For those of you who follow the sagas of my sewing studio you will remember the woman from Southern California who bought a pair of pants too big and wanted them sized down to be form fitting. Well, she returned this week like a bad penny with a list of complaints.
Back in October, she tried on her pants with regular underpants but today she said she was wearing long johns because she was from Los Angeles and the pants don’t fit. “Of course”, she says “when I go out at night I will be wearing hose so they should fit not matter what I wear underneath.” Oh, I see she wants the “all singing, all dancing” pants just like women who think they can have one hem lengths that works for any shoe from flats to stilettos…it is impossible!
But I agree to see her and when she drops her pants I see the thickest waffle weave long johns that I thought went out of fashion back in the 70’s when we wore them under ski pants. They actually look more like flannel lounge pants. Obviously I forgot to ask the vital question “will you be wearing pajamas under these pants?” She is insistent that I let out every seam 1/4 inch ( 1/2 inch total). So I do what she asks, document every step with photos in case things get ugly and she accuses me of not doing my job. Here is the photo of me working during the night in my cheetah pajamas ripping and pinning all the waistband seams:
You can see in the second photo that she wanted me to save the inch wide seams and not trim anything off and fold them down for later…who does that? Imagine how bulky the seams and lining are with 2 extra inches of fabric along every seam…but the customer is always right…right? I suggest to her that in the future she might think about buying her pants from Pendleton as they have nice lined wool pants and she snaps back “we have one of those in Pasadena and the sizing is inconsistent along with Talbot’s and Chico’s and Coldwater Creek.” Getting the picture of this woman after making a sweeping statement about not one store being able to fit her, I drop the subject and show her the front door.
Another little honey who graced my studio is also from out of town but has been living here for 8 years. She arrives on time (a rarity) and announces, “My husband just dropped me off and you will have me here for at least 45 minutes as he has gone off to a doctor’s appointment.” What? Babysit a grown woman for 45 minutes? All she has is a ratty old velvet jacket that probably fit back in the 70’s when she was 40 but at 82 years of age, it is sad. She says she has “two special events” to wear it to and tells me that it is my job to make it work. All I can say is I may be able to let out 2 small pleats in the front to give her some extra circumference but it will never button/
or look right no matter what I do. I tell her I will steam the velvet and because it is silk and rayon it should come up nice with no marks after 40 years of being sewn shut…asking for a miracle here, Lord!
After 5 minutes of agreeing to do the job she positions/
glues herself on my sofa and spends the rest of the time telling/ boring/ bragging to me about all the luxury (around 1 million dollar’s worth each) homes she owns around the US and her 4 children (my age) and her grandchildren and great grandchildren. Then she drops the bomb…“I have 2 huge plastic tubs of clothes that I want altered and will bring them back for you to work on.” Thinking I would just jump at this chance, she pauses. It is a long pause…
My mind starts spinning and beads of sweat break out on my face and calmly I remember my vow of “no alterations in 2013” and give her the name of another seamstress who can help her. There is no way I need this women back in my life!
Wishing you all the best with holiday seasonal planning and shopping and maybe a little rest at the end of the week. Anne of Tulle and Tweed in Scotland has not received the Pyramid Patterns yet, but keep your fingers crossed it happens soon!