Sunday, May 4, 2014

I Want To Cry

Well, I did cry.  If truth be told.  I'm writing this post because I need someone to commiserate with me.  I have had an epic fail.  Epic.  And it hurts even more because sewing time is so precious these days.  I spent hours working on this.


I may as well have blinking red lights on my chest.  J claims is not that noticeable.  But he's being kind.  I know I can't wear it without feeling super self conscious.  Not only did I end up with red paisley nipples, but they aren't even completely symmetrical.  One is lower than the other, which is not a good look for a bust.   And I tried so hard when I cut out all my pattern pieces.  So hard.  All I could think about was avoiding the purple medallions on the bust.  I didn't account for the alternatives.


The fabric I used is really special.  I go back and forth about whether or not it's silk.  My burn test was inconclusive- how in the world do you tell from that anyway?  It burned, that's all I can say with certainty.  It sort of pressed.  And pins left pin holes.  Anyway, J has gone to China for work a few times in the last few years.  Shanghai and Guangzhou.  The last time he went, he asked me what souvenir I wanted him to bring back.  Like any good sewing enthusiast, I said fabric.  On his last day in Guangzhou, his guides took him to fabric shop for me.  They took him to some sort of fabric shopping mecca about an hour away (he was not happy with me at that point- he really has no interest in fabric shopping) where he picked out a few pieces.  He said he was overwhelmed.  The place he went was like a large shopping mall full of nothing but fabric stores.  Sounds like a dream come true to me :)  He snapped a few photos.  Here's one.


He picked out several pieces using swatch cards and then the shop owner would go and get the bolt.  I ended up with two really wild pieces.  This paisley print and another crazy feather print that I have plans for.  My first instinct was that the paisley fabric was polyester. However, since I've been working with it I'm not so sure.  I'm thinking that it probably is poly, however it is meant to replicate silk which it does very well.  It was slippery, slinky and really difficult to work with.


The only positive to come from this fail was learning how to do a rolled hem on my machine.  I did the bias trim the pattern instructed first, but it was sloppy and really homemade looking in this slippery fabric.  This is Nicola from Victory Patterns by the way.  Won in a giveaway from Sown Brooklyn almost two years ago.  I'm not done with this pattern.  I have no qualms with the pattern.  Just my unfortunate pattern placement.  But I think I have to let this version die.  I love the sleeves, especially after figuring out the rolled hem.  I luckily did not cut out the skirt pieces ahead of time.  I was going to complete the bodice first to make sure the length was right.  So I have a bit of the fabric left that I can make something with, hopefully.  But I still can't tell you how much this fail hurts.  We are going to a wedding next weekend, and now this girl has nothing to wear.  And I hate shopping under pressure.  Someone tell me it will be okay.

29 comments:

  1. Do you have a pink or turquoise solid that you can use to cut the front out with again? Print blocking is big and if the front is solid and the back and sleeves are printed that would be fine. Make the skirt of the dress with the print but add a solid band to the bottom all around. It could possibly save the dress and give you the dress you need for next weekend.

    Also, hugs to you...been there, done that...totally understand how you feel right now!

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    1. I LOVE this idea—would be a great way to rescue that special fabric!

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  2. I'm with Carolyn! You can make it work! If you cut off the paisley bit but kept that striped border, you could attach a solid fabric to the border peice, and I think it would blend in really well. That would take care of the lopsidedness AND the boob paisley! Another option would be to try using a sharpie to colour over the red and tone it down to an eggplant purple or some other colour that blended in more. All that said, maybe you need to throw it in a corner for a while until your heart is ready to play around - experimenting on a timeline makes everything hard!
    Good luck!!!!

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    1. Oh man, I love Gillian's idea! I think keeping the striped border at the neck closure and piecing it with a solid would look a-mazing, and save quite a bit of this special fabric! I hope you feel better soon - we've all been there. *hugs* And, your rolled hems really do look spectacular.

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  3. I know your pain. I have been there. When I have been there, I just wasn't able to leave it alone and had to find a quick fix just so I felt better. Ideally, you probably should put it on the shelf and walk away from it until the tears fade and you can just say "oh well." Then tackle it again and see if you can salvage it. I love the ideas above. At this point, it doesn't hurt to try. It is salt in the wound considering how far the fabric came from. Ugh. Try to give yourself a break first. Trying to recover it in time for the wedding may just make it that much more heartache. This too shall pass. ((hugs))

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  4. you can totally make this one work, just give it few days of rest, and then start with fresh eyes and a smile!

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  5. miss fantastically creative artsy mama. go get your fabric markers, colored sharpies, bottle of red wine and a brush, and start drawing on that turquoise! you absolutely have the creativity to save this...hell, save, AND make that fabulous precious print even BETTER!

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  6. Okay, but what gorgeous pattern placement on the back! I love that part. And a beautiful rolled hem! You'll make this work one day.

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  7. I totally didn't notice until you said something. But now I can't unsee it. Damn! I feel your pain. I agree with the others above that you will figure out how to make this work, but for now you need to put it in the naughty corner.

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  8. Ok, put this in detention and let your feelings settle. You can't quit this one, it has great specialness! The back is fabulous and I done even mind a little paisley grouping, actually....

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  9. I'm so sorry! How frustrating! I hope you can set it aside until you're less frustrated. I really think there's a way to salvage this! I'm glad there's some fabric leftover, too. :)

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  10. I agree with hubby, it's not that noticeable. Having said that, you notice it. Been there. I think you can save the garment with scattered appliques over the fronts from the same material ?butterflies ? lotus flowers - to camouflage the red pattern.

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  11. I totally didn't notice it either! Perhaps add a peplum to make it a short top p to wear over pencil skirts?

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  12. I like the applique idea, and the painting idea, and the border idea - but if it were mine, and there was a wedding to go to, I would start something new and simple. Such henious behaviour means that project should go sit somewhere in the dark until there is a burst of enthusiasm for recovery. (In my sewing room is a crying chair.....)
    The pattern placement at the back is awesome.

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  13. I didn't notice the pattern placement, because the stripes are so strong. Perhaps gather a few more opinions from friends, as J might be right that it is not noticeable. They aren't symmetrical, and perhaps if the skirt portion is attached, it would just look like the paisley was spreading up. Perhaps put it on, wrap the skirt fabric around, take another photo and rethink....'cause to me it looks okay. And that back is fantastic!

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  14. Sorry if someone else mentioned this idea... but see that edge of the boob paisley that's overlapping the neckline's border print? I'd carefully cut a portion of any border print scraps, match it up well with the dress's border lines, and applique over that paisley edge, to hide it. That way the border looks uninterrupted and the paisley is subdued and much less prominant.

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  15. By the way that shopping mall full of fabric shops looks AWEsome! someone hold a meetup there please!

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  16. It will be OK! Like many of the others, if it fits well I would be tempted to try and piece it, because lovely fabric. If you need some time (I usually have to take a bit of time away from projects that aren't going how I'd like), wear your gorgeous brightly coloured maxi skirt with a silky top or a jacket, fascinator and strappy sandals to the wedding, if it's appropriate and you don't want to get a whole new outfit. I sometimes dress up more casual pieces when I'm short on clothes. I too have occasionally been driven to tears, but it's threading the overlocker that does it to me. I've written a note to myself (sad I know) for next time I get to the tricky bit in the hope I will be able to make sense of it next time. Btw, when I see a mall like that full of fabric, I become just so aware of how tiny the UK really is! Good luck with your wedding outfit xx

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  17. It's definitely not an epic fail, just a bit of an oversight. If you've got the time and inclination, I'd definitely go with the applique/colourblocking route. The fabric is gorgeous, and would make a beautiful Nicola.

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  18. Your husband has great taste especially when overwhelmed. Put this project away for a little bit and I am sure you will figure out a solution when your angst settles down. Trying to rescue it now when you are feeling so frustrated might lead to further problems. Having said all that I really like it !

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  19. I feel your pain, having recently had a series of sewing failures myself. However, I don't think this is a complete failure. You have the skills and artistic knowledge to save this.

    I would cut some more paisley pieces from the fabric (if you have enough) and applique them over and around the red parts of the front, extending up and down the striped area. Make it look like a really sumptuously decorated fabric, and even add a few beads or sequins if you have time. You can do it!

    Your rolled hems are superb! xxx

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  20. I agree with the other suggestions. You need to let this one rest for awhile and get your mind away from it. I'll bet you'll get an inspiration and realize you can save it. It's so pretty and the so called "error" is not as noticeable as you might think! Good luck! I'm sure you'll come back to it with some time, space and new fresh idea.

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  21. :( I'm sorry this happened! I hate it when everything's going well and then a tiny oversight like this makes everything terrible. I agree with everyone else that you can totally save this, but I totally get putting it aside for a while... that's what I would do!

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  22. You call this a fail? Behave yourself!
    If you love the sleeves keep the sleeves and attach them to a fabric of a similar weight. I recently saw US first lady wearing a dress made of two entirely different prints and it looked good. Or turn it around, lower the neckline, make the back the front, and cut a low back from what was originally the front. Just don't do it right now, wait till the fabric stash gets low and you'll be insprired. I am inpressed with what you've done just far, thank you for putting this post up!

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  23. Oh man, I feel your pain! I did the exact same thing, truly. I focused on making sure one crazy part was not on my boobs and ended up with basically ikat headlights instead. I totally finished the dress and did not notice until my husband could not hold back the laughter. I chopped mine into a skirt (-: I think you have some amazing suggestions, you can save it! It will be stunning, great fabric and I want to go to a fabric mall!!!

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  24. I did not notice it until you said something, and I'm not just saying that. The stripes are what catches your eye, not the paisley. I think it's great. Honest :)

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  25. I think a lot of times we are too hard on ourselves. I like it.

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