Saturday, April 21, 2018

I’m in Sew News!


You would think that with such exciting news, I would manage to get a blog post up in a timely manner.   Hmm mm.  I do apologize for being so slow.  My wonderful news – I have an article in the latest issue of Sew News!!!  That would be the April/May 2018 issue.

My article – “Gathered to a tee” is on page 61.

It’s just an easy way to dress up a t-shirt neckline.  There are templates to download for the new pattern pieces that you’ll need, so I’ve done the “hard” work for you.  It would be lovely to know if anyone actually tries out my idea, and if you do – please leave a comment to let me know.
There are plenty more wonderful ideas and articles on knits and other things in the magazine.

I would gladly show you a picture of the t-shirt in the magazine as it is “at home”, but unfortunately, very soon after the samples arrived back from Sew News, my daughter appeared for a visit and absconded with the t-shirts.  The likelihood of my daughter arriving here wearing the t-shirt in question is very, very slim.  So, the opportunity to take an “at home” picture is pretty well non-existent.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Ham - burger



No, this has not turned into a food blog – it could, but it hasn’t.  This is all about an apron.  My son’s Christmas present, to be exact.  Christmas-present-making time was coming up, and this pattern came up on my radar because of a class that was being taught at the store.  The pattern being used was by Harebrained Happenings.

They have the cutest applique patterns for, among other things, aprons.  For aprons there are a possible 4 choices of picture.  An apron – the perfect present for a chef.  But I could not decide on which picture, so instead of this all being a great secret until the mailman arrived, I e-mailed son-chef with a link to the patterns and had him chose.  I was leaning towards the Hamburger myself, but I did want to be sure (that’s a lot of work to put in, and if it’s not quite right, you know …), and, as is often the case – we think alike.   So Hamburger was on the menu.  Sewing an apron is no great feat, but choosing fabrics for an applique picture – good heavens – it takes forever!  For starters, the pig has to be the right colour.  Then you need the bun to be the right colour, and it has to look good next to the pig.  And then the red has to be just so, the green ….  You get the picture.  At some point you just have to make decisions and go with it.  (This is so, so much worse that picking fabrics for an outfit!!)  There was lots of tracing of fiddly stuff, cutting of fiddly stuff.  Most of all (for some bizarre reason) I was dreading the blanket stitching around every single little applique piece.  And that certainly takes a whole lot less time on the machine than it does by hand, so I have no idea why I was even worrying my brain about it.  I toyed with the idea of doing machine embroidery for “Ham burger” under the picture, but that would have required bringing the apron in to the store, spending some amount of time at figuring it all out, etc., etc.  In the end, I decided to just embroider the word by hand, and I’m quite sure that the amount of time spent was much, much less than it would have taken me by machine.

I did alter the actual apron pattern a little.  I found it a bit wide at the top in the larger size, so I narrowed it.  And the pockets got stitched down after all the layers were together (this apron has a lining).  (Made more sense to me - to keep things from flapping around when that apron goes into the wash.)  I have been promised a picture of “apron being worn”, but at this point, I’m not holding my breath.  I do receive random pictures of new bikes, trucks, food on plates, food in ovens, but for some reason the face that I do want to see in those pictures is rarely there.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

The Hairy Jacket




Having tweaked the fit of Kwik Sew 4191, I thought it might be a good idea to use the pattern again – it was out of the envelope already.  I also had an “inherited” remnant of furry/hairy stuff.  Years ago (when this “inheritance” came to me) I had decided that this would be a jacket.  And a very warm one at that.  Problem was – definitely not enough fabric there for a whole jacket.  Sleeves had to come from somewhere else.  I knew there was a reason I had kept that black sweater coat of my daughter’s from many, many years ago.  She hardly wore it, and it had just felt wrong to give it away – don’t have a clue why.  Given that the hairy fabric was quite heavy, the front closure that made any sense, was a zipper – not at all like the Kwik Sew pattern.  I grafted on the front of the Sewaholic Cordova jacket.  Now everything was in place.  Cut.  Sew.  Fuss and grumble.  Once again I added a lining.  The back side of the hairy fabric is a knit, but not at all the thing that you would want anyone to see.  (It also has absolute zero stretch to it.)  I also needed facings.  Thin fabric – because the hairy stuff is soooo bulky.  Those came from the bits left over from the black quarter circle skirt.

And don’t ask me why, but I decided to just serge around the edges of the facing and then sew them to the lining.  Uuuglyyyy!  That just wouldn’t do.  No.  Ribbon to the rescue.  I hand stitched that on (because by that point there was no way I could get a machine into places where a machine would have to go.)

Attaching the sleeves was a bit of a think.  I did completely undo all the original stitching of the sweater sleeve and cut out “new” sleeves, but for some reason there was a lot of worrying about getting it all to work.  If only I could knit ….   Well, I don’t, (my hands just don’t like knitting, and after a few very painful attempts at scarf knitting, in preparation for learning how to knit sweaters, I consoled myself with the knowledge that I can just sew my sweaters.)  All in all, I’m quite happy with my jacket.  It is very warm, and with the weather being what it is, that’s a very good thing. 

 I’m also pleased with myself that I actually cut and sewed the jacket in a very reasonable amount of time, instead of dragging things out for months on end.  (OK – the thinking about it for years doesn’t count here.)
One very bad picture of me in jacket, just because it seems that this is the only way I can show you that it does actually fit - unlike those mannequin pictures.

Now the problem is I still have a small rectangle of this furry fabric left – a very small rectangle.  Can’t possibly throw it away.  May-be I need an “accessory collar” that I could tie on over a sweater.  Hmmm …