Stretchy Remnant Possibilities

Spring is in the air! Excited to see soft and bright colors, in the landscape and in fabrics. It makes me think about sewing something.

Since I made a pair of shorts a few posts ago that I was not particularly proud of, I did a re-do of that project and added a contrasty/matchy leotard.

leotard & shorts

Jalie yoga shorts and Kwik-Sew leotard

I was happier about these shorts than the red pair in which I practiced using the double-needle. With this blue pair, I did much better with the double needle. Let me hasten to add, the process still wasn’t trouble-free. If I had a job doing this, I would have been so fired, by now.

My idea to make the girls a white shrug/sweater led me to this pattern, which also included a little dirndl-like skirt and a short-sleeve leotard.

sweater

Kwik Sew shrug/sweater

Everyone should have a white sweater in their closet, right? Except maybe Goth chicks. This little front-tying shrug can go with a lot of outfits. The fabric (not a remnant) is a white sweater-knit that is very easily snagged, so maybe it isn’t a good choice for kids’ clothes. Since there was a leotard included in the pattern, and it looked easy, I gave it a try. The Kwik-Sew leotard was easy and very basic, compared to the Jalie ones I’ve made before. And the sizing is different. This one is a size 8 or 10 girl, and I altered it some by adding 2 inches to the length of it, like I do with the Jalie ones. It looks huge. I may not have used all of the 5/8″ seam allowance, having been accustomed to the smaller allowance of the Jalie patterns. It’s a leopard leotard. The 1-yard leopard (they call it “Big Cat”) spandex fabric, and the turquoise (less than a yard) and silver (scrap) fabrics for the shorts, are remnants. The Big Cat fabric is normally $16.99 per yard, but half that price when sold as a remnant. From the yard, I had this much left over that I can possibly make a cute infinity scarf as part of the outfit shown on this pattern:

spandex remnant

Big Cat remnant project with leftover fabric for another project

The pattern is Simplicity 1323, an American Sewing Guild Design. The retail price of the pattern is $18.95 but during JoAnn’s Simplicity sale it sold for $1.99. Thought I could give this one a try; it looks cute.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Ephemeral

Spring flowers

Tree blossoms of early spring

Ephemeral: fleeting. Look at this tree tomorrow and the tulip blossoms will be gone…

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fresh

Azaleas

azaleas in the neighborhood

Spring brings a profusion of fresh, beautiful flowers…for more Fresh look here.

a Day in the Life of The Wall: Weekly Photo Challenge

Here’s the rest of The Wall, shot in a drive-by viewing, with Canon Rebel on the fast-click setting…the day was 3-14-15. For more Wall see here.

A Trying Day, with Twin Needles and a Demented Cat

I saw a sewing blog post this morning with this leading question as the title: What is your Achilles Heel of sewing? But when I read the post, the content had nothing to do with the title, as far as I could see. But that’s the way these last couple of days have been for me. I checked, and Mercury is not in retrograde at the moment. Nevertheless, things are going slow, not at all, or incredibly botched-up.

I wanted to do something new in the sewing category, so I dragged out a twin needle from the stash to do some topstitching and hemming on this pair of Jalie yoga shorts, as the pattern directs. Turned out to be quite a learning curve. The fabrics used are two-way stretch performance remnants.

thread bird-nesting

thread bird-nesting

I looked in the manual that came with the machine, and threaded the two spools as directed. One spool had red Gutermann thread, the other had a brick-red color polyester thread, a pricey thread that I ordered online from Superior Threads. Got the double-thread seam going for a while, then the Superior thread kept disappearing. Upon investigation, it was apparently shredding up into a fuzzy ball inside the thread path of the machine. Changed to a red rayon Robison-Anton thread. That’s when the bird-nesting marathon began. Needle-less to say, I had to re-thread every time an undesirable seam was sewn, and go through lots of picking and clipping. Grrrr. I switched to an extra-wide twin needle. Bad idea! The seam pulled the two rows of stitching together with a big loopy pucker in between. More seam-ripping ensued. So finally I got an inkling: maybe there’s a setting for twin-needle sewing on this machine, even though I didn’t see a word about it in the manual.

Et voilá! There was.

Twin-needle sewing

Twin-needle setting under Tools

Even so, with machine on the special setting, it didn’t go completely well forever after. I still had to thread and re-thread, and there were other glitches as well.

The poor cat had his thyroid burned out with radioactive iodine, and he hasn’t been himself. Or maybe he’s been a crazed, geriatric version of himself, with advanced dementia. He’s been staggering around the house moaning and wailing LOUDLY at every door, and he will only lap broth from cat food and ignore the solid food completely. We got him some meat-flavored baby food, like the vet suggested, and he took a few slurps of that and then he was done. Next try: canned fish stock at $3.50 a pop. I hope we don’t end up having to give it to him through an IV!

Finally finished the shorts, but I feel I must make another pair that is better. Not sure how the fabric will hold up with so many needle holes in it from stitching and restitching with double the number of needle!

Jalie yoga shorts

Jalie yoga shorts



Grayzie in his new favorite place to nap.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Wall

34th St Wall

Pi Day on the Wall

This is the iconic graffiti wall on 34th Street in Gainesville, such a fixture it even has its own Facebook page! For more interpretations of the Weekly photo challenge, click here!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Orange

Photo on 3-8-15 at 4.58 PM

More WPC Orange here.

Discussion point: the color of this hand-dyed yarn is “Georgia,” which makes me wonder, is it really a peach color? Because it sure looks orange to me. If they named it Florida I would totally be at ease calling it orange.

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