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  • FIRST POST
    • kittie
    • By kittie 9th Dec 16, 7:42 AM
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    kittie
    The sewing thread
    • #1
    • 9th Dec 16, 7:42 AM
    The sewing thread 9th Dec 16 at 7:42 AM
    We have an active knitters thread on the os board, I always felt that we should have a sewers thread here too, in visible sight. Many many people sew and there are also many learners. I made my first skirt on a treadle singer machine at age 10, many of us oldies were taught sewing at a very early age. The craft died down for many years when cheap clothing shops flooded the high streets but there is a re-awakening and I have grandchildren who are desperate to learn how to sew. I believe that a sewers thread should take equal place with the knitters thread and on this board

    I am still an active sewer, using three machines, overlocker, sewing machine and coverstitch. Even sewing a plain hemmed tablecloth for all day coverage to keep the table nice, using good quality fabric, takes less than two hours and gets lots of good comments, also very practical and made in a light fabric, it brightens that corner of the room

    I am about to teach my 8 year old grand daughter, who is getting a future-proofed real janome sewing machine for christmas. She will obviously have to start with pedal control, forward and backward etc but I can see her making an apron for her mum after half an hour of basics. I have a simple paper pattern ready, the fabric and the notions. We will do simple cutting out of two fabrics, then will sew back to back, pulling the fabric through, there will be no seam edges, or finishing or hems.

    Let`s get this thread going. Join us if you sew, if you want to sew, if you have queries and questions
    Last edited by kittie; 09-12-2016 at 10:17 PM.
Page 23
    • Artytarty
    • By Artytarty 12th Jul 17, 12:27 PM
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    Artytarty
    A pattern notcher?! Who could have imagined such a thing exists.
    I think I shall get one. I used to do the triangles or sometimes tailors tacks but I've got sloppy and they are not that accurate as you say. Some time I just ignore them and hope for the best by measuring from the paper pattern when I get to that bit.
    Sounds like handy gadget.
    P.s. I've bought one!
    Last edited by Artytarty; 12-07-2017 at 7:06 PM.
    Norn Iron Club member 473
    • kittie
    • By kittie 12th Jul 17, 5:18 PM
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    kittie
    Does anyone know of a shortcut to tailors tacks?

    Its been a more balanced day today, I stopped cycling when the weather got very hot and started lurking indoors, I am not much good in the heat, went to the allotment early mornings and that was it. Cycle ride today did happen, not far, just 5 miles but a few hills, then straight into allotment jobs. It gives me thinking time as well as keeps me moving

    I am going to copy my size in esme next, straight off the pattern, no alterations. I have to copy as my size is not the largest. Then I will sew properly via a muslin made from some of the tarton brushed cotton shirting, of which I have much as it was destined for hubbies shirts. If that fits then I will go onto better fabric in due course but that tartan will be good for autumn anyway. Btw, I read about stitch lengths last night and the standard length for quilting is 2.2 and for all clothing sewing is 3.5 as it gives much neater seams when pressed.
    • PollyWollyDoodle
    • By PollyWollyDoodle 12th Jul 17, 6:00 PM
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    PollyWollyDoodle
    HOW much? - I'd love to see some of these clothes for real and see if they really look as if they're well made and good quality. I don't think my construction skills are high enough to equal that but I'm sure the stuff I turn out is as good as or better than, say, Primark!

    It's really funny that you mention the pattern notcher, Kittie - I had no idea such a thing existed until it popped up on Amazon yesterday while I was looking at something else. I was wondering if it's really worth it or whether it's just another piece of kit that won't get used. Sounds as if it's something else for me to add to my Christmas/birthday list. I already have French curve and thread clippers written down.

    No sewing today due to paid work getting in the way, although that's not a bad thing - might allow me to order something from Croft & Mills next month!
    "Inconceivable". "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
    • kittie
    • By kittie 13th Jul 17, 7:41 AM
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    kittie
    a mini skirt from
    http://www.celticfusionfabrics.com/ourshop/prod_6037815-Rifle-Paper-Co-wonderland-navy-metallic-CANVAS-weight.html

    not me, just thinking grandchildren when they are older. If I was famous then I would charge £500. In reality, cost would be <£13.

    Got to get going, slept so well last night, must have been the exercise. Got esme copied while leaving the tissue uncut, last night at 8 as would have faeen asleep if I sat. Works well using white card on tablecloth and pencil not sharpie. This swedish paper is better than the first lot that I used a long time ago, it doesn`t retain curl and you can use pencil easily. Also ironed long length of brushed tartan, was a beggar to get grain as it was sticking to itself. Trial run of that first, no darts in esme and looks very easy but I will put a little interfacing on the back facing, maybe. Next after this, if it is a good fit, will be essex metallic linen, I have a short length washed and ready and it is lightweight. Could potentially look very good worn with the essex linen skirt I made.
    http://www.robertkaufman.com/fabrics/essex_yarn_dyed_metallic/E105-171/

    http://www.robertkaufman.com/fabrics/essex_yarn_dyed/E064-1019/
    • kittie
    • By kittie 13th Jul 17, 6:19 PM
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    kittie
    esme was a surprise. I was expecting that it might look like a maternity smock but it didn`t, it atually looked quite slimming on me and it goes over the head easily, so will not be getting buttonholes. The sleeve cuff was too restricting on the elbow so I have lengthened the sleeve by an inch. This is meant to be a beginner pattern but the facings are confusing, I ended up just putting it together quickly as a muslin and did the facings quickly. Then binned the muslin

    The sleeves are wonderful to insert, cut on the bias, they just ease in without any gathering. There is some fabric gathering under the front yoke, I did that and took it out to replace with a couple of small pleats on each side of the button band, which I left above an unpleated section. Its a lovely pattern and easy to cut and put together and I have already cut another in a stash poplin, could be a liberty design from years past. It will fit onto a 44 wide fabric and takes 2.2 m for a size 18. The yoke seam was at the right place and looked like a princess seam, helping the top to fit nicely. It is going into my reliable pile
    http://www.backstitch.co.uk/sew-liberated-esme-top

    I had to wash that poplin as it smelt of cotton so I didn`t know if it had been done. While waiting for it to dry, I started work on style arc maddison, which arrived quickly from amazon. There were multi sizes on the pattern, all in different colours and the paper is thick. I moved the side bust dart down about 2 inches to point towards my BP and re-graded the side seam. Btw the bust point below pattern BP is very common in larger busted women. To find the exact BP, you pin the pattern at the SA and place it on your shoulder with the centre at your centre front, then you mark your own BP on the pattern. Moving a side dart is not difficult but you need to be accurate and a large quilting rectangle comes in very handy. It isn`t a full bust adjustment. You need tape and patching paper and a french curve to re-align the side seam

    I felt confident in style arc and am not making a muslin but have cut two tops out as I want to keep the living area tidier, rather than keep taking everything out. The fabrics I used are
    https://www.sewhot.co.uk/product/outback-wife-blue-mary/
    I had 2m and had bits over
    and
    https://drapersdaughter.com/collections/fabrics/products/robert-kaufman-yarn-dyed-essex-linen-metallic-water
    this was tight to cut out, I didn`t have a mm left as there is a long bias strip for the neckline. I had 2m

    https://www.stylearc.com/shop/sewing-patterns/maddison-top/
    Last edited by kittie; 13-07-2017 at 6:24 PM.
    • Artytarty
    • By Artytarty 13th Jul 17, 6:52 PM
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    Artytarty
    Eh, well I made a new ironing board cover!
    I had enough of a very heavy checked cotton,- old tablecloth and enough elastic.
    Norn Iron Club member 473
    • PollyWollyDoodle
    • By PollyWollyDoodle 13th Jul 17, 11:57 PM
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    PollyWollyDoodle
    Always good to do, Arty - I really should replace mine.

    Kittie I can't believe the amount you get through - you've got some lovely fabrics in your stash. Can I ask - do you just buy it without a specific project in mind, and how do you know how much to buy? The Esme top looks nice.

    Still no sewing here, frustrating but I haven't got a free day till Saturday. Please keep inspiring me, I'm getting so much impetus from reading what other people are doing.
    "Inconceivable". "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
    • kittie
    • By kittie 14th Jul 17, 6:18 AM
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    kittie
    wd arty, very satisfying job

    Polly, I wish I was disciplined re my stash, its building up again but this time I am being more fussy. I don`t often have a pattern in mind when I buy and the trouble with buying online is that you cannot feel the texture and drape, so even if I have a pattern, I may change my mind. I did recently make a simple pull on A line skirt from brown paper patterns, which fits well and is lovely so I am repeating that in x number of fabrics in future. I know that takes 2m of 110 wide fabric and if I know that I 100% love a particular make/type of fabric then I will buy a few to put by for the future, in case I cannot get them again. I basically calculate 2 to 3.5m but sometimes more than I need because of shrinkage

    I am treating the last stash esme as a trial, it is too big around the neck, was going so well too. The poplin isn`t drapey enough to hang comfortably from my shoulders, without slipping. Pinterest is full of these tops and most of their necks look snugger than mine. I am going to make another today in a thin linen that I have in my old stash and I will make the length shorter or will make a curved hem. I am going down two sizes to a 14 but will grade the skirt to an 16 at the hem. I am determined to get this top right. I added band interfacing to the cuffs, not needed and makes them too stiff also serging around the neckband and bib was not a good idea, I am going to do the tricot stitching as suggested. If I grade up to 16, then I can easily grade back to 14 on the sides if it needs be
    https://www.pinterest.co.uk/patterny/esme-sew-liberated/?lp=true

    The white and red top on top right, she raised the neckline, that is what I need to do, she says it is simple, so that is what I will aim at
    Last edited by kittie; 14-07-2017 at 6:27 AM.
    • PollyWollyDoodle
    • By PollyWollyDoodle 14th Jul 17, 8:11 AM
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    PollyWollyDoodle
    Wow - light-bulb moment, I never thought of looking on Pinterest to see what other people have done with a pattern! D'oh.

    I like the contrast yoke, they all look very different don't they - sleeve length, some looser, some more fitted. It's a lovely top.

    I don't really have a dressmaking stash. When I got back into sewing a few years ago I started acquiring fabric but at that time I was making bags, cushions, pencil cases etc and using thrifted fabric. Then I discovered that the 'local search' on eBay sometimes brings up fabric, and I acquired a suitcase full of stuff from a lady who was clearing her mum's house. Now I've discovered Marie Kondo I need to go through these and be realistic about whether I'm going to use any of it. However I think I'm more likely to make one project at a time, trying to stop myself from buying things in case they turn into UFOs.
    "Inconceivable". "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
    • kittie
    • By kittie 14th Jul 17, 8:29 AM
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    kittie
    Polly, I have been sewing since 9 and got married at 22 having made my wedding dress and four bridesmaids dresses, at the time they all had those sleeves that were fitted but with puffs at the top. Each dress was made straight out of the pattern, so it was easy. Was so cheap with market fabric. I have a photo at home with the five of us, the youngest age 2, I was 31 and this was 1979. I had made every single item we were wearing, including machine knit dresses for me and the two dds and sown everything else including shirts and trousers, Hah, don`t know how I did it, couldn`t do it again. That led me to accumulate loads of fabric over a long time and looking back it was most of the cheap fabrics that gave the short lives. Now I am retired and widowed, there is no holding me back with fabrics

    I am determined to rescue this esme fabric, so I measured the size 18 to 14 difference on the pattern and basted all down the sleeves to the hem, having cut the cuffs off. Gosh it fits me, couldn`t believe it, size 14, ok american. Neck was still too loose, so I undid the bottom of the button bands and all the top stitching and overlapped by as much as I could, about 1.5 inches. Lo and behold the neck now fits much better. I used the sm mock overlock to tidy the inside yoke. Used to use that all the time before I got the overlocker. I cut the hem off 1.5 inches and took an incredible 8 cm off the diameter all down

    I have enough to make new shorter cuffs and will be finished in an hour with a very wearable top, when last night I felt despondent about it. I will be making this top again but in a 14 and will change the pattern to cut a higher back neck, so will have to taper it in a little or better still make a pleat in the centre back and just a neater facing

    Love this sewing!!
    • kittie
    • By kittie 14th Jul 17, 12:37 PM
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    kittie
    I am comfortably wearing my altered top, so next step was to permanently alter my copied size 18 pattern, hardly wasted anything, just needed a bit of patching tochange to a 14 with a good inch taller at the back. Did that and delved into my ebay pink washed linen fron about 5 years ago and was pleasantly surprised at how nice it looks cut out. Its a rose pink and has a different appearance to woven linen and does not appear to fray. Much better quality than my cream thin stuff. I remember buying 2.5m and thinking ooh thats nice, so bought another length. Both were hanging in the cupboard for five years but then again events overtook me

    So yet once again I am tidied up and this pink top will be an evening make as it successfully keeps me awake. The sleeve hems are nice at elbow length and soft without the interfacing, better. I have a hint of a twitch about the smaller armcye, so will baste that to try on as SA is 5/8 and I can make SA less

    Having lunch now and need to get out in the fresh air, got to make the most of this fresh weather if we are heading to 40 degree temperatures next month
    • kittie
    • By kittie 14th Jul 17, 10:39 PM
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    kittie
    welcome jondav, lovely to see someone new on here

    Janome is a very good make of machine and this is an excellent company to buy from
    https://www.gursewingmachines.com/janome-217_s-sewing-machine-28095
    There are plenty of other machines on their site, this was second to cheapest and looks good

    A good place to start looking for cheap fabrics would be in charity shops and then just start simple with forwards and backwards and maybe seam finishing and perhaps edge stitching, to get back into the swing of it

    Esme number 2 is almost finished, just sleeve hems and tidying up. I think it is going to fit perfectly, fingers crossed. The fabric is certainly very nice and I found some indie buttons. I remember picking them up at wonderwool in wales
    http://www.injabulo.com/acatalog/Ceramic-buttons.html
    Blooming busy again, its the summer thing, come autumn I can`t wait to put the allotment to bed.
    • flissh
    • By flissh 15th Jul 17, 5:41 AM
    • 637 Posts
    • 1,269 Thanks
    flissh
    Hi everyone, lovely thread, like jondav I'm picking up sewing again after a few years of not doing it. I'm ok (ish) but its interesting to read about people altering patterns. I'm not accomplished enough to do this. Think thats what I have to spend some time getting to grips with.

    Kittie the pinterest link of the esme top is so interesting. It shows the difference fabric makes to a creation!
    • flissh
    • By flissh 15th Jul 17, 5:44 AM
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    flissh
    Here is the pattern I'm using for the jacket, very simple and straightforward. https://www.sewessential.co.uk/misses-dress-tunic-trousers-shorts-simplicity-sewing-pattern-3799
    I'm making one in lace and one in voile.
    I shan't get much sewing done today, too many other calls on my time.
    Originally posted by Hard Up Hester
    Ive got that pattern. Ive made the dress, just got to hem it. good luck with the jacket, it'll be interesting to see how you get on with it.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 15th Jul 17, 7:07 AM
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    kittie
    ooh fantastic, welcome flishh

    altering clothes can be easier than it seems, just looking at a pattern is daunting these days because of the multi sizing but you have to get your eye in. Some mean cutting the pattern and moving the whole section and obviously that is harder but worth learning to do the BP side dart for a start, I found out the hard way when a lovely blouse had a dart pointing upwards to fresh air , while my BP was below. I think FBA is more for big or small boobies, when the actual cup should be made more or less accommodating. I was never a pattern alterer but decided that as my shape had changed, it was time to bite the bullet and I learnt. Making a high back is easy but you need a french curve as you have to keep that upward sweep at the shoulder/neckline

    I am only tidying up my pink top this morning after buying compost and yes flissh, I agree seeing pinterest is interesting, makes you appreciate how different fabrics affect the look and hang of a garment so much

    I am still managing to keep my sewing things tidy, don`t know how, except I have essential items in a small basket, which I carry around. Bobbin mates are also invaluable for keeping part filled bobbins together with the spool, I keep them in rows in an old bacon box and large spools that don`t fit the bobbin mate, a pipecleaner will do the job.

    Flissh and jpndav, there are very many useful links on this thread, it took me many years to find them, just sharing
    • PollyWollyDoodle
    • By PollyWollyDoodle 15th Jul 17, 9:43 AM
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    PollyWollyDoodle
    Welcome flissh and jondav - I am learning so much from this thread. Bobbin mate - something else I didn't know I needed! I keep spools of thread in a small box that used to contain cards, and bobbins in a bobbin box. Last year as a Christmas present my friend gave me a box with lots of bobbins prewound in different colours, it was a great gift.

    I had never altered a pattern until recently, see my posts above about FBA - I didn't need to do all this when I was a (relatively) slim teenager but Kittie is right, these patterns seem to be made for people whose vital attributes are still heading north, mine are definitely going south!

    Jondav, you're exactly where I was about five years ago - just as Kittie suggests, I started with charity shop fabrics, I made cushions and pencil cases and drawstring bags and then it's only in the last year that I've ventured back into clothes, and I'm pleasantly surprised at how much I remember.

    As well as the link Kittie has put above, I will put in a vote for this baby which was my first machine. It has been down to £65 in the John Lewis clearance so you might be lucky - it usually comes in a range of colours. It'll do everything you need, and I only moved up a grade because someone I knew was selling a barely-used Janome.

    I've got a free-ish day today so I am going to try and sort out the shoulder issues with my muslin, it's difficult pinning it on yourself. I am lucky enough to own a dress form, donated by my sister who was given it but never used it - sadly, even dialled up to the largest sizes it's a little bit slimmer than I am at the moment! It will be helpful for getting hems level, and I am going to see if I can pad it out with an old bra today to get nearer to my shape.
    "Inconceivable". "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
    • kittie
    • By kittie 15th Jul 17, 11:20 AM
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    kittie
    polly I have a dress form, bought 18 years ago and used the first few years, until my shape started to change. It has lived in three different houses and always under the stairs until 5 years ago, when I got inspired by posts on the artisan square site

    I bought many metres of thick and thin polyester wadding, curved needles and an interlock that was made in a wide tube shape. Took my measurements and two months later finished. It was no way an easy job, I put my bra on her and stuffed that and slipped the interlock over her and pulled it tight and stitched it with the curved needle. Then another tight cover with a back zip, so I could future proof. I put black tapes around to mark waist, hips and bust and made a slipover because it was like looking at me half dressed. There she stands in a tight corner of my sewing room, completely out of the way and used twice and only for knitting top down jumpers. She is probably ok wrt my size but I have been tempted to ditch her but won`t do as I suppose I could hang a dress on her. I should bring her into the room but she takes up a fair bit of space and nestles well into the corner

    lol, 3D printing is the way forward. They are already doing perfect body images in america

    I think the shoulder issue is the hardest measurement to make and change as you need to cut a whole section out of the bodice pattern and move the whole lot and re-draw the neck and armcyse. It affects the back waste length and bp position. Kathleen Cheetham says to do one change at a time as it can affect the whole pattern
    Last edited by kittie; 15-07-2017 at 11:25 AM.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 15th Jul 17, 11:34 AM
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    kittie
    Its a grey breezy day and perfect for gently drying new fabrics, I just draped a new one over an airer after a 30 wool wash and it is fantastic. Its woven double gauze and I cannot believe how drapey it is. Very slightly see through if held up to the light but will have air flow hence perfection for the heat and best of all, I have just discovered that it is double sided, both sides could be the right side and I can imagine something made in this with bits of one side and contrasts with the other. It is too good for esme but I will be looking at a MnM dress as there is no pattern match and I might have enough
    https://drapersdaughter.com/collections/fabrics/products/robert-kaufman-double-gauze-chambray-dobby-black-new

    new as in modern stash and its 145 wide
    Last edited by kittie; 15-07-2017 at 11:36 AM.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 15th Jul 17, 6:05 PM
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    • 58,612 Thanks
    kittie
    esme is completely finished, buttons and all and I am 100% happy with it. I will make it over and over as it is such a comfortable top to wear. Size 14, psychologically good or what!!

    I put style arc maddison together, size 18, aussie sizing, this afternoon in R Kaufman metallic linen. It was the easiest top ever, the most difficult was the bias neck tape but I used my own way and got a good flat result, just got to take the hem up tomorrow. Its the first style arc top I have done, I have many as I joined their club a long time ago, when they started and they gave out good prices and free patterns. Real patterns, not those PDFs. Its a fantastic start. Now for the fabric, mistake as it is scratchy because of the lurex, so I will wear it as an layer on top of something thin. The linen is a weave and it is good as maddison, so maddison will be awesome in a knit fabric. It is tunic length and true to size. I moved the side dart on that pattern, which is something I will have to do with every pattern

    Something new to me, the only pale blue overlocking threads I have are two large cones of woolly nylon, never used it before and wow. The filaments spread out from the loopers and cover a much better area, the result was fantastic and the fabric frayed a lot with not a stray thread to be seen. I will be getting more when appropriate, from empress mills

    How to make a nice neckline
    http://www.threadsmagazine.com/item/3839/video-a-neckline-binding-for-knits
    Last edited by kittie; 15-07-2017 at 6:07 PM.
    • Concerned75
    • By Concerned75 15th Jul 17, 6:12 PM
    • 224 Posts
    • 123 Thanks
    Concerned75
    I've been sewing at an Industrial level for 27yrs on the PAYE system, but I would like to pack that in and work for myself. I'm registered self employed. Does anyone know any useful companies or websites looking for people to work from home, but on a remotely basis ideally? So i can do it anywhere from in the country. Much appreciated if anyone does!😊
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