Thursday, August 29, 2013

Wedding Bag

Many women tend to accumulate accessories over time, like shoes, jewelry and bags; these items are an easy way to change the look of an outfit (and they generally still “fit” whether you gain or lose any weight). And while I admit to buying more shoes and jewelry then I need, I don’t end up buying bags because I’m lazy. I use the same bag everyday because it would be too much of a hassle to move all the junk I have in one bag to another.

However, I didn’t really want to carry my large everyday bag to a wedding I was attending, so I thought I could buy a smaller bag that would be more appropriate. Truthfully, I didn’t dedicate myself to finding one, but merely checked out bags when I happened to be at a store. I wanted to get one at a thrift shop because it would be cheaper and I didn’t want to spend much for a bag I wouldn’t get much use out of. Unfortunately, I didn’t find one I wanted.

Then I looked at some other stores with new bags, but I didn’t see anything that I liked. Most of the bags were the wrong size, the wrong color, the wrong material, the wrong design…or just plain wrong. And really, I didn’t even want to spend $20 on a cheap bag that wasn’t particularly cute and that I would just get rid of after I used it. I thought that if I was going to carry a cheap bag, I might as well just make one myself (and at least get some sewing practice in while I was at it).

I made a very simple purse with the materials I happened to already have. It’s not a terribly large bag, about nine inches wide and five inches high. The flap folds over the top of the bag and tucks under a front band of fabric. I created two tabs on either side of the bag and connected a chain (I had bought from the jewelry section of a craft store) to each tab. I chose a very light blue fabric with thin satin stripes on it. From a distance, the fabric just looks like an icy blue (which matched well with the navy I was wearing). The fabric wasn’t stiff enough on its own, so I put a piece of cardstock inside the bag and that helped to maintain a more rectangular shape. Will I use this bag again? Probably not, but it’s served its purpose.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Simple Tie Dress

I wanted to sew a looser fitting dress because it would be more forgiving with my current sewing abilities. I tend to have difficulties fitting my garments the way I want them to (and in particular form-fitting dresses), so to avoid the fit-as-I-go sewing that I usually end up doing (that isn’t so efficient), I decided to pick a looser pattern to work with.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Little Holes

I bought my blue-green blouse at a thrift shop and while it was in good condition, when I cut the tag I saw that the tag had left two little holes in the blouse. This irritated me because I had checked the seams and made sure that there weren’t any stains on it before buying it, but I’d assumed that that was all I had to check. I didn’t even think about the stupid plastic bit of the tag that ended up damaging my blouse.

I liked my blouse and wanted to keep it, so instead of returning (which I couldn’t really do without the tag on it anyway) I had to sew up the little holes. One was near a seam so it wasn’t very apparent; the other was on the back in a not-so-convenient location, and when I sewed the hole up it did become apparent (which was quite annoying). But there wasn’t much else to do about it. And if I wear a jacket no one will be able to see my little sewn hole (and really, most people wouldn’t pay attention to it anyways). It’s just me that will really think about it and know about those little holes. [Pause.] Stupid tag.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

What’s Your Size?

It’s irritating to me that women’s clothing sizes in the U.S. are inconsistent across the board. I’m envious of men’s clothing, where pant waist sizes are simply in inches. It’s so easy. And while men’s brands probably still have their fitting differences, the starting point from the get-go is so simple. Men would probably never shop again if they had to go through the wide range of size variations that women’s clothing has.

In women’s clothing you have to hunt for your size. Depending on the store and the brand and the year it was made, sizes can be quite different. You have to store in your mind which brands tend to run large and which ones tend to run small in order to find your size more efficiently. And yet still, often it seems nearly pointless to go by the size the garment states it is. Sometimes I just put the garment near my waist and eyeball it rather than trust a number that means so little.

It’s just rather ridiculous; the sizing system has no meaning. A size 2 today is not what a size 2 was a generation or two ago. When I look at my sewing patterns, they start at a size 6 (rather than a size 0), and I’m guessing that these pattern sizes are truer to what women’s sizes used to be before the sizes got skewed. This is apparent when I go thrift shopping when my “size” fluctuates between about five sizes depending when the garment was made; the older the garment, the higher number my size becomes.

The clothing sizing system plays on our vanity because then we never have to know our waist size in inches, because a hard measurement in inches would just make us feel fat. So if we’re just too vain to do waist sizes in inches, then could we at least have a standard system that doesn’t fluctuate? Keep the current size system of 0, 2, 4, 6, etc. but have it actually mean the same thing in all brands. I just want the clothing sizes to stop fluctuating and start having some consistency.  

Thursday, August 8, 2013

More Fall Clothing

All I seem to find lately when I go thrift shopping are garments for fall. While I enjoy the warmth and sunshine we’ve been having this summer, I’m rather looking forward to autumn so I can start wearing all of the clothes I keep buying that are meant for cooler weather.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Earring Check

I usually do the “earring check” as I’m trying on clothing at a store. I double-check that the earrings I have on are still there because it’s easy to lose an earring that has a French hook. Occasionally I can feel the earring tug as it comes out of my ear or I can hear it fall on the ground, but sometimes I receive no sign that it’s left my ear.

Unfortunately, I did not do the earring check the other day when I went thrift shopping. My earrings weren’t really in the forefront of my mind; I was more conscious of the griminess I felt as I was shopping (since the clothing tends to be in various stages of cleanliness). So I was I was trying to keep my hands away from myself until I could wash them.

So I shopped at a couple of stores and when I got home I finally touched my ears and realized I was missing an earring and I didn’t know where I had lost it. It would be too much effort to try and find it; it wasn’t an expensive earring but I liked it and wore it, so I was disappointed in my carelessness. I guess it’s just a reminder to myself to double-check my earrings every time I try on clothing. [Sigh.]

Thursday, August 1, 2013

DIY: Spiral Wire Necklace

Looking at a spiral notebook one morning, I thought the spiral metal rings created interesting shapes that I could create jewelry with.