Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pattern Hoarder Solution

I collect vintage patterns, and although I'm not going to reveal the true number I'm up to (it's like my weight), I will say that I have enough that if I didn't have a decent storage solution, things would be getting a little sketchy around my house. All I know is that some little sewer is going to have a grand time at my estate sale, especially if she has big boobs and has a fondness for 1930's fashion.

I found the above box at the Container Store about a year ago, and they work like a dream to store my patterns in. A lot of the patterns are pretty fragile, so I like to store them each in their own 4 mm ziplock 6x8 bag first before I file them by era. The boxes are made by Semikolon, and of course, the Container Store (at least the one in Portland, OR) doesn't sell that size anymore, so I've had to go elsewhere to secure them, because now I'm addicted to the boxes, too. They're the perfect size, 12 1/2"tall x 6 1/2"wide x 10 1/4"deep, and all vintage patterns fit nicely inside except for McCalls, which I have a larger box for. Larger Vintage Vogue's won't really go either, but regular patterns, Amy Butler and Colette all slide and nest very nicely inside these guys. If you're interested, they're called a "chemise" box, and I've been able to find them at and at the Storage Store in a variety of colors. The price has gone up a couple of bucks and shipping is involved, but each fits about 40-50 patterns. Having access from the top makes flipping through the patterns easy if you don't crowd them in too tightly. If you do run across then at a Container Store, snatch 'em up--they're sturdy, cute and work perfectly for a helpless addict like myself. I wonder if they have a Betty Ford for us?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Finally sewing again...

It's been a busy winter and even busier spring, so I'm just finally setting in to whip out some dresses of the patterns I've been..."collecting."
This is the fabric:

It's a 30's inspired lawn that looked perfect for summer. I'm using an old late 30's, early 40's Advance pattern which is one of the first ones I purchased when I first started being a pattern hoarder, or a pattern whoreder, which ever you prefer.

It's the version without the jacket. That middle panel has two corner seams that have always proved to have nemesis-like qualities when I am concerned. I'm not very good at this, and that's exactly why it took me seven times to put the panel in and take it out to get it sharp, symmetrical and just not looking sloppy. It was so frustrating that I had to stop in the middle and take a nap, I was so exhausted. I finally got the panel in somewhat satisfactorily, and I'm loathe to mess with it any further in pursuit of an uncertain (and elusive) perfection.

So here we are at the current state, and I think it's looking cute on the model--not so sure how it's going to look over my fat ass. Not as cute, definitely. Thank God there are no buttons to gape open like toothless spaces over my planet-sized belly. No, I'm not pregnant. I ate a deep-fried avocado chicken ball in Texas two weeks ago and it's still hanging around.

So yeah. I get how lame it is to post half a dress, but I have been feeling like a poseur, buying patterns, finding fabric and producing nothing due to my work schedule. So this is mainly for myself to prove that over the course of the year, maybe I can produce a sleeve. And by the time I have to dig paths in my house because it's full of "BEAUTIFUL FABRIC I GOT ON SALE" from floor to ceiling, I can finish one dress before the paramedics have to cut a hole in the roof and pull my dead body out with a strap under my rigor arms because there are too many sewing notions for an adult sized and non-mole person to make his way to the crapper, where my body is.

Seriously. What am I supposed to do when has stretch bengaline for $2.49 a yard and I have a 30% off coupon? AND FREE SHIPPING? Am I NOT supposed to get every color but lilac and rose? Did you miss their promotional dupioni sale? I didn't. Wash dupioni and throw it in the dryer. You won't believe what a soft, textured fabric is created. Very Victorian, almost. Thank god they ran out of Vera Wang and Ralph Lauren, because things here were getting sketchy, as in "I think this houndstooth would be fine in the crisper drawer in the fridge as long as I camo it with lettuce, and this silk faille would do very well hiding in the piano bench." I'd simply rather have a house unnavigable by EMT's that make dresses out of friggin sheets from Goodwill. The bengaline dress is up next from a Lutterloh pattern from 1941. And oh, what surprise there was for me in THAT book of patterns. It starts with "Heil" and ends in "Holy Shit!"

That's all for now. Happy Sewing, my fellow whoarders.