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The Star Wars commission is done for now. My client is coming to try it on tonight - I have a feeling the collar needs some alterations, but won't know for sure until he tries it on. 

In the meantime, Big Fish closed yesterday. It was a wonderful show, and now I'm in the weird space of being show-less again. I only even have one audition coming up, and it's for something (that I am unlikely to get) that won't perform till October, so I guess it's break-time, aka sewing time!

Except for the next two weeks, most of which will be spent on vacation. I leave Wed evening to fly down to the Bay Area, and then my mom and I will be driving back up to Seattle in my new/her old car. We'll have one day up here before boarding our Alaska cruise on Sunday! As much as I would have loved being able to bring hand-sewing on the cruise, there's no way I will have any. 

But when I get back from the cruise, it's time to start in on the gala dress. I have to figure out the pattern for the princess dress first, so hopefully that will go smoothly, and the mockup will be successful, because I really want to dive into actually making it. I still need to make my Daniel Deronda riding habit for Costume College, too. 

That said, it's good that I'm going on vacation this week, because my main sewing machine broke last Wednesday. The take-up lever was still going up and down, but the needle bar wasn't. It's probably one screw that has come loose, or something simple like that, but I can't get to it, so instead I have to spend $160 on a full service. I definitely did not need this to happen right now! Anyway, it should be done being serviced right about the time we finish the cruise, so at least the timing works out, and in the meantime, I used my Viking to finish sewing the last bit of the commission. 

I prepped all the pockets for the flight suit yesterday. This involves pressing all the edges of the pockets in, and doing two rows of stitching on the side of the pocket that is open, plus sewing/turning/top-stitching the three pocket flaps. There's a total of nine pockets, I think, and I'm hoping to get all nine sewn on today. I've only marked placement for two so far, though, so we'll see how that actually goes...

After work, I'm taking the jazz dance class, so I won't actually get home to eat dinner and sew until probably about 8pm, unless I sneak in some dinner before class. At this point, I'm pretty sure making a formal dress by next Wednesday is not going to happen. But I am hoping to finish the flightsuit by tomorrow night. 
I knocked most of my to-do list off last week -- pretty much everything besides the commission and hanging the towel bars in the bathroom. So last night, after our matinee, I wound up with some sewing time, and worked for about three hours on the commission. I seam-ripped off all the different pockets from the ill-fitting flightsuit my customer had ordered, and cut them all out in the coverall fabric. There's a lot of pockets! Today, I hope to sew the majority of them on. Besides that, I just have to sew on two shoulder patches, hem the pants, and add a stirrup to the bottom of each leg to make it easier to put his boots on. 

If I can finish all that by the end of tomorrow (unlikely), then I think I might make myself a vintage-style formal dress to wear at formal night of the cruise, since I apparently only have historical formal-wear in my wardrobe. 

As I mentioned, though, that's unlikely. Today, I have to go grocery shopping after working late, and am planning on going to zumba. And tomorrow I'm taking a jazz dance class in the evening. I'm determined to finish the flight suit this week, which I know is totally possible, but I doubt it will leave much time for a formal dress, even without much pattern alteration.

May. 7th, 2019

I haven't posted in forever, because I haven't sewed in forever. 

Okay, so that last part isn't 100% true. I did attempt to make a new slip last week, since mine is completely falling apart. But since I was only home for abut 30 mins a day last week, and that included when I needed to eat dinner, I have yet to finish it. All it needs is a side seam and the waistband put on, so hopefully I'll finish it this week. 

What I really need to be working on, sewing-wise, is the commission. Now that Big Fish is open and I don't have rehearsal every day, I should have time to get to that very soon. But first I have to play catch-up on all the things I haven't had time to do for the last 2+ weeks, which is mostly house/yardwork. I've already mowed both lawns in the last two days, went grocery shopping, and cleaned the kitchen (and I went to the gym and walked Lion). Today, I hope to run a couple errands, go to the gym, give Lion a bath, clean the living room, put up two new towel bars and a new curtain liner in the bathroom, spray all the weeds in my yard, do a load of laundry, and put away all my clean laundry (including from the last load I did). 

I know, realistically, this will not all happen today. But luckily, I have tomorrow after work as well, and I finally get Friday off again this week. (I normally work M-Th, but I've had to work M-F for the last three weeks, plus longer hours during the week, plus rehearsal every night.) Naturally, I'm feeling very burnt out at the moment, which is why sewing has not also happened yet. 

The really nice thing that I'm looking forward to, though, is that I get to take an absolutely relaxing break in a few weeks! My mom and I wound up booking a last minute Alaska cruise a couple weeks ago for the end of May. And I'm rather looking forward to being forced to do nothing at this point. But I definitely do need to finish the commission before then!

Next Project!

My house projects are temporarily on hold, because I can't find the paint for the cabinets. Also, I got a signed contract for a commission, so I have to be working on that. 

Naturally, though, all I really want to work on right now is my CoCo gala dress, because I figured out my design! I'm really excited about it. I'm going to do a natural form 1879 dress based off a fashion plate I've been eyeing for a while. I'm fairly certain I'm going to make it a princess dress, since that's what I originally thought the plate was, though [personal profile] sewtimely noticed there is actually a waist seam. In between the commission work, I'm going to play around with some patterning, and see what I like better. I have to find some long pieces I can use for mockup fabric, but I already have the green/pink satin/taffeta stripe, and the pink taffeta, both of which I bought in September at Luxury Fabrics in LA. I'm hoping to find some nice wide lace online, and I'm also trying to figure out what I might have to do for the understructure. 

Anyway, here is my version and the original plate:

My closet

My closet is finished! It actually wound up being a pretty quick project. On Monday, I installed the left side shelf/rod/brackets, which took me a little over an hour, and seemed somewhat difficult. Yesterday, I turned the shelf unit around, and oddly enough, the wood was much nicer on the back side, and it fit against the wall better that way. I realized if I anchored it back to the wall, it would still be quite functional and probably pretty sturdy, since it had previously held quite a bit of weight. So that's what I did - it has two screws anchoring it to what was the back workbench support beam, which I left up on the wall. I also added the shelf/rod/brackets to the right wall, which took me under an hour, even including a 20+ minute break to allow my drill to get a tiny bit more juice (it died when I put the shelving unit screws in). I'm hoping it was the lack of a full charge that was the reason why two of the screws were not going all the way in. I'm going to go back and try those this afternoon - they just kind of got to a certain point and stopped...

I ordered some more garment bags on Amazon prime, and they should be arriving by tonight, so I think I can even move a bit more in to the closet, though I have a feeling I'll wind up needing to get even more bags. I'm probably going to leave most of the silk and possibly the wool things inside, and put everything else out in the outside closet. Also, anything that is too long for a 72" garment bag will have to stay inside, too. I can't wait to have more room in my coat and bedroom closets, and be able to get the garage a bit more organized. 

My next project will be a quick jaunt back to sewing - I have to get estimates done for two commissions, plus I'm making my mom's birthday present (which is a tool roll-up for her glass tools). And then I'm back to house stuff, painting the 5 lower cabinet doors for my kitchen, installing a new shelf/towel bar in the bathroom, and (hopefully) figuring out my leaky faucet. That one still seems really daunting! 

House Projects

I got some done on my house projects this weekend. Namely, my friend's husband came over on Saturday with a chain saw and helped hack up the trunk/base branches of the giant shrub on the side of my house, so that is now gone! Or rather, it is a stump, and about 4 branches that didn't fit in my yard waste bin this week. The branches will go in next week, and I will either live with the stump, or eventually decide to dig it out. But this means I can get to my gutters! So that will be one of the next things on my list, when it stops raining. I have to clean the gutters on that side, mow both lawns, and shape the rest of my hedges. And I found 4-5 gutter guards left over from when I did the back of the house, so I can go ahead and put those up while I'm at it. 

In the meantime, while it's raining, I have my indoor projects! The closet has definitely climbed to the top of the list. Unfortunately, I had to return some of the things I bought from Lowes, because it turns out that not only can they not cut closet rods, they can't even cut closet shelves! When I called Home Depot, they said they could, so I am going to stop there after work today, buy two shelves and get them cut, and probably buy rods from them, too, if they can cut them. Otherwise, I guess I have to go with the extendable metal rods. I also have to get screws so I can put the brackets up. 

On Saturday, I managed to get the workbench out. For one thing, I did find another spider behind something that had been leaning up against the wall under the bench. Luckily, this spider was stupid, and when I started spraying him with poison, he came out from underneath the workbench (on the floor), and I stepped on him. He was the only other one I found, though. Taking the workbench out was really hard. They really had nailed/screwed that thing in there, stripping the heads of all the screws in the process. I was able to get all the screws out, though I had to do it by hand, and wore down my phillips head in the process (the drill couldn't handle how stuck they were). I got enough of the nails out that I was basically able to lift the plywood tops of the bench up, and bend a lot of the nails out. It was really tough. And now I have even more plywood that I don't know how to dispose of, this time with nails sticking out of it...

The shelf unit that had been "built in" to the workshop was actually only screwed in to the wall with one screw, and it is super flimsy when it's not leaning on the wall on one side. So I'm going to put that out at the street and hope that someone takes it, so that I don't have to dismantle it. I might get a cubby or shelf unit eventually, but I have a plastic drawer set that I will put in there for now. I'm just excited to get the bar and shelves hung!

Closet planning

Because I knew this would happen, I am probably going to work on the closet before the two more important projects.

Last night, I went in and cleaned off most of the workbench, including killing the biggest spider ever. I sprayed him with poison, he pretended to die for like 10 mins, and I thought all was well. Then I hear a tapping noise behind me, and it's because this humongous spider has come back to life and was so large that his feet were literally making tapping noises on the wood as he walked. Gross! So I sprayed him with a lot more poison, and before he could come back to life again, I used one of those claw extended reach things to squish him with a piece of poison soaked cardboard (that had been to near to the spider to remove from the workbench in the first place). Then I threw a tissue over him, and picked him up within the tissue using the claw grabber, deposited him in a trash can, and then squished him with the claw some more. I just needed to make sure he was really dead. 

So anyway, the workbench can now be removed. Though I am kind of paranoid that I'm going to run into another spider! And last night, I ordered hopefully all the closet supplies I will need, though I know that's a little premature. But I got brackets, shelves, and rods. It will wind up being kind of walk-in closet style, with a rod on either side of the entrance. In the back center, I hope to have some sort of shelving unit that can also act as a desk, because I want to see if the room would also work to do voiceover in. There is a shelving unit currently in the storage room, that were presumably built by whomever built the workbench, so I'm hoping that I can maybe just move that, since it would save me from dismantling it. 

I'm still trying to figure out lighting. Right now I have one of those clamp-on ikea desk lights in there, but I'd rather have something with a bit more even light. The problem is that the only plugs come from a surge protector that has been mounted on the wall by the door. 

Anyway, I'm hoping to have a little time tomorrow to start dismantling the workbench, though I also need to take a little time today or tomorrow to do yard work as well. 

Apr. 1st, 2019

I'm still editing pictures from the three costume events I attended in March (the Outlander Ball, Emerald City Comicon, and the Victorian Festival). I've been posting some pictures from all three on instagram, and once I finish editing, I'll try to do a little picture post of each of the first two events on here. 

In the meantime, I'm on a sewing hiatus this month. I'm kind of in between roommates this month, as my current roommate is partially packed up and mostly living at her mom's house already, and I don't yet have one finalized for May yet (I'm hoping to this week, though!) Because of that, I've decided that it's time for house projects:

  • I still never finished painting my cabinet doors and drawers from my kitchen, which I started and abandoned back in Dec 2015. My goal for this project is to get the 5 lower cabinet doors painted, plus at least two drawers (I've become used to using the drawer spaces as shelves, so I plan to continue doing that for two of the four existing spaces). 
  • My bathtub faucet has been leaking for like a year, but has gotten pretty bad the last couple months, and I'm sure it's hurting my water bill. So I really want to get that fixed (though I have no idea how!)
  • I want to shape all the shrubs in my front yard. They were nice little round things when I moved in. Now they're pretty huge. I'm almost done with removing the giant shrub on my side yard, though - all I have left are the thicker base branches, which I will need someone with a chainsaw to help me.I'm hoping that I can still get my ladder up even with the base branches there, though, because that means I can finally clean the gutter on that side of the house (and probably install some gutter guards). 
  • The project that I'm most excited for, though, is revamping the storage closet area in my garage. It was built as a workroom, with a waist-high workbench on two walls, and shelves on the third wall. I'm going to remove the workbench and set it up as a closet! It already has actual dry-walled finished walls, so I think it's pretty well-sealed. I would love to be able to put up actual closet rods, and hang all the costumes in garment bags, but if I can't figure that out, I will get another ikea wardrobe, and move my existing one in there, too. I'm even wondering if I can set up a little space in there to do voiceover work. I've been wanting to get into that for a long time, but haven't had a space available for it. 
So anyway, there really won't be any sewing updates for the next month or so, other than a commission I might have, but I will be posting about housy stuff here!

Victorian Festival

Port Townsend was lovely! I didn't wind up finishing 100%, but I got about 98.5% done, so I was still happy. I didn't make the belt, for example, but I made the bow that goes on the belt, so I just pinned that onto my skirt waistband. And I pinned my petticoat closed instead of having hooks and eyes, and wound up sewing on the buttons to the plaid dress in my hotel room on Saturday night. But everything else was done, and I even had bonnets/hats for both new looks! I'm also super pleased with how the Fairy Godmother dress came out, and I can't wait to wear it again. 

Here's a few bonus pictures. I'm still working on editing all the pictures, but they'll be up on Facebook eventually. 

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