Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Needle Does Matter

This is what I wore to church today.
This is what I wanted to wear to church last week.

I couldn't wear it last weekend because of sewing machine, well, umm, operator error. Last weekend I was on a roll, really living up to my blog moniker. (The bulk of my work was on a jacket that won't be blog ready until next week.) You know how you kind of envision all the steps to making a garment in your head? Well, I figured that I had just enough time to sew a knit top and skirt, probably long before we had to leave for church the next morning. Top goes together in a snap and is soooo comfy! Skirt goes well until I'm ready to sew the side seams. At least a half hour of frustration ensues. The bobbin is a mess every time I sew. So I put it away and started trying to figure out when I'll could bring it in to be serviced. That never happened. Yesterday evening I tackled it again. This time the bobbin thread wasn't even locking with the top thread! As a last resort before packing it up I changed the needle and got the most beautiful stitches I've ever seen (okay, that an exaggeration but - what a relief)!

That's the story behind the garments; these are the actual sewing details. The fabric is a poly knit jersey and both patterns are for woven fabrics. I used this pattern for the top. The center seam is visually distracting but necessary for the dolmen sleeve. I extended the turtleneck (cause I like 'em tall 'n tight), eliminated the opening in the back and made the separate tie/bow. I interfaced both sides of the bow. It turned out way too bulky and the bow itself just got lost in the print - instead I used it for the skirt waistband! The neckline has enough give to fit over my head without a back opening, but I will probably go back in and make the turtleneck a little tighter, it's still a little loose for me.

I've been looking for a flattering knit skirt pattern that wasn't the usual gored skirt. And I have to say, I'm not a big fan of an elastic waistband - just one of those things. This pattern is from 1995, and yes, I'm the original owner! Honestly, I don't even remember making it before, but it was cut so... Anyway, I'm intimidated by how a bias skirt looks on me but thought this would be okay in a knit. I didn't cut it on the bias and ended up (a little short on fabric) cutting it with a CB seam. Originally I cut it to have an elastic waist, but when the bow didn't work out on the top I decided to add the waistband. I did move the zipper to the CB since the seam was already there and a side zipper in an a-line knit, well, I just didn't want to deal with that. I interfaced the seam allowances at the zipper opening. I also basted fusible web at the hem, pressed the hem into place and then used my blind hem stitch to secure.

Hopefully, I'll be posting again next weekend with my completed black suit! I've been so busy with school - and having so much fun - just can't seem to make room for blog posts!


Sigrid said...

Gorgeous outfit. Love the fabric.

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Really cute looks! I love how they're totally contemporary from patterns many of us would pass up as "dated." The needle does make a huge difference, especially with that kind of jersey. Stretch needles all the way!

Summerset said...

What a great ensemble - I love that print! Yes, the needle really does matter! I've found that the right needle solves many, many problems.

Sew Passionista said...

I love it! it is so cool! I just made a knit dress and for the life of me ,I couldn't get my machine to do my usual zigzag stitch I always use for knits ,I ended ,up after trying every type o needle imaginable, using a straight stittch and stretching as I sewed, ???
Apparently ,I needed a jersey needle which isn't available in my area . Anyway, I love your blog.
Happy Sewing