Thursday, February 14, 2013

New Month = New Book Blog!


For the month of February, our Senior Designer Amanda Elliott, will be taking us along on her journey of projects from the book
by 

Shufu To Seikatsu Sha. 



A quick description of the book:
25 fabulous, wearable garments from only 8 simple patterns
Sewists will learn how to make a closetful of comfortable and easy go-to garments without needing a library of separate patterns with Simple Modern Sewing. All you'll need to make 25 unique garments are the eight included basic sewing templates included. Shufu To Seikatsu Sha has designed each pattern to be easily adaptable with no-fuss sizing and clear fabric folding and cutting instructions, so it's simple to sew clothes that are perfect for you.
Beginning sewing patterns are often boring or unappealing in favor of being easy to sew. These 25 patterns are just as approachable as traditional beginning sewing patterns, but also have the still style and modernity of more complex patterns. Once you've mastered a pattern, you can combine your creativity with the template provided to design a one-of-a-kind garment with different fabrics or added embellishments like a print lining or contrast-stitching.
Sewers of all skill levels with love the freedom of making custom-cool clothes without all the fuss and hassle of traditional sewing patterns and customizations. Fill your wardrobe in no time with the easy to make and wear garments of Simple Modern Sewing.




 I was thrilled, for many reasons, when I came across Simple Modern Sewing by Shufu To Seikatsu Sha—I haven’t sewn in a long time (a real long time).  I received a new sewing machine for Christmas and was antsy to test it out and the book features several garments with ruffles. The Sew Beautiful staff is quite familiar with my affinity for ruffles—I wear them nearly everyday! For my first project from the book, I was excited to find a simple blouse with bias band ruffles, made in 7 simple steps.

After tracing off the pattern and cutting pieces, I followed the steps: join left shoulder, use bias strips for neckline and armhole binding, create bias band, gather and ruffle band, attach ruffle to neck line, finish sides and hem bottom. Viola! Blouse is complete!



I did not take many step outs while constructing this garment, but I will share some insight.


Make sure you have all supplies handy before starting. It is helpful to have things such as pins, stabilizer, hot iron, a glass of wine, instructions, seam ripper, fabric weights, etc. at an arm’s reach.

Don’t underestimate the helpfulness of space and resources. I found very quickly that sitting on the hardwood floor of my craft room, straddling pattern and fabric gets old, very quickly, especially when the dog comes in, tries to help by applying dog hair, rearranging your pattern pieces, so on and so forth. The aid of a cutting table, clear rulers and rotary cutters are a must for my back, straight cut lines and my next project. 

Iron, iron iron. It really makes a difference.

Prewound bobbins are amazing. Drop and go.






Don’t let techniques you think to be difficult intimidate you. I did not know how binding worked until working with this pattern. I finally took the time to sit down, study the pattern and figure it out. I am almost embarrassed how easy it actually is.

When working with fabrics that don’t have a obvious right and wrong side, like the linen I used for this project, it is helpful to mark the RS with a contrasting thread. It will help keep you working on the correct side when there is a lot of flipping back and forth between sides.




Things to bragging about:

I finished!
I love my machine!
It looks like a real, wearable garment!
Why, yes, I did make this blouse!

Things no one has to know:

When you may have gotten really excited about how things were going and you may have sewn an armhole binding to the incorrect side. More than once.

That you may have had some really choppy cut lines until you utilized the correct materials. (Praise to temporary spray adhesive!).

That you were intimidated by a technique.

Let's here some of your embarrassing sewing moments in comments sections below! We've all been there :) 

Stay tuned next week for some more sewing as I work on the ruffled front jacket with grosgrain ribbon!





-Amanda


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