I’ve been trying to make more clothes for me because:
- It builds skills, it’s certainly more difficult than a blanket
- I know exactly who made it and what conditions it was made in. If those conditions are inhumane I know exactly who to blame
- It forces my mind to not think of my body as a ‘size’. A 10 or a 12 or an L or XL, any of these may be different in any given store. I am instead a series of measurements, none of which add up to any particular size and have no conscious or unconscious judgement attached. It’s just me.
- I am learning a lot about how clothes are made and thus how they fit. This actually helps a lot when buying clothes off the rack.
It is incredibly slow going. Making any progress feels like slogging through mud. For now I’m at the very simplest of skirts. This is Amy Butler’s Barcelona Skirt. I used a slightly heavier weight quilting cotton in mustard. I used the tiered version with the unfinished hems. The pattern is nice and easy but I did find that my tiers didn’t line up perfectly. It was ok in the end as the whole thing was a bit too large. I need to learn how much to pull in from my actual measurements. When the waist band of the skirt perfectly matches your actual waist the skirt is actually too big. I wasn’t sure if the pattern was taking that into account or not but I’m pretty sure now that it is not. Things to keep in mind for next time.
Also, how do you all get good pictures of yourself in clothes? Should I be figuring out the timer option on my camera? Because after asking my husband, son and friend to take a picture of me in the skirt, I’m still publishing the one with me standing on a stool in my bathroom mirror. More things to keep in mind for next time.
…as i posted to a friend’s facebook wall after she informed everyone that it was nearly 85 degrees out. Two days ago another friend and I were browsing through Old Navy when I said I wanted some sleepy shorts. She responded that she would have been all over that if she still lived in Arizona but that it was way too cold here for shorts. WHAT? It’s nearly 85 degrees! It’s well into sleepy shorts weather. Crazy Arizona people.
Are you thinking “wow, these people are babies”? Yes, yes we are. Also, check out these babies
Sleepy shorts for me out of some I-have-no-idea stash fabric. I know it’s a quilting cotton but, otherwise I know nothing about it. Oh, except it’s pretty. No real pattern here, just used some flannel sleepy pants as a guide but cut them off at about the same length as some shorts I have. I did do fancy clean finish edge and I think that made my sizing a bit off. Let’s just say I hardly needed the elastic at the waist.
I did add some stash ribbon for prettiness and (I’m very proud of this) I used the button hole feature on my sewing machine for the ribbon holes. I have never use it before and, wow, was it super easy. Nicely done, Singer.
I like them quite a bit. In fact, I’m wearing them now. No, there will not be pictures
As I have mentioned before (and before and before and before) my projects don’t always work. A lot of the time they are just weird. It’s because I don’t follow the instructions. It’s because I take short cuts. It’s because I didn’t really understand. In short, user error. Every time. I have made these pants before. Before they have worked. This time they were weird. I’m sure it was me. It’s always me. Clearly they are just not long enough for the width. BUT, here is a tip for sewing for boys: if you put a super hero on it, it doesn’t matter that the sewing is wonky. They are his favorite pants. I’ve re-sewn some seams twice now due to active use.
The grey corduroy is the same from the first installation of these pants. I went up a size this time (4/5) so I needed to draw out a new paper pattern. I’m thinking that is where I made they mistake. The contrast fabric is from a Marvel comics print at JoAnn’s that was 70% off. All in all, I think I spent about 5 bucks. Tim Gunn would not be impressed but my little guy was. Good use of 5 bucks.
Our beautiful, wonderful nanny recently got married and who was the ring bearer? Why a little boy I happen to know. We could not be more excited to be part of her special day. As the boy said yesterday “my family has a mommy, a daddy, and a nanny.” Truer words have never been said. She is part of our family and, in some ways the most important part, as without her we would probably devolve into feral creatures: unwashed, unfed, and with no gas in our car.
For the big day, I made no-sew (hot glue gun ftw!) burlap bow-ties for the two little boys. I followed the basic instructions here. Burlap is much thicker than normal fabric and frays like a mo-fo. I used lots and lots of glue. To attach to the boys’ shirts I glued the bows to small hair clips like these.
Of course on the wedding day, none of this went to plan. But really, if something is going to go wrong on your wedding it might as well be some little bow-ties.
Remember that quilting class I said I was going to take? I really did take it. And it was totally fun. A lot of my reason for going was to figure out all the stuff I had been doing wrong. Just like when I learned that I was so, so not purling correctly a full half sweater in.That sweater has since been sacrificed to the frog and no photographic proof remains that it ever was. I am very happy to report that quilting class didn’t unearth any similar face-palm lessons. Most of what I had been doing, I had been doing correctly or close enough. The biggest things I took away from it were
- Keep a hot iron close. Really saves a bunch of time and helps you not give into the laziness of just not ironing
- Measure all the damn time. This one was a biggie. We made 9 square blocks. Measured each piece, measured each block, measured each row, etc. I need to be better about this
- A 12 1/2 inch square ruler is kind of essential. See measuring above. That thing makes it far less painful.
- It’s totally ok if at the end of attaching your binding, you finish with a flat seam for the two ends instead of a bias one. Quilting police did not storm the building. It was like they don’t even exist.
- Binding stitch. Most things I found I had been doing mostly right except this. I have been hand sewing the binding wrong on every quilt I have made, making my life more difficult and my fingers more… perforated in the process. This is the way to do it.
I ended up with a nice little quilt made out of a things I already had in my stash. One of my rules of class taking is that I shouldn’t buy materials if I already have them. This is for practice not for the family heirloom (right, like my son is going to want to keep any of this. He’ll likely go to college with the 2 yards of star wars fleece currently on his bed that I picked up for 40% off at Joann’s).
I am very lucky to work with humans. Humans who have babies. Humans who have babies always need blankets, even little wee ones. Aaron from two desks over was very happy to accept my homework for his new Little J. I hope Little J gnaws on that new-stitch-learning binding to his hearts content.
Full quilt taped to the wall
9 block detail
back side with cool ghost print
Thanks A Verb for Keeping Warm for the great class. I’ll be back.
Hey, remember when I didn’t post for like 3 months over the biggest crafting time of year? Me neither. Let’s just pretend that didn’t happen. Great.
In other news of inactivity and procrastination… 10 bajillion years ago I started a quilt as part of the Road To Spring quilt-along. I got as far as this picture:
That is the last I ever posted to the group.
I did actually finish the quilt top. I learned a lot about what not to do. My fabrics were wrong as was a lot of my technique. The Road to Spring quilt called for free motion quilting but I knew I wasn’t up to that. So the quilt top just sat. After my quilting class – and really learning how to do the quilting part and binding – I wanted to practice those skills. And there was my old quilt top just waiting
I found some nice backing fabric at the local Cat’s Pajamas sale and used scraps from the front to get the width right.
I also made the binding out of a yellow solid I have had around for a while. I haven’t measured it yet but it’s definitely a throw/baby blanket type size. Now just to figure out who to give it to…
I wouldn’t say that I have switched from Hipstamatic to Instagram so much as I have learned to love both. The social part of Instagram isn’t all that interesting to me and, yes, it does bug the crap out of me that I have to upload to Instagram to have an image save to my local device. This is lame. Fix it, Instagram. But I do like that I can choose my filters after the picture has been taken… setting up Hipstamatic is also a pain. And that Instragram doesn’t do weird croping… so what you see in the view finder is what you get in a picture. That Hipstamatic goes for some old style ‘framing’ is lame. You can set it up to be precise but it doesn’t come that way out of the box. Whatever, Hipstamatic. Regardless, I do love that my otherwise crappy pictures are looking a whole lot better these days. They even make my crafting craftier.
Nick Fury approves these quilt blocks
Hay Maze Adventurer
If you’d like to follow me, I’m ‘kaelaangelica’