I found a picture that rather appealed to me as it is geometric. I happen to like geometric patterns.
The randomness of the shapes I thought would work well with cotton jersey, because it is not easy to cut straight. Some easy hand stitching, nice and relaxing, and voila, a nice me made Alabama Chanin inspired skirt.
I notice that my inspiration design had stencilled stripes applied to the background fabric. So I decided to draw on some stripes with a wax dye crayon. I then ironed them to fix the dye (with of course paper on top of the wax to protect the iron and sop up residue).
Only it wasn't. I soon got very, very, bored. I have always like hand sewing and embroidery, but this was just too basic for me. However, I thought this was just a mood due to life stresses. So I thought that I should proceed and a stitched quite a few patches on the front of the skirt:
At this stage I thought I should hold it up and admire my handiwork and think how great this will look as a casual skirt.
So I held it up (in front of a mirror of course, so I could see what it looked like) and tried to like it, I really did. I tried hard.
Only I did not like it. I did not like the rustic, first time I have ever attempted hand sewing look. I know this look works for some people, but I just did not like it. I think it just looked too handhewn and casual for me.
I thought about this for a while, and decided that yes, I do like the Alabama Chanin look, but really, I prefer a much more polished look. I think I would like to revisit a hand worked technique on cotton jersey, but in a much more complex and refined way. I am quite capable of that - beading and lots of work. And to only attempt to do a small amount every day to relax, and not as an activity in itself. This sort of slow but quick handhewn sewing is just not me. I like my needlework and embroidery to be detailed and exquisite. Even if it takes ages to finish. So I shall revisit the Alabama Chanin techniques outlined in her book "Studio Sewing and Design" at some future point in time and aim for something a little more detailed. I also like her takes on classic garments - things like jackets for instance, that are hand sewn and sometimes embroidered.
I also had to think about my personal style. I think with sewing, we can get swayed by all the wonderful ideas floating around the sewing community. And it is good to try a few of them, because you can get stuck in a bit of a sewing and style rut. But sometimes, we just stray away from our core likes, and forget what really suits us.
And really, what suits me? I think at heart I am a classic style type. And I really should make sure that I stick to a classic base for all my sewing. I can push the edges, so long as I don't go over the sides in the future!
That's it for now, back with my next mishap story (yes, there is another!) soon...