Thursday, April 19, 2018

A new collection started in grey

I'm teaching a friend to sew. She had asked if I would help her to make a few tees. No problem, right?

Imagine my surprise to find a late 50 something woman who has never made a single garment, not even the ubiquitous pillow case or apron! Instead of the hour or so I thought this would take, we're now doing "lessons." As well all know, something in a woven cotton is the best way to learn to sew.

But she still wants tees and I had helped her draft her own version of Pamela's Perfect Tee as I find it the best tee I've ever made, bar none. So I wrote out some basic instructions, (still not knowing she'd never sewn anything before) and left her with the pattern, instructions, and three pieces of fabric she purchased at Hobby Lobby. I have to say the light bulb should have gone off when she didn't know the difference between woven fabrics and knits, but I knew she'd taken a basic quilt class, so just figured she hadn't run into it before.

She had the first tee sewn together, but couldn't figure out how to do the neck or hems. That's when I got my first inkling and asked the questions. Shock and awe were my reactions. She did pretty good putting the tee together all on her own, but since she was using an old machine that was pretty messed up, I told her to take it in for servicing, and I'd finish the tee. Instead of servicing, she traded it in on another machine.

As I was finding out all of the above, I realized I needed to have her come to my house for "lessons" as I have, ahem, all of the supplies we'd both need. I did have her get some jersey needles, good quality thread, a seam gauge and some ball point pins. The rest we'll do here. BUT, she wanted to have me make a tee concurrently with her making hers so she could watch anything and everything I do. She's definitely a visual learner as she's had dyslexia quite badly her whole life and has a very difficult time reading instructions.

I agreed to make a tee with her, and we were going to get together last Sunday for our lessons. Something came up and she couldn't make it, but since I'd already cut mine out, I went ahead and put it together this week. I really like it a lot.

I love stripes, but as a voluptuous woman, horizontal stripes don't really flatter me much. As I thought about what I wanted to do, I realized I could take my Pamela's Perfect Tee as a base and combine it with my Bootstraps #42721, turn the center piece to vertical and have some nice interesting lines that would also flatter. Since the fabric is tissue thin, I also used some Japanese fusible bias along the neck edge to keep it from curling, and then cut my neck binding on the bias to alleviate the curling on it. I really like the looks of this one! 

The fabric is a fairly recent, for me, purchase coming from Mood in February of 2016. It's a heathered cotton jersey, and as I said above, light weight, which will be perfect for Southern New Mexico summers along with a pair of linen shorts. 

Now my friend will be here tomorrow, so I'm working on cutting out another striped fabric for a tee to make with her. This one is grey and white striped, a bit narrower than the stripes on this one. I'm thinking a diagonal stripe from one neck edge to the opposite hem might be very interesting. Here's a photo of the fabric, and I'll update as I get it put together.

Wishing you happy sewing this Spring!