Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Collaborative Sewing part 2: Back and Front

Back we went through the pouring rain in A's minivan to her MIL's house to continue our sewing project. This time I took my sewing machine and we set up in the basement next to a glowing woodstove. "Grandma" took charge with the kids, setting up a craft for them to do involving squares of paper and recycled notecards. They punched holes in the top of the paper and threaded pretty yard and ribbon through using the notecards as covers to make little homemade booklets. These would later be given as Christmas presents. Little M was fascinated with this and happily spent the morning with her grandma making booklets but my kids preferred the blocks and trains.

While they were thus occupied, A and I dived into our project. For her first big project, I have to say she picked a tough one! The very first thing we ran into was making and turning little strips for ties on the back of the dress. We discussed topstitching them instead of turning them but eventually decided to go ahead and sew them right sides together and sew a piece of string inside to make them easy to turn. We did that and they went fairly quickly.

The next big obstacle was the curved gores in the back and front. These curved seams make the dress more fitted and are really hard to sew smoothly, but with a lot of pins and a lot of patience, we managed them.

By the time we'd finished the back of the dresses, it was lunchtime. A provided homemade bread for lunchmeat and avocado sandwiches. I added grapes and cookies while Grandma fixed quesadillas for the kids.

After lunch we went back to sewing, putting in the gores on the front pieces. By then, the kids were getting tired and fussy so it was time to pack things up and put them away. To me the morning has rarely passed so quickly; working and chatting made the time fly by when usually it drags. For that reason it makes me glad the dresses are really complicated because it means we can extend these pleasant mornings to last a little longer.

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