*****Before I show you the recent muslin attempts, I will show you what I made in January. I am a novice when it comes to sewing knits - I know that they are supposed to be easy, but I think learning to sew anything new does require a learning curve.
And these certainly did.
I had a piece of very lightweight white cotton jersey in my stash and thought this would be ideal to make a cool summer t-shirt. I used New Look 6216.
I decided to make version B with the little arm bands - it is otherwise exactly the same as C but I liked the look of the bands.
I have made this top before in a drapey knit, which was easy to sew, but a nightmare to get right with the stripes - they had to be level at the hem. I used C and made the neckline smaller and added quite a bit of tension to the black knit band I added. It's quite a little bit on the A Line side, but looks nice and is comfy to wear:
|New Look 6216 View C|
As there is some tension around the neckline, I decided to cut the slightly smaller neck size but to loosen the tension of the band (ie not stretch it so much). This resulted in a slightly lower and larger neck, but not as wide as the original of the pattern which would have slid off my shoulders.
A simple five minute job to cut out, and I anticipated a quick sew. Eager to start, I put a ballpoint needle on my machine. I started. The seam had skipped stitches - lots of them.
I hummed and harred. I changed the needle to another ballpoint needle.
The seam had skipped stitches - lots of them.
I wondered if my machine had developed a problem. I used the same needle and stitched a piece of voile.
The machine did not skip stitches.
The machine did not have a problem. My white jersey fabric did. It did not like the ball point needle.
I changed machines to my Janome electronic (that I usually only use for buttonholes). I put on a ballpoint needle. The machine skipped stitches.
I got fed up and hungry. I went and made dinner.
In between stirring things, I looked through my needle collection. I found needles that called themselves Universal and claimed to be able to sew all fabrics especially knits, as they had a slight ball point.
These needles only fit the Janome, so I inserted one. I stitched a seam. There were a few skipped stitches but decidedly less.
I rescued the dinner (which I really wasn't paying attention to). I decided it was late and I better eat and clean up. DH is usually in very late after seeing patients in the evening, so his was put aside and I went back to the problem.
With a large sigh, I decided that perhaps I should read the Janome manual. I discovered that two stitches on the machine were two stitches dedicated to fussy knits.
I tried one - it worked. I tried the second - it didn't.
I concluded that I was working with a very fussy knit indeed.
And that it was going to take longer than a quick half hour to make. And was not going to be so simple after all.
This was the result:
The rest of the seams were quick and simple on the serger.
The armbands were simple to serge on.
The I had the hem to do. I tested a hem edge - just a one inch turn up and stitch sort of hem. Quite simple, even if a bit slow on the Janome.
I pressed the test hem. It wanted to buckle. It was not going to lay flat. It was not going to behave.
What now??? I racked my brains and decided to serge the hem on, like a little band.
The result: A bit sewn on looking, but much better than the test hem.
Here it is on me:
The band sticks out a little bit, but overall, for an around the house, hot weather, after a shower throw on with loose pants sort of t-shirt, it works!!
I also made a little t-shirt from my modified pattern from view A- the long sleeve t-shirt. I folded out the body fullness and shortened the sleeves to view B and added bands. This t-shirt has less fullness than the one above:
At least they are not complete wadders :)
As I had a bit of jersey left, but not enough length for a t-shirt, I decided to get inventive. As the bottom of the t-shirt is quite loose, I thought I could use a strip of voile at the bottom, and also use voile armbands. I was pleased with the result:
My self timed picture of this t-shirt is less than flattering, but believe me, it looks nice on. I'll show you another day.
I now consider that I have been well introduced to the pitfalls of sewing knits, so it should get easier from now on!
*****My knit practice will be useful for the t-shirt I have planned for pattern review's contest "Inspired by the Movies". I will be making a Breton t-shirt using Kwik Sew 3766.
I have made a muslin from a cheap polyester knit:
I was very pleased with my muslin for Vogue1316:
I also wanted to try a Style Arc pants pattern - everyone says how good they are and how the fit is just right.
So I decided to try a simple pant, the Style Arc Barb's stretch pant.
I looked at the pattern pieces and decided to keep a very open mind - after all, everyone says how good these are. I found a piece of stretch fabric in the stash that I really don't like, and made a muslin. I knew it wasn't going to work for me, so I didn't sew the band on. Have a look at what I mean:
A side view tells the whole sorry story:
Not on me. But I shouldn't really be surprised. Because RTW doesn't work on me either.
These pants are cut for a pear shape figure with a low bottom and a flattish tummy. I do not have that sort of shape.
So I altered the pants to waist height and cut out another muslin out of stretch fabric I am not overfond off:
This suits me much better - I agree, that the hip line does fit nicely.
Lets look at the side (and this photo is a bit blurry):
Much better look over the tummy. I have cut the back rise high - I have a high rise, and wasn't sure where to end it.
The back looks quite good as well. But there is a big problem. I can't sit in them. Or move. They are tight.
As it is not the height of the rise that is the problem, it has to be elsewhere. Only one place. So I opened the seam.
Here is the result (Warning - you need a sense of humour for this picture):
Yes. Right there. I need extra here. And if you look at my shape, I have a triangular bottom, not a pear shaped bottom. I need more in the rear crotch.
Sigh. Back to the drawing board...
Style Arc is not going to be the right brand for me for pants. Back to the search for the perfect pants solution...
And that is the round up of the last few weeks...
Sarah Liz :)