please

I love books. Especially technical books. Got some good sewing books and I've been reading them.
Why? Right now working on perfect pockets. Those holding bags on pants and jackets. Gotta be smooth
and clean and functional. So I read those books. And I've been doing some samples to test what I've read.
Because somewhere down the road, I'm gonna design and sew up a suit. And it has to be right.
Wrong suits don't do anyone any good. So everything has to be right.
That's why I'm reading about pockets right now. Good pockets. Perfect pockets.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

New block on my new machine

I decided to put a pants block together so I can have a stable pattern that I know will fit everytime.
Did it from scratch using my measurements and drafting them to a muslin. Darn if it looks like a
good fit. I think I will put a pair together with some less expensive fabric and see what they look like.
And I got to use my new to me Singer 201. That is one nice machine, period. Just a real joy to use.
Looking forward to sewing some projects on it this winter. I see flannel stuff in my future.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Confident fitting eh?

Just bought Nancy Z's book " Confidence in fitting patterns". It features her pivot technique for making adjustments in patterns. Haven't tried it yet but it does make sense. I still want to get away from relying on manufactured patterns and have the ability to draft and design my own blocks or patterns.

I think the answer is to use a little of all ideas to come up with something you want to make. For a man that has some weight to him expects to have a good selection of patterns to choose from, he will be on the hunt for a long time. I prefer to have more control over my hobby.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A little off track

Well, got side tracked a little. Had to do some repair work on my winter stuff and other things happened so I haven't had time to work on my jacket. Hopefully this week. I need to get some more muslin material so I can make the blocks I need.

On a positive note, I've increased my library a bit and made arrangements to buy a Singer 201. They are a workhorse and although I love my little 99, it doesn't do heavy duty. This one will. The gal I got it from gave me a very good deal and it is much appreciated. The hunt for a Necchi BU will go on the back burner for now.
That's okay because it is more of a whim than a need. Hope to report jacket progress this week.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Practice makes better

Well, still working on the jacket. Dialing in the muslin for it. Looking forward to working with the liner as it is something that I haven't tackled yet.
Also, I've been practicing with the 1/8th hemmer foot on my 99. That can be tricky to keep it on track.

I now have a monogrammer and a buttonholer for the 503. Need a plate for the monogrammer to work and I will make one since none seem to be found. Thanks to my good friend Mary and her husband, I now have a manual for the buttonholer. Although you can make a decent button hole with out it on the 503, it should make it easier and being able to do a keyhole button hole on the machine instead of by hand is a definite plus.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tough Decisions

I was wanting to work on a pair of pants but that little voice
keeps bugging me to make a sport jacket. I cut the pattern of
a jacket I have and I'm thinking of making a denim sport.
I'll start with a muslin and see how that goes.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tripping to the Fabric Store

Scored pretty big Saturday at JA's. Had some good sales so I grabbed some denim, linen and they had
muslin on sale for .99c a yard. I want to try using muslin for my interfacing so this was great.
My lighting for both my stations has been poor so I lucked out with their sale on lamps.
Picked up one of those flip HD recharge lamps normally listed for 89$ was down to 29$. SCORE.

Besides grabbing some needles and thread, I picked up a belt for a machine I am fixing for my
ex DIL. I gave her a Diplomat Deluxe some years ago. This is a finned 50's looking Japanese
machine that is truly heavy duty. All metal and will sew through anything. I will post some pics of it
before I send it back to her. It really is a beauty.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Monogram attachment

Well, I got a monogrammer for the 503 from Goodwill's auction site. Too bad the bottom plate is missing so
I can't sew with it until I find one. If I have to, I will make one out of plastic but I'd rather have the one it's
suppose to have.

Yesterday, I sewed on a Harley eagle patch on the back of my leather jacket. The 503 didn't blink. Sewed
it smooth as could be. Gotta love it.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

That JA coupon

Well Jo-Ann sent out their 50% off coupon. I got mine by email.
Think I'll take advantage and grab some fabric for some up
coming projects. Going to try the muslin as interfacing for
what ever I decide to make.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Runs good

Well I used the 503 to do some topstitching and it worked great. I love this machine.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The 503A is home

It's a great day. My Singer 503A arrived via FedEx this afternoon. Wasn't expecting it until next week.
It is so nice. Paint is like new. No nicks or wear marks. Rolls smooth as glass and I can't believe I got it.

I'm finishing up my shirt. Need to get some buttons for it. I'm thinking black glass.
Not sure what I'm going to break in the 503 with. Maybe a pair of pants.
I'll post some pictures soon.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

An addition to the family

Sometimes you do things you probably shouldn't do. Say things you shouldn't say, go places you shouldn't go.
Should I have gone to Ebay? Man that place can get you in trouble. But most of my life I've been a trouble boy,
so, I went.
Seems I found a nice 503 Singer that was calling me. So I started to bid. And bid. And bid. Somebody else
had heard it call also. But baby, I was calling back. Probably didn't need another machine.
But those slants are soooo cool. And if you let them they will sew like no tomorrow. So, sew,,,,
I got it.
Hey, I'm happy.
Now the wait for it's arrival. tic tock

Monday, September 6, 2010

Holiday progress

Well I got my placards on and they're looking okay. Everything is draping nice so far. Hope to have the
collar on tonight. Who knows, this thing may be done this week. But I ain't a rushin nuttin.

ps. I didn't melt the mystery fabric when pressing so that is always good.

Friday, September 3, 2010

It's a start

Well, I put a form together. Not as elaborate as I envisioned but it's workable for the moment. The plaster thing
outside or inside or whatever will have to wait till form #2. This one I just stuffed like a sausage and it's holding
form good enough to use. Funny how those curves you don't want to think about kind of stick out on one of
these things. I know it's all necessary but a little depressing to look at. Tried on several shirts that fit me and it
wore them well. So now, no excuse. Get busy Carl. Do something for goodness sake. Those machines are
crying "use me, use me". So now I've given myself enough thread to hang myself,,, here we go gang.

ps. if nothing else, I'm having a good laugh with this. After I got the darn thing stuffed, I laughed so hard I almost
wet myself. I gotta watch that.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Waiting for the weekend

Started cutting my fabric. Hoping to get a start on my shirt this weekend. I really want to have the form ready
before I start on the bodice. I've been having a tough time getting someone to help me with that darn form.
Once I get the initial wrap done, I can do the rest.
My plan;
Go with the original idea of wrapping with duct tape. But then I'm going to use some of my dental plaster and
reinforce the inside so there is no give. I'll wire a pvc tube inside so the base can slip into it. Then I'll fill it with
expanding foam to keep it light. A tight fitted T-shirt over it will give me a good pin-able surface.
All the great techniques posted at PR gave me the idea for my final way of trying this. That is a great site.
Hope I have a good report on this for the weekend.

Here's the link for the thread on forms at PR.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Finally, I hope.

Okay, good news. Finished up part 4 of my download pattern and I think I have all the parts for my shirt.
Had to wait for the last puzzle to get my collar and front band. The stocky boy parts are just that, still in parts.
So anyone who thought I was gonna make their stocky boy a shirt. Sorry but fagedabodit. He ain't gettin no
shirt. This one is about the stocky old man.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The puzzle patterns

Now right out of the gate I want to say I'm not gripping, cause I kind of knew what I was getting into.
Bought a online pattern. Thought maybe fifty pages, put em together, cut out what I need and get to sewing.
Well,,,,, my four part pattern, pt 1 and 2, 41 pages each. Part 3 and 4 thirty something each.
Oh man,, got through one. Most everything lines up, good. Part two,,, some are not lining up like they should,,
oh man oh man. Part three is a little out of whack too. I'm getting worried about number 4.
I got this because it was a great looking big mans ( and stout boy ) shirt. Might be easier to go on a diet. For a
long time. Okay, I'm going to get this thing together but I think I'm liking my project and trace idea a whole lot
better. The computer generated patterns are put together like this also. Man oh man, project me a pattern
please cause I'm a little burnt on puzzles.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

more ideas

Well, along with the projector idea, I've decided
 that having a form to help fit what I'm making
would be an excellent addition to my stuff.
 Sew many projects, so little time.
BTW, anyone have a Singer 500 or 401 they don't
want anymore? Okay, just thought I'd ask lol.
The weather has cooled a bit, so I hope to
get more things done. That heat just puts
the brakes on life sometime.

ps. I need a giant table to lay out things.
The dining room table comes up just a
little short sometimes.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The weekend already

Well, I found a spot for my new sm and now it's time to get back to finishing my projector pattern.
Down side of the projector, you have to use it in a relatively dark room. So early morning or evening
is the time to wall trace.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Singer 99 just found a new home

Well, I got a deal on a Singer 99 with cabinet off of CL and I went and picked it up tonight.
Little oil and it runs great. I know I didn't really need one but I've been wanting a 99 for a while
and this one was calling me.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Pattern project cont.

Well, last night I set up the projector, got the image close and then started to measure. It took a few times but
eventually I got it dialed in. I started by measuring the neck to shoulder length. I finally got it and then I checked
the side seam, it was right on the money, next, the center line and it too was right where it should be.

Next I took my pattern paper ( I used packing paper from when you get packages sent to you with all that
light brown paper tucked in there ) and ironed it smooth. I then taped it to the wall where the image was
and got it nice and tight. I then took my straight edge and sharpie and started tracing. It worked like a charm.
I got the one front done but it was so hot last night, I had to stop. Hope to get more done this evening.

I think this crazy idea is going to work.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

My idea for pattern making

I talked about this on a couple of forums. Since I have lost my youthful shape, buying clothes can be a real
challenge. So I decided to dig out my old sewing skills learned from dear gramma and make some clothes
for myself. Well, naturally the pattern industry decided that being a big guy is two strikes against me.
So now what?
Well, as usual I came up with a crazy idea. I have a small portable projector that you can project pictures on
the wall. Nice for murals. I thought what if you had a pattern that wasn't your size but if you had a way to
enlarge it, it may work for you. Then I found a computer program that lets you put your measurements in and
it adjusts and creates a pattern for you. The downside is that it is expensive and you have to print out the
pattern and glue it together like the patterns you can buy and download online. The good thing is the program
has a demo you can get for free ( you can not print or save with it ) and it gives you a picture of the completed
pattern on the screen. So what I am trying at the moment is to save the picture and copy the measurements
for all the lines, print the picture and then project it on the wall. Adjust the projector so the projected image
matches the dimensions you need and then trace onto a paper.

I plan on working on this during the week, hopefully I can get a muslin made for a shirt and see if it fits.
I will post my progress.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Here's a first, Carl's blogging.

To be honest, I never really thought I would have a blog anywhere. What would I talk about?
What is to be said that already hasn't somewhere else? Then I thought, who cares? So I'm gonna
give it a shot and see what happens.