Sunday, December 25, 2011

Mother & Child Aprons

Skills acquired: pattern drafting, pattern cutting, cutting on the bias, sewing on the bias, making pockets, stitch the ditch, using bias tape, mitered corners

This was my big Christmas project, an apron for my sister-in-law and her son. (He's three and loves to play chef.) The pattern is a combination of things I drew up myself on postal paper and patterns from Stitch by Stitch (the picnic place mat and pockets from a skirt). My nephew's is extra fun because the belt and pockets can be untied and snapped off to be worn as just a tool belt.

I'm very proud of my invisible stitches!
The gear print fabric is twill. I'd never worked with twill before and learned that it likes to twist. But then some of it was cut on the bias too. I made all the tubes first so I could watch Damages while I turned them inside out.

Since making these, I've acquired a hem gauge so ironing the hems will take far less time. I also realized after I made my nephew's apron that I'd hemmed the first fold then the second (fold-stitch-fold-stitch) when really I only needed to fold-fold-stitch. Hers also has mitered corners, while his are bulky folds.

For future aprons, I think I'll install d-rings at the neck to adjust the strap. For the little boy's tool belt, I'll add a hammer loop as well. Part of me also wanted to use a zigzag stitch in a contrasting color for the hems just for interest. I may try that in the future too.

A few people were interested in me making them aprons, so I'll set up a custom order on Etsy. (More on Etsy later.) I'll post here when the link is up.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Blind Hem...Sort Of

Skills acquired: Blind hem

After much consulting with my mother and my yoda about what on earth a blind hem is, I put one in a pair of jeans. (At 5'4", most of my pants need to be hemmed.) This was both a success and a failure. If these jeans were pure cotton, I think it would have gone better, but polyester blends don't iron as beautifully as cotton. Ironing a tube didn't go as well as it could have either. My hem is also too short for heels. The biggest problem, however, was that I thought I could do this without cutting off the excess fabric. Not so. They don't lay cleanly because of the extra bulk, so while my hem is perfectly blind, it needs to go on a diet. When I get a moment (please see my previous post of upcoming projects), I'll pick this out and try again.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Projects in the Queue

I'm still working on secret Christmas projects, so no photo updates this week. But soon there will be a slew of project posts. I have a lot lined up.

- Pillowcases The pillow cases I have are a terrible dye. I bought two lovely olive brocades which will give me some slippery fabric experience as well as practice putting in invisible zippers.

- Apron I've been using the same apron since middle school home-ec. The fabric is terrible. I'd love to use some of the techniques I've learned to make something retro and dress-like.

- Applique Robots One of my friends has two boys, so I thought I'd learn appliques by making some nice linear robots for their wee little shirts.

- Silhouette Skirt I have big, big plans for this. My first one will be for my dear roomie!

- Scarf Winter is nippy. Making some scarves will get me started on jersey and several fabric techniques.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Tools Wishlist

I've been sewing this week, but I can't post pics until after January. (Secret Christmas projects!) In lieu of a project update, I thought I'd make a list of the tools I need/ am lusting after.

Wrist Pin-Cushion I'll most likely be keeping my pins in magnetized containers on the wall (<3 Ikea.), but moving to put the pins in their proper place while I sew disrupts my rhythm. I'd really like a wrist pin cushion so it's all by me as I work. (I guess could make one, but it wouldn't be as cool as this embroidered sugar skull from Etsy.)
French Curve I'm a curvy girl and will be making clothing accordingly. A French Curve helps alter commercial patterns and draft patterns for the shapely figure.

Scarf Hem Foot Chiffon is lurking in my basement, and the mere idea of working with it intimidates me. My sewing yoda told me there's a foot that will roll the hem of a fine fabrics while you sew! As I have big plans for fine fabrics, I'd love a scarf hem foot.

Ruffler Foot Pulling the bobbin thread gets the job done of ruffles, but a ruffler foot would do this faster.

Sleeve Board Sewing means ironing has become part of my life, and I rather enjoy it. I do not enjoy, however, ironing sleeves. Puff sleeves are the worst! When I cant' get the sleeve on my board, I end up with one smooth side and one creased side. A sleeve board would fix that.