I headed out to the Knit-Wits meeting last night - having missed last weeks, because I had a cold - where I managed to knit a full twenty-four rows of my wobbly line scarf. This one (my second proper knitting project) is taking me forever to make up, not because it's particularly difficult but because I've been concentrating on making costume for Shards. As it was, last night I was expecting to be sewing but ran out of hem the night before on the skirt I'm currently making. The translation of that being, that I finished hand-sewing the hem and so had nothing portable to take with me.
I headed over to Richard's for the weekend, making use of his spare room in the evening, while struggling around Shining Death doing a LARP event during the day. Determined to make good use of the time, I took two projects with me - the maternity bodice and matching skirt. Both of these had reached a stage requiring hand-sewing so were perfect for working on whilst nattering away to Richard and his fellow guests, Matt and Gareth in the evening.
The maternity* bodice is almost done. Thanks to my efforts last weekend, I've sewn the binding around the armholes so all that's left now is the eyelets, which I hope to make a start on tonight.
Those who know me, know I hate setting or sewing eyelets, which is ironic since so much of the costume I make features them in some way or another. The alternative is to use buttons or loops, but since I typically hand-sew those as well... Let's just say that fastenings are my least favourite part of finishing a garment and leave it at that!
The bodice will need eyelets (or most likely metal gromits) set into the centre front seam as well as the side seams. I still need to press and then sew a flap to each side seam in readiness for this, and then comes the fun of deciding whether to punch a hole or to poke a hole with an awl. The secret to good metal eyelets is to use as small and tight a hole as possible, which means the awl is usually my favoured method, but it's fiddly and time consuming. Not so time consuming as sewing eyelets, but it still takes a surprisingly long time to set metal eyelets, even when you've had a lot of practice.
The maternity* skirt is also nearly finished. As usual, I've opted to use a kilt pin rather than a zip to hold the side closed and was planning on using elastic to help hold the waistband in place. I've never chosen to use elastic before, since most of the costume I make is loosely based on historical clothing. The only reason I thought I'd try it was the skirt has to sit high around the base of my ribcage to allow for the bump*, so I wanted the waistband to have some give in it which would have allowed me to breathe. Sadly, disaster struck from the combination of lack of experience and cheap, nasty elastic which lost all elasticity once sewn - hence I'm having a rethink. I've pleated the skirt into the waistband, so it's not a huge amount of gather we're talking about which means I may opt for a drawstring instead.
So getting there, slowly but surely.
* The costume described within this posting is designed to go over a series of fake pregnant bellies. The LARP character they're intended for is expecting and so I'm simulating the pregnancy with costume.