I finished the latest muslin yesterday. Here it is:
This one, you may recall, has a side panel inserted between front and back panels, enabling the asymmetric back and also adding some more fullness at the bottom (adding “swing” to the swing coat design).
I’m not crazy about this muslin. Yes, it works technically (though I wonder if there is now too much fullness at the bottom), but I don’t like the lines, especially on the back, which looks unbalanced and ugly. It also feels angular and regimented, very unlike what I was envisioning – the drift of an autumn leaf as it falls to the ground.
In fact, I’m conjuring up a crazy idea: what if I made another muslin with the dark/light boundary a whimsically curved line in back, and a similar whimsical curve along the diagonal line of the front facing? If I did that, I could also add more curves at the edges of the side panels, continuing the whimsical-curve motif and integrating them into the theme of the garment. I could add piping to emphasize the line, and then embroider skeletal leaves in gold thread, semi-randomly following the line of the curve.
I have absolutely no idea whether this will work – I have the feeling it may interact badly with the horizontal lines in the fabric – but this is a sufficiently exciting idea that I think I’m going to mock it up in either Photoshop or Illustrator, and maybe make another muslin next week, just to see.
Meanwhile, here is what the muslin looks like with the actual fabric:
The left and right photos of the front are subtly different: the orange panel in the right photo has the orange panel shifted up by two or three inches, bringing the two red sections in closer proximity. I had hoped this would balance them and add interesting interactions, but it doesn’t; it looks more lopsided than the original. (The original also has interesting colorplay at the bottom, with the purple shifting from left to right and then going in unison to brown – the altered version just looks like a mistake.)
Anyway, that just goes to show that a small change in color proportions can make a big difference to the balance of a piece! It has been really interesting playing around on the dress form.
And, lest you think I have been slackerly with the chocolates, I made four batches of fudge (coconut tequila lime, coconut almond, lavender lemon vanilla (with white chocolate), and chocolate ginger) today and will taste-test a horde of bonbon center flavors tomorrow. I am soaking dried cranberries, dried sour cherries, and raisins in rum, Armagnac, and cognac, and will try the nine combinations in chocolate tomorrow, along with a bunch of other (much more exotic!) combos.