I amused myself this morning (while I was supposed to be cleaning the studio/study rooms!) with perusing the Timmel sewing SWAP for 2007 contest. The photos and notes were really interesting and the resulting wardrobes suit real women and their lives. Obviously while I was busily sewing medieval tunics other people were making clothes they can wear every day! Whadda concept, eh? Also nice to see a number of garments that coordinate well without becoming the dreaded “matchy-matchy”. Patterns used came from many sources: from self-drafted to big-name pattern companies to small independents to Burda magazine to vintage patterns. And one garment had to be reversible just for fun. Some participants also blogged about their sewing or have a photo site for even more details when you follow the links. Very inspiring.
I really need the inspiration myself. After spending some time in Sears, the Bay and the malls in the last while, I’ve come to realize a number of things including the fact that I have no idea what commercial size I am. I know my measurements but that doesn’t help. I know that sometimes I fit into an M and sometimes an L but does that make me a 12 or a 16 or what? Guess I need to take a bunch of clothes into the dressing room and find out! Also my top half is at least one size smaller than my bottom half so if the top fits the bottom is too tight and if the bottom fits the top is baggy. I’m a pear. I was a pear when I was 98 lbs and 18 years old and I’m a somewhat more rounded pear today. I’m also on the short side at 5' 3-1/2" but if I buy Petite pants they shrink up too short and if I buy Regular they’re too long. And what’s with elastic-waisted pants? I know I’ve complained about this before but can’t they make them out of something else besides polyester? What’s wrong with cotton or linen or ramie or tencel or wool or something breathable that doesn’t make me feel like I’m wearing plastic wrap and doesn’t cause me to sweat profusely? Not to mention they make me look like an old lady. I know I’m a grandmother but not the kind you might imagine from 20 years ago. And I’m not old yet. And I'm sure even older women don't want to wear scratchy uncomfortable plastic-fibre pants any more than I do.
Clothes for women of a “certain age” need to fit closely but not too closely. They need to skim over the lumpy bits while accentuating the positives. To follow rather than lead. They do not need to reveal too much or to bind anywhere or to bag in the wrong places. You know there’s a problem when even the young, tall and thin don’t look good in some of the clothes out there! So darn it, if I can’t find what I want I’ll just have to make it. I have patterns that I like. I have the skills. I have all the equipment. I even have some fabrics. I just have to do it. But first I have to get over the last sewing marathon. That was just Too Much and I can’t face my sewing machine quite yet. Soon though.
While I’m waiting for my sewing mojo to return, I’ve still got several yards of warp left on my table loom and a bunch of ideas I want to try on it. As soon as I finally get around to cleaning up this space enough so I can find things, I can get to it. I’m also finally nearing the end on the Ribby Socks for T-Man. These poor things got back-burnered while I was sewing and knitting a moose legwarmer and weaving samples. I’m hoping to get them finished today or tomorrow and then go on to a pair for my new son-in-law who’s birthday is next in line. He liked his socks last year and by all accounts wears them regularly. The only criterion is boring dark colours like black or dark grey. No patterns, no fun dye effects. Mr. Excitement wants plain and I aim to please. And soon, very soon, I’m going to cast on for something lacy even if it’s just a scarf. My lovely new Addi lace needles are itchy for something to do.