Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Alterations & Projects

Oh Dear this blogging lark is getting the better of me, at sometime hopefully I will fall into a pattern - I'm not sure if it will be a couple of short ones every week or a monologue every week to 10 days. But at the moment I think it will be a bit hit or miss.

Anyway I think I had better explain a few things about where my time seems to go. As I have mentioned in my profile I used to make bridal wear and at one time employed girls doing this --- that was quite a while ago. I gave up doing it when life was throwing up obstacles like poorly 'in-laws' to look after and having moved to our small holding and were developing the holiday cottages. It was all too much pressure, when you are sewing until 3-4am. all the pleasure of weddings disappear. Mind you the sparkle was fading - there are only so many things I was prepared to worry about and when brides were comparing the dress fabric with their invitation cards I thought it's time to get a life.

Now there was only one problem with giving up the weddings and that was lack off money - the one thing that I did miss. So after visiting a sewing exhibition and having a brain storm and buying another computerised sewing machine I didn't need (it's so easy when you have 24 months to pay and just sign a piece of paper) I decided a necessary evil had to fund this. So I went into our local town of Narberth and gave a couple of dress shops my card and started doing alterations. To cut a long story short I still do it for 1 shop called White and only do other things if I want to. Most of it is shortening new clothes and it comes in fits and starts. Mind you I do not do it for a song, in my view if you want a job done well 'you get what you pay for'. So a few pairs of trousers shortened last week earned a few pennies but then I couldn't charge my Mum naturally -- she's off to a wedding in a couple of weeks -- and to prove I do have a sewing machine and can sew here are a few photos.

Shortening the skirt,

giving a better fit to the sleeves

and finished and pressed.

Exciting stuff these alterations. Now I don't know if I've made a rod for my own back but when I came back from holidays last November, Sally who owns White, started asking me questions about the idea of opening a bridal shop and would I be prepared to do alterations and teach her how to do fittings. Now suffering from the effects of sun, rest and the feel good factor of the holiday I said of course I didn't mind. To cut another long story short White Bride is the result and we have the 1st dress fitting this weekend to an actual wedding - I shall keep you posted.

I thought I had better show you that I can do a bit of embroidery as well. This is a piece I did for the C&G a few years ago. It was inspired by Henry V11 ceiling at Westminster Abbey which when I saw it took my breath away.

And a close up, it was felt, hand stitched with quite a textured
thread which was then machined over. It was then stitched onto
wireform and then manipulated. The background is chiffon
scarves with bondaweb, machine stitched little
dots of gold and blasted with the heat gun.

Now I did mention in my brief and slightly pathetic blog yesterday that I was off with the EG today to discuss a project. Well we are very lucky in our little struggling group to have Audrey Walker, Eirian Short and Rozanne Hawksley associated with us and they do support us when they can. Audrey and Eirian have been asked to design a banner to do with St. Davids Day and they have asked us to make and embroider it, so this was the meeting to show us the design and discuss a few things. It is quite exciting and hopefully will get us some publicity and new members, when I have got something to report I will let you know.

I am away for a week on Sunday I will tell you about it in the next blog. So until then Bye-Bye.


Jackie said...

Ellie thats amazing, the Henry piece..just gorgeous.I will never make a good dressmaker..I found all my pattern pieces in the end..there was only one piece for the skirt and the others were under the fabric. I wouldn't know where to start with silky stuff!

Gina said...

I don't envy your alterations and Bridal venture. I did a bit of dress making for a while but found it far too stressful. However, your Henry piece is amazing and you EG news very exciting.

Mermaid's Purse said...

Your ceiling piece is wonderful!