Friday, November 30, 2012

Two down, uncounted to go

I've been a busy little beaver up here in the sewing room, pounding out garments for my Etsy store.

Finished what I like to call the "Polka-stripe" dress the other day, and a really nice pima cotton batiste blouse.

I finally wised up and put the zipper in first, so if I screwed it up I would be only out a handful of minutes' work. I did good. It was easy to match the stripes in the skirt, and I decided to pleat on the stripes for the puffed sleeves. Due to no planning on my part, the pleats were perfectly spaced for the sleeve pleats.

This is the same pattern as the blue and white gingham ruffled dress I posted about earlier.

The blouse caused me to sweat a little, although it did only take me 3 1/2 hours, about what a human-sized blouse would take me, so I guess that's OK. The cotton was a delight to work with, and I have more in white and light blue to play with. It cries out for rows and rows of pintucking.

And, I finally caught on to 3/8 being larger than 5/8 and set up my Singer automatic buttonholer to make the buttonholes. Yes, those buttons really really work.
Hancock Fabrics carry Slimline buttons, 6 to a card. On sale the other day for 60 cents. These are 1/4", the smallest buttons I'm willing to try and do and undo. 
The blouse-sweat came from the darn vintage collar construction. I cut a white blouse out at the same time, so I might change the order of operations just a bit for the next try. AND, by cutting two blouses out in 1/2 hour, I saved 1/2 hour of time! Sweet!

Etsy has a suggested formula for figuring the asking price for an item: material (ALL, including packing materials) + profit + labor. Then you double the resulting wholesale number for retail. There might have been something like overhead in there. 
Anyway, my material cost is quite low, and I've had to set my labor quite low, or the garments would be seriously overpriced. 

Well, enough whinging.

I have a couple of improvised photo floods, and today I kluged together some barn doors out of disposable pie pans and also a diffuser out of kitchen parchment paper to help direct the light where I want it and make it a little less edgy.

I played around with a backlight to show off the batiste. 

The doll's face was quite dark with the backlight, so I deployed the barn-door/diffuser thing and all was well. I still had to lighten up everything in the GIMP, since it is raining like mad today and my lights are 75w equivalent daylight fluorescent bulbs.

I stuck the Nikon on a tripod, framed the photo I wanted, and started waving the big light around over my head while clicking the camera. I'm sure the termite inspector person thought I was absolutely off my head. (No termites, by the way.)
I picked the version I liked best.

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