Saturday, July 31, 2010

"Fixed the Newel Post!"

If you're a fan of Chevy Chase in the movie, "Christmas Vacation," you'll remember Clark Griswold's frame of mind when he shouted out this line.  He had just taken off the wobbly top of the newel post with a chain saw.  If you've never seen the movie, I'm sorry.  What does this line have to do with today?  Well, let's just say, I am exasperated, overwhelmed, and just out of sorts today.  I feel like Clark Griswold before he took his frustration out on the newel post with the chain saw.  So, what better time to just put the icing on the cake and rip out something you can't stand?  Take one top...

I hate the sleeves on this top - I will never wear it again, ever - unless I do something to fix them.  Hate is a strong word, but it is appropriate in this case. 

Grab a seam ripper and start removing the poufy bottom halves of the sleeves...

Have a piece of chocolate.

Measure the bottom part of the upper sleeve pattern piece so your new bottom part of the sleeve will actually be the same width as the upper part (remember no extra fabric was left over from this project - one shot at is all you get).

Eat a spoonful of peanut butter right off the spoon.

Cut the bottom cuff bands off the sleeves and this is what you have to work with...

Press the two pieces of fabric and cut each into a 12 x 16 inch rectangle.  Also cut two 2.75" x some length - I don't remember - strips.  Press the rectangles in half lengthwise.  Unpress the rectangles because you are a moron and you have to sew them into tubes first.  Sew them into tubes - forget to take pictures because you're aggravated.  Press the tubes in half so they are 6" wide. 

Have 4 Hershey's Cherry Kisses.

Sew the 2.75" x whatever into tubes lengthwise using a 1/4" seam and turn them right side out (don't you love turning skinny tubes right side out?  Yeah - me too).  Turn the raw edge in on one end of each tube and top stitch all the way around.  Sew - I mean baste (using reeeeally looooong stitches so they're easy to rip out) - the new sleeve bottoms to the existing sleeve tops making sure to attach one of the narrow tubes on the outside edge of each sleeve. 

Have several more Hershey's Cherry Kisses.

Naturally, since I basted these, they were done correctly the first time.  If I had forgotten to baste and used really, really tiny stitches, they would have been incorrect - it never fails.

Have a spoonful of Nutella (if you've never had it, I'm sorry).

Look all over the place for that tin that has about 1,000 buttons in it.  Tear through all the fabric drawers, cabinets, look under the beds, scratch your head, and finally say to yourself, "Screw it!  I'm going to Joann's."  Get into the hot as H#LL car, drive to Joann's (of course it starts pouring on the way).  Get out of the car.  Glasses fog up because it is a sauna outside now with steam coming off the parking lot black top.  Go into the store, pick up a four-pack of buttons for $1.75. Figure that you must buy something else so your 40% off coupon doesn't go to waste.  Pick up an art bin (great for storing fabric along with the quilt pattern, so you'll know what you bought that stack of fabric for when you make the quilt 20 years from now). 

Can you tell I'm in a mood?

Have a couple Tums.

Drive home.  Sew the buttons on.  Thread snarls several times while doing this.  Have a few choice words to say about it.  But when all is said and's a top that no longer has hideous sleeves.

My youngest daughter suggested this as a solution, and it worked like a charm (once it was done).  The sleeves are a good length - just to the elbow - hiding the upper arms that keep on waving even after the rest of the arm has stopped *sigh*

Have a Grrrrrreat - emphasis on the Grrrrr - weekend.

I need a drink!


  1. Haha - I know that feeling! (And I love that movie - my sons and I have to see it each Christmas).
    You have done a great job changing the arms!

  2. Well I'm sorry you had a day like this, but glad you posted - I laughed all the way through! Because of COURSE you know we can all relate. Especially to all the chocolate.
    Love how the sleeves turned out Mary, and I'm glad you did it - this is way too pretty not to wear!