Short and Sweet, with Remnants (& Twisted Straps)

Where have the past few days gone? I’ve been languishing in a Mucinex and/or Nyquil-induced stupor. Worst cough; broken ribs? Ugh.
I haven’t even left the house since Sunday and it’s already Thursday night.

Since I was fairly incapacitated I tried to do some remnant projects. And I didn’t totally screw them up. I got in some good practice projects, using up lycra spandex remnants.

Jalie leotards

Jalie leotard pattern 3354

The orange and blue leotard with the twisted 😈 asymmetrical shoulder straps is going to be used as a swim suit. This week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge theme is Twist. For more Weekly Photo Challenge: Twisted, look here.
As they say, “filthy with meaning!”

I discovered a very compelling detail about my remnant stretch-knit-fabric stash. Of all the different lycra-spandex remnant rolls I’ve got racked up, each one has a different percentage of lycra or spandex, meaning that some fabrics are much more stretchy than others. When you look at a pattern envelope under the fabric suggestions, it will tell you that you need fabric for this project that has, say, 50% stretch in both length and width. Or, 70% stretch. But when you look at the label on the fabric bolt, it won’t say “this fabric has 50% stretch.” You have to measure a length of the fabric between your fingers and thumbs, line it up to the graph on the pattern envelope where it says “this much fabric must stretch to………..here.” I thought my DH could come up with formula for that. Some fabrics have 13% lycra, some 7% lycra, some 18% lycra. How stretchy does that make them? I still don’t know. But it would be helpful to know if you need to use a larger size pattern for less-stretchy fabric, and how much larger?

I love the Jalie patterns. I had a question about one of the patterns, and emailed the company to ask it. I got a friendly, personal, valuable response about my prospective sewing project the next morning!

I bought a pattern from Jalie that was a downloadable pdf. I found that it was very easy to use that way, although I prefer buying the paper pattern and having it posted to me. For the same price, I got a download and had to use my own paper and printer ink, but it came to me immediately, whereas I had to wait a few days for the paper one to be shipped from Canada.

Jalie patterns

Jalie 3022

Jalie pattern 3022 is for yoga pants or shorts. We went to watch a granddaughter at gymnastics practice, and there were leotards and matching shorts sets for sale on the premises: $45 for a leotard and $25 for shorts, or $65 if you bought a matching set. Wow! That is the retail cost of a gymnastics outfit. If you could learn to make them yourself, using a cute little Jalie pattern that costs about $15, some knitted elastic, and a yard or less of lycra-spandex remnants that are 50% off the regular price, you could have a cute outfit to exercise in. I wanted to see how long it took me to make a pair of yoga shorts from start to finish.

First I had to trace the pattern on to Pattern-Ease (Jalie patterns come in 20 or more sizes). Tracing the pattern, cutting out the material, sewing it up–this pair of shorts took me just under 2 hours to make.

tracing pattern

tracing the pattern

I did hurry and as a result it looks rather unprofessional: seams a little uneven, and I didn’t use a serger to coverstitch the hems as the instructions said. Next pair will be better. I like the contrasting colored waistband and the seam down the back of the pants legs. I should mention that I use designated “Stretch” needles for working with these knits. I used Jeanne Binet’s technique for sewing stretchy knits without a serger. You can find some You-tube videos that show you exactly how to do it, and what great results!

leotard and shorts

Jalie leotard and matching shorts

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ethgran
    May 29, 2014 @ 22:45:20

    These look great! You will become an expert sewing with that stuff in no time. I finished the skating dress for my granddaughter yesterday and will get it mailed tomorrow. I ended up putting nearly 200 crystals on the front using the Hotfix tool. It was a lot of work but worth it. The tool is fairly easy to use but using it on velvet proved challenging but it is now done and ready for a young ladies excitement. Don’t you just love making things for grandchildren?

    Reply

  2. jenyjenny
    May 30, 2014 @ 03:36:54

    πŸ™‚ Yes, I hope my imagination suits them when I dream up things to do I think they will like. I’ve had some adventures with the hot-fix tool, too. Lesson learned: don’t attempt early in the morning… 😳

    Reply

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