Monday, July 9, 2012

Cute little bike bag

On Saturday, Nick and I took our annual Fourth of July 20-mile bike ride up and down the Delaware River Canal Towpath. As luck would have it, at the end of June, Sew Mama Sew posted a quick little bike bag tutorial. This was great timing as I had been meaning to pick up a small bag to stash tissues and chapstick in while we're on our rides. Those are my absolute must-haves, of course!

The great things about this pattern are that it's super quick to put together and I was able to use scraps for the entire thing! These are leftover scraps from the backing on MaMotts' 90th Birthday Quilt. They're so bright and cheerful.


I guess I was eager to get going on our ride and didn't realize that 3/4 of the bag was in the shade. Don't worry, the fabric doesn't have any weird color issues.


The bag works great and will fit on many different styles of bikes because the straps are velcro. There is also a velcro strip on the inside of the bag to keep it closed. My only disappointment with the pattern is that you sew on the velcro after you make the bag, so you see the stitch lines for the velcro on the outside of the bag. Not a huge deal for a bag that is solely going to live on my bike, but if I was to make it again, I might try to figure out a way to have this not happen.

Anyway, I highly recommend it for a quick and easy project!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

A sack and my first knits!

I finished this dress (New Look 6803) back in May but haven't worn it yet because I'm still searching for the right belt. It most definitely needs a belt, as otherwise it is a shapeless sack. This is because somehow I managed to cut out the wrong view (View C instead of View A) and, not wanting to make a tunic dress, I just kept the neckline intact instead of slicing it down the middle to make the tunic.  I was very disappointed because View A has such a cute neckline! In these pictures it even looks like a hospital gown. I assure you that the fabric is cute though, it's a gray swiss dot. It will be great for the fall/winter paired with a cardigan and tights, but for now I'm struggling. I'm thinking I need a medium to thick width belt, worn around my natural waist. Any other suggestions?


Now on to happier topics. During this round of sewing classes, we chose to work with knits. Having never sewed with knits before, I was a little hesitant, but my sewing teacher said I would have no problem using my sewing machine and not have to resort to using a serger.

Then I realized that I already had a knit dress pattern, New Look 2618. Most likely I had it because I liked the dress and didn't realize that it was meant to be sewn with knits. Oops! My teacher recommended Sophia knits, which thankfully were reasonably priced on I chose a cheaper knit to sew up my muslin.

After checking out the measurements and the amount of ease in the garment, I ended up cutting out a size 10, four sizes smaller than the pattern suggests for someone of my measurements. There is a ton of ease in this thing. I used a zig zag stitch with a .5 width and 2.5 length and had absolutely no problems sewing together my muslin even though my machine doesn't have a dial to change the presser foot pressure. The other great news is that my muslin fit pretty much perfectly! Yes, I realize I didn't match up the print, but I'm ok wearing this dress anyway.


Then I cut out the pattern using my nice knit fabric. This stuff is thick! In real life, the fabric is a nice and rich wine color, which is going to be great for the fall. I think the fabric is a bit too heavy to wear in the dead of summer, but it will be perfect come September and even into the winter if I pair it with a cardigan.


I think this is it for me with this pattern though, mainly because I am not fond of the seam hitting at the widest part of my belly. Also, the neckline calls for a facing and I'm not crazy about how this looks with the thicker knit.

Still, I loved sewing with knits! Who knew it could be so easy? When I ordered this fabric I also ordered some knit fabric in Jay McCarroll's Germania line to finally make a Renfrew. Hopefully that will come together just as easily!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Never fear...

...I am still alive and sewing, although you might have assumed that I abandoned sewing since I haven't posted a finished object since the beginning of May! I have actually sewn up three dresses and a bag for my bike, I just haven't gotten the chance to take pictures of any of them. I am making it my mission this weekend to document all 4 items, so stay tuned.