Monday, January 23, 2012

Sewing FAIL

I have done a myriad of projects.  From painting a bookcase to learning watercolor to sewing my own clothes, I have learned a lot this year!

Like I mentioned in an earlier post, I got a sewing machine for Christmas and am learning to make my own clothes.  I am using patterns I found at a local thrift shop for only 25 cents apiece, and love the idea of making new stuff out of old fabric.

My thoughts about sewing prior to actually sewing from scratch:

  1. It is relatively easy.
  2. Don't bother readying the instructions that come with the pattern, because they are like stop signs:  a suggestion, not a rule.  
  3. You don't need to worry about what direction your pattern goes, just make sure it all fits together.  
  4. Just cut out the pattern "close enough" and it will fit correctly once you put it together
  5. Just speed through the stitching part, you don't have to be PERFECT with your seams.  
  6. The other stitches on your machine are not really for sewing clothes, really more for quilting.   
  7. Hems?  Easy peasy. Just make it up as you go along. 
  8. You can complete a garment start to finish within an hour or so.  
Don't you love my preconceived notions of sewing?  I am a perfectionist and thought that I would be able to throw together the perfect garment of Anthropologie quality in an hour.  

I really wanted to make this lovely peplum dress, but modify it by making it a black skirt rather than a coral dress. I wanted to make something trendy but thought that it would be easy to replicate. Remember I had the notions as noted above.

It took me several multiple-hour days to just finish the dang skirt.  And the final skirt? Ginormous.  I had to bring it down multiple times.  And the final fit?  Terrible! I got over-excited and wore the skirt to church on Sunday, probably out of exhaustion.  Note to self: don't make any major decisions when tired.  I could end up with a tattoo or invest in a ponzi scheme.

I am working on multiple other sewing projects which have already ended up much better!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Best online sewing videos

Many of my friends say that they have a sewing machine but no idea how to use it properly. I have started sewing with my new machine, and already ruined multiple beautiful fabrics because of improper use.  I thought that those pesky instructions in a pattern was mostly for stupid people, much like the warning to take the metal packaging off of pop tarts.

After realizing that I was consistently getting my basic sewing wrong, and realizing that I couldn't just wing it, I realized that I needed some help.  During one shift at the ER where no one had any emergencies, I searched long and hard to find the best online videos for basic sewing information. I've found that non-video tutorials are not as helpful, as sewing is as much of technique as it is instructions.

 Sewing Studio at YouTube

These videos are the best!!!  She offers an online sewing course, but these videos (just put the setting on auto-play)  get you from no idea what a "bobbin" is to a making a perfect skirt from scratch.  Ok, I don't know if the term "from scratch" is a sewing term, but I am a former pastry chef, so I relate everything to food.

I am finishing up my first from scratch (ie, from a pattern) skirt with a lining today!  I'll post as soon as I get it done!  


Thursday, January 5, 2012

Kate Spade inspired Covers

I got a sewing machine for Christmas, and have gone a little crazy about it!  I needed a sewing machine cover, but obviously it had to be fashionable.  Check out the one I made, inspired by the fabulous designs of Kate Spade.

This is version #1.5, as version #1 looked like a drunk person sewing blindfolded.  I was of perfect vision and alcohol free at the time, but I think I was just going too quickly to sew straight.  

It is a little hard to tell from the picture, but I also added a back pocket system to hold my pedal and chord while transporting.  It definitely isn't my best work, but it gets the job done of keeping me organized!

And not to have a naked Nook (also a Christmas goody) I believed it needed a cute case, too!

I had a request to share my pattern: here it is!

I love them both, and now need a logo that adequately reflects my style and class, just like Kate Spade.  However, I don't think there is an obvious symbol for "Lewis" :-)

With love,