I have this shirt-in-progress, we'll call it the Seed Packet Shirt (the print features seed packets), which was begun as a team effort between me and mom. A New Look pattern, very 90's, very loose and "comfy". Mom cut it out, and actually stitched most of it. I forget why. At some point, the unfinished blouse and the rest of it's parts ended up back at my house. At some point, it was noted that the cuff pieces were missing.
I was stoic about it, thinking to myself, how hard could that be to improvise - they're just rectangles, right? But, also being a perfectionist, I preferred to have the actual pattern piece. So I kept a look-out. (Mom is notorious for losing pattern pieces. She hates folding them up and putting them away. She loves it when I come over and clean up after her cutting-out sessions.)
I actually wondered if it would be unethical to pull the pattern from the drawers at the store, and trace off the piece(s). I thought about that idea fairly often, to tell the truth. But I never did it.
After a while, the pattern went out of print, as patterns do, and I had to go back to looking for the missing piece. It was never found, though many others were - skirt fronts, cuffs, collars, bodice pieces - all kinds of loose/lost pattern pieces turned up. But not the cuff for my Seed Packet Shirt. That piece, it appeared, was lost forever.
While contemplating which UFO's from my sewing room might be smart (and fast) to finish for Me Made March '11, I started going through a basket of what at one point was my "current" or "soon to be finished" set of UFO's. Not much in that basket really excites me right now, but at some point, these were things I wanted to wear. At any rate, the Seed Packet Shirt is part of that group, so I pull it out, and tell myself it's time to get over it, once and for all, and just figure out the dimensions of that stupid cuff, so I can finish the thing and move on. The sleeve has some pleats in it, so I'll need to fold those over and measure the resulting width in that position to determine how long to make the cuff, which is best done with the paper pieces, since fabric has a tendency to stretch. (Can you understand why I didn't just do this before? Can you?) I reach into the pattern envelope and pull everything out. I unfold each piece, one by one, but only to point that I can tell it's not the sleeve, and then move on to the next piece, placing each piece carefully back in the envelope as I go. (I don't have a problem with that - I think of it as part of the process.) I'm almost through all of them, still haven't seen the sleeve, when I come across two small pieces that haven't been cut out yet. They're both just rough-cut around the edges, like you do when you're separating the pieces before laying them out to cut. I unfold them, and, what do you know? it's the sleeve binding and the cuff.
maple-bacon-bar. Nothing like a little comfort food to calm the frustration.)