Sunday, May 12, 2013

Simp 4138, and some Poly thoughts!

Im the first to admit I'm a rather free spirited sewist. I could not handle a SWAP if my life depended on and would probably go nuts just trying. But that doesn't mean I don't have goals and plans. I never have enough white shirts. White's a color that looks good on me. I'm a "Winter" and us icy winter types look good in white, not beiges. (Don't ask how much beige is in my closet!) So I had the goal to sew three white shirts/tops and that has been met. Now I'm on a skirt buzz. Skirts are perfect for my work and I hope to make a few. One thought is some of the patterns for skirts that I like take so much fabric. What you see above is not one of those. This is a simple 6 gore trumpet skirt, knee length. I fretted over the length. Every bone in my body that lived through the sixties is begging for a frumpy long skirt, really. I've taken pics and know that mid knee is the most flattering length on me. But for some reason I never make that length. I've decided, in my dotage, to poo poo the sages and wear my skirt lengths at my knees if that is what looks best. So what if said knees are a tad baggy. Photographs taken by my hubby brought me to this enlightenment.

What you see above is my perfect idea for work, a crisp white shirt, a belt to highlight my waist while it lasts, and a loose, flow-y, colorful skirt. I just feel so neat and crisp in an outfit like this. I know it's not coming down the runways right now but color is and so are those gladiator sandals so I'm good with that. Accessories are a great way to keep your maturing style updated. I actually love to wear classics and have trendy accessories. That has served me well. Plus it is something that flatters me at this age. Most runway business doesn't. I am not a fan of tee shirts or knits and I guess I go against the tide with those opinions but at this stage I am pretty sure of what is flattering and still comfortable for me and that's what I make.

The skirt is 100% poly "stuff" from Joanns. It has a crepey texture and is fairly opaque. I will wear a short slip with it.  These poly "silkies' are quite seductive with their wonderful color and design but they can be a bitch to sew well. Here are just a few hints that I thought might help. Haven't we all succombed to their look and price point?

Mark the right side of your fabric. Often the sides are just the slightest bit different from each other, not enough to notice until you put them together wrong. Lo tack tape does not stick to these. So I pinned the tape because pins don't want to stay in this fabric either. Which brings me to pins......

THEY WILL NOT STAY IN! That is unless you have the double pins from Clover. I found these to work wonderfully at holding this nasty fabric.

Start your seams on a piece of paper stabilizer that can easily be ripped right off. Use a "single hole" foot and plate. It makes it much easier to work with this fabric and prevent it from being sucked into the nether regions of your bobbin area. I like the 1/4 inch quilting foot as it is a great help for French seams.

This garment is all French seams. Because the fabric is a stripe I needed to cut the pattern out on the cross grain. That can be a gold plated invitation to pucker seams and I was very worried the French seams would not work on the cross grain. I have had that experience in the past. So it was time to make a sample. I made a fairly long sample with a French seam on the crossgrain and it worked beautifully. I hung it up to make sure it hung ok. You just have to sample these things when sewing, one of those lessons you learn the hard way.
 
Here you can see it hanging from a shelf with no puckers.  I did set my tension to "normal" and a stitch length of 2.0. I like small stitches when I am doing French seams, particularly on something that ravels. 

To do the hem on this fabric I used the Kenneth King Tiny Hem technique and it came out beautifully. I just love that technique and you can find it in the tutes in the sidebar. It is so quick and easy. 

So with this project I got some quick gratification, a good thing after working six days this week. Sometimes you just need a colorful easy hit of sewing and this filled the bill. I am not going to review the pattern because it is so simple and classic and there must be loads on Pattern Review. It is  easy classic. Now maybe I'll make one of the long versions, a la frumpy.......Bunny


19 comments:

  1. Lovely outfit. Glad there's someone in the blogosphere advising fashion for those of us who are not really comfortable in t-shirts and slopping things together and smiling as though we did something wonderful. I just reviewed the tiny hem tutorial because I wasn't seeing how this would be done on a really curved hem. I understand now, that's why Mr. King sewed first and then cut. Also I really had to look at the foot you were using. I would call that an edge joining foot. An edge stitching foot has the blade on the far right. I have both for my Viking. Happy to have happened on your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Georgia, and welcome to the blog. I hope you visit often.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I agree that those polys are very tempting, and in this case gorgeous! Turned out beautifully! And I love those Clover pins...don't have any yet, but they're on the list.

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a pleasure to read about poly treasures from JA. Most of us have used this fabric because it is FUN, cheap, and colorful. I appreciate that someone who is so gifted at sewing would use such a fabric because they like the print:-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Love your outfit Bunny. The top is perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  6. really nice outfit. Re: knits vs wovens, I notice my wovens last longer and look better. A little ironing is a small price to pay!

    ReplyDelete
  7. If you can't suit yourself in how you dress then when can you!? Great outfit.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Yes, I would have bought that poly fabric too: it is beautiful! I have no problem wearing polyester comfort-wise but sometimes it does not behave well when seamed. Nevertheless I'd have taken the risk for that one.

    I think you dress very elegantly so take no notice of those with other tastes.

    Hopefully you husband is on the way to a recovery, by the way?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is having a procedure done as we speak. I will know more when I get to Boston in a few hours. Thanks so much for asking.

      Delete
  9. I, too, like the "shirt & skirt" combo - much more "put together" than a t-shirt. The skirt print is just lovely!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Such happy colors & a very carefree, casual summer time look! I would have bought that fabric in an instant, not knowing how difficult it might be to tame. Thank you for walking us through the steps to insure success, Bunny. It is always helpful to visit your blog & learn from you.

    With grateful hugs,
    Rett

    ReplyDelete
  11. Beautiful skirt! Thank you for talking about the Clover pins...I'm going to get some today. Also, I've probaby said it before, but I soooo appreciate your tute on the Kenneth King tiny hem!!!! I'm making a top that needs one...couldn't remember who had the super good instructions...it was you...thank you for mentioning it again...perfect timing!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That technique is probably the most viewed of all my tutes, both here and on Pinterest. All my tutes are on my Pinterest board under Sewing Tutorials, as well. Glad this one helps you.

      Delete
  12. I'm also from the '60's and love long, flowy skirts. (Apparently Google doesn't think flowy is a word. Maybe Google is just too young to remember.) I've seen several in the stores lately and that's given me hope. Love your outfit!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Bunny, another great outfit!! I hope Ern is feeling better and that the procedure went off without a hitch.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Very nice outfit, Bunny. I love the colors in the skirt, but here in hot Texas I'd like to find a cotton blend - it's impossible!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am soooooo thankful that you found & shared the KKTH technique. I've used it many times! I learned how to use a hemming foot, so I'm not using it as much as I did at first, but it was PERFECT when I made a slip for my daughter using Ambiance fabric from Fashion Sewing Group, and the bias slip pattern Cinnamon from Colette. That fabric would not sew at all without the paper underneath! As your other fans, I am hoping DH is doing well. Teresa in WV

    ReplyDelete
  16. DH is doing much better. His procedure was a success and we will be back to Beth Israel for some more work in a month. In the meantime he has started therapy and liking it and getting around much better. He has a long way to go but has come very far. We are so grateful for the wonderful treatment he has to received.

    ReplyDelete

Engaging commentary: