Saturday, July 14, 2012

Needle and Thread

Because I've had significant quantities of free time this summer, I have done a ton of sewing. In addition to what I mentioned before, I have also cranked out even more.

A few years ago, I treated myself to 101 One-Yard Wonders, sight unseen and ended up being slightly disappointed. Too many baby things (like 25% of the book) and things I would never use. This summer, I decided to try to get my money's worth out of it.

First up, one dress/nightgown. The pattern was for a shortie nightgown, but I had 1.5 yards of this mermaid fabric I'd bought years ago. I lengthened the skirt until all the fabric was used up and ended up with a mini-dress, which I wore to a mermaid-themed party. Double-stick tape was employed. Since then, it's made a great nightgown.

I also fussy-cut the bodice. This placement doesn't just happen, you know. Lengthening the a-line skirt  also widened the hem, so it required a bit more bias tape than the original, and I also didn't follow the book's bias tape instructions to zigzag stitch, which were probably geared to the newbie sewer.

Next, my neighbors had a baby and I made a quick, flannel swing coat for him from the same book.

My aunt had given me the fabric when I was down in Florida and I thought it would make a cute jacket for a camping family.

There are only a handful of other things in the book I want to make, perhaps some bags. That said, if anyone wants to buy me the next edition in the series, I wouldn't say no, partly because I suspect it may have some good tips for working with knits. Knits scare me.

My favorite project were some curtains for my sewing room. I raided my stash of vintage hankies to make three cafe curtains, in Mardi Gras colors since I store my beads year round on heavy closet rods above two of the windows.

For the tab tops, I used some fabric I had intended for an apron ... about 9 years ago.

One of the previous tenants had painted all the woodwork black, which the then-landlord tried to fix by painting it white. I made a brief stab at seeing if it was possible to peel it off, then gave up. Someday.

I didn't follow a pattern for the curtains, just measured the windows and made them 1.5 times wider. The actual measurement makes for a skimpy curtain, I feel. Two times the width is more traditional, but I worried that the actual hankies wouldn't show up. I used masking tape to mark the finished size on my sewing table, then laid out the hankies until I liked what I saw. I filled in a few gaps with some satin ribbon and overlapped elsewhere. Instead of a straight stich, I used the zigzag stitch. I didn't want the bulk of seams showing through.

Before I start crafting each day, I have been setting my timer for 10 minutes and work at tidying up or ironing. At the end of the day, I tidy up as well. Little by little, my sewing room has become just the sweetest little nest, especially with the new curtains.

1 comment:

AECDesigns said...

Love the mermaid nightie! :)
And I thought knits looked frightening, too. Until I just jumped in and did it! There's a simple, simple cardigan in this book:
It was super, super simple! Even I managed it! She gives some good tips, too. Makes it not-so-scary!

And the sewing room looks nice! --and bright!