Sunday, October 16, 2011

Weekend Project: Some Things You've Taught Me

A man only learns in two ways, one by reading,
and the other by association with smarter people.
~ Will Rogers

I was thrown into a bit of a panic last week, when Ana informed me that Carolyn and Brandon's baptism ceremony - anticipated for summer of 2012 - was, in fact, scheduled for next Saturday (October 22nd). I had promised to make them outfits for the occasion, and thought that it would be a fun leisurely project to be started sometime next spring.

Instead, it has turned into a bit of a mad gallop, with a looming deadline nipping at my heels...

This weekend I made a muslin of Carolyn's dress and finished Brandon's shirt. As I sewed, I noted many of the little (and some not so little) things that I do differently, thanks to the comments and feedback that I get from you guys!

For example, based on your advice, I got some glass head IBC straight pins - and I love them!

I also regularly switch my needle position (left or right of center) to do top stitching - like around the pockets on Brandon's shirt.

And this time, I actually remembered a tip that Mamafitz gave me about applying interfacing to a facing.

Well, to be fair, I usually remember her tip - right after I iron on the interfacing and it is too late to follow it. ;)

This time I remembered it ahead of time. Instead of directly ironing the interfacing onto the fabric facing, I align the pieces (fabric & fusible interfacing) right sides together and stitched around two sides - the two sides that would normally have to be finished in some way.

Then I trimmed and clipped the corner.

Finally I turned them so that they were wrong sides together.

And finished it up by ironing on the fusible interfacing. This way, I didn't have to finish those two edges.

Didn't it come out nicely? Thanks, Mamafitz! I really like this method and plan to use it often!

So, Brandon picked out a very soft and drapey white fabric. He also asked for short sleeves. I was worried that this wouldn't be acceptable for a baptism, but Ana thought that it would be okay. He also picked out a bit of a cowboy pattern - with a pointy yoke. It isn't the most formal shirt in the world, but it should be super comfortable and I hope he really likes it just because it is what he asked for.

There is one way in which I did mess up - and I'm pretty annoyed at myself. His measurements were too large for the largest boy size that came with the pattern, and too small for the smallest man size. I went on the theory that it's easier to make something smaller than it is to make it bigger, and started by cutting out the smallest man size.

While that hypothesis may be true most of the time, I have now learned one glaring exception - the armscye. A larger shirt has a larger armscye and making that smaller would require adding fabric, not subtracting it. :(

So, I was able to take in the shoulders and take in the sides and shorten the shirt - but the armscyes are too large. :(

Here's hoping that it doesn't turn out to be a big deal for Brandon.

Here's a close-up, where you can see the herringbone weave pattern in the fabric.

I'll try to get pictures of Brandon and Carolyn in their baptism finery next weekend. Now, it's back to the sewing room for work on Carolyn's dress! ;)

I hope you all had wonderful sewing-filled weekends! :)


gwensews said...

You did a great job, and I bet Brandon will be very pleased with his shirt. We learn something every time we sew. Isn' that marvelous?