if i needed it confirming, this is the project that confirmed it: i will never make a seamstress. the clue's in the name, -stress. it's not making things for other people in general that's the problem, i've bombarded my nearest and dearest with enough homemade tat to disprove that. but those have always been a surprise, they didn't carry the weight of other people's expectations. it's making to commission that apparently takes a lot of the fun out if it.

also, making something apparently small and simple that is actually all kinds of stuff you've never done before doesn't help. the pattern (burda 9990) had mock welts. personally i can't think of anything crueller to inflict on a 4 year old than pretend pockets, so i had to make them functional. despite my many mini-trials with the bound button holes it still took a bit of brain bending to get my head around the process. then a bit more brain bending to get around the fact that i'd cut past the opening and into the main fabric on the first pocket :cry:

i stitched up the cut as best i could, but i wasn't confident about the repair holding. neither was i confident about the strength of the pockets themselves, as the lining fabric is thin (in future i'm making a huge effort to find good quality lining, this stuff was horrible to work with) and the structure of the welt pocket - clipped right into (past :roll:) the corners - weakens it further.  i also wasn't happy that the pocket lining was showing through the main lining. happily, i solved all the above problems with an interfacing fudge :)

i didn't bother to look it up, as i'm sure there's a million reasons why it shouldn't be done, but at that point i Really Didn't Care. the denim has a very soft hand so i'd interfaced the whole of the front pieces with a dark fusible. so i took a patch of the same interfacing and fused it over the whole of the back of the pocket, simultaneously reinforcing the pocket, reinforcing the repaired cut and masking the pocket lining. clever huh? (now you can tell me why it shouldn't be done because it is Too Late To Do Anything About It :P)

the buttonholes, which had been giving me the heebeejeebies all the way through, were slightly less trouble than i'd feared. i did have to unpick and restitch a couple of times, but i didn't cut through any threads when i opened them. they're a little stiff cos i clear nailvarnished them in the hope of keeping any fraying under control.

overall i'm pretty happy with the finished product, all the fussy cutting i did at the beginning has really paid off, i'm happy with where the horses are sitting, which i think is the standout first thing you notice. will have to report back re sizing (i combined differing height/chest measurements). i've sized up the recipient next to my 3-yo and i'm hopeful that the way it fits on her (i had to beg her to take it off :D) indicates it should be a good fit on him.

it's just a shame that the process was so tortuous. it turns out that i'm mostly in it for the journey.