Monday, December 7, 2009

Unmentionables and Stashoholism Confessional

Fabric.com 12-09

I have been ordering fabric like a mad woman lately! But I have also been sewing like crazy lately and the fabrics have been good stash fabrics (if you accept that there is such a thing)--silk cottons and now wool. I ordered this fabric really just to make it to $35 at Fabric.com for free shipping, but when will I not need a good quality stretch wool? I pre-shrunk it by wetting it in the shower with hot water and hanging it to dry. Cidell and I were talking about how much we love the smell of wool. This smelled so good!

The real reason for my order was the pattern. Fabric.com was having a 20% off sale and I just couldn't hold out any longer for a 2-for-1 deal at HotPatterns. I've never used a HotPatterns before, but I loved this one as soon as it came out and people have been making nice things out of it. My serger is gray right now and I have a list of gray projects to complete (including a dress of the stretch wool), but when I change it to red this pattern is on the list! Probably won't happen until after the holidays, alas.

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Sew Sassy Stretch Lace

I also ordered two sets of a 30 yard stretch lace assortment from SewSassy. That is one set rolled onto cards, and one set loose, to give you an idea. I really don't know why I ordered the bundles. Well, I mean I do know why I ordered the bundles--because I like the surprise element. It's like getting a sewing present. But in reality, I pretty much wear black underwear every day because (tmi) I spot 24/7/365 and anything else gets ruined on the first wear. So I should have just ordered a crapload of black and of course the bundles didn't come with any black at all!

I was pleased with the quality and service, however. I like that you can choose USPS shipping because USPS is the only delivery I can get at my house and I hate sending all my packages to work. The shipping charge was totally reasonable and it came super quickly! I will probably go back and order some black picot lingerie elastic for legs, and can use the light colored laces at the waist.

I had actually made some panties before ordering the lace, if you can believe it! I bought some H&M underwear a few weeks ago when I had forgotten to pack any and ended up really liking the style. I prefer a low waist, full coverage rear, separate crotch piece, and lower cut legs so they don't ride up and they fit the bill perfectly. Of course, the downside of my preference for full coverage is that I cannot really make them out of "scraps." This takes a not insignificant chunk of yardage, around 3/8 yard.

The only thing about the H&M panties was I had bought a size too small. Luckily, I have the technology to correct that! So I laid tracing paper over them and traced them with a pencil (my pattern is not symmetrical, but the resulting panties are fine so I haven't bothered to clean it up), added a bit to the sides, and voila! I have what I hope is a TNT panty pattern. I won't really know if it's TNT until the Spring, though. You can't tell if panties are going to ride up if you're wearing tights over them. So I feel like I shouldn't make *too* many of these until I know for sure!

First attemptsAnyway, I made the prototypes using clear elastic and a twin needle. They fit well and wear well (although I can't really wear them since they're not black), but the clear elastic feels chintzy. Also, the allowances roll out out and expose the clear elastic, which again is not uncomfortable but just isn't cute. So I decided that I was allowed to order the stretch lace, since I had demonstrated that I actually would sew panties.

With stretch lace So much better, right? They look better at any rate. Can't actually wear them because they're not all black. I switched Pills several months ago and now I have a few days' window where I don't spot so I have to wear all my cute underwear on those days. I just overlapped the lace at the seams, and one leg already had one of those long strings you pull from all the way around the lace, so I'm going to have to figure out how to finish those ends. I guess just zigzag them in place.

Next time my serger is threaded in black (and I have black picot elastic in hand) I'm going to have to do a black panty-sewing extravaganza. They're quick to cut and assemble, but it does take some time to pin the lace/elastic around the legs and waist so each pair takes about 40 minutes. I thought it would be like popcorn, but it's more like gummy worms.

So I guess I'm making my own underwear now. But there's still no way I'm going to attempt a bra.

17 comments:

aurelia.donka said...

Regarding the tmi--have you looked at menstrual cups?

I have a similar problem, though not so extreme, and find that using my menstrual cup (I use a Keeper) when I'm spotting is the best solution I've come up with.

You might look at the mc community on Live Journal. There is an entry on there somewhere comparing the size and price of all easily available brands. http://community.livejournal.com/menstrual_cups

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Thanks for the suggestion, Aurelia. I haven't tried the cups because I can't wear tampons--they give me horrible cramps. I assume the cups would be the same (and I have to use "junior" size tampons and I fear the cup would be oversize). I use cloth pads, however, so I am environmentally friendly!

senaSews said...

I love the 3-graces hotpattern. Arrgh, why is it so hard to get hotpatterns here in Germany?! And i admire your courage to sew panties. That's something i still fear (and probably will for ever)!

redhotpepper said...

That's the wool I made my LBD from and it is wonderful to work with.

Annie

Linda said...

Yes, clear elastic in panties is just awful. Stretch lace is so much more comfortable and a much better choice. You'll get faster at them the more you sew. You can sew the stretch lace to the edges before you sew up the side seams if you want, or you can just fold one edge under slightly and lay it over the raw edge of the other. It's not very bulky.

amber said...

I think the colored stretch lace will add a little pop to plain black panties, so I think you're good. Good luck perfecting the draft of the pattern.

sz said...

Once you start the panty production line, you'll find the lace insertion goes a lot easier. You get into a rhythm and will just zing along.

Vicki said...

Love the undies! Can you just do a black cotton crotch so you can still wear the pretties?

Vicki said...

And another thought...(funny you have people from the other side of the world thinking about your "issue:)...you could make little pockets in the crotch so that you could insert your cloth pads. Made to measure?

Anonymous said...

Maybe you could use cloth liners with your pretty underwear? I use them and they work pretty well.Also may I add that if you could get a babylock imagine serger you won't even think about switching threads.It is that easy !

Marte said...

You have my sympathy! I spotted for the full three years I was on pills, and also stopped wearing white. Now I finally quit my pills, and I stopped spotting a few days after. It hasn`t come back yet!

My suggestion is quit pills and get a fertility computer. In the end it is much healthier to not overload the body with hormones. They are not cheap, though.

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Thanks for the suggestions, Marte. Unfortunately, when I am off the Pill it is much, much, MUCH worse. I went off the Pill for two years and have only been back on a year. By the end of the time I was off the Pill I was having two 10 day heavy periods per month (and spotting in between). It was insane. I thought I was going to run out of blood. I had been like that before going on the Pill at 18, but I thought maybe it was because I was still young and my hormones hadn't settled. Apparently not. Now I really regret ever going off because I didn't used to spot while on the Pill and now I just can't turn it off.

Katharine in Brussels said...

Eeeii, what a condundrum. Another idea: mama pads (google). Was it you who mentioned using fleece menstrual pads? A flannel panty liner is just a step away, although wearing stuff like that is never too glamourous-feeling. Psst, anything internal can slightly, slightly negatively influence fertility, according to studies I found on the Net. I'm 36 and 8 mos pregnant, it probably wasn't all switching to pads tho'! Here's a vote for some French Maid black knickers with white lacey edges. Pretty! A matching singlet would be cute, and warmer in winter. Don't you have that KM lingerie issue? Could be fun...!

angie.a said...

Ok I seriously thought maybe I was the only one on the planet who has always gotten the most terrible cramps with tampons. Of course I never googled it either. I don't have any panty advice. :D I just wanted to commiserate on the other issue, since I feel for you!

Anonymous said...

I just tried sewing my own undies and it's been a neat creative outlet. Definitely gives you more flexibility on design and what feels right for you. You'll have a lot of fun. I've been shopping like crazy at SewSassy and really like their choices. Good luck w/ your spotting. That's not fun but our sewing community is always helpful.

TracyKM said...

If you were using 'regular' (Brand name) tampons, the cramping, etc could be a reaction to all the chemicals in them. A cup is usually silicone and most people can tolerate that. But if you're using cloth, have you made your own? Just make some panty liners. You can buy PUL from diaper makers to make them leakproof. I can't imagine knowing I'll probably spot and not use something.

(I KNOW this is an old post, hope things have improved).

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Hey Tracy-I do make my own pads! Info here: http://theslapdashsewist.blogspot.com/2007/08/menstrual-madness.html