Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Commission: Volks SD Girl Traditional Basic and Princess Hanbok Part 3

Previous parts here:  One and Two.

There is a not pretty chapter behind the story of this project.  I've been extremely angry with myself over it, and couldn't figure out why I could not work on it.  I finally accepted the doctor's strong suggestion that I seek depression counselling (to shut her nagging up about the anti-depressants, mainly) and focused on what was really bothering me.  The major fails in my business since the stroke destroyed our cozy little life. This one innocent sewing project seemed to have taken on the entire issue of my husband having his stroke at the back of my mind.

I had said "You never know what might happen" at the time the customer and I first started discussing this project.  That was the thorn in my side.  After a long cry (gross and snotty) and still refusing the damned meds I don't need, I came home and pulled out the emails and the fabric and the project notes and just everything that goes with this project and let the bad stuff go.  I've been forcing myself to work on a project.  That is not why I took this project on.  I took it on because it's lovely and I learned a lot about Korean culture, and I wanted to do it!   And I learned how things can become the focus of anger and hurt and frustration when you don't even expect them too.  Like being afraid of something completely unrelated to the trauma that caused the fear.

I made myself let all the 'bad' go and found the good again. It's no use being angry and frustrated with all the things that went wrong when I was trying my best to do this.  It's a gorgeous project and I'm working every day on it again and the 'bad' connection just wasn't there this morning.  I held the skirt up (pins and all) and thought, yeah, this is great!  This is going to be adorable.  There will be photos in a day or two, I still have appointments this Thursday and Friday and then the weekend should be free to deal with things other than just the mechanics.

Edit: This project is now slated for an October completion, due to the headbands.  I'm still trying to figure out how they go, but will be putting up photos of the jackets soon.

August 30, 2014

Thursday morning (2 days ago) I had everything pinned and ready to sew before an appointment and did the work in the morning.  Everything looked fine then. Yesterday I had to decide to hem before or after the embroidery, because the embroidery might have been positioned right on the hem line.  I got out the iron and marked the hem on the pink skirt and it looks great. I can hem and finish the tie string ends before embroidering.  After that's done it's ready to be set aside for the final hand embroidery, etc, along with the jackets.  Great, right?

Then I put the violet skirt on the ironing board to measure and press the hem and found these god awful errors.  The underside of the sewing had caught in the feed dog on one bodice end, (scissors pint to it) the center piping strip had somehow slipped off center (safety pin points to it)And the other bodice end had slipped to show the first line of stitching.  This requires carefully picking out the stitches, risking damaging the silk and redoing the skirt to bodice sewing again.  I can also see from this photo that one other stripe is off from where I had marked and pinned it as well. This is frustrating as hell because I used the pink skirt to measure the violet one.  There shouldn't be these kind of mistakes in the piping stripe placement. The machine has issues with the fine silk, I can understand the bodice silk catching, things slip, but the piping stripes shouldn't be off like this.  I need a very good light, a magnifying glass and a new exacto blade to undo all this. The skirts are doubled and form their own lining, and there is no excess silk to redo anything I damage in sewing, so here's hoping I don't.  I mark pin and sew very carefully, and things like this just make me feel like I'm losing my mind. Glaring errors going unseen WHILE I'm sewing? However, I'm sure I can correct them. That's the one thing I'm hanging on to. I'm still capable of correcting things when I finally see them.  My finished work is always as good as I can get it.  


Sept 2, 2014

The purple skirt is now corrected.  ^_^  Wasn't anywhere near as difficult as it seemed at the time.  Once I have the jackets to the point where they need the embroider and so forth, I'll do the skirts and jackets at the same time.  I just have to finish hand hemming the skirts.

Sept 24, 2014

I don't know how time gets away from me sometimes, but I've got the sleeves and stripes on the sewing machine now, the tie strings sorted for length, etc. and I'm looking forward to having some time to just sit and work on the painting and embroidery.  The head pieces are still puzzling me.  I need to sit down with some paper towels and a doll with the same size head (volks dolls have larger heads compared to body than others, FYI) and work that out.  I now anticipate an October finish, but it's working with the very gauzy silk that's making me over cautious.  I nearly put the stripes on the wrong end of the sleeves today.

Sept 27, 2014

I've got the sleeves on the bodices and checked the measurements.  I just need to mark the princess jeogori for the placement of the medallions before sewing up the side seams.  Photos should be up soon, if it stays cool this weekend.  Having to have the AC and fans on is playing havok with the silk laying still.  The exacting placement of that thin white neck trim is my next goal to reach.  Then I can get the yellow Jeogori done, but I want to do the embroidery on the Princess one before I put it together.  Fray Check is my best friend right now.  Handling the silk and stopping it from disappearing like a puff of sea foam in fraying is going to be 'fun'.

October 10, 2014

Work has been bogged down on the one week I set to get all the basic sewing done by appointments and I'm going to have photos of progress up by Sunday evening. I had set this week aside to reach the point where all that was left was the embroidery and beading, but I'm still slowed down by doctor stuff and losing my mind.

October 12, 2014

And of course my camera is low on power.  However, I did manage to get photos before having to plug it in and wait. I laid out the indigo skirt and slip to check the 'look' with the almost finished yellow top.  I need to sew up the sleeve hems and the back lower opening to turn the jacket right side out from, as well as position the other tie string and then cut them both to the proper length and finish the ends.  The green is ready to have the embroidery and medallions put on it, so I can't sew in the lining or put in the strings until that's done. I'm still sorting out how to 'miniaturize' the embroidery for the look with out the bulk, and the head bands. Getting that perfect little V on the neck band trim wasn't as traumatic as I thought it would be. But then, I've had a lot of time to really think about how to get everything correct.  The silk slips all over the sewing machine and it's best to go slow and really control the fabric to keep it sewing on the seam marker.

A bit blurry but still fair photo. The sleeves are not pressed yet.  Everything will get a good press before it's finished, but I don't want to cook the silk with repeated pressing.  The indigo looks very violet in this picture, but it's the lighting.  I still need to position the paint/embroidery on the skirts.

When the embroidery is done, I can put the lining in the green princess top.  I've noticed on some that I've seen lately, the front medallion has it's own lining so that it's edge over laps the edge of the jacket to keep it centered.  Good to know.



October 23, 2014

I've just got the last bit of the Yellow Jeoguri strings to sort out and cut to the right length and that's done. I need to double check the hand width on the sleeve ends, too now that I think about it.  O_o Because of the poofy bell shape of the sleeve, it's not the usual way I press a sleeve either, I think it will have to just be pressed flat like a kimono sleeve.  With all the sewing how-tos out there, there aren't many on pressing or ironing traditional garments.
I cut out the medallions today and put fray check on them to dry over night.  I'm debating how much I can put the jacket together before it becomes impossible to get the embroidery done 'just so'.  Sometimes I can slide the needle between layers easily and sometimes not.  With the thin silk, definitely not.  But over handling unsewn edges will make them fray, so more Fray Check!

October 31, 2014

It took me a while to sort out what designs to use. I've had this problem before, thinking that one thing would work and it turned out to be just too big to do the job.  Now that I've run a few test pieces and simplified the pattern, I'm going to start working on the embroidery on the princess jeogori, but it's going to take time.  The stitches are minuscule. The medallions really help, I just need to 'frame' them and put some butterflies on and they're done, but the little tiny trim on the collar and cuffs, that will take some doing.  And then there is still the flowers on the skirts.  I had hoped to be done by now, but it looks like it's going to get done when it's done.  I'll photo more progress more often, though.  T-mobile seems to have stabilized with the cooler weather.

November 3, 2014

I've got the colors picked out for the embroidery and I'm still working on putting more gold thread in with the red I've put the medallions on with. Unfortunately the colors don't photo true, but the pinks for the flowers and foliage match the medallion colors, and the darker set above them are for the butterflies.  The white band of the neckline is folded in with the lining so it looks weird in it's current state, but it's correct in reality.


My embroidery floss ziplock bag is a mess. >.<;;  I untangle as I go.  
November 13, 2014

It took me a while to puzzle out the pattern, but I've finally managed to get a series of stiches that look the way they should!  Embroidering centimeter square butterflies on an area the size of a large coin, I had to test, test and test again for size ratio.  My goal is one section a day until I get the medallions  cuffs and collars done.  I'm still working on the flower pattern to go with the butterflies.  Thankfully, flowers are simpler.


November 20, 2014

I'm still sorting out what to do between the double cherry blossoms on the cuffs at the moment, but that should be sorted tonight after dinner.  I usually work in the evenings when it's more quiet and then forget to update the next day. >.<;;  The medallions are done, and I'm working on the cuffs, while getting the pattern in my mind for the skirt flower embroidery.  I'm thinking a full flower, profile flower and leaves on each panel, rather than under painting anything.  Once again, not ironing until I need to, so yeah, wrinkled, but it saves the silk.


November 30, 2014

I never seem to be able to get this order done and it's not from lack of trying.  I have finished the embroidery on the jackets and started on the skirts, hoping to finish this weekend, until I realized, wait a minute!  And checked the notes.  I didn't put the striped cuffs on one of the pantaloons!  And I keep mentally misplacing the head dress.  It's definitely a mental thing with the order and the timing and it's being triggered again as we get near Dec 3 again.  It will be over soon, though.  I've got pins in the jacket to sew it up, the tie strings to finish at the correct length, the skirts will be done when the floral bits are on and I just have the stripes to make and put on the cuffs and then the head dress, which will be fun. Photos to follow soon, everything is a crinkled mess right now.

December 07, 2014

Alright, the embroidery on everything but the head band is done!  I went for a more simple motif of buds on the collar band of the every day jacket, and then a Mum for the skirt trim.  The silk is much more in the blue range to the naked eye.



December 14, 2014

I'm always hoping to have the time to report fast progress and ending up taking longer.  The main problem is the Indian silk, it's like gossamer and I have decided to never use it again. That being my problem, the clothing is done and just needs a good pressing before photographing.  I'm working on the head dress now, and correcting things I found in notes and misinterpreted.  I remembered stripes on the tails of the head dress and then read again and found flowers.  So that's caught just in time. O_o  I will use the bugs and leaves to border the head dress around the forehead area, flowers and leaves and beads in the center, and then the pearl strings.  I'm seriously hoping to get all that tiny work done this week.  I will then make sure everything is correct, clean, pressed, photographed for this last post and shipped to the address in the paypal I was paid through. I remain certain that I have done the right thing and my best with this project, given the circumstances that threw it off track.

December 31, 2014

Finally!  O_o  I had to catch a few more mistakes, but I believe I've finally done my best and the order is finished.  I'll be shipping it to the address on the customer's Paypal account payment with a letter of explanation as soon as the end of month/start of month stuff is taken care of here.  

The slips have been photographed earlier, but this is the rest of the order.  Most of them have been taken in natural light, but the silk colors are never as pretty as in reality.


The headress flattened out to show off most of the work.  The measurement given was 26 cm, and I'm not used to Volks doll head sizes, but the drape of pearls that go over the head should help keep it on.  


I forgot to snap the snaps, I was fussing so much over not making any more crinkles in the silk. >.<;;


The Pink dress goes over the lace trimmed slip. 


The pants for under the Princess set.  


Tiny gold buds to match the flowers on the skirt. 


This purple changes color with every lighting. 


The plain pantaloons for under the every day outfit.  The slip for the every day outfit is plain, too. 

I sincerely apologize for how long it took me to get through this order. With everything that happened, I wanted to do my absolute best.  PTSD and all that, stuff you never think about until it hits you personally, I can only repeat, I'm sorry, and I hope that the customer really likes my work.  I'll be shipping it as soon as I know how much the package will cost and have the cash in hand to ship, and will post that shipping date here.  I will put tracking on the package as well.  

Jan 2, 2015   Shipped, expected delivery next week.  

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