UFO (unfinished object) may break a record

by Ramona on September 28, 2011

And, we’re off …… with a staple of most sewing enthusiasts’ sewing rooms, a UFO (unfinished object). We’ll start with me embarrassing myself by telling the world about a UFO which has probably broken a record in my sewing life.

Go back 18 years. My first born, a girl, is 17 years old and I am making a prom dress for her. For whatever reasons, the unfinished dress is relegated to the nether regions of some closet in the house. Fast forward to the present; the girl decides to clean out her wardrobe (it took her all these years to do that?!?) and lo and behold, le prom dress emerges in all it’s unfinished glory.  She tries it on and it fits! The sleeves and lining were assembled but not attached, the crinoline underskirt was already pinned in, and the shoulders were pinned for some adjustment (that explains a sudden shortage of pins at the time in my notions basket).  Now, the dress needs a neck facing, hemming, the addition of sleeves, addition of lining and other finishing touches. The fabric is black ottoman — maybe silk ottoman, maybe not — who knows.  The pattern and inspiration picture are both AWOL. But very little work is needed to finish the dress!

Stay tuned for the story of this Sleeping Beauty which will come to life as an LBD (little black dress).  I’m shooting for a not too distant future where you’ll see it finished. No doubt I will be prodded on by the owner/wearer of the dress.

With Daughter #2, I did the smart thing. Her prom dress was outsourced to a good friend and fellow ASG member, who made a beautiful column gown (Vogue Patterns, Badgley-Mischka) in soft yellow silk cut-velvet.


So, members and readers, have you broken my UFO record?  Or are you an overachiever and never had a UFO?   Please tell!  Let the world know of your UFO experiences.



Cynthia Poole September 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm

Hahaha I don’t think i can break a 16 year record but I’m sure if I search hard enough…[really not that hard] I could find my share of UFO’s. What a wonderful way to describe them too. I think it takes a little of the pain away …you know …the pain of expenses, time, and effort put into something at the time you actually planned to wear or someone else might wear. I really have to hmhis [hang my head in shame] because at several occasions i remember thinking maybe someone else might be interested in finishing what I couldn’t and placing the pinned garment complete with pattern pieces and the pattern in a bag for donation. Now i can see how silly. More than likely the item was placed in a bin marked for the trash. Just a less painful way for me to say goodbye. haha…Thanks for beginning this blog it actually was theraputic. Hugs

Debbie September 28, 2011 at 7:04 pm

That’s quite a record. And, one with a great ending. I have two ufo’s but from this year with the intent yet to finish. I used to have many ufo’s, but most of my sewing now is necessity related, so they get finished. Also, most of my sewing projects are quick to create and less likely to be let sit.
I’m really looking forward to following along. I love the other asg offerings.

Susan September 29, 2011 at 3:29 pm

I once had a wool jacket that was on the ‘eight year plan’… I had the body all cut out and chose contrasting fabric for the sleeves. I put everything aside until I could cut out the sleeves. When I finally resurrected the project the sleeves were missing! Fast forward five years and I moved house. I found the sleeves but the jacket was MIA, packed away very securely. So I used the sleeve fabric for something else. Finally one day I stumbled over the jacket body. I had some fabric that would make good sleeves and sewed it all up. Of course by then the jacket styles were completely different but I wore it several times just to say it was done. I put it in the recycle bin. Maybe the fabric was just never meant to be a jacket!

Valerie September 29, 2011 at 7:46 pm

Does holding on to a piece of fabric for 10 yrs and then taking 6 yrs to finish count?
I bought a lovely piece of cashmere wool in 1995/1996 for really cheap price and had it earmarked for a nice winter coat. I bought a couple of patterns and finally in 2007, I settled on a coat pattern by Sandra Betzina. I bought a really nice print for the lining and cut out all the pieces. I had a hard time on the front placket and put the thing away. I moved to another state, but packed up that pile and said I would finish it some day. Finally, in early part of this year, I finished that jacket. I actually re-cut some lining pieces, as they obviously slipped during the first cutting. Tried it on and it was too big! So I undid the lining and took in the jacket and lining. Tried it on and it was still too big – it ended up looking like a swing jacket instead of a nice fitted slenderizing jacket. I still have it, because some day I’m thinking (notice only thinking right now) of taking it completely apart, resizing it and doing it all over again. And maybe I’ll get around to making a set of gloves and hat with leftovers (yeah, that was in the original plan too).

Mary October 3, 2011 at 2:04 am

I have a boiled wool jacket-in-progress that may be that old. Once upon a time I bought boiled wool in a beautiful shade of blue with matching trim for what was to me then a small fortune. I got the jacket together with sleeves and collar and all, and then it got too warm for it so I put it aside before sewing on the trim. Over the next several years my weight fluctuated and/or I did not have sewing time when it was cold out,so it sat – or really, hung on a hanger in my closet. Eventually my weight and the season were right, and I got the trim on and started to do buttonholes. First one went well, second not so well and needed to be ripped. It. I noticed sat for a couple more years. I saw it hanging there the other day as I packed for a sewing retreat. Alas, there were more pressing projects [like a Halloween costume for my grandson], etc, etc.so it did not make the cut. Now home from a very productive retreat [finished cape with collar, 2 jackets done except buttons, costume needing only finishing touches, pillowcases completed for a shelter and most of the work done on a half dozen freestanding Santas [gifts]], and seeing this blog, I am inspired to finish those buttonholes and wear that jacket. Thanks for the gentle nudge!

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