cutting roomI’ve had a bit of knitters block the last couple weeks.  I’ve been knitting here and there, but nothing really feels like it is getting done.  However I have been sewing.  A couple Friday’s ago I bunkered down and traced one pattern, then cut it out, and then cut out another pattern while I was at it (both use pink thread so it seemed prudent).  The new office-craft room set up works pretty well for working with a couple yards of folded 44″ wide fabric. And yes, I’m messy when I work. That would be the Anna Tunic being cut out, I bought the pattern and “wearable muslin” fabric shortly after the pattern came out and it had been sitting in my to do pile for way too long.  Months ago I traced the pattern onto some spare sew-in interfacing, making adjustments for my pear shape (but now I don’t recall if I made a petite length adjustment).  Then, it sat for another two weeks before I managed to sew it up.  Right now I am nearly done and finally at the point where I can try it on (it only took like 4 -2 hour sewing session).  And I discovered that the armholes are just a bit short.  It is wearable, but I’m not sure it is comfortable so I have hit a wall.  The yoke is basted in place just waiting for me to top-stitch it (originally I was going to hand-sew it, but now, not so much), stitch the buttons on the back and hem it.  Currently the tunic is also really long on me – about the length of the mini-dress as shown on the pattern envelope.

Another long awaited sewing project is another pair of Hello Kitty pajama pants.  IIRC the pink HK fabric was originally going to be my mom’s pants, but now that my sister is no longer in her anti-pink stage, and since she wasn’t going to be able to wear the blue HK pants we originally cut out for her, I made her pair in pink.  I started with the pajama pant pattern we bought for my mom, and taking a cue from the knitting world decided to lay a pair of nicely fitting pj pants on top the pattern for comparison.  My sister and I are the same height so I figured this would work.

Petite huh?

You might notice the significant extra length at the bottom.  And I had already taken out 1″ in length in the hip/crotch area.  Do you notice the two parallel creases a few inches from the B&W HK print pant hem?  That is what the petite-adjustment looked like, it was 2 inches.  I marked the hemline on the pants and measured to find the difference.

Length Adjustment Needed then New Accurate Length Adjustment

I drew new lines perpendicular to the grain that were 4″ apart – resulting in a 2″ deep fold instead of a 1″ deep fold.  And finally I traced the pattern onto new white tracing paper (out of extra interfacing) and repeated the process for the other pant pattern piece.  The second time went much more quickly since I just had to measure what I did on the first pattern and repeat the folds in the same places.  The pants are sewn up (hem and all) and waiting for me to insert some elastic (it took a couple weeks to find my sister and mom at home at the same time so I could get her waist measurement).

Unstructured BagOnce I had the oomph of accomplishment of cutting out two patterns I went on to create this bag that has been dancing in my head ever since I saw a similar bag in a Japanese crafting book.  I originally bought the brown paisley fabric to become a set of pillows for my living room, but alas due to a badly folded bolt my 1 yard piece ended up parallelogram shaped and just short of enough fabric for my pillows.  Then I feel out of love with it and it had been sitting in my stash almost two years.  But I thought, it just might work as the purse, (also it was one of the few pieces of significant size that I didn’t already have intended for specific projects), a second piece of fabric that never managed to be made into its intended project (the HK Quilt) became the lining, and my added pocket (note to designers: bags need pockets).  Of course since this bag is just two pieces of fabric gathered onto wooden handles it doesn’t really stand up on its own or have any structure or security.  (I was lazy and daring/stupid and used my zipper foot to machine sew the bag onto the handles, I nearly sewed through my finger in the process). So I am using it for a project bag, that is my elenka that you see in there.

Unstructured bag

August 25, 2009. Tags: , , , . Sewing. 1 comment.

Pajama Pants

Tonight On November 18th I finished a pair of pajama pants I started to sew 4 1/2 years ago.  I found cute Hello Kitty fabric in several colors and thought it would be fun for my sister and I to have coordinating pajama pants (we bought some for Mom too).  It was also going to be my sister’s first big sewing project.  We got as far as pre-washing all the fabric, ironing it and cutting out the the pattern and fabric for her pants.  Then the weekend was over, she went home and the pants lived in a plastic Hobby Lobby bag in an under-the-bed storage box until I repurposed the box for some other stuff.  I transferred the fabric to my sewing closet and then went about life.  I’m currently trying to get a handle on the crafting space and decided to tackle easier (read: all decisions made) projects.  It only took two nights, maybe 3 hours tops and that included iron warming and internet breaks.  I’m ridiculously proud of myself for completing a pair of pajama pants.

Hello Kitty Pajamas

January 21, 2009. Tags: . Sewing. 3 comments.