Wednesday, April 14, 2004

I Hate Shopping for Clothes

Last night I went to the mall to get a birthday gift for a friend and decided that while I was there, I might do a little shopping. I wound up with two pair of jeans from Sears (and yes, a birthday gift) and consider it a successful shopping trip. I generally don't go to the mall since I do most of my shopping on-line. As far as clothing shopping, I used to enjoy it but now I hate it. Sadly, most of my wardrobe comes from Costco - yes, Costco. Actually they get some pretty nice casual stuff and although there are no fitting rooms, I have only had to return a few things because they didn't fit. About once or twice a year I must venture to the mall. Last year, after dropping a size thanks to Weight Watchers, I thought I'd treat myself to a full day of shopping. I left early on Saturday morning to procure a parking spot at the megamall and headed for the department store. After a few minutes I realized the following:

1. I'm old
2. I'm very unhip
3. I'm still fat
4. I'm a tightwad
5. I have the right fabric in my stash

Last year, when I made this shopping excursion, all the pants were hiphuggers and the shirts reminded me of stuff I wore in high school. And this wasn't the junior's department. All I wanted were some plain pants that fit and maybe a shirt or two to make an outfit! I was pleased that I did indeed drop a size, but pants still didn't fit. Like always, they pulled across my hips and gapped at my waist. I'm sure there were clothes there that could fit me and look great, but I got sticker shock. Especially when I saw that I have the patterns and fabric to make exactly what they were selling. That's what happened last night too. I walked around Macy's and I was in a sea of pink (because pink is in). I managed to find some jeans at Sears and then optimistically tried on some capris in a lime green that would make a cute outfit with some fabrics I have and pieces that are already in my closet. Egad, they looked awful. The fabric was thin and pulled at my hips and crotch but gapped at my waist. I think I can do better. I know I have fabric and certainly the patterns (although not the kicky lime green, hmmm, maybe I'll check out

After returning home with a sense of sewing energy, I picked up the tank top and thought I'd work on the binding. The Burda WOF instructions said to fold the binding lengthwise and place the fold edge 1/2 inch inward and then stitch near the edge. Huh? Then you fold it under and topstitch. Ok, I got the last part, but my interpretation of this whole thing made for a very bulky binding. My first thought was maybe WOF had a featured sewing lesson that might expand on how to sew on the binding. Every issue of WOF hightlights one (and sometimes two) patterns and provides instructions in much more detail, complete with illustrations. But alas, I could find nothing that matched this project. Then I consulted my vast library of sewing books (I knew I bought them all for a reason!) and even my Kwik Sew "Easy Sewing the Kwik Sew Way" book. The latter only made me wonder why I bought, and continue to buy, all these individual patterns. That book contains enough basic patterns to build an entire wardrobe! But I digress...I eventually found what I was looking for in Tauton Press' "Sewing with Knits". I can simply serge the neck and arm hole edges, turn them under and stitch. I think I can use the coverstitch on my serge and do it in one step. I'll first try a sample and see how it behaves with this knit, but I have a feeling it will work just fine.

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