Sunday, June 26, 2011

Cropped Jeans with Hem Bands – Burda 7669

The growing t-shirt provided many laughs but hasn’t done much to encourage me to sew more tops. No, not much time or fabric was invested and my ego wasn’t damaged, yet I haven’t felt like giving the pattern another try. Eventually, I will - I just need to find some other knit fabric first. Cotton knits are what I’ve been looking for but I’m not coming across many that aren’t printed with little hearts, puppies or trucks.

Consequently, no new tops to tell of…however, I did sew some denim. I made myself another pair of cropped jeans using Burda 7669. The hem bands are what got my attention and this time I didn’t deviate too far from the line drawing. I left off the belt loops, topstitched a bit more, and added some rivets. I also sewed twill tape into the pocket seam to keep the bias-cut pocket from stretching out. The lighting I had to work with was terrible and the photo above is the best photo produced. The details don't show up very well but I figured it was better than no photo...

The new cutting mat, by the way, is wonderful and I wish I’d gotten it sooner. I didn’t because it is just too easy to buy sewing things I don’t really need and with little space, I work hard at keeping non-essentials away. In spite of this, I want to use my sewing time wisely and if there is a tool available that will speed things up and/or help produce better looking garments – well, I’m willing to do some rearranging.

My goal for this coming week is to sew a comfortable summer-weight top. Fabric? Makes no difference - as long as it isn’t matte jersey…

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Tammy and the Growing T-Shirt

What with the new job and the heat, I haven’t felt much like sewing this week. Still, I was able to put this t-shirt together. The pattern is Simplicity 3571, view A. I shortened the sleeve and also lowered the center front neckline about an inch and a half.

The fabric is a matte jersey from Being only $3/yd., I wasn’t expecting much but neither the serger nor the coverstitch wanted anything to do with it. To deal with the skipped and loose stitches, I changed out needle types and sizes, trying out everything in the drawer. Absolutely no improvement in stitch quality came of my attempts, even with tension adjustments thrown in. I finally just sewed the thing up and didn’t look back.

Once completed, I took it to the laundry room for a visit with the steamer. Before my eyes, as soon as the steam met the fabric, the shirt began to grow! I’d never seen that happen before. Have you? The bottom of the armhole is now well on its way to the waist. I’m going to leave it on the dress form for a few days just to see what happens. Maybe it’s gonna turn into a dress…

In other news, I finally bought myself a cutting mat - the big one that they have at JoAnn’s. I used a half-off coupon so it was really quite reasonable. I knew from measuring my little fold-out cutting table that the mat was going to be too long but that didn’t stop me from getting it anyway. I used it, full-length hanging over the edges of the table, to cut out this t-shirt. It didn’t work very well and half-way through I took the scissors to the mat. I know, I was shocked too at my treatment of the brand new mat, though it was the right thing to do. It is now the perfect length and might just fit between the filing cabinet and the wall when I’m not using it.

Yeah, it has been an odd week…

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pleated Cropped Jeans - Burda 11-2009-122

This pair of cropped jeans has been finished since Sunday. Well, almost finished, as I didn’t get around to sewing the tops of the belt loops onto the waistband until last night. I wore them to the office today and I have to tell you, that due to the comfort provided by the pleats and the handy front pockets, this is my favorite pair! I intend to make other versions of this pattern, both full-length and cropped.

Burda 11-2009-122

Along with the usual jeans topstitching, the other departures from the pattern included the addition of back patch pockets, rivets and a cropped length.

The back pockets came from Lekala 5066, yet another free pattern download. I randomly dialed up an embroidery stitch on the Bernina and kept it simple by embroidering only one horizontal line. I’m learning if I get my pockets too busy, it is more difficult to coordinate tops. Simple just blends better. The shape of this pocket appeals to me and I’ve put a copy of the pattern into my pocket file.

If I don’t sew some new tops soon, I’m going to have to pay a visit to La Cantera. Even so, I think it’s a pretty good bet you’ll be seeing more denim here…