I know, I am a bad, bad blogger and I don't post enough. But I have a good excuse! I have lots of them!
You see, first I was reading. And some of that was dfr's fault, because while I was waiting for my other Borgia books to come, I started reading Black Sun Rising, the first book of the Coldfire trilogy. (The second and third books are When True Night Falls and Crown of Shadows.) That's dfr's fault because she's the one who first told me to read In Conquest Born, which is by the same author. My mom actually ended up buying Black Sun Rising for her Kindle while she was here. I'm not sure exactly why she started reading a book I was still in the middle of! My dad got started reading This Alien Shore, another C.S. Friedman book. I'm not sure why he left it here, he seemed to be enjoying it and I was already finished with that one!
The Borgia books I was waiting for were Light on Lucrezia, The Borgia Betrayal, and The Borgia Bride.
I'd already read Madonna of the Seven Hills, which comes before Light on Lucrezia, and
Poison, which comes before The Borgia Betrayal, because those were cheaper.
And then of course I couldn't put up in-progress pictures of my mom's tunic, because then she would have seen them. So really, everything that's not a good excuse is dfr's fault!
I'm actually much happier with the tunic than I am with these pictures. My camera and computer don't seem happy about the color. It's this really beautiful, deep, vibrant turquoise, and the photos just don't do it justice. I tried adjusting the color, but I couldn't get it quite right. Any adjustments that made the fabric color more accurate gave strange hues to everything else.
The actual fabric is a bit darker and much deeper than it looks in the photos-- just a really stunning color, utterly perfect for my mom.
Turquoise and silver are her colors. She already had a beautifully matching necklace with her-- and she didn't know about the tunic until she got here!
(On a related note: our house got burglarized when I was a kid. When we got home and discovered this, we found that he'd emptied my mother's jewelery box all over the bed. And of course found nothing but silver and semi-precious stones. My mom said she actually felt bad for the guy!)
My mom seems to have the same fitting problems as I do, except even more exaggerated. I'm a lot taller, but we're a similar size, so I'd cut the same size as I do for myself. The sleeves turned out to be too narrow, although I did manage to get them fitting fairly well by letting them out a bit within the seam allowance. Her shoulders are also even narrower than mine; I fixed that by taking it in a bit around the top of the sleeve cap. I didn't unpick anything there; I just took in both the top of the sleeve cap and the edge of the shoulder. The final fit seems to be fairly good, although next time I'll probably cut the upper sleeves a bit wider.
That pleat on the back is not part of the pattern. I started doing it because the pattern actually wants the back to be cut as separate pieces, and the first time I made this tunic I didn't take the seam allowance into account when I cut the it on the fold.
I'd planned on doing a decorative stitch for the hem, but I was using the silver metallic Gutermann thread (not the same as the metallic Brother embroidery thread) which fluffs up a bit too much for real decorative stitches, and my mom liked the way the regular zigzag looked, so I ended up just just a plain old zigzag hem. My no-model-name-or-number "Heavy Duty" Taiwanese Necchi had thrown a hissy fit over the metallic thread (and protested the use of top-stitching thread too,) but the BU Mira handles it wonderfully.
Some tips for using that metallic Gutermann thread:
- Always use a top-stitching needle.
- Thread the needle using a needle threader, don't try to just thread it normally; It's kind fluffy and frays easily, so it's really, really hard to get all of the thread through the eye.
- Use a Thread Stand It keeps twisting to a minimum and feeds more easily.
- Use regular thread in the bobbin, preferably in a color that matches the fabric.