Lots going on in the world since I last posted. Between the adjustment of working again and the angst of the 2016 political contest, my anxiety has been in overdrive. As a result I – ever an emotional eater – have regained every ounce I lost a year ago, and added a few pounds for good measure. On the plus side, my favorite hand me down pants, formerly wearable only with a belt and even then not outside of the house because the waistband folded over on itself with said belt, can now be worn sans any belt at all. They are the most comfortable thing in my wardrobe right now, excluding my giant granny gowns.
On Why This Isn’t EVEN My Fault
I have gained a full 6 1/2 inches in my waist since the summer 🙁
On the not-and-yet-oh-so-plus side, this means that 5 pairs of jeans I bought when I landed this job stopped fitting about a week after they landed in my closet, and my old jeans are likewise out of the question. None of my t-shirts should be seen in public, and most of my “loose” blouses and tops are now too tight in the shoulders. Even my new shoes are now too small with the exception of a pair of boots I bought to wear with thick socks (they work if I’m barefoot or wearing hosiery).
I’m currently making due with a couple of cheap pairs of jeans from a big box store, some old stretch pants I bought at Walgreens a few years ago, and – well, and working from home as much as possible. I do have a couple of tunics I bought for work, but I’m mostly just glad it’s finally cool enough for me to throw a big cardigan over everything before I walk out the door.
I can’t blame all of this on food, folks, which leads me to another thing that’s happened post-employment, and that would be hot flashes. All. The. Damn. Time. I’m currently unable to take any kind of systemic estrogen for this issue, which kicked off with a bang a week and a half after I started my new job (though my doc is exploring options as she reviews my medical history more closely), but am about to start bio-identical progesterone. The doc said she thinks progesterone alone will help with the hot flashes, and I hope & pray she’s right. I totally thought I’d skated through this part of my life without going through any of this intemperate hoo-ha. I was wrong.
As you look at the 3 blouses I’ve completed since my last post, you’ll see I’m aiming to hide something under my shirt. All of this weight gain has driven my sewing towards blouses that will hide my enormous, bloated belly and reduce any requirement for anything even touching the skin in my waistband department (and all other departments, too, but that’s another story). Alas, all are a bit wrong – but I’m moving in the right direction.
Whitney Deal Ryan / Khadi Denim Slub
Using this Khadi Denim Slub (purchased from Merchant & Mills back in April, no longer available) and the Whitney Deal Ryan Top, I finally… finally made a blouse I actually really like and am really proud of. And the fabric, which I have been quite dubious of since it’s arrival? Well, I actually fell in love with it as I got to know it better. Oh sure, I had to toss the first bodice I made because I was incapable of sewing a 1/4″ seam without turning my sewing machine into some kind of fabric unravelling robot. Sure, that was frustrating (though not unexpected, as I should probably toss stuff and start over before I commit far more often than I do) and disappointing. But if I hadn’t tossed the first attempt I would never have taken the time to oh-so-carefully Steam-A-Seam each beautiful edge of this fabric, and would never, therefore, have learned to appreciate it’s beautiful feel and sheen, which simply cannot be captured with my little iPhone 5. In some lights this fabric is blue, in some lights it is gold, and in others it is black. Although it’s called “Denim” it is actually almost sheer. It’s been a month and a half since I made it, and it is already too snug to fit comfortably over a camisole, unfortunately. It’s hanging out in my closet with my other pre-weight gain clothing (PWGC) until I can wear it again.
True Bias Sutton / Mystery Japanese Slub
The blue top is a True Bias Sutton in a Japanese fabric. I purchased the fabric from the Cloth Pocket here in Austin several months ago – I bought all they had left, which was exactly enough to make this top. The selvedge was in Japanese characters and the owner didn’t know the English translation – so I don’t know the manufacturer or the fabric name (if you do, please let me know!). It’s some kind of very stable Japanese fabric with a delightful print and just enough drape for this blouse. I accidentally cut out a size medium in this pattern (no matter – I didn’t have enough for a L, anyway). It just barely fits me and I did wear it to work one time. It’s also back with my PWGC clothes, as the front actually rides up over my belly as I move around :-(. I think I’ll really enjoy wearing this next Spring / Summer after I lose this weight again.
McCall’s M7325 / African Wax Print
Finally, have my African wax print from Hell Gate Fabrics. Given the very opaque nature of this fabric, I was utterly amazed by how transparent it looks in these pictures. Who knew? At any rate, the jury’s still out on weather or not I’ll wear this top. It’s fun, but it’s also an awful lot of fabric for a short lady like me. The good news about this top is that it’s the first time I’ve ever successfully completed my McCall’s M7325 pattern. I used the wrong kind of fabric, but so did another blogger (her’s turned out wonderfully, probably in part because she knows what she’s doing and definitely in part because her daughter/model is absolutely gorgeous and can pull it off).
So, my sewing has been earnest and hopeful and is certainly improving – but I haven’t had a great pay-off from it in the wardrobe department, yet. Here’s hoping my next sewing post shows more progress in that particular area.