Please excuse the radio silence… It’s been busy lately. Between sewing and my day job, I’ve been toying with digital art again… making patterns for fabric including the one in the banner above. I’ve been in the sewing studio as much as I can, working towards selling my products here and on Etsy. I ordered a torso and underwear mannequin as well, bundled for under $50 on amazon. Both are just molded white plastic, and both are pretty small, so they presented a little challenge.
Lounge Shorts Coming Soon
Unfortunately none of my lounge shorts would fit the model, only 30″ (small for us Americans) but very small otherwise (daresay, twinkish)&emdash; so I had to sew 5 pairs! Being optimistic, I figured I could track my time and estimate my costs better, so I jumped right in. They came together pretty quick really, and I’m glad I made some pairs special for the model and product photography. Speaking of…
Skill Building: Product Photography
Some time ago I purchased a lightbox for taking product photos. It’s a pretty basic kit, with a collapsible fabric box, a few backdrops (white, black, red, blue), and some lights on tripods. The lights are fluorescent, and remarkably cool even after an hour of being on. I took photography in college, and I know my way around my Nikon very well, but I’d never taken product photos in a lightbox before. Any worries I had were completely unfounded. It just took a little experimenting and toying with settings, but I managed to get some pretty good photos. About half of these first photos were under-exposed, but that can be fixed in PS. I’ve shown the unprocessed photos here for documentary purposes.
Now when the time comes to take product photos for real, I will feel more comfortable. I enjoyed posing the products as well as shooting, it was just fun to make things look nice and try and present details accurately. I need to work on exposure as well because I don’t like to fix that in post if I can avoid it.
My First Jackets
Since my last dispatch (blog post) I have made my first and second jackets. I found a really sporty jacket pattern from The Green Pepper. Overall, this was a fun and challenging sewing project, and I’d like to make more jackets in the future. I did make some easy modifications to the pattern, such as the pockets, and I plan to modify the pattern further. There were some new things to me in this pattern, including:
- Cutting and sewing silk (poly). I could definitely improve on this one.
- Fully lined jacket, turned through a gap in the sleeve lining.
- Raglan sleeves
- Ribbed sleeve cuffs
- Ribbed waist
- Exposed pockets with zipper, I’ve done these in bag making too.
- In seam pockets with ribbed knit facing. This was kinda complicated and I’d rather do something different in the future. Though I liked the facing…
I like the jacket’s bagginess, and with the simple lines it can lend itself to beautiful top-stitching. Look forward to seeing more of these in the future. I’ve already got some other fabrics in mind.
Been a While… Bags.
For the jacket I used a pattern from the Green Pepper, but I’d previously tried one of their patterns for a courier style bag. I wasn’t very experienced at sewing when I first tried, so I figured it was time to return and give it another go. This time around I’m going to use a nice denim with a little bit of stretch. I’ve fused decor weight interfacing to the denim pieces, so it should have some nice structure to i. The lining and part of the bag’s flap will be made with batik fabric, with black cotton webbing and antique brass loops and side-release buckles from Buckle Guy.
I will say after reading the instructions, the bag looks easier than I remember. Perhaps it’s because I read and tried some of the bags in “The Better Bag Maker” which taught me how to make nice corners and some other handy things.
Something quick and simple
I just had to make these… but I’m definitely NOT a beret guy, and it almost looks more like a chef’s hat. Goodbye for now from AG!