Happy Friday! It’s a gorgeous one here, and I’m in a great mood because Spring is finally arriving in bits and pieces! Not to mention the fact that I discovered I’d completely forgotten I had the afternoon off work, so I excitedly sat down at my sewing machine to work on my current dress project, another rendition of the pattern I used for my Singin’ in the Rain dress. (Thank you for all the lovely comments on it! ♥)
But that’s when I discovered a problem. My (modern) fabric had a few holes in it (possibly manufacturer flaws as I saw another bit that was undyed, too). And I’d already cut out the pieces. Hell, I was already assembling the pieces. The holes were on the skirt both front and back, and I definitely didn’t have enough fabric left to re-cut those pieces.
Alack! Alas! What’s a sewist to do?? Make do and mend.
With Rochelle having recently announced Sew for Victory for the second year, a lot of us are eagerly planning our 1940s-inspired sewing projects. (Me? Not sure what mine will be but I can guarantee it won’t be as ambitious as last year’s project!)
So when I stopped in my tracks at my ironing board, pressing my pocket pieces and spotted those inglorious holes (four of those &^%$ers), I knew what I was going to have to do. The choice was either chuck the entire project or darn the holes. The first option felt like the easy path to take in the disposable culture that surrounds us these days. The second option took more time, and quite frankly, a little bit of balls to know I was going to make myself something from new materials that was already going to have small flaws.
And yes, while the first option could have been accomplished by purchasing new fabric and potentially re-purposing all the non-holey-bits so I didn’t waste much, it still involved spending more money and using more resources to finish the dress. I went with the option that didn’t involve anything more than a few supplies I had on hand already.
So what I did was simple: I cut a tiny square of fusible stay tape (since it was a bit lighter weight than the fusible weft interfacing I often use), and fused it to the back of each hole. Then, running matching thread through beeswax for extra strength, I stitched over each hole carefully.
When I was finished, I applied a few tiny dabs of Fray Check delivered on the point of a pin (since these were mighty small holes) to both the back and the edges of the front of the mended spots.
And really, they look pretty… well… not noticeable. The photo below is like a Where’s Waldo of mending. Can you spot the two mends?
And here’s another one, with my fingers for scale. Hint: it’s in the light blue below the ‘a’ and ‘i’ in the word Straits.
Not bad, right? There’s one more just like them elsewhere on the skirt, too.
It’s not the 1940s. These days, we’re free to buy whatever fabric we’d like; there are no rations. The only restrictions are the ideas in our head and our budget. I could have bought more of this fabric, but I chose instead to mend the fabric. That means when I’m finished, I’ll have four visible mends, which might seem crazy to some of you. But I’ll be proud of the choice I made, using both the skills and resources I already had on hand. Okay yeah, and proud of the fact that the mends look pretty damn good if I do say so myself!
If you’re interested in reading more about visible mending, I’d recommend you check out Tom of Holland’s blog. I like to think I was channeling Tom a bit when I sat down to mending this afternoon.
Make do and mend? Check! Looks like I’m off to a good start for Sew for Victory already.
Now, back to the sewing!