Tuesday, 25 June 2013

mend- it is a four letter word..

Have you ever had one of those garments which relies upon ruching elastic, to give it shape? 

 And then the elastic decides it is going to give up on being , well, elastic?  So instead of a gathered item you have a saggy rag?

saggy elastic
I had a garment like this as a small child. It was a swimming costume. I distinctly recall having it aged about 4. The wretched garment went on and on and on. I wore it for swimming lessons at school aged 11. I hated it, and it was a relief when that one gave way!
 So, a friend of mine also had a garment like that. But in her case it was a rather elegant and pretty dress. In a fine fabric, with beading around the neckline. But it had sagged.

So, the question was, could I fix it? I had never attempted the job of sewing ruching elastic into a garment before, but I knew the principle, and watched a couple of videos on youtube. Which, incidentally, contradicted each other. And I had a bash.

First, though, I had to take out the old elastic!

3 hours later... a pile of old saggy removed elastic ( why is a cigarette coupon from the 1960s in the picture? I welcome guesses, and if anyone gets it right- I will make them a surprise! just the first one to get it right, thank you. )  And then winding ruching elastic onto bobbins. There is an art to this. An art I have yet to master. But I did it. Somehow.

And then to sew elastic back into the dress.
 If you look carefully at this picture, you will see some ends in the middle. No, the bobbin did not run out. The elastic broke. It broke several times. Sometimes I removed it and started again. Other times, I just kept on going, having sorted the bobbin out again.
And one bobbin lasts about three rows across the back.
I eventually got the job finished, and I await information as to whether it is satisfactory. I have no idea what I might do if it isn't, as the elastic sews in at the tension it wants, and there is very little I can do to adjust that!

Latest arrivals in the garden? This peony is now open. She is very frilly and dainty. 
 My little pink rambler is being little and pink...

A hot lily makes a gorgeous rich impact on the eye, and self sown foxgloves grace the ignored corner here.

And I have yet to confess to my other half- but I have signed up for a triple zippy pouch swap! Sign ups go until July 6th, and posting out is in August- 17th I think. I have wanted to do one for a bit- since I saw Annaliese's ones, and this will make me do it!

And a housekeeping note- I got some really lovely text charms through from a texty charm swap group! no Idid not take photos- but go and look at Cindys if you want- they are the same but much better photo's than I can do! One of my daughters has requested a selection for making a new kindle cover! So suitable! Of course she may!


Di said...

You are a good friend to sort out all that elastication!
Your flowers are very pretty. I look forward to seeing your triple zippy pouch. I warn you that they are addictive once you start!!!
Di x

cheeky monkey said...

You are so nice doing this! I always avoided making dresses for the girls using this technique. But I heard there is a simple way .. use a band you can adjust after .. I just have no clue how to call it in English but it is called "elastik kräuselband"

mumasu said...

I've yet to try ruching but having seen it on the Great British Sewing Bee I bought some fabric and elastic and now it's sitting there taunting me!! It's so nice of you to have a go for your friend though. I'm doing that swap too. I've never made one and like you I think this will give me the incentive to try them.

Nicky said...

Definitely agree on the mending thing! It looked so easy on the Great British Sewing Bee!

Love the peony ! One of my favourite flowers - just wish they lasted longer...

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