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Thursday, November 8, 2007

The Shirt - Cutting Out

I started on a long sleeve tee from the teacup fabric. When I prewashed the fabric I found out why it was $1 a yard. The washing and drying made obvious the fact that the printed teacups are not on the grain. It was such a pain to cut out, since I wanted the teacup "stripes" to look sort of straight. I pinned the fabric to the carpet and laid the pieces out all weird and slanted. I couldn't for the life of me get the stripes to go evenly across a fold for the front piece, which is supposed to be cut on the fold, so I had to make a second half out of leftover tissue paper and cobble the halves together.

The pattern is a New Look pattern I've had for three or four years. My mom bought it for me while I was in Ecuador and I had just bought a sewing machine. They don't have patterns in Ecuador. All of the women who sew clothing have learned pattern drafting, which is commonly taught in what we would call vocational high schools. I didn't use the pattern, though, because I didn't want to sew with knits. Instead, I carried it back home with me after Peace Corps and it sat in a drawer. I tried to sell it on Ebay (with two other patterns) and got no takers. But finally it is coming in handy. I did lengthen the torso of the shirt by two inches, as I am not fond of lifting my arms and having my tummy on display.

It took forever, and made me really really wish I had gotten some NORMAL fabric for my first try at sewing with knits. I think this pattern would have been a snap to cut out, otherwise. Not a lot of pieces, and not a lot of notches and circles to mark. The print still turned out a little wonky, not straight across all the pieces as I had hoped. But I think it will all work out now. It's just a sort of wearable muslin, an experiment, anyway, to see how I like both the pattern and sewing with knits in general.

The best tip for cutting out knits that I got out of my Vogue Sewing book was to pin the pieces to the wrong side of the fabric and cut them out. That way they curl less. And it's true. I cut the neck piece out on the right side, and it curled like crazy. I'm not sure why that is, exactly.

1 comment:

littlegreen said...

k... I LOVE that pattern! I have only ever made one tshirt from it, a short sleeved black tee... and loved it, but I truly love the pants in that pattern, awesome!! I have made linen pants, red sweat pants, and several others, all from that pattern, they have big wide legs and I just love them!!!! cute shirt, I love the print!