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More Elvery, or, Measure Twice, Cut Once

December 7, 2011


This weekend, Krypton and I sat down to make some ties for some men we love!  Little did we know (well, really, just in my case) how difficult it would turn out to be.  Thor is an habitual bow tie wearer, so I wanted to make him a bow tie out of the fabric I bought at Mood a few weeks ago.  Since I only had a limited amount of that fabric, Krypton and I both used some homespun that I had lying around.  As you will see, the fabric was crazy candy colors–the fabric had been given to me by a colleague who made some bandanas for a daughter’s dance performance long ago.  Krypton had a pattern for her tie, but I didn’t, so I used a tie I had borrowed from Thor for this express purpose.  I traced (what I thought) was half the tie onto a piece of printer paper, added a seam allowance, and first tried cutting on the bias, placing the pattern on the fold:

Aside from possibly creating a ridiculous new fashion trend–perpendicular bowties–this first cut was useless.  Clearly the math teacher made a boo-boo (hey, I teach Algebra, not Geometry) and I had to start over.  I cut on the bias, but cut two separate pieces that did not include a fold and stitched them together.

Now THAT looks more like a bowtie.  Notice two pieces are sewn together–my idea was to create another piece that looked just like this, then sew them almost all the way around and turn the piece inside-out.  This is me ruggedly jamming a chopstick up the tie as a turning tool–I quickly realized that I would be unable to turn the tie because of the narrow path created by the neckband.  Here the pictures get a little spotty, because, as they say in politics, “mistakes were made.”  I created a perfect gingham bowtie…oh wait, two edges are exposed.  I fixed that issue and made a perfect gingham bowtie.  Then, I created the same tie out of the silk (albeit more carefully) and it looked BEAUTIFUL!  But in going to put it on, I wondered why it felt so tight.  Thor’s neck is a good three and a half inches bigger than mine, and this was never going to work.  So why on earth didn’t this work if I had used HIS bowtie?  Ladies and gentlemen, by trying to avoid the hardware (adjusting hook and whatnot) in the tie, I neglected to realize that the hardware creates two sides of the tie unequal in length, and I had gone with the shorter one.  So, basically ruining the streamlined look of my piece, I had to insert a lumpy middle section.  Sigh.  The tie certainly looks “special” when sitting around, but Thor tried it on and you couldn’t tell at all.  Yes, I already gave the tie to Thor because I was disappointed at my efforts.  Krypton fared better:

She was working from a pattern, so her job was much easier (though she did request my help to show her how to slip-stitch the tie).  Above are some of her cutouts and here is the mockup of the tie…

Nice fashion choice, Krypton.  Stripes and plaid aside, she knew there were a few issues she would fix in the actual tie-making process (notice the point at the bottom isn’t even, etc.)  Here’s her finished tie for her dad:

This side of the fabric is actually the “wrong side,” but we both agreed that it looked better since the gradient of colors was much more pronounced.  Krypton embroidered her dad’s initials into the back of the tie and added a loop to it!

Now it’s my job to create the tie for E. Chadwick (Krypton kindly cut out the pieces for me).  Let’s hope it goes way better than my bowtie experience!  Not to mention I still have to make a whole shirt for my dad!  Eep!  Gotta run and craft!

~Love and Stitches,

Miss Pascal


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