In life there are big problems and small problems. What I'm about to relate is admittedly a small problem, but it's still substantial enough to be blog-worthy. Or at least MPB-worthy.
Today I bought the wrong fabric.
After sewing all those shirts over the last three weeks, I'd been wanting to make myself a nice pair of cotton corduroy pants I could wear with them, over the holidays and beyond. So with an hour and a half to spare in the Garment District this morning, I looked for corduroy; to judge by what I found, we are in no danger of running out of this fabric anytime soon. Yet I had a hard time finding the color I wanted: a very classic color, at least in men's corduroy pants and blazers. Sometimes it's called wheat, sometimes harvest gold. It's this color, or pretty close.
I did see a few things that were approximately the right color, but they either had Lycra in them, or the wale was too wide, or both.
Finally, at Fabrics For Less on 39th St., I found this:
It's not corduroy, but rather velveteen, but the color was perfect. It did seem a little thick, but I'd already looked three other places, the price was right ($7/yd. for a 60" bolt), and I was eager to have something to show for my efforts. Plus it was pretty. Worn out and bleary-eyed, I bought two yards.
When I got it home, I realized this really is upholstery-weight fabric. It would be perfect for sofa bolsters, an ottoman, or even a theater curtain. But for men's pants, not so much.
I love the way the color and thick nap look with my Pendleton plaid shirt and I think it would coordinate well with my red polka dot shirt too.
What to do?
Friends, have you ever gotten stuck with the wrong fabric, been unable to return it, and soldiered on with your project anyway? In the end were you glad you did, or do you wish you'd listened to your gut and found something more appropriate?
Should I launder this fabric and see if it doesn't soften up? Save it for another project?
On a related note, do you ever sew clothes with upholstery fabric? Do they end up cute and practical, like Maria Von Trapp's curtains re-imagined as playclothes, or stiff and unwearable?
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!