Sunday, June 10, 2012

This + that = THIS

In December of last year, I made a scarf for my MIL for Christmas using tencel in deflected double weave using this pattern:Weaving Today - Deflected Doubleweave. I used a soft periwinkle and black. It was lovely and she really liked it. I neglected to take a photo :( HOWEVER: there was a ton of warp left on the beam and DS's GF's birthday was in January, so I decided to make a scarf for her as well. I wanted to do something different with the same warp so started experimenting. I finally settled on a novelty yarn, a variegated pastel rayon with little bits of ribbon twisted into the yarn at regular intervals. She didn't mind waiting and I feel lucky for that!

Here is the result:

Note that the pattern is different on both sides of the scarf. This is a characteristic of the deflected double weave structure. The ribbon in the novelty yarn gives it a slightly chenilled look.


60" long with fringe. The tencel warp does shrink, compressing all of the black and periwinkle for a very nice effect.

Warp is Tencel 8/2 in periwinkle and black from Kansas Yarn Barn. This was incredibly nice to work with.

Weft is a novelty yarn picked up on a close out. I think it's rayon from the burn test but the label in the cone says "stretch nylon", which I know is not right. If you enlarge the top photo, you can see a bit of the yarn draped over the scarf and a bit of it wound on the bobbin. I also have this in a burgundy, pink/blue and green colorway. This is the danger of buying on-line at closeouts... You find something you really like but don't know a thing about it!

Ends and Set: I can't tell you this because I started it in December and my notes are in the wind :) BUT, if you follow the pattern linked above, you can get the same results! I treated the 8/2 like 10/2 and had no problems at all.

Next up are towels in red and green to try out the new loom. Did I not mention that? In the excitement of wedding preparations, I had the chance to pick up a barely used Louet Spring for a more than reasonable price. You can see her in the wedding dress post, sitting on the wool rug just BEGGING to be warped! She is a countermarche loom, different from my Baby Wolf jack and this will be a good project to get familiar with her workings. Once those are done, I plan on figuring out what I want to do in the way of weaving yardage for a vest. She will weave 44" wide, so will produce yardage that is easier to adapt to garment sewing.

I haven't mentioned my new job either! I start as a project manager on July 13. This is a big move and I am really looking forward to the challenge.

So... New SIL, new loom, new job. It just keeps getting better!


And here is the Happy Couple!

I love this picture.  The wedding was held at a City Park facility and right next door is the Arboretum. This is the photo the bridesmaids and DD headed there pre-ceremony for photos. Isn't she adorable? Note her flats... She graduated on 5/6 and wore her red heels that were meant for the wedding. Verdict? They killed her feet and she was going to put comfort over everthing else on this important day. Hence the flat. They were quite adorable, too.

The bridesmaid holding her dress is Molly. Molly was amazing. She did Beth's hair (the blonde) and made all of the bouquets.  Beth is DD's best friend from 2nd grade. She met Molly in college. The ultra-thin brunette is the groom's sister, Alyse. They were all just delightful.

The bridesmaids and the bride...
The groomsmen and the groom (center... the somber one)
And the bridal party. Looks a bit off balance with 3 bridesmaids and 4 groomsmen, but that's what they wanted. They are an uncoventional group :)

The bridesmaids dresses are from Modcloth. They all loved them and will definately wear them again! I should also mention that all the photographs were done by 2 friends of the bride and groom. They are not proffessionals but they did an awesome job!

The ceremony was performed by a friend. He was absolutely fabulous.

Their first dance as husband and wife.

And thier formal picture.

It was a grand day! I'll share more as she feeds me more pictures.

The Wedding Dress Wrap Up

Beautiful Weather, Beautiful Bride, Handsome Groom and we are now +1 in our family.

Next post will be about the wedding day, today will focus on the dress.

I'd like to start out by saying what an honor it was that my dear DD trusted me to make this dress. That said, I was clearly in over my head more than once. Making a dress for an occassion this important should be a well thought out decision. Mine was made with my gut.

What made this so difficult?
  • My fitting skills are rusty
  • The Bride lives 300 miles away and fittings were spread too far apart
  • There are parts of the inspiration dress that I didn't even notice until it was too late to make changes
  • The lace was a NIGHTMARE to work with. The manufacturer couldn't possibly believe that this would be used in a garment that would be worked with or worn anywhere outside a clean room with no rough or sharp surfaces. ANYWHERE.
  • The Bride made some last minute decisions about foundation. This changed the already tenuous fit of the dress. Everything had been stitched up solid at that point and there was no going back but no changing her mind either.
I say all of this and think over and over again what I could have done to make a "better dress". With one sentence from my daughter, I gave all of that up. What could she say that put all of this into perspective for me? "Mom! I got the pictures and the best part is that everything was just as beautiful as I remember it!"

The lesson here is that perfect is not my perception of a stitch or a wrinkle, a shadow or a gap. Perfect is the sunny day, the love of two people pledging their love, the laughter, the friends, the smiles and the recorded proof in photographic form. "Everything was just a beautiful as I remember it."

I've recorded a lot of what went into this dress on previous posts. When I last left off, I had most of the pieces fabricated and I just needed to put it all together (Progress Pics). The next post was in March, when I had a day to refine the fit and added a bit to the sides seams. In late April, I drove to Pullman for another fitting. She'd lost weight and it was now too large, back home, take a bit off, and then to final assembly.

For review, I used New Look 6401 and David's Bridal T9612 as jumping off points. There were quite a few pattern modifications required to get there. Here are the notes I kept.

Required Alterations:

Skirt, lace and satin:

Front should be cut as one piece, use side seams from pattern, create darts where side seams appear on pattern. All front shaping should be done in this manner.

At low hip, insert Godet/gore.  Cut at least full width.

Back should be cut similar to pattern, but with piece cut straight down side after low hip to accommodate gore.  Piece 7 should also be cut straight at center back. Insert gore at center back just below zipper.

Train will need to be lengthened and shaped with center gore and both back pieces.  Lace train should extend approximately 2 inches beyond satin @ train.

Bodice, lace overlay:

Redraw bodice to create crossover @ center front.

consider joining pieces 1 and 2 at shoulder.

Bodice , satin:

Redraft as princess seam cup. Cup should end at approx equal distance between shoulder and armpit top. Back typical to original piece less strap.

The lace is a Ivory corded floral rayon, 60" wide purchased from Nancy's Sewing Basket in Seattle.
The lace trim is Ivory Bridal Veil Trim purchased from Pacific Fabrics in Seattle
The crepe back satin is Champagne colored, purchased at Joanns.
Interlining and lining are silk broadcloth, purchased when the bride was 10 with the intent of making her a gown some day. I am seriously deranged...

All the beads were purchased at Fusion Beads in Seattle. They were terrific to work with!

Here's what things looked like in the first week of May:
The bodice and skirt have been joined and I am "auditioning" the beaded band that will applied to the waist.
This is a close up. The band was made by placing a strip of organza on top of the crepe backed satin dress fabric. I beaded the band down the center of this strip. Once all of the beaading was done, I cut the satin back to the width of the beaded band, trimmed and folded the organza to the backside and slip stitched that in place. The beads were fresh water pearls and 4 different sizes and colors of seed beads. I really liked doing this until I was about half way through. It got a bit tedious about then :)

This is the view from the side before hemming or the application of the beaded band.
And here is the back... Notice my two looms sitting patiently? They were sorely neglected for months!
By the second week of May, I had sewn in the lining. I used the technique in Susan Khalje's bridal book and it was SO much easier than I thought it would be! No fear of the lining poking out using this method!

The beaded band has been stitched to fron and back. The extension on the back was attached to the other side over the zipper with a hook and eye.
This was stitched to the lining in the center back gore.

And here is the hem with everything stitched into place. This is a post wedding shot, it had been walked on and dragged a bit at this point.
I finished the dress a week before the wedding. The hem was the last thing I had to do. I used the same trim that I used for the bodice to trim the lace. The trim caught on the rayon lace something fierce, and that was hard to deal with.

In all cases where the trim is applied, I used a fusible tape on the back of the trim, then fusing to the rayon. I went back and hand stitched everything, but getting it in place this way kept the yards of trim from snagging the rayon while I was working with it. Note of caution, use the lowest heat possible to activate the fusible. The "pearls" on the trim melted on my trial piece. Testing is really IMPORTANT.

So that's the dress!