:: head + brick wall = ? ::

the great sloper saga II - all my scribblings

I am blushing at all the sweet comments you left about my drawings! Thank you! I haven’t “seriously” drawn in so long nor shown my work online much, so its a bit weird to put it out there. But thank you; your kindness has made me a little bit less self-conscious about sharing my artwork. And I’m so delighted that so many other readers love 19th century fashion plates too!! I have just been so inspired lately by all the artists whose blogs I read that I knew I had to get back into drawing, if nothing else just to amuse myself. *giggle*

Thank you also everyone who has continued to support my Shoppe! Wow; I’m just amazed and blessed by how positive the response has been lately! Must be something about the fall air...

No outfit photograph for today. I woke up bright and early this morning (at, um 6:30; after going to bed at around 1am!!), chipper and ready to start the day. Then it suddenly hit me: a huge wave of creativity and ideas. So I decided to “art” today rather than worry about how I looked too much. hehe. I’ve been doing lots of sketchy-sketches all morning of ideas and thoughts that are floating around inside my head. If only they’ll come out the way I’m seeing them!! rofl.

the great sloper saga I

Yesterday I did embark on drafting the sloper, although it was very uncomfortable in my room where I was working because it was so warm! But I persevered! Every time I make an attempt at drafting a sloper (and there have been many!), I am reminded:

1.) I hate drafting patterns from scratch;
2.) having a sloper would make the whole drafting thing loads easier.
3.) How much I would prefer to just drape the sloper, but...
4.) ...my dress form needs to be upgraded to a professional one to make that feasible.
5.) Which makes #2 all that more urgent.

the great sloper saga II - front

My background in drafting is all over the map. I taught myself to draft doll clothing patterns by the time I was 6 (my Barbies and American Girl dolls were very well clothes in the latest bustle-inspired fashions). But 10 I had discovered a dusty 1970’s d.i.y. book called Slapdash Sewing and drafted my first piece of “people clothing”. When I was 13, I discovered Jennie Chancey’s lovely Regency gown pattern, but rather than just buy the pattern (like any normal, sane person would), I drafted my own (and then did buy her pattern about three years later...). Right before I turned 18 and graduated from “high school” (I was a life-long homeschooler, so grades really don’t apply!), I interned with Jennie for a month. She taught me some basic principles, which over time (unfortunately) have faded a bit in my memory. So, although I mentally can draft a sloper, sometimes the imagined and reality aren’t as seamlessly easy as I’d like.

This isn’t to say how wonderful I am, or “look at me--I was a pattern-drafting child prodigy!”, but rather how there is a innate need and understanding within me to do this. Its like all aspects of creativity: some people are just born with a fundamental ”have-to” desire to practice their craft. Sometimes it just takes awhile to perfect the basic techniques so you can move on. Its a well documented fact that I’m a late-bloomer anyway. Once it clicks, I get it; but until then it takes a lot of head-against-wall moments. lol.

the great sloper saga II - back

This has actually been the most successful attempt yet, and I still haven’t given up; it really just needs a few tweaks (as evidenced in the photos). Times like this, though, I wish I could go to design school and just take a few courses in drafting and pattern development. It fascinates me, how patterns are manipulated into different forms, creating an architectural sheath for the body. Art and beauty are created from a flat set of patterns (or fabric, in the case of draping, which comes much easier to me than drafting!). Its amazing, and yet frustrating. But anything worth doing or having is always a bit bumpy at the beginning of the ride, isn’t it?

And as Mother always said: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again...”

I need to frame that on my wall.

cheers & creativity,
    ♥ casey [ email me ]


Anna Allen said...

Oh man, I can totally relate with #1!! I hate making patterns from scratch. It pretty much kills all my creativity. I think mostly because it's such a discouraging process for me. But I'm learning every day, so perhaps these feelings will change one day....

marmielu said...

That was very interesting - reading your "history". A good read, as they say. I do hope this one turns out for you.

Melissa said...

A vote for pattern drafting!! It'll fall in to place...persevere!It's a tool a "creative" like you needs!

A seamstress reader

Marjorie said...

What a lovely posting! I've only ever dabbled in pattern drafting and draping here and there.....I don't know any of the real techniques or anything so I've always felt like a bit of an outsider peeping into some secret club! ;) I mostly just fidget with other patterns (use them as a base to work from and such) or scale up those teeny ones from books. : )

I love when the creative flow starts....it feels like some sort of divine magic beyond your control!! Have fun with your lovely sketches!! They are so wonderful and elegant!

Happy weekend!

fiftyRX3 said...

hi, just landed here from tricia's blog and skimmed this post. I am not sure if I am missing something, but shouldn't you just be doing half the torso? That way your pattern is symmetrical.

You can get books on pattern making for reasonable prices on ebay.

although, I am much more of the quick cut and drape type!!

good luck!

Sam said...

I know what you mean.. sometimes i just HAVE to make something. Actually.. all the time.. but sometimes I just get huge bursts of creativity that I have to follow through or I'm pretty sure I'd explode. Except I think you blogged about one of those once.. haha. ;)