Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tons 'o' Tees

Yup, that's right - Tons of tees - or tonnes - ok well not really, but a lot of them. I've been collecting knit fabrics for the last year - mostly because it is really hard to find good variety in quality cotton knits. So I snag them where I can and have now amassed a nice stash - too much of a stash really - time to get busy using some of them up. It was always my intention, after this blogpost, that I would just make up a bunch of tees for myself. Well that was in January and well, you know how it goes, spring and summer rolled around and other projects took priority and it just never happened. Now it's well into fall and almost winter again and I figured I'd better get them done soon or I'd be putting them on hold for another year ~ Plus that stash really needed a little denting. So I cut cut cut out a bunch of them using the Zoela pattern, then collected a bunch of grown-up embroidery to compliment the fabrics (harder than you might think really), then stitched them on and mass-sewed them all together. Now I should say that t-shirts whip up pretty quickly and it really shouldn't have taken as long as it did, but finally I managed to finish up the last one. And here they are - IMG_9628
ok there are only 4 but it still took me weeks to complete them all. I would really love to make a few more - do I need more tees? No! But the fun is in the designing after all.


And wouldn't you know it, whenever I'm having fun with the designing part, my dear daughter shows up and wants to help - this is her way of saying she wants to design some for herself - and of course she wants matching embroidery too - I have created a monster - a design monster that is. But that's cool! One of these days she is going to compete with me for sewing machine space. But in the meantime, here are some of her self-designed versions using the Farbenmix Drunter and Druber pattern:
Groovy DruberOwls on the line Druber

Some random t-shirt wisdom from me:
A serger isn't an absolute must, but it sure does make for nice sewing, so put it on your Christmas wish list!
Use wooly nylon in your loopers to give your seams a softer feel on the inside. I've noticed that there is less chance of unraveling with this stretchy fabric if you use the wooly.
Don't stretch the fabric as you are sewing the seam, this will help prevent puckering. One exception would be necklines where you might have to stretch a bit if you are easing in the neckline ribbing. You might have to adjust your feed dogs especially when you are sewing across the grain with ribbed cottons.
Go crazy and have fun! There are lots of new products out there to help embellish your tees. You can use Fold-over elastic (FOE) on the necklines/hemlines/sleeves in place of ribbing if you prefer - gives it a different look. There are also lots of embellished elastics you can use to apply to your edges. Consider picot edged elastic, or ruffled edge elastics to add a little flair to your tee at the neckline or on the sleeves. (Myrinda at Fabrichound always has a nice selection)
Use ballpoint needles - these are usually marked 90/14 BP or 80/12 BP
Don't sweat the knits! Check your anxiety at the door! It's easier than it looks/sounds - You can do this!
Practice on an old t-shirt first if you are still worried about it.

Happy sewing!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What happened to October?

Devilish Decor
I'm still stalled in October and it's already the middle of November??? Accck! The dreaded swine flu hit our house about a week before Halloween and I'm still playing catch-up. So before December hits, here's a look at our Halloween costumes from this year - I was really much to sick to pay much attention - thankfully the kids were able to get themselves ready and dear hubby was there to chauffeur them around. Luckily the costumes were done well before the pig and his friends showed up - or else they would've been trick-or-treating in their PJs or something.


Pippi's dress is in fact a Farbenmix VIDA done in a solid corduroy and embellished with patches and fake 'darned' holes. I have to say this is the easiest hemline I've ever done - just shredded the thing. The pocket was added later because, apparently, Pippi has to carry a monkey along with her everywhere. Umm okaaaay Pippi. Said monkey also needed a hat, shirt and tie - sigh - so the shirt was cobbled together using this handy doll shirt tute from thingsofcloth, and enlarged just a bit until I thought it would fit the monkey. I think at this point I was already a bit feverish because it took a couple tries to get the shirt the right size.
Dear Daughter and Hubby pitched in and finished up the hat with felt applied over a straw hat - I think - must've already checked-out at this point.

The nearly-headless reaper dude (err whatever that was supposed to be) was achieved using this handy dandy cape tute. Thank-you Vegbee! Enlarged just a bit because my son wanted it full-length and I didn't curve the hood piece because I knew he wanted it pointy - you know like a nearly-headless reaper dude should be - err yeah.

And there you have it - Halloween 2009. Phew. Ok now I'm a little behind, because I really wanted to have a few more things done before Christmas sewing set in. Oh well, it'll get done one way or the other. Or not ~ I refuse to stress over it because sewing is supposed to be fun.

'til next time, happy sewing!