Cutting out


So, I really did intend to document this whole dress-alteration process on the blog. "Photos!" I thought. "Meditations! Maybe even tutorials!" But as it turned out, altering this pattern was akin to one of those Carlos Castaneda-type spiritual journeys you can only undertake alone, wandering in the wilderness until your spirit-animal emerges from a tumbleweed and advises you on the proper angle to invoke in order to remove three inches from the center back.


At first I was bummed out about this, because I wasn't having much FUN during my desert-wandering period. But then Jennifer commented that it seems like an apt metaphor for making a relationship work, and that sort of brought me back to myself. Sewing and knitting are journeys, after all, and some parts of the journey are difficult; that's as it should be! It just means I'm learning and growing. This is stuff I always tell other people, but in the pre-Partnership-Celebration stress I'd forgotten. I took a few deep breaths, returned to the pattern with my hat in my hand, and she and I sat down and talked about our disagreements. Eventually, I think, we sorted it all out.

And then...


Well, another good relationship practice is knowing when to reward yourself for having worked something out. The pattern, David and I took a trip over to my folks' house, where my mom and I teamed up to cut it out in the fancy silk! This was a luxury, because my parents, unlike David and I, are possessed of a dining room table.


As you can imagine, keeping all that silk clean while cutting out on David and my floor and trying to keep Mr. Bingley entertained would have been a recipe for disaster. The table and the extra cutting help were amazing!

First we ironed:


Then we planned...


...and pinned...


...and pinned, and measured...


...and occasionally we stopped to regroup and consult the strategic plan...


...and then, after measuring twice, we cut!


No turning back now! During the process of cutting I remembered just how beautiful this fabric is, and I'm both psyched and, I must admit, slightly nervous to start working with it. Luckily, I have quite a bit left over to practice on, but I can't spend that long fiddling around: the Partnership Celebration is in under a month! I took the pieces home and marked them with tailor's tacks, and soon the actual garment will start coming together.

Nothing like a little adrenaline to keep a girl honest...


(Thanks to David for the lovely photos this time around.)


  • This fabric looks amazing! Can't wait to see the finished project.

  • Oh this fabric is so beautiful.

    Looking forward to seeing the finished back - I've got a 'no provision' pattern that definitely needs above-waist adjustment, and I've been deliberating for, oh, years now.

  • The fabric is truly beautiful. I can't believe you are just now cutting it out!!

  • Great entry! I have felt all of this from afar and have made a great effort to give you space. I am thankful for the dining room table, but even more for the lovely collaboration with your Mom. I hope you know how accomplished and courageous you are to attempt this project. The dress will be so beautiful, but even more, with you in it!
    Love from the lady who got a "D" in home ec.

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  • That fabrics were lovely. And I just like your ideas of creating wonderful patterns what from it. - Marla Ahlgrimm

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