Thursday, December 23, 2010

Vintage Vogue 1593 - Underlining

I have had the great fortune this week (and next) to be on vacation from work. This means I've had plenty of free time to sew, right? Well, not exactly. My oldest son has also been off from his preschool, so while I've had a little bit more free time than usual, the schedule is also plenty full.

I managed to get the body pieces of the vintage Vogue 1593 Patou jacket underlined and sewn together this morning, which was some feat considering what I finally decided to use for underlining fabric!

While I worked on the muslin of the jacket (made out of an old bedsheet), I noticed that each pattern piece instructed me to cut one of fabric, underlining, and lining. Knowing absolutely nothing about underlining, I posted on Pattern Review's board asking for advice. Bingo! A very kind expert weighed in with the suggestion of using silk organza. I shuddered in fear, but she was right.

Silk organza it is! I wanted a little body with no extra thickness or warmth. Thus, flannel was out. Cotton batiste or broadcloth would have been ok, but I really like the body of silk organza. I bought two yards (this substantially increased the cost of this project, so I hope I LOVE it when it's done!), washed it on hot and dried it to the bone in the dryer.

(You can tell I was sewing with a child around, hence the anteater and kitchen tongs on my cutting table.)

Then I cut each pattern piece out with about one inch extra seam allowance. Why? Because the way silk organza moves underneath my hands, I didn't want any risk of not having it entirely underlining a section. Does that make sense?

I read various suggestions on the technique of underlining, but the one that seemed the best suggested not machine basting the underlining to the fabric pieces because of the risk of rippling. Instead, she suggested rolling the piece over your arm and pinning or tacking the underlining after doing that. The roll makes up for the curvature of your body, and the difference in the two fabrics' body. Wow, that was wordy.

Anyhoodle, the underlining of the front and back sections is done.

And Merry Christmas to me! My new dressform came today by UPS. I haven't had a dressform since I sold my rickety adjustable one in my giant fabric stash yard sale last spring. I love my new one, as much for its form as its function. According to my misshapen body, I should be a 10 on top and a 14 on the bottom. So I ordered a 12. It's close enough (1/2" off at most) in all the measurements to be good enough for me, and cost approximately $220 with free shipping versus $800 for a dressform made to my own measurements.

Up next...assembly, sleeves, and lining. I hope to be able to show you progress on the Patou jacket on the new dressform. Exciting!

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