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Failed seamstress

March 12, 2008

I think I should really just give up on ever doing anything crafty or artsy completely and stick with the one thing I’m actually good at–writing.

Why, you ask?

Well. Today I watched an episode of Project Runway, which was kind of exciting and really inspirational and made me want to bust out my sewing kit and customize shirts or just make nifty new things. After wasting time on Craftster and other assorted diy-inspiration sources, I found this oversized, relatively hideous but warm red sweatshirt I got from the Science Center that I knew I was never ever going to wear. I figured I’d attempt a very very simple reconstruction and make it into a lovely warm red cardigan, and I can cover up the hideous science center logo with some felt and witty applique.

Everything seemed to be going well. And by everything going well, I meant that I cut open the front center, sewed one of the sleeves to its proper width (it was massive and monstrous on me), and then I turned it right side out to test it out. It looked promising. Despite the awkward shoulder areas and cuffs, there was potential. I wondered if for once in my life, a sewing project I attempt would not turn to hell…

And then I decided to cut off the half of the sleeve, the previous sleeve that had now become the excess.

I made sure to turn it right side up to ensure that i wasn’t cutting off the wrong section of fabric.

when I turned it right side out again to test out what should have been a well fitted, lovely and successful first sleeve, it fell apart.

I had cut the wrong fabric.

Despairing, I hacked off the whole length of the remaining, jagged fabric and convinced myself that maybe I can make it into something cute and short sleeved…despite the fact that the fabric was rather thick and totally inappropriate for cold weather short sleeve cover up. I refused to let what was a perfectly decent but unattractive sweatershirt go to waste. I cut off the other sleeve as well, and contemplated creative crafty ways to fix my utterly stupid decision.

I considered attaching another colored fabric for the sleeve, and actually found a relatively matching black corduroy material that would surely produce an awkward finished product, but could at least be displayed as some interesting sewing project. But I didn’t really like the idea of having to sew together another sleeve and somehow attach it to the short sleeves without it ending up like a fabric puke. I looked at my sad, cut off sleeve and suddenly got an idea.

Although the half of the sleeve that had been originally intended to stay on was ruined forever, the other half was still intact. And after I turned it right side out and slid it over my arm, it actually sort of fit! At the very least, I’d be able to use it as an arm warmer or sew it back on.

With that in mind, I cheered up quite a bit. It wasn’t hopeless and maybe I’d get something out of this after all…

Then I realized that the shoulder/armhole area was just completely awkward and still ill fitting on my doomed creation. I reasoned that if I was a proper seamstress, I would have cut off the sleeves and redid it in the first place. So I marked the point where my natural shoulder sat and cut, cut, cut.

Which just resulted in a far larger cut than I had anticipated, as the armhole of the original really is massive. Now the whole upper half of my once-precious sweatshirt disappeared. So what the hell, I went ahead and cut open the rest of the way, justifying it by thinking that it’d be like taking it in so that it fit.

After pinning the horrid remaining two sides and trying it on, I realized that my mission was truly an impossible and unsavable one. For one thing, the whole thing was now too small. Sure, I could attempt to make it some form fitted vest or blazer–but knowing my crafting abilities, that would turn into further disasters. I can’t quite reattach the sleeves in such awkward layout and I can’t imagine how this thing could go any worse or take a turn for the better.

Fantastic. Now I sit, left only with the numerous stabbing by my incompetent pinnin and scraps of depressing red fabric scattered everywhere.

Sigh. I suppose, always a good reminder that I should leave the cloth making to the designers, and stick with wearing the few things that fit and make me happy.

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