What light from yonder umbilicus breaks?

I’ve made a bit of progress on the Farnsworth, and the painting is all done. That’s always a big plus.

But today I want to show you what progress I’ve made on something else.


This summer I don’t have access to my normal sewing supplies, as my summer employment required a flight. My sewing machine would not terribly like my suitcase. And its a bit too heavy. And I’ve got too much fabric to fit into one suitcase, let alone bring clothing to wear along with it.

This also means that I’m not planning on doing any subtle cosplay, as the major components of my wardrobe aren’t with me. And its much too hot here to wear jeans.

But none of this has stopped me from working on my plans.

It just happened to… slow them.

I bought this sewing kit from Amazon, and its a  nice little starter kit. If you are new to sewing, and want something to work with for simple handsewing, this may be a good deal for you, but mostly I needed the scissors and the pins. I’ve had experience with enough unsharpened scissors and cutting fabric for me to need to invest in another fabric pair, even if the kit overall was cheap.

But anyway, back to the point of this post. I have begun work on my white vest for my Claudia costume.


I was going to try to find an online pattern, and while waiting for my Amazon package I did some extensive searching, but I came up with very few patterns that were close enough to help. I decided instead to make a pattern based on my measurements.


This is what I came up with.


I knew it would be a bit wonky, because I’ve rarely created a pattern that was wearable the first time, so I decided to make a muslin. I took an old sheet, traced my pattern, and gave some extra fabric space in the areas I suspected needed to be enlarged.

I unfortunately forgot to take a picture of this step. I was too excited and started sewing immediately. Hand-sewing.

On the plus side, my stitches are becoming more even?


Here’s what the muslin looks like when I’m wearing it. For being a first drafted pattern and handsewn by a machine lover, I think its a pretty good effort! I’m not quite sure if I want to do anything about the shoulders. The muslin makes the shoulder seam lift up a bit, and I think that might look okay with the final fabric. I’m going to increase the width of the fabric in the front, because I want to have a fairly wide inside seam there, so there is a nice appearance when the collar is folded over.

afront1The front will match, I promise, it just was being too picky for pictures.

I found this awesome fabric a few years ago for my quilting stash, but I haven’t quite figured out how to use it yet. Granted, I’ve been without my sewing machine for all but two months of the year since then.

The fabric is a neon yellow-ish Gatorade color, with a floral pattern in black. Kind of a combination of this fabric, if this one was the background yellow. And without the stripes.

Claudia would love this fabric.

I’ve decided to line my vest in said fabric.

I’ve loved the idea of lining demure jackets and coats in crazy fabric, and this is my first opportunity to try.

I’ve got a heavy lead on a bid for a serger machine on ebay, and so I’m holding off until I know the outcome of that before I cut the fabric and move on, but if I am to handsew it, I’ll be using this technique to build a sturdy garment.

So that’s what I’ve got and where I’m going. Now that I’ve decided on my lining, the project won’t be fully finished until August, when I get back to my fabric stash.

Next step? Seam rip the muslin.


4 thoughts on “What light from yonder umbilicus breaks?

  1. First off, I burned my arm really bad and one handed typing takes forever! But I just had to stop by and say that the entire reason I opened your post from the topic reader is because of “umbilicus”. I just had to see if this was 13 related! The fact that you are drafting and hand sewing your vest for a Claudia cosplay is pretty awesome. 😀
    Good luck and I cannot wait to see the results!

      1. It is pretty darn rad. Haha. I remember when I saw the first season and in the finale Artie being trapped in the Umbilicus went kaboom…! I was so mad the next season, haha. And of course Claudia has the best quotes. She is so sassy!

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