Vest 0985

I made one more felting attempt after my disappointment with felting on this fabric

I attempted to felt a single strand of yarn along the edge of major shapes and along the raw edge of the fabric.  I was curious as to whether a raw edge could be stabilized by adding and felting yarn.

The reverse side was still disappointing:

not enough detail for my purposes.   As for the raw edge, I’m not sure how much abuse it would take.  It’s an interesting edge finish but I think I would prefer to turn under/up once and felt close to an already finished edge.

Afterwards I had this weird shape hanging in the closet.  I contemplated folding and putting back in the stash but decided to go ahead and make the 0985 Vest. It’s a simple enough style. Only the shawl collar is somewhat tricky.  I struggled with shawl collars for years.  I even avoided shawl collars for years.  Then about 4 years ago I decided to find out why these defeat me. Why was I basting, stitching, ripping multiple-times every time I tried to install a shawl collar.  As a result of that that effort,  I completely changed my process.  I don’t match dots or sew one long seam across shoulders. Nope. What I do is to mark the seam lines for the collar. Where the pattern has little dots, I mark the seam allowance into and out of the corners. I stay stitch on those lines, Frey Check and clip right up to the inward corner.  While the Frey Check finishes drying I seam the collar pieces together  For this vest I made a french seam and then top stitched the free edge.  I stitch in 3 steps.  First I pin the back of the neck to the back of the collar, paying particular attention to matching the stay stitching I made earlier.  Leaving the shoulders free,  I sew with the collar on the feed dogs from corner to corner. Then I match up the front and back shoulder seam and stitch from collar to armscye; repeat for other shoulder.  Using this process takes me a little more preparation time, but I perfectly sew in my collar the first time every time and the overall time to apply the collar is less, for me, than using the typical Big 4 instructions.

I cut out my back and front and immediately serged all the edges.  This fabric frays badly, very badly. I stay stitched the back neck before proceeding to  attach the collar. Then while sides were still open, I finished the armscyes with bias tape.

I had a brain phart. Whoa I could add the line of yarn, as earlier envisioned, without the mess on the backside if I would just couch the yarn instead of trying to felt.  I’m so focused on playing with the Felting Machine that I forget I have other options. I used my free motion couching foot to add yarn along selected patterns on the fabric.  I couched the collar area on the inside (which is turned to the outside when worn) and the back on the outside.  My FMC was much better this time than the last, but when done I still had a few places where it was necessary to attach the regular foot and zig zag over the free-floating yarn.  I also find that FMC flattens the yarn somewhat more than a light felting.

Close up of front collar

Asubtle tone-on-tone embellishment was produced and then my garment  was completed by finishing all the edges with bias tape.

I love tone-on-ton effects. I also relate this particular project to silk painting with its gutta outlining and restricting the flow of paint.

I’m classifying this as tentatively finished. I didn’t add a closure.  I like how the vests looks from the front when it’s allowed to hang free:

.. and the back isn’t bad either

but I’m less than pleased with the side view

I think when the front is open it adds pounds to my already rotund torso. This isn’t a really good comparison shot, but you can see that the vest is pinned shut and my shape is more cylindrical than buldging-earth shape

The pants were the first iteration of Burda 12/2012 #148. I’m still tweaking the fit of this pattern. The front crotch is  a bit long and I have to decide whether to add or remove more ease because of the wrinkles around the knees. But I love the slimming overall look of these pants.In the pics above, I”m not wearing  a belt.  Always a mistake. I need a belt.I have a minor physical issue in that my bowel becomes sluggish.  I can watch my stomach and waist grow until finally something kicks in and everything is expelled. (The doc’s do their rotor rooter thing every few years and are satisfied that I’m healthy).  Point is my pants need to be able to adapt to my changing waist line. I prefer the belt to elastic and make most of my pants with belt loops. But then I neglect to wear the belt and in pics you can see the droop over the back thigh.  The pant needs to be lifted into place with the use of my belt.