Sunday, September 15, 2013

A Tip from the Procrastinating Patternmaker...

 A year and a half ago I set out to make my son a couple of button-up shirts for his birthday.  I drafted a pattern, he picked out the fabrics, and we were both really excited.  In a moment of over confidence I cut out two shirts.  With his birthday just around the corner I finished the first one.  I loved the way the first one turned out...until he tried it on.  It was too short!  Too short and sewn together really, really well, seams finished without a serger, lots and lots of top stitching.  The thought of taking out all of that stitching was daunting.  The birthday came and went, summer flew by, and the beginning of school approached.  "I'll have them done by the beginning of school," I promised.  So, I adjusted the pattern and he picked out more fabric.  I cut out and started three more shirts....then procrastination happened again, and kept happening.  The front pieces of a button up shirt are not necessarily symmetrical, every time I would think about working on the shirts I would remember that in this particular pattern they were not suppose to be symmetrical, but the pieces I cut out were symmetrical.  I could vaguely recall there was SOMETHING I was suppose to do, but I could not procrastination continued....for a whole year.

As school was getting ready to start this year, my son asked if I would please finish the shirts I was suppose to finish for the beginning of school LAST year.  FINALLY I got the pattern out figured out what it was I couldn't remember...cut 5/8 of an inch off of the left side of the shirt before adding a facing....all that time for 5/8 of an inch.  So, if you know you are a procrastinator, as I know I am, here is the tip:

Keep all of your pattern pieces in a large envelope.  If you need to make changes write down the changes on the envelope with a date, mark off the change when the pattern gets updated. 

I do this now, but I was not doing it a year and a half ago, it saves sooo much time.  I don't always have time to get pattern pieces out and alter them right away, but this way I always know where I left off.

I mustered up the energy to take out all of my fancy stitching on the first shirt and lengthen it.  The boy loves the shirt and ended up wearing it for the first day of school.  He told me when it gets to be too little he is going to save it for his kids, and if he doesn't have kids he'll make a quilt out of it someday...that's my boy!

I just finished the other four yesterday, in time for the third day of school.  I have one very happy boy.

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