OK, no photos. And I know this blog post would be so much better with some, but in another way it is kind of fitting that you can't see what I am talking about.
You see I just had to post straight away. I am so pleased with myself it is disgusting. The wool jacket I sewed feverishly between Monday and Tuesday in between chores and in nap times is really really good. I love it, and so does everyone else I've asked. Perhaps my tone made it clear what the only acceptable answer was, but still. I walked Wil to childcare this morning singing I'm too sexy for this pram, too sexy for this pram, the train and the tram...
If I had photos I am sure you would agree, but perhaps my point is better made unsullied by any adverse opinions you may have of the garment itself. There will be photos, but since I finished it at 9.30pm last night and am working until 7.30 tonight it will take at least a few days.
Anyway, here's my point. The jacket was a risk, a leap of faith. The fabric was expensive and precious and I was in love with it and scared to cut it. There was a lot of re-work in it as I first re-cut the fabric and then re-sewed several seams that just weren't right. All this was due to the very unique properties of the fabric and the ways it gave and yet didn't.
And also because aside from the very vague outlines of the front, back and sleeves, I wasn't using a pattern. Since the centre piece of the garment is the collar and that bit was totally made up, there was a lot of pinning and trying on and cutting and pinning again. For a while in the middle of it I was exhausted and I took some time out to look up hotels near the hospital for la la la fall back position and got all depressed. And then went back to it.
But the collar is perfect. Just exactly the right marriage of fabric and pattern, and it is flattering, practical and dramatic without being silly. Sigh. Such a sweet spot.
All last night I kept thinking about taking the leap. How many times I walked around the laid out fabric on Monday too scared to cut it and repeating to myself the little mantra of fabric in the cupboard is as much a waste as fabric in a garment that didn't work out. Knowing it might not work out and the suggested plan of simply edging it and making a wrap was much safer and perhaps better than a wing and a prayer.
But it wasn't. One of the joys, perhaps the joy of making your own clothes is not just the jacket that works. It is the chance to experience the thrill of risk taking, with no more than a piece of fabric at stake. Experimentation, trial, creativity and (very occasionally) triumph. You never know until you take the leap.