Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dress Form Stand

Carolyn asked what I was using for a stand for my dressform, and I thought I'd take photos and show it. The form itself has a 3/4" PVC pipe inside which is notched at the top with a not-very-thick, curved wooden hanger sitting in the notch. This fits into the shoulders, and the shape is padded up to match mine. This pipe fits on the outside of a metal tube which is part of the stand I got with a Uniquely You form that is very much the wrong size. The stand is something that I think could probably be easily made from components available at the hardware store. Here's a close-up of the lower part.

You can see that the "feet" are straight rods. These are threaded, and screw into the center piece, which has 4 holes for them. The metal tube/pipe is screwed into the center of the same piece. The PVC pipe fits over the metal one, and the plastic bushing slides on the metal pipe, but the PVC pipe sits on top of it. The wing-screw lets you secure the bushing at any height you like on the metal pipe, thus also raising or lowering the form. I will have to drill a hole in the PVC pipe for another wing-screw so that I can keep the form from twirling on the pipe. It's a very satisfactory system though, and should be easy to replicate if you're interested.

Here's the stand showing the bottom of the form.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Duct Tape Dressform

How I Spent My Thanksgiving Vacation

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Actually, the title refers both to the form and the top I have on. It's another of the FSG1960 tops I've been doing lately. This is a nice, soft knit-back fleece I found. I just about froze to death on Thanksgiving evening at my parent's home and knew I was going to be spending a lot of time there in the next several days. Also, I was the only one who was cold, so I went home in the evening and made this top, and it's just what I needed. In this photo, there's a dusty streak near the bottom, but I was moving things around the basement and apparently didn't notice. So, you get to see the real me.

The form was very kindly wrapped by my sister, who was here for the holiday. I think she did a beautiful job. It's very true, especially in the shoulder/bust area. The midriff/waist/hip was bigger than I measure, probably because I had to breathe while we did this, so we made some changes. The shape is still very good. We extended the form one tape-width or so below the rear, onto the leg. You can see how that worked out. I think it was probably a good idea.

I am rather stunned to see just how crooked I am, but we really checked and looked and it is just like me. Oh well, better to know than not, I guess. Here's a close-up of just the form. I'm leading a form workshop in December for my local sewing guild, and I'm glad we did this first. It's going to be interesting to see if everyone else is as pleased with their results as I am with mine.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I'm Back

I can't believe it's been so long since I posted. I've been dealing with family medical stuff, and then suddenly it was me being the "sickie." I'm sure most of you are familiar with the reality that whether one is ill or just recovering from a small procedure, the basic work of keeping the household running must continue anyway, and we know how that works. It would really be a luxury to just get to let everything go for a while, and I must say I did my best to let that happen, but all I achieved was letting some of my favorite things go by the wayside for a while, including my blog. I also seemed to lose my will to create for a time, but it's slowly returning as well, and I have been knitting anyway. Maybe not really the will to create, but there was just no decision-making happening, and what is the creative process if not a string of decisions?

I will also admit that I had no idea that I would really, really need to take it easy for as long as I did, even thought I had been told. As my nearest and dearest often says, I think I know it all, and I just don't listen. I do have to admit, he was pretty much correct there, as he often is. I do want to say a great big thank you to all of you who have sent such kind wishes. I really appreciate it, and I hope to be back to normal (?) very soon, if not right now.

Since it's cold again, I naturally have had the urge to make some warm things to wear. The zebra print knit top I made was such a yucky knit fabric mitigated only by its really great print, but I liked the pattern blend I used of FSG#1960 with a cut-on very long funnel neck, and I repeated it in another, beefier knit, and I've been wearing it with great pleasure. Now getting a picture of it that pleases me is another thing altogether, but I finally decided that it just isn't going to get any better than this. So, we will all suffer together.

I bought some interesting knit fabric a while back that is a very deep plum, and fairly sheer. I decided it would make a very nice overblouse, and used an older Vogue pattern for the basic shape. I decided it needed something, and tried a tie collar, which was dowdy in the extreme, so I thought the time had come for an unusual approach, so I took some HugSnug rayon seam binding that I got on a 100 yd. roll from the Pendleton outlet, and which just happens to match the lace fabric, and started making loops along the collar. It's definitely different, and I like the way it turned out. I'm using the former tie collar as a belt. I edged the sleeves with the seam binding as well, using it almost like a flat piping. You can see a close up below, and the colors are pretty true, at least on my monitor.

Here's the overblouse, over the blue top, which is NOT what I plan to wear it with, but it needs something with a collar, and I have nothing the right color and style, and it's too see-through to wear alone. The pants are another pair from my favorite Burda pattern, and the fabric is not what I had hoped. It's a polyester microfiber, but it's not nearly as nice as the fabric I bought a few years ago that I thought was very similar. This is drapier, and it's horribly staticky, and nothing seems to help. It doesn't actually crawl up your legs when worn, but it attracts every cat hair and dust mote within a 3-block region, and it seems unwilling to shed wrinkles. Now if polyester wants to wrinkle, what is the point?

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I have been knitting away on my nephew's Xmas sweater, which will match his Dad's in style, but in a different color, and I'm getting close to dividing for the armscyes. It's going faster since it's smaller, but I'm making it a little large so he can wear it for at least a few years.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Ruffles Aplenty - Mitts are Done

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Here's my version of the Ruffled Fingerless Gloves. The yarn is 100% alpaca in a very dark brown. I lightened the photo a little so that the details would show up. It's a very quick project. I realize that I did one more row of ruffle increases than the original, which makes them a little more dramatic, but I think they're kind of fun this way. In a firmer yarn, I would probably only do 3 increase rows.