Slow sewing: How to make “YES! it’s easy” into a month of work.

Hey again!

Do you remember when you were new at sewing? When it was fresh, and you were filled with zest and passion, for this wondrous new thing you had discovered? In love with your machine and all the wonderful creations you would bring to life in rapid succession. Rows and rows of shimmering garments in sleek fabrics and fabulous trim, stretching out before your minds eye.

All your apparel dreams just waiting to be fulfilled one stitch at the time. A perfect fit, in the perfect style, and the most beautiful fabric, with the most delicious couture finishes.

Yeah well.. I am so not there right now. It is like the initial romance with sewing have met everyday life. And I have realized that sewing takes a long time. In my first romantic sewing haze I have purchased so many patterns and so much fabric. I am not sure how quickly I thought I would sew it up, but definitely not this slow. At this rate I got patterns and fabrics enough for a year!

My latest project has taken me over a month to complete. Butterick might say “YES! it’s easy”, and it probably is easy. But I guess when you are new, easy can be a subjective thing. Because there really is a lot of ways you can make it harder for yourself, if you are not afraid to try. And that is me. Not afraid of anything, not even the clearly retarded stuff.

Then it hit me: slow is all the rave at the moment, take the slow fashion movement for instance.

So I decided to make a tutorial on being slow. I call it:

Slow sewing: How to make “YES! it’s easy” into a month of work.

 

This tutorial is based on Butterick 6156 (version A), which you can buy at your leisure, I am not affiliate with any pattern brand/online shop, so what do I care. The principles as you will see, really applies to any pattern. So if you wish to follow along, feel free to use any pattern you got lying around.

 

The tutorial is developqed and tested by me, and if used appropriately will ensure you a prolonged sewing experience and possibly leave you with a lasting hesitation about starting new projects in the future (thereby extending the slowness), and some possible aches and pains. I take no responsibility for anything you do after reading this tutorial.

 

 

Lets get started!

Step one: Because you are a beginner, you should opt to trace off any paper pattern on to some giftwrap paper (you know, so you dont fuck it up, with your noobness), so here we add a good evenings of work to the project.

Am I the only one prepared to stock up on cheap giftwrap paper after christmas?

Step two: Measure yourself in the most obsessive way you can. quadruple check everything – you just never know if that measuring tape was a bit wonky over your back.

Step three: Do all your planned alterations, hack and slash away. Remember to always close the taperoll when you put it down.

(it is also preferable to do steps one-three in the evening when you are tired and “just want to finish”. This way you can make the accuracy of transferring markings extra challenging. Also if it is dark-ish it is a plus)

Procrastinate.

Step four: Make a toile (Make sure you in this proces sew onto of the zipper teeth for extra work removing and adding the zipper again) and come to the realization that the fit is completely off. That the waist sits in the wrong place, the fabric is drowning you, and you cannot get the gathers sitting right.

Procrastinate more.

Step five: Start making you alterations. Here it can be good to remember this trick: If you do these alterations without giving to much consideration to the end projects grain line, you can add a lot more work for yourself later.

Step six: Realize that you will need to do something to straighten the center back seam and have a serious period of procrastination and self doubt – feel free to take days, even a week or two. Some things you just need to take your time with.

Step seven: Take your toile apart and transfer it onto paper. Try to even up the CB seam, by moving the curve to the outside by meticulous dividing the pattern into 1cm increments horizontally and measure the distance from the curved seam and a new straight seam. removing this measurement on the side of the pattern. Realize you don’t know what to do about the wonky shape the armhole has become.

Step eight: Make a new toile. Do some final adjustments, and try and scrub the pen marks of the kitchen table.

If you can procrastinate, feel free to do so. Here though, I could feel I was on the home stretch and things moved smoothly.

Step nine: Sew up your final garment, in a preferably very difficult fabric. To keep the slow pace you can choose between different approaches. Really it is up to what suits you as a person. You can either slow down the process by double checking the instructions all the time, or by impatiently disregarding them, to try and increase likelihood of mistakes and time spent unpicking. Also make sure to hem everything by hand. Never take the easy/quick way out. When you are handhemming try your best to sit in a slightly hunched over and twisted position. Be careful not to support you upper back, shoulder og neck. Stay in this position as long as you can. Despite growing aches you can justify staying to yourself, by the continual mantra “alllllmost done“, or alternatively “just a little more“.  It is an excellent way of squeezing the last extra few days out of this project by giving yourself aches and pains leaving you unable to continue for a few days.

Step ten: Be proud and enjoy your new garment! Think about how many hours you have spent making it, and try and see how much the garment should cost based on amount of time spent and your normal wage. Feel like the queen of the block, because you just made yourself one extraordinarily expensive piece of clothing.

So that was my tutorial to get slow-sewing. If you try this method or If you use a different method or have experience with something similar, I would love to hear about it.

Slow Fashion

I mentioned slow fashion at the beginning of my post, and it is because I am consindering joining the #sewmystyle project (click the link to learn more). It is a project embracing slow fashion and spreading the idea of sewing to young people. I kinda like the slow fashion concept. Trying to get away from quick fix trends and clothing. Working my way towards a more long lasting, quality wardrobe (of all exuberantly expensive home-/handmade garments). Also I think that to try and make more sustainable choises is an admirable thing. Not to mention something I could always use a reminder to be better at.

I don’t think all of the patterns in the project are right for me, and while I think it is good to get invited out of my comfort zone, I think I will just pick what I like. Preserving the spirit of the project, if not its letter, and not sew up something I really do not think I am going to use. I think I will definitely make the January project, the toaster sweater, then we shall see where it goes from there.

To be honest I also just want to keep sewing a feel-good thing and not let it slip into a deadline thing.

Are you joining it? And if yes, what patterns do you look forwards to sewing up?

Anyway that is it for this time. Leave me a comment, they are always welcome and appreciated.

Cheers!

Jannie

 

 

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Sew over it Tulip Skirt

Hi guys,

So lately I have been working on a few different projects. And I have gotten around to finish one of them. It is the tulip skirt by sew over it. Since the pattern does not come in my size I graded the pattern up a few sizes. I have graded a patter before with good result. This time it worked so/so. The waistband suddenly didn’t fit the skirt (luckily it was too large). I am unsure wether it was due to an error I made, or wether the grading method I used just did not work very well for this particular skirt. But what ever it was it was not really a problem. I just removed the excess of the waistband after making sure the skirt would still fit me, if I did so. I can still fit the skirt fine. It just sits a bit further up than I har imagined. Which I do not think hurts the look of it, at all.

If you are not familiar with grading, grading is about sizing the pattern up or down. This way you can get to wear and sew a pattern that does not come in your size. Grading might seem daunting, but it really is not very hard to do. There is some good tutorials out there to figure out how to do it. the one I used was one I had read about in Mrs. Huges blog. Besides from the “easy method” which I am linking to, she also has another method you can check out, if the easy one, does not work for you.

If you use another method I would love to hear from you, I am always curious to learn new things.

While the skirt is an easy sew, I did have some trouble adding a concealed zip. Some of the trouble revolved around me seemingly not thinking straight when putting the zipper in, so I had some bad placements. One time, I had even managed to get the skirt twisted around on itself! I finally got it put in right, but I still noticed that there seemed to be an issue with the centering of the needle. I still see a little difference in the centering of the needle in relation to the zipper foot. I am not sure how to fix this issue. Have any of you guys had trouble with this? And if yes, how did you solve it?

I definitely think I will sew it again. I got a grey wool blend I think might be very nice for the shorter version.

I guess that is all for this time. Thanks for stopping by. Feel free to leave me a comment and tell me about your favourite skirt so I can check it out.

Cheers!

Jannie

 

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New sewing items.

Hi guys,

A couple of days ago i was my birthday and I got some new sewing items. So I thought I would share those with you, plus a few other things I have picked up lately.

So the first couple of things to show you is a couple of new feet for the sewing machine (Brother DS-120)

Walking foot Alternative concealed zipper foot

The first one is a walking foot for my machine, so hurray for that. Have been wanting one since I tried sewing those “faux leather” trousers. The second, green one, is an alternative concealed zipper foot. I got it recomended in the sewing machineshop, when I complained that mine were “taking sides”. I mean it sewed closer on one side than the other. I tried it out today on the Sew over it tulip skirt I am working one. It was great.

The second sewing related present I got for my birthday, is a years subscription for the dutch sewing magazine Knip mode, from my sweet boyfriend. In Knip mode all the patterns have a high size range. I got my first number a couple weeks ago, but I have not yet sewed anything from it. I will let you know how I get along though. So far the language is not really a problem. I always thought dutch seemed like a combination of danish, english and german, so I can sorta make most of it out. And what does not make sense, google translate helps with. He also sent me some beautiful flowers because he couldn’t be there with me. He is a soldier and a couple of weeks ago he got shipped off to Africa for the next five months.

Knipmode

 

The last items I want to share with you is this stack of magazines. About half of them are Burda Style and the other half is a danish craft and sewing magazine. I found about 15 of them in my local thrift shop. All of the magazines had their patterns, completely unused. They were recent too.

I got three magazines for the price of one liter of milk. It was crazy. I could not believe my luck.

I also found the little embroidery pattern book (It was the same price as the magazines).

imag0411

Do you guys read sewing magazines? Which ones do you prefer?

Thanks for stopping by!

Cheers,

Jannie

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The First Ten: Item 10: The hacked concorde

Hi guys,

My item number ten was supposed to be the Harrison shirt from Cashmerette. And while I have sewn up a Harrison, it does clearly need some alterations. So I am procrastinating. And the best way to do that is to sew yourself something completely diffrent, but lovely.

So while I gather my courage, I sewed up this lovely hacked version of the concord. The fabric is a lovely jersey called Milano jersey, and I think it is a polyester/cotton blend, but there might also be some spandex or something in the mix. I got both colors for cheap as scrap-cuts in my local fabric shop.

So I had done some sleeve alterations on this version,  (trying to increase the width of the sleeve without tinkering with the arm scythe by creating a curve on the bottom) and to check it before giving the final okay, I just basted the sleeves and sides together to start with. The sleeves were pretty good. I will probably do a little tiny alteration next time, and make the curve slightly less sharp, but for now, it is a great improvement. However I thought it seemed a bit tight around my hips/belly. I also thought that the way I had placed the colors made it look like an old t-shirt fashion. So I decided to try and add some triangular side panels, both to give some more width and to change the look a bit.

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Looking at the pictures of my finished result I am very happy, I know I will be very comfortable in this t-shirt. However I am wondering if maybe I need to remeasure myself, because I do see some draglines at the side of my breasts, and it was a bit to snug around the hip/belly area. Oh well, we shall see, it is no big deal.

Well that was it for this time. I hope you all are enjoying yourself.

Feel free to leave me a comment, I appreciate and welcome them all.

Cheers!

Jannie

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The First Ten: Item(s) 9: Sleveless Shirt (Butterick 6026), And I am back home.

Hi guys!

I am happy to report that I am now finally back home. And today I got around to finish up some projects that I have been waiting forever (since before the trip to hospital) to share with you. But let me start with giving you an update about my stay in hospital.

As I wrote in the previous post I underwent back surgery to remove a prolapse in a my lower back, but it seemed that my symptoms had returned after a being violently sick from the medicin the same evening. To see if I had re-prolapsed or my nerve was “just” in bad shape, the gave me a new MR-scan and it turned out I had indeed re-prolapsed.

The next day I underwent surgery again. And I am happy to say this time there was no reprolapse. Two days later I got discharged and I was already walking again. I went to my mothers place to recover for a weeks time and a few days ago I came home. I am happy to say that while I am still a bit weak and taking it easy I feel better than I have felt the last year.

I can sit down now, lie on my sie, stand and walk around with little to no pain or problems. I get tired, and sometimes feel little tiny sensations that I would not even call pain. But that is it. I feel like I have gotten my life back, and I cannot stop smiling.

Okay, I will move along to the sewing.

Butterick 6026

Butterick 6026
Butterick 6026

So this is view A, the sleveless version. Which I guess is a bit of a weird choice, heading into the scandinavian fall season. But I really love sleveless shirts and I think they work great as layering pieces.

I made this garment in a viscose/acetate mix, which feels very soft and slightly shiny. I got the fabric online from Stofkiosken.dk where it was on sale for 20dkk/meter (3,5 USD). Which in danish prices is very cheap! And only now after completion of the shirt do I realize I am not supposed to iron it. I have been ironing the shi(r)t out of it, and will probably continue to do so, because it wrinkles really badly. Oh well, I guess we will see how long it survives.

I have kind of been dragging my feet regarding this make, having had both fabric and pattern for a while. I guess I just felt apprehensive about the number of alterations I would have to make, the new construction details (collar, button placket, full bust adjustment) as well as the amount of precision sewing to make neat tucks on the front.

I started out with a size 20 to match my top bust measurement and then following this tutorial made a full bust adjustment for a pattern without a dart. I added about 4 cm in the FBA, and decided to keep the dart it created. Next time I will shorten the dart though, I somehow managed to make it to long, and I didn’t pick up on my mistake before in the proces. Also the FBA added 4 cm alle the way down, which kinda changed the proportion of the fronts seaming details, so the tucks seem much less noticeable on my garment. Next time I think I will try lengthening them. Also I think I would like a little more ease next time, especially over bust and hips. Also I think I might have a bit too much ease about the waist, but I think I need to wear it a bit more to make that decision. I had planned to grade out the sizes to a size 24 over the hips, but initially I forgot, which I guess was a good thing, since the FBA also added quite a bit over the hips. So I ended up just adding a little more over the back-piece. Next time I make this I might experiment with having a starting off point of size 2o bust, size 18 waist and size 22 hips, then do the same, or a slightly bigger FBA. Other things I might change is the interfacing I have used for the collar, it is probably a little too stiff for my liking.

Of other points of interest, the shirt gave me a chance to use my edge stitch foot for the first time, which was really neat. All in all a very succesful make that I am sure I will get lots of use out of.

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Quickly after finishing this version I started my second version, having enjoyed the proces very much. This time it is in a khaki linen/viscose blend. I decided to not mess around with the basic size of my pattern, but I made the following alterations.

  • I shortened the darts and moved them a little down.
  • I tried to solved a  fabric bunching  problem in the back by moving the shoulder seams a bit foreward. This fix did not work. Next time I use this pattern, I should undo this alteration.
  • To fix the fabric bunching in the back, after having cut my pieces I made a centerback seam and removed fabric on the top as if it was a big dart. This worked fine.
  • Also I paid much more attention to precision when cutting and constructing the collar, as well as grading the seams on the inside to remove bulk. I also omitted a little bit of the top stitching, when I could see that the result just would not be great.
  • I forgot to lengthen the side pleats

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Overall I am very happy with my second make. The only thing that I am really regretting is that I forgot to prewash to fabric and I think it has shrunk the first time I washed it. I stille fits, it is just more snug, and there is a tiny bit of gape on the boobs. But oh well.

Over all I really enjoyed the process of sewing these shirts/button down blouses, and all the details. I never thought of myself as someone who would like to sew fiddly things with lots of details. But I guess I am. I also really feel I learned a lot from this project and mastered a lot of new techniques.

Well the is about it for this time, thanks for stopping by, all comments are of course welcome and appreciated.

Cheers!

Jannie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sorry for the silence, and a pattern haul

Hi guys,

I haven’t been very active for a while, so first of all, sorry about that, and thank you for your patience.

The reason I have been so inactive is because I am in hospital at the moment, having undergone surgery for a big prolapsed disc in my lower back. I have been struggling with this issue for some time now, about a year actually. And in the end, it was decided that the conservative approach (pain medication and light training for stability, while allowing my body to heal it self.) was not working.

My condition had deteriorated to the point where there was concern about lasting nerve damage and damage to the control of my bladder function. So suddenly everything happened very fast, and I underwent surgery. The surgery was succesful, but there is some concern that I might have re-prolapsed after the surgery so I am current waiting for a MR scan to attempt to determine weather the nerve disturbances I feel is part of a badly irritated nerves healing proces or signs of a re-prolaps.

Hopefully soon I will get some answers and a solid recovery plan can be made and I will be out of hospital.

I haven’t told you guys about this before but having this issue has had a major influence on my life, suddenly being badly injured and not being able to do simple things like sitting on chairs, going out to dinner with friends, going to the movies, standing up for more than 5-10 mins at the time. I bet you didn’t know, but all this time I have been sewing lying on the floor, propped up with pillows as necessary and as long as I could at the time. But now it seems I can finally imagine a future where I can sit down when I sew/eat/socialize/work etc. It will most likely be a while before I get there, so I will probably be sewing on the floor for a while yet. But just knowing it is finally a posibility feels great.

I cannot wait!

So this is why I have been so quiet lately, but hopefully I will soon be feeling well enough to resume with sewing (even if on the floor), taking pictures etc. I have finished my first ten challenge, but still need to take some pictures to show you of the last couple of items. Which are all button down shirts. I Can not wait.

Pattern Haul

On another note, my brain obviously have not stopped working, even though my back has been too bad to be sewing or modeling for pictures, so instead I have been planning a lot of future projects! So I have purchased a lot of new patters, and the rest of this post will therefore be a pattern haul! Hurray! Most of the patterns are variations on the shirt/blouse theme, which seems to have captured my liking in a big way.

Here is the haul:

Butterick B6099
Butterick B6099

 

The first pattern I am excited about making is Butterick 6099

 

I want to make view C or D, but maybe with the mandarin collar. I have been making quite a few normal shirt collars lately, so I feel I might need a change of pace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterick 6208
Butterick 6208

The next pattern I am excited about is this one. I want to make view B (the orange dress version with cute little sleeves). The pattern is intended for summer garments though, and the fabric should be thin and light. So I am unsure weather to leave this for the spring or to try and give it a go with a slightly more heavy fabric so I can wear it in the fall/winter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterick 6156
Butterick 6156

For this pattern I want to make view A (the yellow one), and I think I will make it, in this lovely white/ivory modal fabric that I got a while back. I initially got it for another project, but it never really felt right. I just wasn’t yet happy with my pattern and the alterations I had made to it, and unsure how to get the result I wanted, so I kept putting it off. I think it will be perfect for this pattern though.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterick 5786
Butterick 5786

Another pattern I cannot wait to sew up is this one! I just think the different high-low variations is great and very elegant. Im drawn especially to view C and A, but I have a feeling I might end up making several of them.

 

I also think some of them might be cute with a little belt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simplicity 8166
Simplicity 8166

 

For this pattern I was drawn to the neck ruffles and shoulder details. I think it will make a super cute dress as well as maybe a blouse with a little hacking. The pussy bow blouse i might make too, but I have another pattern i might like more for that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Burda style 6578
Burda style 6578
Simplicity 2217
Simplicity 2217

 

Another pattern I am really excited about sewing up, is this one. I think I will be making some really nice layering pieces to be paired with lovely cardigans or blazers. I especially like the versions in the solid colors, so the details really stand out. I got som navy poly see-through something which I might be using. But first I think I need to get my hands on a walking foot, so I can handle the fabric decently. So it probably won’t be made right away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dresses have not been something I have been sewing so far, and to be honest I feel more drawn to separats. But I do like wearing dresses so I decided to get a pattern and give it a whirl. Empire waist is usually a great thing on me, so thats what I picked.  I just hope it will not be too revealing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterick 5890
Butterick 5890

 

This is another pattern I have been drooling over for a while. I really like the bodice and especially the variation in the pink fabric. I really want to sew it in a similar fabric.  I also like the sleeve variations on A and the peter pan color, which is something I have yet to try sewing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterick 5610
Butterick 5610

 

This pattern I do not have a specifik plan for yet. I got in a sale, mainly to have some more blouse/top variation possibilities.

I think several of the versions are really sweet, but I am kinda concerned about how it will sit on my body with no darts. Perhaps It is not necessary, or perhaps I can do something clever. We will see.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vouge 8833
Vouge 8833

 

Yes, what can I say? A custom cups wrap top, seemed a good idea. It almost have kinda Karate Gi style vibe, which is okay with me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simplicity 8216
Simplicity 8216

 

This is my last pattern for this haul, it is the before mentioned pussy bow blouse. I think it is just beautiful. I love the yoke, which extends over the shoulders. I might make this in the blouse version or in the mini dress version.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So ya, that is all I had to say for this time. But I would love to hear about it, if you have made any of these patters, and how they worked out for you.

 

Cheers!

Jannie

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The First Ten: Item 8: The Concord T-shirt(s).

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Hi guys,

I figured it was about time I got around to getting some pictures taken og some of my projects, . These two projects are both versions of the Cashmerettes concord t-shirt, and have been lying around for a while. I have kind of been waiting to do a third and “perfect version” before uploading it. But I figured that would probably take a while, so I might as well upload.

The pattern I cut out for the first version was the V-neck view in the medium length with long sleeves, with no buttons. I adjusted the size so I was a 16 top and 18 bottom (cup E-F) and I also made a full arm adjustment (I think they are called), Adding in 2,5 cm (1 inch). I had ended up writing to Cashmerette for a hint on how big their arm sizes were, since I was unsure about working with a knit pattern, and the magical concept of negativ ease when using knits. I got a helpful reply within half an hour. Excellent service.

The instructions were great and easy to follow. But just to be sure I looked at a few tutorials online when it came to sewing the V-neck. They all suggested using some stabilizing tape, but my pattern just wanted stay stitching for the V-neck. A quick check told me that I had no clue where my stay tape had gone, so I decided to just do the stay stitching.

Sewing up the V-neck went like a dream, it looked so good I could not believe I had made it. Until I noticed I had put it on the inside of the blouse. Oh… Ya, I definitely made this. An hour of careful unpicking later I tried again. This time it seemed I had stretched the seam, damn it. I left it and finished the rest of the t-shirt while pondering what to do. First I thought, that I have blown it. But after sleeping on it I decided to unpick it again and try once more.

After unpicking it the neck hole still seemed stretched out, so I trawled the internet for a way to re-shrink it. In the end I asked Gilligan from Crafting a Rainbow, and she gave me some helpful tips. In the end i tried washing and tumble dry it, and it seemed to work. However I realized that it was still very low cut, to low cut for my taste. So after pondering this for a while I got a new idea.

I made a new collar much wider (total with of 8,5 and then placed it on fold, so my final product was a foldet band 7,5 cm wide). So instead of it becoming an edge-finish it became a feature. I am really happy with the idea of the collar, but I think next time I make it, I need to cut it another way, so it does not sit and “flap” but rather sits snug around my neckline. So in the end I am a bit torn about the result. I might still try and save it, but not sure. Sometimes you just got to call it a day.

The plan for the second version was to make it with a high neck this time. Besides from the V-neck just being to low for my taste I also figured it would give me a better idea of the size and fit, without a big “hole” in the front. So there is not much to say, I pretty much followed my patterns with the alterations from last time and I am really happy with the result. The only thing I will change next time is the fit of the sleeve. Even with the full arm adjustment it sits tight. I am used to tight sleeves so it is okay really, but a part of me want an even fit, that is part of the reason I got into sewing anyway. Next time I will definitely make a much larger sleeve adjustment.

I might also make the neck-opening less wide.

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All in all I think this second concord was a succes! Hurray!

 

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The First Ten: Item(s) 7: Panties!

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My first pair – a little trouble with the elastic tension here.

 

Since I so far have thrown myself into sewing with knits and stretch fabrics, I thought that panties, could be a fun project to get familiar with. So after the idea rippening for a while and having looked at some tutorials online I decided it was time and ordered some some stretch cotton. I also had some black and white stretchy cotton-ish fabric that I had made a little sleeveless top from long ago.So I jumped in, and I am obsessed. It is so rewarding!

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My second pair

 

 

I started out finding a free pattern online, but that did not work out. So I set about making my own panties pattern, based on a pair I already owned and felt comfertable in. After making the pattern I followed this tutorial from Silver Linings Atelier for the actual construction and the sewing of the elastic, which was a new thing for me. And I must say it was a steep learning curve, so the first pair was not a great succes (but still totally wearable!), I felt confident that my next pair would be even nicer to look at. So I plowed on, and the first day I made two more pairs in a pretty pink stretch cotton I had gotten for this specific purpose. It was a great success.

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normal elastic

 

I really had not thought through how much elastic even one pair of panties would take, so while I thought I had pico-elastic enough for plenty of pairs. In fact there was enough for two pairs. I had some plain old elastic too, so that worked out to. I have ordered some more, both pico elastic and fold over elastic.

 

 

 

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I had however a long piece of dark raspberry-ish color stretch lace, so I have also made some lace hipsters following a free pattern from sew so easy which I graded to suit me (worked really well).

 

 

 

Sewing panties is seriously fun, and I am really happy with the results. I cannot wait to get some more elastic and then chop up some old t-shirts I do not use anymore. I have also thought about some ways to change my original design for some fun details. As soon as my elastic arrives I will experiment with making more variations. Thongs and laced back panties are next in line. I am also thinking how I can alter my pattern for other types of more fun and flirty variations. Rouching? colorblocking? See through panels? I have made a new pintrest board for panties-inspiration. Feel free to look!

 

I also plan on sewing a little camisole out of the pink stretch cotton.

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The First Ten: Item 6: Faux Leather “tights”

p1010027 So do you guys know how when you are working on a project, that sometimes it starts one place and ends up somewhere else. That was how my last project was.

I started out planning to make a pair of simple tights from this odd stretchy faux leather, but after several mis-cuts (cutting on the wrong way of the stretch, cutting to small because the fabric had to little stretch) I had to change my approach.

So I formed a new plan and got my trouser pattern out (the one I had made for the grey trouser that was item 1). It could work if I cut each front and back leg into two pieces, an upper and a lower part (also called a design detail, in case you were wondering). So I re-cut everything again and sewed them up. After having constructed the trousers I started modifying them, slimming in the legs for a tighter fit.

I also noticed that the back waistline sat lower than the front and also gaped like I had noticed on the original pair of trousers I had sewn from my pattern. I decided to try and fix it. One more seam hardly mattered at this point. So I attached a piece of fabric to the back piece, from side seam to side seam. Then I sewed up from the CB seam and made a big dart starting in the top of my back pieces and moving up into my new “flap” (is it a kinda yoke I have made?). Then I trimmed  the top of my flap. Now they sat into my back following the curve of my behind and sway back and I got a horisontal waistline all the way around.p1010037

A zipper, a waistband and a couple of quick hems later, done! Then I made the appropriate adjustments to my pattern, which was just as satisfying knowing I got one step closer to a great fitting pattern.

HAHAHA… no!

No, actully they looked terrible. Like biker pants, and not in the sexy bad chick way, but in the ill-fitting, pot-bellied midlife crises way. There was all sorts of strange baggyness going on in the front, and I had no clue how to fix it. I kept looking for answers online, and eventually almost gave up, thinking my shape was just to weird to fit too.

So I spent most of the weekend in depressed sew-frustration thinking about my shattered dreams of well-fitting pants. It wasn’t until I had a good sparring season with my boyfriend (who does not know much about sewing, but somehow have an intelligent eye for all things crafty), who kept suggesting removing fabric here and there. We also talked about other pants I owned that did fit me (so obviously it was possible), I tried them on, pondered about how they differed from the ones I had made and thought some more.

So today I got the pants out again and following my gut instinct, I started working on the CF/crotch seam taking them in as I went. In the end I think I took them in 7 times, but every time I could see it getting better. It was amazing! All in all I think I removed about 2,5 cm (1 inch) and more where it curves “under me”.p1010031p1010029

Satisfied with the fit I attached a waistband, or tried to. The rubbery faux leather didn’t go smooth through under the foot. So it was a huge struggle getting the waistband on. I gave up hemming them and just decided to leave them unheeded. I haven’t put in a button either, because I am not relishing putting it through the buttonhole maker. I think it will be hook and eye instead. As you can see in the images, the legs ended up a bit short too, so i might ad some fabric there. Also there is still som folds/wrinkles, but It looks much better in real.

Also I think I got to get a walking foot.

Well that is it for me for this time. Have you tried sewing with kinda fabric? How did it go? And do you have a perfect pants pattern? How long did it take you to perfect it?

Cheers!

Jannie

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The First Ten: Item 5: The Sports Top

So a while ago I went to the fabric shop, and there was a sale. And well. I am a sucker for a good sale. So I came home with a little extra, if you know what I mean. That extra included a weird grey fabric, with some silvery shine to it, and a little stretch. The sales person didn’t really know what it was made of, but we agreed it seemed pretty synthetic. It was at the insane price of 3 meters for 50dkk (7,5USD),  and i am pretty sure that was most of the reason I got it. Consumerism, god damn you. I am your bitch, it seems.

At the moment I got home and unpacked my wonderful bounty of fine fabrics and notions (and well, the grey one…), it was instantly clear I had no idea what to do with this strange silvery fabric. Mostly it made me think of listening to Boney M – night flight to Venus and hanging with my cousins in our childhood moving box spaceship (There it would have been more than appropriate! Mandatory even).

In the end it lay in my fabric stash for something like a month while I worked on other projects and nervously eyed it from time to time. It finally struck me that, space ship wibes aside, it kinda reminded me of the fabric some of my training tops, were made off. I double checked with a training top, and bingo!

So I decided to make it a princess seamed work out top, with slightly longer sleeves than regular (it just works better for my arms. The shape of my upper arms often makes the sleeves roll up). So I watched some video tutorials on youtube and referred to my pattern crafting book. Got my basic block, allowed for less ease, rotated some darts into the princess seams and this is what turned out!

 

Front 1 front 2 front 3 side 1 side 2 back 1 back 2 back 3

I plan to make one for my for boyfriend too (twinsies!!), for some reason we both have this little love-hate-loooove relationship with being dressed the same. It is disgusting I know. Disgustingly good! So this weekend I got out my measuring tape and measured him top to bottom so I got his measurements ready for when I am ready to make his top, or anything else really. Believe you me, we got aaaaall the measurements.

Evaluation:I am really struggling with my collar making. This final collar is the third attemt and honestly it is not very nice. But the fabric is too damaged from the seam ripping for me to feel comfortable to give it one more go. So this will be it, and I will continue to work on my collar skills with other garments. The princess seams turned out great – no sweat, I will do this again! By accident I made the sleeves a bit to tight by using the wrong seam allowance so I let them out. Seam ripping a three point zigzag well… it did a bit of nastiness to the fabrics, with a few snags, even tho I was fully focussed on being careful. So next time more attention, less ripping. I have not tried working out in the top yet, but I have worn it bit around the house, and it seems good.

Also when I look at my pictures I notice things I didn’t notice before. Lately I have been reading a lot about fitting clothing. Been wearing ill fitting clothing most of my life, it is not something I have thought about to that degree before, but now I start to notice. I can see the sleeves are still to tight and I got some draglines in various places. Maybe the bust area is also to tight, even though it does not feel it, or maybe it will fall into place when I get the sleeve size right. Also there seems to be an awful lot of fabric on my lower back, so next time I guess I should do some kind of sway back adjustment. Frankly I am new to this, so if you know or have a suggestion about what the problem is, every hint and comment will be appreciated.

What about you, do you sometimes fall victim to the consumerism ritual of “sale” and end up coming home with things you could have sworn did not belong to normal-sane-you? And what did you do with it then?

Thanks for tuning in, Talk at you soon!

Cheers

Jannie

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