Approaching the Finish Line

We left off with pinning the collar on. That took a while to finish.

Stitch collar. Done.

Mark sleeves. Briefly pausing to iron the pieces before marking.

Stitch sleeves. Done.

Now I have to figure out how to put it all together. This is the part of the instructions that I wish I could translate better, because it makes no real sense. I wish I could translate it all better, but here we are.

I hear the Siren – A lilting distraction lures Me from my great task

Inspiration for the next thing competes for attention

I really am getting excited about the next major project. I put it on the back burner for C3 and Crown’s A&S. I’ll be starting that in February. Yay! But back to the current thing…

More to Do on the Uwagi Upper

Pin second okumi. You better believe I added these steps to the list when I decided to pin and then stitch individually. It’s a great way to trick my brain’s reward center because I’ll have another thing that’s “ding!” checked off a list. Plus it made me a little sad that I didn’t break up the other step, lesson learned and behaviour “corrected”. Ha.

Stitch second okumi. Done.

Press all the seams. I think I’m going to put a pin in this and move on to the collar shenanigans first, stopping to press before pinning. So onward to that.

Mark collar. Check.

Cut collar. Done.

Re-edge collar. Complete.

Mark collar. I paused to iron the piece before marking it. I also paused for tea.

The kettle whistles Thick steam billows from it’s spout And pours into cups

Pondering the floating leaves As the liquid grows darker

Iron all the things.

Pin collar. Almost halfway done with this step. Not sure if I’ll stay up to finish it or save it for the morning. Maybe some more tea while I think on that.

Continuing on the Uwagi Upper

Today’s first project task was to finish the side seams. The fabric isn’t incredibly unpleasant to sew. I’ll take that as a small win. Then I began work on the list.

Cut open center front and edge it. I should have made this two things for the satisfaction of completing two things.

Mark okumi. I’d say this took longer than I’d like, but at this point everything takes longer than I’d like. I’m still a little irritated by the minor decrease in precision due to the chalk pencil I’m using. But it is only a minor decrease.

Pin okumi. One side is now pinned on. I’m going to stitch it on, then pin the other side and stitch it.

Stitch okumi. This is my current step for okumi one. I think it’s the left.

Once again I’ve copied and pasted the rest of the tedious list in a draft for tomorrow’s post. It’s working really well to keep me on track.

The smell of woodsmoke Binds merry souls together On cold winter nights

Please keep the hearthfire burning, A candle in the window

Uwagi Upper

I marked the double wide migoro panel with a safety pin at the back hem. I have to carefully put the garment together making sure that all of the panels are running in the right directions. The brocade is directional. One of the okumi panels will be upside down. I think. I didn’t have enough fabric to flip the panel for cutting. It would have taken almost another 2 yards.

Let’s get my “tedious” list made so I can concentrate. Stress has sapped all my bandwidth.

Mark false back seam. Check.

Mark side seams and sleeve attachments. Done

Mark the okumi attachments. Complete.

Fold and pin false back seam. Done.

Stitch false back seam. Also complete.

Unfold and pin side seams. All set.

Stitch side seams. This is my current place, And I doubt I’ll get through both of them tonight, So I’m just going to copy and paste the rest of the list into tomorrow’s post. Easy Peasy. Though, that does not mean I expect to get all 14 things on that list done tomorrow. Oh no. That would be great, but I don’t sew that fast. Plus I still don’t know quite how I’m doing one of the steps…

The smoke drifts upward Gentle tendrils reaching out Embracing fragrance

The tea cup is slowly drained As the ember glows its last 

Pressing On

I finally went to bed last night after finishing the markings for the migoro and okumi (body and overlap).

Today I finished marking the sleeves and collar pieces, cut everything out, and edged all the pieces.

I’m covered in tiny synthetic threads. The way this stuff sheds is unbelievable. I honestly expected the fabric to be so awful I’d have to figure out something else. This just really reinforces to me that I don’t want to make anything from fabric like this ever again. Ick.

And tomorrow I start stitching the upper. I need to make one of those absolutely tedious lists of the steps again to keep myself on track.

The keyboard mocks me I hear laughter In the click Of each backspace press

The cursor calls with each pulse A taunt and promise of more

Determination in the Face of Stress

I deleted a paragraph from my post yesterday about how my anxiety is affecting my progress. I should have left it in. Basically, I was repeatedly browning out. I’d catch myself sitting or standing completely still, mind blank, like someone wiped my operating system. It’s a stress reaction I’ve come to expect from myself.

Here’s the big secret. My anxiety has beaten me in the past. I usually become physically ill and am unable to fully complete whatever it is, or just barely make it through. I need to make it through this pair of contests. The reward is worth it. The outfit will be gorgeous and help complete another ensemble. I’ll get to share my art. I don’t want to barely make it through, I want to finish strong.

So right now I’m fighting my anxiety. It has me on the ropes, and I desperately want to rally.

Anxiety lies. Turns deadlines into lions. Seizes momentum.

What truth awaits breaking through Entanglements of falsehoods?

I’m steadily working my way through the steps, one by one. I’ve finished marking the sleeves and am moving on to pinning them for stitching.

I paused after stitching the sleeves. I’m not positive how to join the lining to the upper. Right now I’m likely to fall back on whip stitches. Because order of operations for that is still jumbled in my head, I did not attach the sleeves to the lining. It may be best to finish the sleeves independently and attach the finished sleeves to the finished garment.

That makes it time to cut out the brocade.

I took the time to fiddle with my serger. It’s all but seized up. So that will not be an option for edging which means I’m overcasting the edge with a zig-zag stitch using my regular sewing machine.

The brocade is kinda icky. I had to change from my ceramic marking pencil to a broader (and less precise) chalk marker. Ugh. But there’s brocade in the floor and it’s slowly becoming covered in chalk marks. On the back. Because the fabric pulls if you mark the front. Boo.

Lining Soft Deadline

I’m trying to be very calm about the fact that I’m going to have a hard time finishing the lining before the end of the year.

Today’s tasks: Press all seams. Mark the collar. Pin the collar. Stitch the collar on. Mark the sleeves. Sew the sleeves. Pin the sleeves. Stitch the sleeves on.

Let’s see what I can get through…

I’ve pressed all the seams and am moving on to marking the collar.

I paused between marking the collar and pinning it to give it a pressing.

Now that I have the collar pinned on, I have to decide if I’m folding it neatly on my lap or leaving it on the dining room table for stitching.

I left it on the table to stitch the collar on.

Took another brief break to press a sleeve before beginning the marking up.

And it’s getting on toward midnight. Looks like champagne and sleeves for the New Year. Cheers!

Time for reflection Contemplation of one’s place And where we have been.

Cherish what we can of it And move toward the future

One Step at a Time

I’m feeling overwhelmed. I imagine I’ll feel this way, off and on, until things are turned in for Crown’s A&S.

At last it comes, this Crushing wave of overwhelm Immobilizing

Dashed upon the rocky shore The sea will always retreat.

I’m trying to focus on just the next step, but I do want to break down the rest of the uwagi lining so I can keep the next step straight.

Thread mark the migoro. Complete.

Pin okumi to migoro. Essentially done. I have them pinned on with the pins running horizontally on top of the stitch line. I’ll re-pin vertically in sections as I sew.

Sew okumi. One is attached. I’ll finish the other (which is fully prepped and re-pinned) before I quit for the night.

I guess this means the collar and sleeves get squished together into the same day.

So tomorrow will be Press all seams. Mark the collar. Pin the collar. Stitch the collar on. Mark the sleeves. Sew the sleeves. Pin the sleeves. Stitch the sleeves on.

I did manage to finish something else though. My documentation had one last step, the conclusion. I had a list of things I’d learned as an outline. I thought of a line that I wanted to include, so I popped into the document and before I knew it, my list had transformed into a handful of paragraphs and I had a mostly done paper. And it’s actually calming my overwhelm a little. I know I could turn my documentation in right now and it would be just fine. I’ll still go over it one last time after I update the uwagi section, but it’s essentially done. Wow.

Overlap

Last night I finished edging the migoro at the center front opening. I was up much too late, but the work is done.

Let’s see if I can think through all the steps for okumi attachment. What needs to be marked on the migoro (body) has been marked in fabric pencil. I need to mark out the lines on the okumi (overlap). Once I have the lines marked, I’ll thread mark the pencil lines so they’re visible on both sides of the fabric. Then it’s pinning and stitching.

Sounds doable.

OH! but there is actually one other thing! The okumi have a raw edge. I’ll need to hem those edges so they don’t fray. Insert that task either before or after thread marking.

Now we’ve hit the it’ll be impressive to get that done today stage. But that’s ok. I’ve set the collar and the sleeves each on their own days, so if there’s a little bleed over from the okumi step on to another day, that day’s task should be able to share. I hope.

I’m really trying to get the lining complete by New Year’s Eve.

The sun stretches out Long fingers of colourful  Clouds as she departs

A dear friend waving farewell I’ll see you in the morning.

Let’s Race

I’m trying to be very careful. I can not afford to make mistakes at this point. There’s less than two weeks to go. Pressure just redoubled. I know they sought out and found judges for my entry. That’s both exciting and terrifying.

Time to stab fabric. Goals for the day: (1) finish the edge of the migoro (body panel), (2) mark out the seam lines for the okumi (overlap panels) attachment, (3) attach the okumi.

If anyone needs me, I’ll be on the couch under a pile of silk.

When has the pressure Become just too much to bear? I feel it creeping

It stalks like a predator Cold eyes shining in the dark

The poems have been a good outlet for my anxiety.

The migoro has a finished edge and the stitch lines are marked out for the okumi attachment. And now we have a brief pause while I edge a different part of the migoro where I cut it open – this is the front center, the edges where the okumi attach. Fun times.

Third time is the charm, looks like the okumi will be attached tomorrow.