Saturday, September 25, 2010

Some progress

I started work on the shift right away when my materials arrived at the end of July. Using the Kannik's Korner pattern and instructions for the traditional construction methods, I cut my linen "by the thread" with only middling success. It was more difficult than I thought it was going to be; the thread I was supposed to be pulling would keep breaking off, and in the end I don't think I was able to create absolutely straight rectangles. I think I might get better at cutting by the thread with practice, and if I could try it at table height rather than on the floor. Next, I created a tube from the front and back pieces, and felled those seams. The traditional construction method is actually less fiddly because the "gores" on the back are created by cutting the tube apart at an angle. The gores are already attached to the back pieces with the two long seams, and you don't have to mess around with three pieces of fabric.

I took a fairly long hiatus from this project (about a month, yikes!), while I was out of town. Last night I finally cut my "tube" into the front and back pieces and cut the necklines, sewed the shoulders together with felled seams, and created my eyelets for the drawstring at the center front of the chemise. I set the eyelets too close together (accidentally made them 3/16"-ish apart rather than 3/8"), and I worked them so that the neater side ended up hidden inside the hem, but hope it will still function as intended. Tonight, I am about halfway finished hemming the neckline.

I used to wonder how chemises seemed to be magically invisible in paintings, but now that I see how very wide the neckline can be (with no drawstring, the front neckline hits me mid-rib!), the mystery is solved!