Thursday, May 21, 2015

Girlie-Girl Ruffled Top and Skirt

Adjective: Adding ruffles, lace, ribbon, tulle, soft colors, and combining those elements for a feminine feel

Adapted Summer Chevron Shirt into
Girlie Girl Ruffled Top, Skirt, and Headband

Rick rack over back yoke seam with fabric loops slit opening

This is my third submission to the May Challenge at Project Run and Play.
(I just couldn't help myself as ideas just kept running though my head  of ways to adapt this pattern.)  
When I made the Stripes and Flounces shirt, I created changes in the original pattern that kept the center front of the shirt flat, but added flared out flounces in the back and front sides.  So I used this same idea, but left the rounded cut-outs flat and filled them with ruffles on both the side front and lower back of the shirt.
Light Pink Tulle
Toile Print Ribbon  
Eyelet Lace
Rosebud Gauze Fabric
White Batiste with ribbons,rickrack, and tucks 
gently rounded side front cut-out

This shirt is completely lined with a soft white knit fabric from Riley Blake.  Why?  My granddaughter has super sensitive skin issues (eczema) and I knew that all those ruffle layers rubbing her skin would not be comfortable for her.

 The last ruffle on the shirt goes completely around the shirt and is attached to the knit lining.

 The top of the skirt, that touches Miss C's waist, is made from this soft knit also.  I've learned that when you sew a garment for someone you must consider both
 the beauty of the design and the comfort of the feel.

And lastly... add a bit of frosting to the outfit.


P. S.   The sewing lesson with Miss E and Me on Friday will be about adding a gathered ruffle.

Friday, May 15, 2015

French Pups Short Set

French Pups Short Set

Using the free pattern shown on the left, Summer Chevrons Shirt by The Crafty Cupboard, this is my second submission to the May Challenge at Project Run and Play.

 I love the creative freedom of playing around with a pattern more than one time.
Some of the changes that I made to the design were:
1) On the first top, I added a bit more length above the waistline elastic to give it more ease and poof. I also wanted the elastic to fall in the polka dotted area of the material so the lines of stitching would be more invisible.

2) Sleeveless instead of the flutter sleeves. By the way, my sensitive skin granddaughter did not like the first sewing of the sleeve area with it's double fold bias tape was too "itchy."  So I took it apart and used a satin bias tape that lays flat on the inside of the garment.  That smooth surface made it "un-itchy" for her.
3) Knit iron-on interfacing in the back slit opening was added for extra stability.

4) I love the Michael Miller fabric, "French Pups." 
  So I was very careful in the layout of my pattern on the fabric to get pups that were not cut-off or cut-in-half. I traced the pattern onto this Pellon Tru Grid Tracing Material that is a see through non-woven fabric.  Using it made it easy to line up the pups correctly to get the design effect that I was looking for in the finished garment. 

5)  I made a second top from a women's extra large knit shirt that I found at a neighborhood garage sale.  It looked brand new, and I couldn't wait to recycle it. I cut it apart and used the Summer Chevron Pattern to cut out the shirt front. Then I cut out the shirt back with a higher neckline . I also placed the fold on the third  stripe to allow extra fabric at the center back,  which I sewed into a box pleat. Lastly, I cut the hemline shorter in the front and much longer in the back.

6)  I added patch pockets to the back of the shorts.  Here is a tutorial on making the patch pockets from Miss E and Me.

7) The shorts have 1 inch wide elastic in the waistband.  Notice the added panel to the front of the shorts.
Deborah and my girls

Sewing with Miss E and Me: Patch Pockets

Here's our Friday Sewing Lesson with Miss E and Me.

Here is an easy way for a beginner sewer to make patch pockets.
The ruler is in the photo to show you that the first pocket is laying on top of the fabric.
 1. Cut out one pocket. To cut out another pocket exactly the same, lay the first pocket on top of the fabric and match the pattern. Pin, and cut out.
 2. Pin the pockets on a piece of lining fabric.
 Sew all around the pocket using a 1/4 inch seam.
 Now, cut out the pocket and lining material.

3. Cut a small slit in the lining fabric only.

 4. Turn the pocket gently right side out through the slit. Press the pocket. Next get out some Wonder Under.

 5.  Place the Wonder Under inside the pocket through the slit.  Make sure the slit edges are close together, and then iron to melt the Wonder Under and seam the slit closed.

6.  Topstitch any decorative stitching on the pocket, and then pin to garment.  Sew around 3 edges of the pocket, back-stitching at the beginning and end of the pocket. 

Miss E and Me

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Stripes and Flounces Short Set

     Stripes and Flounces Short Set

Using the free pattern pictured on the left, Summer Chevrons Shirt by The Crafty Cupboard, 
 this is my submission to the  
As I've taken part in these monthly sewing challenges, I've found that each time I make a given pattern more than once, I change and revise the pattern based on my last experience. That's a great feeling of creative freedom.

On this shirt these were my design changes:
1) I create some side flounces that extended all around the back of the shirt. Sort of a high peplum, that has a lot of movement and swing.  

2) No surface trim would be used, as I wanted the stripes to really be the major design element in the overall plan.

3) The back yoke facing was changed to one piece that incorporated both the neckline and the slit for the buttons and loops. I interfaced the lining yokes with a soft knit iron-on interfacing to give the back slit more stability. The picture below shows the completed 2 piece front and back facings sewn together.


Monday, May 4, 2015

Sewing Lesson: Pop Quiz

Last Friday, Miss E learned one way to press seam allowances. 
 So I thought she should have a little 

With her winnings from Project Run and Play, we worked with Riley Blake fabrics to order this
Wiltshire Daisy Doll panel to make this darling American Girl Doll outfit.  In addition, we ordered some of the matching fabric to make a dress for Miss E too.

So on to the POP QUIZ!  I asked Miss E to come up to the sewing room.  I had sewn the shoulder seams on the top and I asked her to show me how to press that seam.

1. Press the seam flat on the wrong side to set the stitches.

2. Use your fingers to open the seam and press it down with your fingers.

 3.  Press the seam open with steam in your iron on the wrong side of the fabric. Up and down----
not slide side to side.

 4. Let it cool, then flip the fabric over so you can see the outside of your fabric.
 5.  Press right on the seam one more time.
A++++  Work

Why the Pop Quiz? 
 Well, as a teacher, I know that research says that it takes multiple exposures or experiences to learn a new concept. So I'm trying to provide Miss E with those same multiple exposures while learning to sew.  This quick little lesson reinforced what she knew, and provided a chance for her to describe in words the same process again...
those important multiple exposures.


Friday, May 1, 2015

Sewing Lessons with Miss E and Me: Pressing as You Sew

Look, my Mom bought me my very own iron to use while I sew!
It's just my size because it fits my hand and that lets me control the iron easily. It steams too.

When I was excited about using it, my Grandma just smiled, and said that most females aren't so excited about receiving an iron.  I wonder why?

Oh well, irons make a humungous difference !!!!!
You need to press your seams open 
as you sew
Check out this experiment:
First,  I sewed a seam, then went onto the next step, and sewed another piece of fabric across one end without doing any pressing.

 Then when I was all done, I tried to press it flat
 because it looked so messy.
In the picture, the pin is pointing to the little creases that formed when I pressed it from the right side of the material.
 It's not terrible, but it's not the best either.
Part 2 
First, I pressed the stitches flat on the wrong side of the fabric.
My Grandma says that this will set your stitches into your fabric and smooth the seam. 
Using your fingers, open the seam and finger press it a bit.
Be careful, because your fabric is warm.
Then,  get ready to press the seams open with your iron.

Don't press over pins or basting stitches. You could melt the plastic heads of your pins or scratch the bottom of your iron. The pressed basting stitches can leave an impression in your material that is hard to iron out later.
Mostly press your fabric on the wrong side of the material.

    Now, turn your fabric over and 
    press the seam on the right side.
    Doesn't this look nice?
    Look at the seam where the pin is little tuck, just flat and smooth.
    I hope our experiment helped you see why it is important to press your seams as you sew and not wait to the end when you are finished.

    Miss E and Me

    P.S. Next Friday we will be looking at pressing curved seams...see you then.

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