Saturday, March 22, 2014

Side Zip Shorts

I did it! I made shorts. With a zipper. And a button. That button was my first machine sewn 
button and my first button hole in probably two and a half years. I am loving the new machine!

These shorts are Salme Sewing Patterns Shorts With Side Zipper. Let's take it back a minute.

Those of you that follow me on Instagram got a highly unflattering preview of a muslin I made of these. The fit was spot on. That fabric is a navy blue polyester I found at an estate sale for a dollar. I'm glad I made the muslin because I knew the fit was great, and I also discovered a few things I wanted to do differently on the good fabric.

I got this fabric at Joann Fabrics. It is a black cotton with white embroidered flowers on it. Well, after I sewed in the lapped zipper and tried them on they were HUGE! I took in all the darts about two inches, the front and back center about 1.5 inches and had to take a little off the side seam with no zip. That is why my butt darts go way past my butt. Then I put on the waistband, which I had interfaced so it did not stretch at all, and realized my fabric had just stretched out that much. I hemmed them and then washed and dried them and they shrunk up a few inches in length and looked much better overall. We will see if they get super big with wear. So for now crisis averted. But, I'm glad I did the muslin first because I knew it would work, and it wasn't the pattern.

The changes I made to the pattern were mostly on the inside. I finished the edges of all of the pieces that had anything to do with pockets on main and lining pieces. I didn't have to, but I thought it made for cleaner insides. 

Aren't the pockets cute? They are nice and roomy, but lie flat and don't add fluffy bits.

Here is my button I am so proud of. The thing is I suck at waistbands. So, you can see some of the lace tape I used on the inside on the outside. I don't tuck my shirts in and can live with it. There is a button hole there too that I am dang proud of because I swore them off years ago. Can an Archer be far behind? A Hawthorne? Ye Gods the possibilities!

Never mind the stupid face, but overall this is a great pattern. I would even go as far as making a few more pairs for summer. I love this fabric, but I may go with something a bit more sturdy. I just like the dressy, lacy shorts look. I may make them a little shorter too. For real, it's going to be 1000 degrees with 110% humidity before I know it. Less clothes is better and now I have a TNT to play with!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Scout Tee vs. Simplicity 1690

I like plain old woven tops.I wear them quite a bit, but since they are worn so much I don't have enough to always have clean ones on the ready and wind up wearing a lot of knit T-shirts. Woven tops just look so much nicer, so I am on a quest to find a TNT one.

The contenders:

First off I bought this voile awhile back, but never knew what I wanted to do with it. It's not a color I usually lean toward. When I decided to do this comparison I thought it would make a great wearable muslin fabric. It also makes me look at the shape of the shirt rather than liking one fabric more than the other. The downside was the pictures are hell to sort! Oh yeah, check out our plum tree we planted  year ago that has never grown or produced even a single leaf. We thought it was dead, and now it is covered is delicious smelling flowers!

Let's start with Simplicity 1690 by Leanne Marshall You might recognize the structural shape of the skirt and dress on this pattern, but I bought it for the simple kimono sleeved shirt. I made french seams on this one since there were only four. I only spent about an hour working on it and it was done. No fuss, no muss! I can't say how well the directions are written because I just didn't read them. I may have missed something because on the envelope it looks like there are supposed to be slits on each side along the hemline. I will definitely add those next time. I made no adjustments or alterations for size.

The neckline is bias bound and hems are just folded and sewed.

Back view is pretty standard stuff.I was told I need to make shorts that fit next since I am holding these up by the pockets. Apparently I have a droopy butt. Everyone is a critic!

Now onto Grainline Studio's Scout Woven Tee. This is exactly as described, a woven tee shirt and exactly what I was looking for. The pattern is a downloadable pdf. I did follow the directions (for the most part) and liked them.I worked on this one a few minutes a day here and there over a week. The main difference here is the scoop neckline and set in sleeves.

The neck is again, bias bound, but the directions added a very new to me step of under stitching the binding to the seam allowance. I plan on doing this from now on because I love the way it looks. Hems are fold and sew.

Back view again pretty standard stuff. Not holding my shorts up at all.

The winner is.....

Simplicity 1690!!!! I am as shocked as you are. I thought it was the Scout Tee, right up until I saw the photos. Then the Leanne Marshall showed to be so much more flattering. I have to admit it is an easier sew, but only because of the kimono sleeves. They are both great patterns, but I think Simplicity is closer to being my tried and true. I may try another couple patterns on my search though. 

BTW I got a $100 gift card to Mood for my birthday....any suggestions?