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Jill de Fae
So this little ol' corset is for me. Yay!  I found some beautiful steel satiny/silky fabric (a synthetic, but who's counting since this is for me and I don't mind one little bit!), and some gorgeous grey taffeta-ish fabric to use for the bindings. One part of it has like a windy sort of embellishment, kind of ropey, but I'm tired and I can't remember what it's called. I keep wanting to say cartouche, but maybe that's some kind of horse drawn buggy that I remember from Sense and Sensibility? Anyway, it's beautiful. But one end has nothing on it and it's plain. So I'm going to use the plain part of the fabric for the top binding and the cartouche (for lack of the correct word) for the bottom binding. So my first idea was to embroider little fairy wings on the corset. I searched for embroidery files forever until I found two that I liked. One was free. One was .99.  VERY affordable I say! The colors were pretty yucky though, so I changed them a bit. I used a rust, a purple, a pale blue, a rose and a pink. So I figured as these were going on the back of the corset (and btw I made this pattern to try to start tight waisting. It's a little different than normal construction. It includes a pretty big hip spring and I made the CB panels slightly curved, so that it would be even harder to pull in. (And that worked. )) I suppose on reflection that I could have just taken more out of the panel next to CB, but for some reason I didn't do that. There was a method to the madness at the time. Or truly, maybe it was just madness. :) Anyway, so the fairy wings would have to fit across three panels. I did not want them to touch the CB as they would be hidden by lacing. So after changing the sizing and a bit of the shape of the embroidery wings, I sewed together my three panels, marked the center, carefully lined them up in my hoop and proceeded to stitch out. When I was finished with that side of the back of the corset, I was really pleased. It looked great!  So then I flipped the file horizontally (mirrored it) and marked the same place on the other sewn together 3 panels to stitch that side (rear left) out. UNFORTUNATELY, when I mirrored, the center point did not stay at the center point for some strange reason. That first stitch that assured me was exactly on my marked point was wrong. I started stitching and about half way through I started worrying. It wasn't looking right. But I kept on stitching praying for a miracle. And when I took it out of the hoop, welp, it was off by at least an inch vertically AND horizontally. That meant that I had just used a ton of thread and 6 panels (already fused btw) and did not have enough fabric to try again. So I made 6 more panels fused to cotton and then started thinking. I  loved those fairy wings. They were beautiful. And I loved the colors against the steel blue. I had already decided on a purple ribbon, so I just had to do this. And then it came to me that I should do 3D fairy wings. Somehow attach them to the back and then bend them so that they would stay bent into a curve, kind of like in flight. So I made the entire three layer corset with 28?,, bones. Reinforced the busks with 1/2" steel, used two 1/4" bones per channel each side of grommet areas and stitched each seam 1/8" on each side and then my boning channels went next to that. I also used 1/2" steel for hip areas. I used a grey shiny thread for my stitching. Okay, so back to the embroidery. I decided that to make the wings thick enough I would have to use some heavy duty embroidery backing. So I used 6 pieces layered on top of each other and then attached to the fabric underneath (sprayed together)  I then stitched out both the left and right wings. They stitched out great. I then cut them out right next to the embroidery so that you couldn't even tell they were on fabric (the same background fabric as the corset). I then sprayed them with starch on the back and wrapped them around a candle so that they would curve. I left them like that overnight and in the morning they had a really nice permanent curve to them. I wanted to embellish them, so I used light rose AB Swarovski crystals on each of the end swirls of the wings. Beautiful! I finished the corset completely, including the 3 layers (fashion/cotton and coutil) and hand stitched the inner bindings, as well as the CF and CB panel insides. My waist tape was stitched with practically every single stitch sewn, so it was strong as an ox. (Again, this corset was for me to begin tight waisting) After all of the corset was finished, I then attached the wings to the back upper edges. I decided that I wanted the upper wing tip to protrude up over the top of the top binding. So . .  I attached the 2nd wingtip with a grommet to the binding area and then hand stitched the bottom left of the wing, so as to be at an angle. I also made sure that each side was exactly the same in the bend so that the 3D extrusions would be the same. It was turning out beautifully. The hip spring was there, it cinched me to 3" on first try (reached finally over 4") and I sort of looked almost skinny. WOO HOO! I then cut and burned the edges of my purple ribbon and was ready to put it away until I had this great idea. :) The late night idea. I asked around a bit and then did a fairly intense search, couldn't find it, so made my own Swarovski crystal busks in an amber color (I forget the name of the shade). It worked really well, except for accidentally nicking my fabric when grinding the busk. (and btw, I will be opening a shop on Etsy soon for these, because you are going to love them!) Anyway, fait accompli. I am now a tiny skinny little Fae (I am not tiny in the least, nor skinny. lol, but I feel like it wearing this corset!) I have been able to wear it out a couple of times in the last month over jeans. Once with a grey t shirt under and once with a pale purple silky top with purple fabric flowers all over it. Both times I received compliments and under the lights, the busk and wings glistened. Maybe I should have called it the Lightning Bug instead. Anyway . . .  lessons learned:
*Don't try to embroider stuff on your corset, especially when you are trying to flip/mirror things unless you know where exactly your center point is going to stitch.
*A crystal busk in the color you want is totally cool!
*I absolutely love the 3D aspect of this and will do it again.
*Adding Swarovski crystals to just about anything makes it look beautiful (as long as you don't overdo it)
*I'm glad that I didn't put any lace on this one, as I make a lot of corsets with lace.
*If I had made the wings more removable it probably would have been better so that I could sleep in my corset. Although, truly, I want just a white cotton exterior with coutil interior corset for sleeping. (Next time!)
Oh, and btw, my embroidery machine needs to be fixed now. When oiling it the other day (because it was making a funny grinding weird noise, I tipped it over gently and a bolt fell out. A very tiny one. So apparently somewhere in the machine there's a screw loose (lol), and it's grinding against other metal). Not good. Now to find an experienced sewing machine repairwoman out here in the middle of the Gulf. hmmmmmmmmmm

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Need to finish bottom binding and lacing on that piece, as well as making pasties. Will do pleather pasties with binding. Will make the fronts look like gears with gold permanent paint markers, and then the tiny propellers in the center. Have to make them in a more "finished" way than what the instructions were on FR. But they were definitely a great starting point. Can make those late at night with leftover materials and shouldn't take too long. Need double sided attachment tape also. (Got it!) Need a model for that too. (Can use mannequin) Need to restitch leather attachment pieces on lacing area. (Did That!)  I made them a little too crappy. Also embroider a bee or something for the inside to cover the hole from screw. (Used a matching glued in sequin instead)
This should take one late night and then can have it ready by February 4 with mannequin pics.
Welp, wasn't able to get to the pasties, although I will still make them! Have decided to put randomly distributed sequins on them with the little mini propellers in the middle. Have cut out the front circles and the back circles and the felt circles for the middle. Have the sticky tape and the propellers ordered from Etsy. Even though it didn't make it into the competition, it's a great idea and I love dong this. WOOHOO!

He's home
So, yep. I'm weird. My son came home yesterday from Afghanistan. Every 15 minutes I was texting other moms, checking facebook for updates, checking my emails for updates, etc. So basically, I did nothing all day other than neurotically stalk my son's airplanes. lol Trust me. You would too if you've ever had a soldier gone for practically a year in the mountains of Afghanistan working in an elite group of fighters. Not hearing his voice for 5 months. Getting emails sporadically, maybe every 6 weeks. It was a horrible, awful, stressful, frightening time for me. And when I DID hear his voice during his deployment, somehow it was awkward. It has NEVER been awkward with us before. Never. It seemed we had too much to say, but couldn't say it. Long silences. I think I heard my heart breaking though at the same time he heard his. Hmmm. Not gonna dwell on the past. He's back at his base in Washington. I will see him in 2 -3 months and will get that long awaited hug. All of my children (5) will be here at the same time, which doesn't happen often anymore and we will sit on the porch and the boys will play guitar and we will have a fire in the firepit and my life will once again feel totally complete. :)

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Morning came too early today. And my head is foggy and buzzing. Working on a headache and it's only 8 am.
Things to do: Clean my room. It's so chaotic right now that I can't even consider tackling the finish of the corset while stumbling over various tools and fabrics. Next: Change thread for my leather sewing on back lacing panel, as well as attaching the end of the "belt" to the leather piece first. It's already fully boned, so I should be able at that point to make my bottom binding and begin the process of hand stitching. Then comes quality control. A crummy stitch line? A random thread here or there? Are the bindings perfectly straight and ending exactly alike on all edges? Is there anything that could improve this corset in construction or style?
Finally: NOTATIONS and specific pattern labeling and information. I.E. Used on the "jules" corset or whatever I would like to call it. Then the date of pattern and then signing of corset with year.
One more thought. There is a tiny hole on the inside of the corset above center line busk. It is not protruding or fraying, but you can see a glimpse of the white boning through the hole. How can I cover this creatively? I have an idea, but not sure I'll go there. The thought is to embroider my logo bee onto soft fabric and attach (glue). Another is to embroider a cog and cover. A very tiny cog.

Finally, pics and attach to my live journal through my photograph account. Should I post on my website BEFORE the competition? Or save it for a modeling session before posting? Should I give a sneak preview from facebook? I also need to take shots of the interior, but will wait until the tiny hole punch is covered.

And then it's fait acompli! (Unless and until I think of something that absolutely must be added to this corset. Doesn't usually happen, but every once in a while something pops into my head and I think, that MUST be added. A tiny swarovski crystal placed on the center knob of the drawer pull. A definite possibility.

Thank you for reading! Please feel free to comment, discuss, check out my website: beespokecorsets.com   Friend me on facebook:   Beespoke  or like my page. :)

Until next year's competition, which may or may not feature my beach theme or silk print. Or whatever the future may hold. :)
P.S. I have resolved for 2013 to journal more. It's good for the soul! In the meantime, I am checking every email and text to see when my son hits us soil.

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Obviously, I'm trying to catch up with my "journaling" because I rarely journal anymore. I'm just too busy. But I'm realizing right now that this is a very good thing. It's a way to keep my thoughts in order and to look back and remember, oh, yea, I want to do that! Or I had that idea that one time when I was at the grocery store. ;) Btw, do you know that looking at produce really helps with color choices? I saw that on HGTV with Genevieve years ago. She split open a kiwi. It was so wild. And eggplant. All of those colors that on the inside have variations. I have to remember that again!

Okay. So onward we trod. The next morning (today actually) I decide to start measuring and drilling my 3 layers of 1/2" flat boning for my busk for the screw to go through. Except. My drill bits don't make a dent. Literally. Hmmm. Not a good sign. And no, I don't have a drill press. So, I go for the awl. Btw, I am going to include pics of the chaos of my room as I make this corset. lol You will die. It's a wreck. A complete and total wreck. Not to mention that a week ago I moved my son into the sewing room which is right next door to my bedroom because his room was downstairs and he was all alone down there. I didn't like that. It didn't feel safe for some reason. So, he is happy as a clam with his new room which is snug and cuddly and everything from my sewing room is now in my room. It was already a disaster from my pattern making disaster coma. Now it's worse. Much worse. It's very good that my husband ISN"T here right now. He'd be sleeping in my son's room. ;)

So I get out the awl. It's a heavy duty awl. Great for everything. Where's my hammer? ARGH! It's working. It goes through the bone. But not through enough to make a big enough hole for the screw. Hmmmm. So I look around and there is some kind of brass thing in my dad's junk stash that has a flat bottom and a hole in the top. I bet if I lay the bone over that thing and then bang on the awl with the hammer, I can get the awl to go deeper and the hole will be just right. Bang. The bone breaks. I try again. And a third time. Okay. So THAT's not going to work. I move on to leather. If I put the leather inside the boning channel with a small hole in it for the screw and then pop it through the front, I can then attach the handle. Except I've already sewn my 5/8" channel for my bones and trying to stick a piece of grommeted leather inside is not happening. So I have to take out the stitches. Punch a hole through the entire corset, and stick the screw through the grommeted leather and out the front. But it works! Yay. Then I add another piece of grommeted leather to the front of the corset, along with another grommet because the drawer pull is concaved outward and I need for it to sit flat. I forgot to say that I decided to punch out the center of the drawer pull because I wanted to use that little knob that I found. haha  It adds detail. And I think I like knobs. :) Everything works. It pulls down tightly and the screw is the perfect length and tightens to a tee. Now, about that boning! Well, actually, it makes perfect sense. I was wondering how I was going to cover the screw this whole time on the inside of the corset so that it wouldn't bother the wearer. This is the answer. The boning goes BEHIND the screw on the inside of the corset. So, three full length pieces of bone (yes, I cut all of my bones and grind the edges and use refrigerator epoxy paint on the tips. Smooth as silk.) And yes, I tip all of my spirals after I cut them, snip off the jagged parts and actually grind them smooth and run them against my lip to make sure they are smooth BEFORE I put the tips on. Why? Because a tip came off inside of a corset once and I realized that the spiral bone could have ripped the heck out of it. Anyway. The three bones are in but I have to replace the stitching I took out to insert the leather. This time though, I have to use a zipper foot to get close enough to stitch because of that big ol screw sticking up with the leather. (I have already had to dismantle the drawer pull). I stitch it. I'm not happy with it. But it's late. And I'm not selling this one. This one's for me to keep for the competition. I put the drawer pull back on. Everything is awesome! WOOT.

I found 2 little bars from that old junky necklace which were brass and perfect length. Thin, with two holes on each end. Perfect for attaching the belt parts to the sides. AND to cover the holes on the ends and add some beauty, I will use the MICA block beads to attach. So . . . hand sewing it is. The top first (can't let any of this show inside the corset. Except for the top hole stitches because it's under the waist tape. YAY! Slip the belt onto the bar and then hand stitch the bottom bar with Mica block bead onto it. Niiiiiiice.

I have already sewn the top binding but haven't grommeted. Now to mark the grommets and decide where I want to put the leather grommet pieces from the belt. The problem is . .. . the leather pieces are already grommeted and I like that they are brass. But how am I going to have the hole go all the way through the panel for the lacing? So I grommet for the holes and then will have to attach the leather grommeted strips over those grommets. But that WILL work actually. I lay out my grommets. Gold/Black/Nickel.  Wish I had brass. Or maybe not. Black is too dark on the grey, unless I had chosen black accents elsewhere. The gold was too gold and not brassy enough. My go to is the nickel and it's good. Grommet it all up. The leather strip with the two grommets will be my rabbit ear holes so the other holes will be slightly farther apart. It's all good and it's all working. Now I have to figure out how long to make the belt to attach to the leather grommet pieces in back. Will the length change once it's tightened?

Yep. Better make sure. So I need to lace her up on the trusty mannequin. This one has a rust spot on one breast and has been my favorite pincushion. When I take pics, I'll use a nicer mannequin. Or hopefully a model. Or not. Who knows? Who cares right now?

All laced up. Using brown ribbon for the lacing which I have to take out of my very own corset, because I'm out of the brown ribbon. No other color will do. This is perfect.  I had already cut the leather straps earlier by lying them across the curves of the corset flat and low and behold they were just the right length. Pinned! That's all for tonight. I'm exhausted from blabbing so much. And it's late. And as I write this my son is on a flight home from Afghanistan where he has been fighting for 9 months. And emotionally I'm exhausted. Ecstatic. Thankful. Humbled. Praying. Loving. Slightly anxious. And by tomorrow night I can sleep peacefully for the first time in 9 months. Prayers have kept him safe. Thank you so much God. I love you.

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark

I look at my sketch again and then start laying things out on the corset. THAT would look neat. No. Too over the top. The drawer pulls look so cool on this and match the bronze binding so well. I want to use the belts. With the grommets. However, there isn't enough length with grommets and snaps to make it around the sides of the corset. The belt is attached to brass rings. I don't really like those though. I don't know why. I just don't want rings on my corset. So out come the pliers. Ah. The ends that attach to the rings have snaps on them. Well, one does anyway. I'm noticing that they aren't identical. One side has a brass rivet. The other a brass snap. But they are close enough. I still want to use part of the belt with the grommets though. Maybe I could use them for lacing up the back? Nah. too short also. But I like the look of the leather with the grommets on the lacing area.

So, now I'm running into problems. Btw, my boning arrived. My machine isn't sewing as well. Especially the top stitching. It gets tight and then loose. The feed dogs aren't letting it feed smoothly. I'm having to push and pull. Not good. I try paper on top and bottom. Waxed paper? Tissue paper? Nope. not working. Rethread. It's probably the dang oil, but I'm not going to oil it now because it will probably get on the coutil which has happened before to a practically finished corset. DISASTER!

So I make do. I decide to use one drawer pull slightly above center horizontal line. I'm going to forgo a busk (good thing they aren't here yet. lol) and will have to use several 1/2' flats to provide enough support. I'll just drill through the boning, insert the screw through the back of the corset and screw the drawer pull to the front. (I do not want to glue) Now for testing some things out. one layer of coutil, one layer of vinyl, 3 bones. So the screw needs to be attached tightly to the drawer pull for this all to work and of course it's too long. AND my drill battery is dead (of course.) I'll have to charge that overnight. But in the meantime, my handy dandy Dremel will be used for something other than filing bones. I start grinding down the screw. (I haven't done this before.) What if when I grind it, it won't screw into the drawer pull thingy? So I grind and then screw and make it groove. And again. And again. It's still too long. I decide to stop for the night and make the binding. I want the top binding to be wider than the bottom. I'm going to use bronze on both, where normally I would use the contrast binding only on the top. As this is a cincher, I think it will be more pleasing aesthetically. It's a bronze taffeta. I do not like fusing. Fusing sucks. It makes bubbles and wrinkles in taffeta and (most everything else). Normally I would use my little binding maker thing (not the auto kind, the kind you thread the fabric through and then iron and fold). I don't have one wide enough. So I have to think. I want 5/8" binding showing, so 5/8 x 4 = 20/8 = 10/4 = 5/2 = 2 1/2. And then I take off 1/8" so that when I fold it in half it doesn't quite meet the fold line. I use a much heavier cotton behind and stabilize with spray glue stuff. Okay, so that works. But, since this corset doesn't have a detachable busk, I have to make the lacing/grommet areas first. Welp. I'm not going to do that, so I match everything up, trim here and there to make the tops and bottoms exact and fold the lacing flap over (I've already tried sewing the lacing panel down and using it for my boning channels. 2 layers of coutil (one from corset, one from flap) and 2 layers of vinyl. It's NOT working. Talk about having to push and pull and tug and stuff. So I have to rip out the threads. And yes, it does make tiny holes. Ugh. I'm finding that things that I normally do, I can no longer do. Like edge stitching 1/8" in. Not possible. Too much bulk (even with trimming - I can't trim that small without weakening the corset.) So . . .  I will just have to use the corset CB panel and sandwich my boning between the vinyl and coutil. Not really a big deal. Except that now I have the back flap just flapping around. And I'm not ready to secure it permanently to the interior of the corset (hand stitching). Oh complications.

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Next day: I start thinking about bindings. What color. . . black? Nah. Silver? Maybe. Purple? Not this one. Bronze? I put it up against the vinyl and it's AWESOME! Incredible. Spectacular! It's looking like something magnetic! Tools. Junk. My dad's garage. Resident Evil (I rented it from redbox the other day). Well, really not Resident Evil, but I like Mila, so maybe it reminded me of her. Where is that stuff that I raided from my dad's junk drawer the last time I was home? Hmm. In a leather purse that I bought at Goodwill one time just because I liked the leather, not to actually use as a purse. I found it! Yay! So then I started pouring it out on the floor. At which time my son pops in again and starts looking through it at the same time wondering what pieces he will take to make something creative. GRRRR. Why is there an old crappy necklace in there? Rusty drawer pulls. A bunch of springs. Clock parts (cool). More other things that are unidentifiable but cool looking. Some keys, some chains. General janx that reminds me so much of my dad, who can make anything out of anything - very similar to Iron Man - Tony Stark. :) Oh yeah. I have beads that are mica. I also have a pack of really metallic bronzes, golds, etc of sequins. I have cream and white pearl beads. I also have black beads. I like the leather straps that I stuck inside the leather purse that don't really go with the purse. They must have been part of a belt. I like it. It's got grommets all over it. Hmmm. I have crystals. I have E6000. I see a tiny brass knob. With a screw. I really like those old drawer pulls. They have a lot of character. I really like the belt or strap or whatever it is. Now I have to sketch. Here is the pic of my sketch.

I'm on a roll.

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Okay. So the test on the vinyl and coutil was pretty nice with tension set at about 6. Still worked when I doubled the coutil and doubled the vinyl. Looked good. The thread dents in a bit on vinyl, but you can still definitely see it. Not like velvets. As I'm stitching under the "lights" I noticed that the vinyl looked metallic. Not with the little flecks, but like pewter. (Ideas start to take place in my head) That's about the time that my 9 year old son walked in and said, hey, I like that stuff. It sort of looks like silk. hahahahah I'm creating a monster. Gotta love a kid that knows silk though.
On toward sewing. Okay, so . . . . my busks weren't in. I had used every bit of 1/4" boning I had on my last corset (both spiral and flat). All that was left was 1/2" flat. BUT, I had ordered more from Dragontown, so knew that it was on the way - as well as my busks from Caitlin of King and Company (Etsy).

I decided that I wanted the corset to be fully boned. Most of my corsets are fully boned now anyway. I like the weight. I like the compression. I like the posture support and change. My pattern could have taken some flats, but I decided to do all spirals (except for the reinforced 1/2 flat behind the busk and doubled 1/4" flats on the lacing panels.

Btw, if you are ACTUALLY reading all of this, well, kudos to you! You are at least seeing that I actually think about the corsets I make, rather than just pulling any old fabric or any old thread or any old pattern and just sticking it together. I love the design process. I love seeing an idea come to fruition. I love the feel of different textures. I love sketching. Also, as an aside, I also have a cool idea of printing a design on silk. I even have it named. That will come one day. . .. Maybe for next year's competition?

So anyway, things are going well. Seams are strong. The vinyl has a bit of give but not too much. I am accounting for whatever that's called? You know, when your coutil is longer than the vinyl. Turn of Cloth. That's it. My sewing machine is chugging along. Poor thing. I never oil it. And my son (his father has been out of town for 2 months now and my daughter is visiting family in VA for the holidays) is in and out of the room every ten seconds talking. Which ruins concentration. And then I feel bad because I can't ignore him. It's just the two of us and he won't be 9 forever. So, I stop. And watch a movie. And feed the pets and look at my bedroom which is a disaster. And then go to bed with my sewing machine light still on calling me . . . work, work, don't give up! But instead I watch netflix on my nook and fall asleep. :)

Daddy's Junk Drawer AKA Tony Stark
Okay, so here goes with my dress journal:
I can't find my last year's journal, so I shall just begin anew/afresh/again!
I have been thinking about what to do with embellishments since the competition rules were announced. I had this awesome idea having to do with "da beach" as I live at one (saving that idea for later whenever I find the time), however, a lot has happened since then and it just didn't happen.

Since last year I went with a long Edwardian, I decided that this year I would try a cincher. Cinchers are new to me. Clients don't usually ask for them, but I figured it was a good way to work up a pattern and see where it would go. WELL, it is going well. For two weeks I felt like I was hitting my head against a wall and nothing would work. Everything looked just, well, not professionally drafted. So I thought and thought and tried some more until my entire bedroom was covered with mockups and patterns. Most of which were labeled, some of which were done on Christmas wrapping paper. lol FINALLY, finally, I had a break through. Maybe it was a good night's sleep. Maybe it was because the stress of Christmas morning was over. Who knows? However, I hit on something that I felt good about.

So the pattern was good. But now what? Where would I go with this? One GABILLION swarovski crystals? A whole bunch of lace? Silk? I could get extremely creative and make one out of metal. Unfortunately, I don't have any metal and I really don't know how to pound metal into any shape. haha  Another idea hit, but involved more gluing than sewing, which wasn't what I was trying to do. SO, . .. I started sketching. Very late at night. Some extremely weird drawings. ;) But kind of cool nonetheless. But then again, this isn't a runway show, it's a competition for FR.

If you know me, you know that I must constantly be challenged. Not necessarily more complex problems, but just different sets of problems to overcome. (In design, anyway). I really don't want a whole bunch of complex life problems to overcome. Already got enough of those.

I also like to stay in the "classic" territory. I like "sexy", but I don't really DO sexy. More like "demure" (I think). Enough to entice, but not be blatant. But that's just my style.

Okay. So on to the diary. I looked through my laces for inspiration. I looked through books and online for inspiration. I watched movies for inspiration. And then I looked through my fabrics. AHA. Vinyl. A silvery grey vinyl. Not too terribly thick, but definitely not thin. I have never, no never sewn with vinyl before. This was my chance. Exploring new things. Yay! (Trust me. I had been thinking fur, that new minky stuff, feathers, quilted silk, etc. All I could think of was FAT. It will make everyone look FAT! And that definitely is not the point of a corset. lol)

I decided on a two layer corset. Vinyl (thick enough) and tight weave herringbone coutil. Next came cutting out. Nice. Vinyl cuts very easily. :) Even with my very best scissors that my 9 year old used to cut cardboard. (I now have 12 pairs of scissors that can no longer cut fabric) And my rotary thingy is crummy. Yes, it was expensive. But it's wobbly and dull and I have changed blades 5 times and so forget it.

Now, what needle to use for leather? What thread? Welp. I used to have my needles organized. They are no longer organized. So I grabbed the skinniest one. Probably not the right one, but I tried it out on scrap coutil and vinyl. I think for leather you need to use big ol' needles. I have leather needles. Somewhere. . . Thread? My favorite is shiny embroidery thread. No it's not cotton. No it's not heavy duty. But it's beautiful and, well, shiny. And I have sewn many corsets with it and as long as I double stitch the seams and top stitch and use waist tape, I've never seen a stretch, let alone pull out on any of the seams. So I chose a pale silver thread. NOT THE DREADED METALLIC SILVER THREAD which is the most horrible thread to sew with ever in the entire universe. (Until I found out that I was using the wrong needle and tension. But still. I learned my lesson once. Not going there again.)

Sorry! This thread is continued, but you have to scroll to the bottom of the page or something. My 2nd Entry "Jill de Fae" cut in line and it was just plain rude. :)

Today is scramble day for me. After spending the last several days reducing clutter, rearranging my sewing area, moving furniture about and generally decluttering the entire house, I'm feeling much more relaxed and with it. It seemed as if all of the clutter was taking away my focus and in general, just frustrating me to the point that I was frozen. It doesn't help that my son is being deployed in a few days. First deployment. It doesn't help that my rehearsal dinner plans are a jumble at most. It doesn't help that my youngest is at home today with a sore throat and nasty cold. It doesn't help that I just spent over 300 on my old english sheepdog for exam, meds, tests, etc. It doesn't help that I got 4 hours of sleep last night. It doesn't help that the alterations and mending that I perform for an upscale clothing store apparently gathered every single item in the store and put it in 2 paper bags with no instructions or markings anywhere for me to fix. So I will spend much needed time examining and finding every area needing mending or alteration. Other than that . . .. I am ecstatic that I now have all organized in my sewing area which truly helps me to focus again on corsets which need to be finished and sent asap. So.......today is catch up and scramble day. I hope that I will be able to update at the end of the day with much accomplished. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. My focus and thought and encouragement for today.