The Biker, Bathing Suit and Burned Basque Barbeque

Let’s start with Jim, the biker guy , who has lost 30 pounds and needs his mesh motorcycle jacket altered. Jim has 2 problems besides the weight loss, his mesh jacket while see-thru is very heavy ( 5 pounds) especially the back section as it contains heavy panels which are used for protection in case of falls (think football padding). His elbows and shoulders are also padded and reinforced with panels and plates. But these safety features pull the jacket to the back and end up choking the rider. The other problem is the high chest area, it is too loose and slides upward adding to the choking issue. Jim wants me to figure out how to make a miracle happen here. The front of the jacket is 1.5 inches too wide and he wants me to take in the zipper area but like most good intentions we find that this is impossible since the mesh lining has 2 zipper pockets very close to the one side of the main zipper. OK…plan B will be to remove only one side of the separating zipper and take the entire 1.5 inches away from there.

  You can see what the original jacket looked like and also the white thread tracing on the left where the zipper will be moved to to tighten up the front. Jim is happy, I am happy….but wait what about the issue of the back pulling down? I suggest that I can attach some Velcro to the top band collar to stabilize it since it is only mesh with no interfacing and is stretching badly. What it really needs is some black elastic slid through but Jim will find that out later.

I ask Jim to model the jacket so I can see what else is making this jacket want to pull to the back and then I realize what the cause is….the back panel is curved and thick and shaped like a turtle shell and very heavy and all I can think about at this point is calling Jim either Donatello or Leonardo because if this jacket was green he would be the perfect Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle! Poor Jim doesn’t know I’m laughing inside and just want to pin him up and get him out.

He says he would like the alterations done in a hurry, well who doesn’t these days? Then he asks what will it cost as he could buy another jacket for $59.99 on sale reg $163. Let’s not put any pressure on the seamstress shall we???? Like if I quote what it will probably really cost ($60) he will buy a new one and save me this challenge/misery…life can’t be that simple can it? My quote is lowered and he is told it will be ready in a couple days. He is disappointed that I cannot do a 24 hour turn-around but as we say Tough Titty, Michelangelo.

Here is the finished project with new zipper placement and Velcro tab and elastic in the neck to stabilize it from stretching any further:


An hour later the phone rings and it is a lady who has a FantaSizer bathing suit that needs a little work on the legs. She say she will be around in a moment and 45 minutes later she shows up with a sad looking back leg to her suit. It is one of those types that have a weird curve protrusion where the butt cheeks should be if the manufacturer actually put enough elastic in to pull the curve inward instead of laying flat.

    Inside the hem is thick rubber that has been serged unto the edge and then turned under and then also coverstitched with 2 needles…great…so if that little strip of rubber had any chance of reducing the length of the leg to make it curve this really ruined it. I explain to her a couple of options like running 1/8 inch elastic through the tunnel and pulling it tight to make the curve do what it was supposed to do. She is happy with that but warns me that her mother is a seamstress  but does not do this sort of work anymore. Now I am not quite sure what I am supposed to say but maybe this woman’s mother just decided to quit sewing for her daughter for another reason? The client is at least my age so I am thinking that her mother must be in her 90’s by now and fed up with sewing for free for her demanding long-retired daughter.

Now it is the time for the great try-on. To make sure I know how much tighter to make the leg I ask Suzi to try it on. She pulls it on and the front looks fine but when she turns around I see her butt cheeks hanging almost 2 inches below the edge of the fabric. I have photographed the suit using a flesh colored cushion to simulate what it looked like since it might have been rude/hilarious to snap one while she was in the suit.

   I mention to her that while I can snug up the leg, there is a little problem of her butt really being exposed and she bends backward and says “well I thought you could fix that”…What? I tell her that the bathing suit is not long enough to stretch down and under her and nothing is going to fix that but that the legs will be tight. She settles for that.

Then I say flippantly/stupidly, “You don’t need this by tomorrow do you?” “Yes”, she says I want to pick it up first thing in the morning as I have a very special date. I look her straight in the eye and say “No, really when do you really expect to pick it up?” and she revises her ETA and says “well I could pick it up at 12 noon”. That’s pushing it but at least I have the evening to work in it before this babe makes her love connection with some geezer she has probably met on one of the online dating services for older singles like Depends Dating or something like that.

What the suit needed was an inch taken out (from 12 down to 11 inches) so here are the photos of the elastic pinned in the tunnel before the final stitching.

  You can see the 1 inch difference.

Here is the finished project with the elastic cupping the curve…if only her butt cheeks were in the same location!

After speaking to my husband about this challenge he said it is too bad that Spanks doesn’t make swimsuit underpants or that I could not make some sort of contraption with 2 wide pieces of elastic that would grab her cheeks and pull them up higher attached to a halter or something to go over her shoulders….IMAGINE!

At the end of a weird day I had plans for a super barbeque even though it was 96 degrees in the patio. Since Christmas I had been saving some beautiful delicious Basque sausages (yes, I am Basque) from my brother sent from SoCal but for some reason once I put the lid down on the grill those little suckers caught fire and burned themselves up pretty good. Thankfully the chicken kabobs made it through a bit better. 

Here’s hoping all you future barbeques work out better!

This entry was posted in non-challenges and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The Biker, Bathing Suit and Burned Basque Barbeque

  1. Alethia says:

    (wiping the tears from my eyes) You need your own reality show…Hmmm, why don’t they have a reality show about alteration/dressmaking shops anyway??? Omg, that would be too hilarious!
    First off, once Bubba told me he could by another jacket for $60 bucks, that would’ve been my cue to say adios amigos! I tell people I’m not a sweat shop worker….So, no, I’m sorry sir, I can’t do it for less than $75,that’s including my rush fee~ $25.
    As for flashing butt-Barbie, she needed to know the truth~ It’s not the suit, your bottom just went south with no plans to return, hee-hee. I think DH maybe on to something….LOL!!
    The food seemed to be the better part of your day….these people have NO clue about alterations and time. EVERYBODY wants their stuff NOW,but no one wants to pay any money.
    There should be some kind of creed or anthem amongst seamstresses, alteration specialists, and dressmakers that we are not included in this popular mantra, “Dress the Best for Less”, uhn, uhn, not here. Here,you get what you pay for… that’s all I’m saying.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s