Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Forging ahead!

So the doublet was always going to be the most painstaking part of this outfit, and I'm proving that by spending all day cutting, slashing, and trimming the doublet. (Admittedly I was also watching Bones and/or Elizabeth R and drinking Mike's Hard Strawberry Lemonade (I know super girly right?) so saying "all-day" is kind of an overstatement in regards to total focus, but you get the idea.)

So here you can see I've cut the fabric ever so slightly on the bias to give a very tall chevron effect to the front of the doublet. Then between the grey stripes I've basically made 4 inch buttonholes. I ran a buttonhole stitch with a little extra space in between to allow the red silk to show more. This allows me to achieve the slashed look without worrying about this (very fray-y) fabric fraying.

Then I used another multi-shade grey striped fabric to cut two strips of trim to frame the slashing.

Then to polish off the look and bring that red out just a bit more I went in and put down a strip of red rattail cord down the center

I was originally going to zigzag the rattail down but I really don't like doing that unless it's an edging detail. I think it interrupts the flow of the solid trim and looks belabored, especially against the shiny rattail. So I decided to try something I didn't think I could do with a cord. I edge-stitched the rattail down. And when I say edge-stitched I mean I barely caught the rattail as I went along. BOOYAH! It took some zany precision but I'm so happy with the result. It looks like the cord is just floating there! One more little trick to put in my pocket that might come in handy in the future (and opens up a ton of new design options *evil grin*).

So here's what that finished doublet front looks like:

Sometimes fabrics just fall into your hands off the rack and practically yell at you. This was definitely one of those moments. As I said before, this outfit is for a cast member who originally approached me and asked me to design the suit, before we knew I'd end up making it. So I designed it, including the color concept before I ever saw these fabrics. Then one day I'm in Loomcraft and I get no further than 10 feet in the door and all of these fabrics just jumped off their remnant rack into my arms and BOOM! Next thing I knew I was walking out the door with a bag full of fabric and shooting my friend an email letting him know I'd be making this. Sometimes a design or color scheme changes as you start fabric hunting and constructing but I'm quite impressed by the match. Here's the color palette I made up and presented to him with the design (before I ever saw these fabrics!)

It's even the exact shade of grey!! And grey is, believe or not, one of the hardest colors to match. Seriously, try it sometime. It sounds easy, how many greys can there be?? But once you start looking; good effin' luck!

So there's my triumph today. Little victories, right? Tomorrow I have my probationary review for my new job, so tune in next time to find out if I still have said job!

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