Thursday, December 12, 2013

I Need Oxygen, STAT!...

Because this learning curve is so steep! Lol

I've been hemming jeans this week. Regular length jeans are just a tad too short when washed and "tall" jeans are too long, so either one often needs an adjustment. First I let down an old pair that was just a tad short. Yes, you can tell they've been let down, but they are old and faded so will be ok for very casual pants. Then I did an old pair that are too long, but I decided today I didn't shorten them enough. Finally I shortened a brand new pair and they turned out just right. Whew! I used a little trick I picked up from this video where you cut out a notch on the double seam so that that part of the hem only gets folded up once to eliminate bulk. I found that worked really well.

Then last night I worked on three projects. Two were disasters. First I re-shortened the still-too-long jeans and now I'm happy with them. It went downhill from there. I moved on to a t-shirt project. Now this is a remake of a store-bought t-shirt that I started a few years ago and just ran across again. I've never used the pattern before so I wasn't sure how it would fit. The pieces were already cut out, and of course the instructions are MIA. So long story short I've ended up with a t-shirt that I will never wear but at least I learned a bit about how it will fit. Finally I tried to make another frankenshirt with the same pattern and a different t-shirt with a favourite logo on it (the "before" pictured above). I hate that men’s t-shirts are used so often for women’s specialty t-shirts. I don’t like the fit of men’s t-shirts on me – they are too big and boxy. I didn't bother cutting it out this time, just marked the seam lines and serged. I tried it on and decided it needed a scoop neckline. Then, because the shirt was originally huge, I decided to remove the sleeves and just finish the edge as a cap sleeve. Those ended up sticking straight out the sides so I tried to taper them down. Then I ended up with a “point” in the middle of the shoulder because I was trying to taper a taped seam. Then I tried to smooth out that point without much success. I also cut 3 inches off the length and hemmed it on the regular sewing machine with a zigzag stitch. That flared the hemline so I reserged the bottom of the side seams, which left a weird shape. So none of this turned out particularly well. Now I’ve got another shirt I will never wear. Not that I would have worn it as it was, but still.

So here’s what I’ve learned:

1. I really don't like the pattern I used - a basic t-shirt with three different "fits" - Butterick 5215. I definitely need to find a flattering basic t-shirt pattern. With instructions.

2. A firm heavy knit t-shirt without much stretch is not going to work for a fitted t-shirt, no matter how much I love the logo on it.

3. Don't start messing with a t-shirt with a favourite logo on it after a second glass of wine.

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