return to camp chanel: day one

20130323-224709.jpgso i am back in baltimore again- on purpose – i almost can’t believe it.  but can i tell you that this year’s camp chanel could not be at a better time?  somewhere after the time shifted – thanks Energy Policy Act of 2005 – my energy shifted accordingly, as in, through the roof.  unfortunately, the weather has not caught up with either the daylight OR my energy and now i have a place to channel it while i wait for my garden to defrost and for spring to get here at long last.

i skipped most of the shopping day in NYC this year, still having nearly 6 yards of chanel boucle from last year’s excursion.  i originally planned to draft a jacket from scratch, incorporating the chanel single-layer lapel and also eliminating all of the styline shaping, replacing it with ease.  abut two weeks ago, i realized that whatever my energy level was, i didn’t have enough of it to spare in drafting and bringing an untested pattern to a project that cost over $500 – just in supplies.  then, i had a brainwave.  i could use the jacket pattern i had already done a fitting on with susan and kenneth in october, and also incorporate some of the amazing details from this number spotted on couture allure:


bonus:  this meant i could actually make – or start to make – two jackets over one course period.

my pattern had armscye princess seams, which susan quickly vetoed as not being a good fit.


armscye – to – shoulder conversion

i say “vetoed” because working with susan on a jacket is always about getting the balance between what she thinks you need and what you really want.  in my case, i got to keep my “dior darts” if i agreed to the shoulder princess conversion.

all of this happened nearly at lunchtime.  the first day of camp chanel, i have learned, is catching up with other repeat offenders – i know more than half the women in class! – and joining the fitting queue, muslin in hand, dreams and aspirations on display.


all too soon comes the dreaded moment of truth, where it is time to place your adjusted muslin onto the precious fashion fabric and make the first cuts.  i carried on a running conversation with both my neighbor and my fabric during this trying period, not really caring which one of them might respond.  mostly i was soothing my fabric:  “you’re so pretty.  this is going to be amazing.  i love you so, so much.  you’re awesome.”


but tell me i am wrong.  i dare you.  🙂


and then, because class ends at 6:30 and i long ago exhausted my excitement for finding things to do in baltimore, why not a little more handsewing after six hours of thread tracing and my first-ever headache from squinting at something too small to focus on (my needle.  next time, embroidery needles!  big ones!)?  above:  a pocket-in-progress for drape drape 2 #3 with alabama sewing studio techniques.


whew.  no wonder i’m pooped!

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13 Responses to return to camp chanel: day one

  1. oonaballoona says:


  2. Rosie says:

    Indy wants to be IN the class. He promises would help a lot! Ahh I remember that class well – lots of work but so worth it. I cannot wait to see the finished product. Have fun!

  3. Carolyn says:

    I think it’s awesome that you’re taking this class! It’s on my sewing bucket list…so enjoy and report back when you can…I’ll be eagerly following along!

  4. Tia Dia says:

    your fabric & trim choices are glorious! *sigh* this is a dream of mine – to be able to do camp chanel with susan. one day…. one day…

  5. meggipeg says:

    $500 gasp! I would be exhausted from the stress of deciding what to make with such fabulous and expensive fabric, not to mention actually cutting into it. OMG, I’m having palpitations!

  6. Clio says:

    Ooh, I love the godets on the jacket. And your fabric. But seriously, it’s my scissors I’d be giving the pep talk to! I’m sure I’d have to promise them amnesty should things not go according to plan.

  7. Pingback: WIP updates: little (or long) french jackets | puu's door of time

  8. Pingback: jacket progress continues! with photos | puu's door of time

  9. Pingback: new look 6028: the original shortcut-style chanel jacket | puu's door of time

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