Friday, July 20, 2007

Tragedy! (of minuscule proportions)

So, I decided to go ahead and see what I could get done this weekend for the wardrobe contest. I spent Thursday night inaugurating my three day weekend of sewing by cutting, perhaps my least favorite task. I managed to get two skirts and most of a blouse cut out while watching NBC reruns of The Office (I keep hoping for Phyllis's wedding because I missed that one during the season--no, I don't have TiVo, or even cable, much to Cidell's chagrin) and 30 Rock. Luckily Cidell called and spared me Scrubs. I used to love that show but now it gets on my nerves. Cidell went to bed and then I spent Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham's show trying to fit a skirt pattern onto a piece of fabric that was really not large enough. I refuse to call it a reality show, because even if it accurately reflected Posh's life (doubtful), her life is not reality. I'm curious if the American "personal assistant" is actually a producer for the show. She certainly seemed to do more assisting to create camera-friendly situations than assisting in the sense of being helpful. I will now think of Posh every time I wear that skirt and the blouse.

Anyway, woke up this morning around 10 feeling really good. I'm not a morning person and in general waking up any day at any time is sheer agony for me. This morning I was awakened by the generator that has awakened me for the past several mornings. Apparently a neighbor across the alley is having an electric gate put in, and apparently such work can only be done between 6 and 8 in the morning. Gah. This on top of the roadwork on my street every night starting at about 10 pm. Somehow despite all this I was chipper and ready to sew!

The first skirt, a Patrones project, was going well (in the sense of coming together--I'm not hyper-enthused about the way it looks) until the very last step, putting a buttonhole in the waistband. My sewing machine did *not* want to sew through all the layers and kept tossing off the thread. I finally got the entire buttonhole in and went to open it up with the seam ripper. My old seam ripper finally died a couple of weeks ago; the metal part came loose of the plastic handle. I switched to a new one and was amazed at the difference! It was like butter! Seam ripping became almost (I did say almost) a pleasure. Well, RIP New Seam Ripper.

The metal just broke inside the buttonhole. It looks all sad, like a hand that has lost a thumb. I was quite upset. First, because New Seam Ripper and I were just getting acquainted, and so far we were getting along quite well. And second, even more tragically, I had to halt my sewing to go get a new one. I went right then and there because I know myself too well. Had I not gone to the fabric store right then I would have started a new project, and then reached a point where I needed a seam ripper and would try to use scissors absolutely *knowing* that it was a dumb idea and then I would snip the fabric and ruin the project and be mad at myself.

I live in the District, which I love. I can walk downtown, to DuPont Circle, to the U Street Corridor, to Adams Morgan, to Union Station, even to Georgetown in good shoes and nice weather. However, I cannot walk to a fabric store. They are all* out in the suburbs and require driving. I hate driving.

*This is not technically true. There is a place called Exquisite Fabrics on K Street, but I have never found anything in there I'd like to buy.

I have also made a vow of NO FABRIC IN JULY AND AUGUST. I must shout this at myself, so pardon my tone of voice. The easiest way for this to happen is not to go to a fabric store. Not so easy is not to go on the internet but since I will be imposing a Harry Potter Media Blackout as of now that will be easier too.

I went out to Seven Corners in Virginia (20 minute drive there). I went to JoAnn instead of G Street because I knew I was not going to be tempted by any of the polyester crap there. I bought four spools of thread and two seam rippers (I will not be caught unawares by this type of tragedy again) and felt quite virtuous about my restraint. Not even any interfacing or quick glance in the remnants bin! Since I was already out in the boonies I went to Trader Joe's and got a few items I needed. There was traffic on the way home (for some reason 395 going *into* Washington is terrible in the afternoon rush, which starts around 1:00 on Fridays), so the total round trip cost me 1 hour and 30 minutes. *le sigh* I was meeting a friend for the 4:20 showing of Harry Potter followed by drinks and dinner so I was racing against the clock when I got back.

I still managed to finish three skirts, and have cut out two tops for tomorrow (in addition to the blouse cut out during Posh). I have decided on the fourth top and will cut it out tomorrow.

I might actually finish this wardrobe thing. That would be kind of fun. I am not going to get too excited though--counting chickens and all that. I haven't even started to attempt to tackle the hat.


Geek Sewing said...

It's almost 6:30 am and your story is the first one I've read for the day. I love the smell of new sewing blog lines in the morning! Next to my coffee and blueberry scones of course...

Nancy W. said...

I'm so jealous of you girls that have so many fabric stores (and good ones) to choose from. Other than a a couple of quilt shops, I have only JoAnns in my town; or, I can drive an hour and get to Hancock's. That's it. The next closest thing is driving 3÷ hours to get to either LA or SF, which I have not done yet for fabric shopping. Maybe it's a good thing. I'm already WAY over on my stash...

Susan said...

I just discovered your blog -- it's delightful!

Our small locally owned fabric store closed last spring. We don't even have Hancock's (in Mississippi! where, for what it's worth, the company originated). (Well, there may be a suburban location, but it isn't worth it.) The big problems are thread and buttons. I've been ecstatic with my on-line fabric purchases, patterns are easy to get, I even found an on-line source for zippers, and I have plenty of pins, needles, sewing needles and I have two seam rippers :-) but I'm going to go online and buy some small sharp scissors...and maybe some needles for hand-sewing; I need some with longer eyes...