Friday, May 27, 2011

Cool tutorials

An easy way to find those tutorial links I liked:

BrianSews - Hemming foot tutorial

How to Make a Collar with a Collar Stand
(Shows how to have a clear finish at the stand corners - I have to try this the next time)

TUTORIAL-- Clean-Finished No Bulk Facing
(I'll try this when I do the Liz blouse again!)

Neckline binding for knits

Finishing the top of a zip: “Fiskars Unzipped”

Invisible zipper
Shows how to attach to the sides and how to finish it.

More to come...

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Drafting a shirt pattern

 This is what's going on: I started to draft the button-down shirt pattern using the Design-it yourself: Clothes book. The directions are easy to follow, but I'll only be sure everything is fine after I make a muslin for this shirt. It's been fun, I have to say. If this works out, I'll be very very happy as it's an important step on my I-sew-my-own-clothes big project.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Plans for the future

I wish I have more time for sewing as I'm full of ideas for my next projects!

I better make a list so I don't get lost!
  • Make a button shirt pattern following the "Design-it yourself - Clothes" book. This seems a good way to know how patterns work. Also the blouse seem to be very simple to sew as there are no pieces to interface, no lining, no yoke, no darts. But this button-down shirt has a collar and sleeves cuffs. What do I need: fabric (probably an easy-to-handle cotton), buttons and thread.
  • Use the patterns for the blouse and pants that came with the "Sew-U" book. I would need fabric for both. It would be a good opportunity to work with patterns that came on that thin paper. 
  • Make the Ellen #9305 pants from I already have the pattern printed, the fabric, interfacing, buttons and zipper. But I'm afraid to make my first pants with an expensive linen... Maybe I should get a cheap fabric to test? Let's see.
  • Sew the DrapĂ© dress from to use at an evening party in September. This will be a real challenge. The plans are to make the dress first with a test fabric and then, if everything goes fine, get a nice fancy chiffon to make the dress special for the night. I have the pattern printed. And I've seen around that chiffon is a difficult fabric to handle. Let's see how it goes.
  • Sew the JJ blouse from burdastyle. It's an adorable blouse, exactly like the ones I use to work. I have the pattern (not printed) and would need to get fabric too.
Long story short: I need to get pieces of fabric right now! Better make a small list before.
  1. Cotton for 2 blouses + buttons
  2. A fabric that drapes nicely but it's not expensive for the test dress + lining + invisible zipper
  3. Cotton for one pair of pants + zipper
Other plans are:
  • Sew one man's shirt (long or short sleeves?). What pattern?
  • Resize one old big pair of jeans (I'm just waiting for the topstitch threads I order to arrive)
So I'll add to my list:

     4.  Cotton for a man's shirt + buttons

Sunday, May 15, 2011

New shorts

I have a new finished project, the Perfect-Fit Sleep Shorts, from the One Yard Wonder book:

The initial idea was to make then with this purple polka dot fabric, but soon I realized it wasn't enough. So I used a plain and also purple quilt cotton, and this was the result (still missing to finish the waistband):

I had done this project before, but not with all the care I had this time. I decided to make flat felt seams on side, front, back and between legs seams. And I also used a white thread to have a contrast, and have a better feeling on how good I was making the topstitching.

I did not followed the steps on the book, because I wanted to flat felt seam everything. So I sewed the front parts together, then the back parts. I then sewed the front and back by the side seams and to finish, I made the bottom seam. I also added a side pocket and a large elastic band. To avoid the elastic to twist around, I topstitched three lines in the waist band.

And now my fail moments. I think simple projects like that may help us improve our sewing skills without much concern if we will ruin the whole thing or not.

1) I did not realized the fabric was not good quality when I was cutting the patterns, and some bad parts ended up in the shorts :(

2) I cut the fabric while cutting one of the seam allowances to make the flat felted seam LOL

3) I should have folded the front and back flat felted seams to the same side so they would match in the bottom, what didn't happen! I will always remember that detail now, especially if I make pants!

And you can also see the bobbin run out of threat when I was finishing the hem LOL
This was fun and easy to make and I got much confidence now. I can wear these shorts at home all year long (it's always summer here), I'm happy I could sew something for myself. Now I have many other projects in mind, let's see how I can organize my time to make them all :)