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Mandy, you’re a fine girl

19 Apr

Many months ago, it was a toss up between Tessuti’s Mandy and Grainline’s Hemlock. I can’t remember why now, but for some (maybe rational) reason I went with Mandy. However, I think my fabric selection was a subliminal ode to Hemlock now I look at it!

ZoSews Mandy Tee

I LOVE this top, and I want to wear it ALL THE TIME!! I have to remember to circulate it πŸ™‚

ZoSews Mandy Tee

As much as I LOVE THIS TOP, my sewing machine HATES KNIT FABRIC. Hence the ugly neck stitching.

ZoSews Mandy Tee

I constructed Mandy with my overlocker, but had to turn and stitch the neck. It’s icky. I’ve tried everything, wooly nylon, tension changes etc etc etc, my machine hates all the knits. 😦 In fact, it hates the knits so much that a pair of Anita pants I was working on yesterday are puckered all the way down the side seams and the machine struggled to sew five stitches without cracking the sh*ts. Put a woven in though, and the biatch was perfect – groan. I may blog these pants, but for now they’re pretty much relegated to wearing on long haul flights lol.

Because my machine hates all the knits so much I didn’t finish Mandy’sΒ hem or sleeves, I reckon she looks fine though.

ZoSews Mandy Tee

The fabric is a cheap as chips poly blend (?) from Rathdowne Fabrics.

Those of you who are super smarty pants’ will notice that my hair is long in these pics, yep, they’re some months old Sherlock πŸ™‚

ZoSews Mandy Tee

Conclusion: If you want a comfortable, easy to wear, easy to sew top – getchoself a Mandy. She’s a free pattern – how could one refuse?

Z xo

PS: Happy Easter to those who celebrate. We’re enjoying a four day weekend here in Aus. Yee hah.

 

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Finished: Undercover Hood

1 Sep

I actually finished my Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood last weekend but was waiting to get some photos – which I now have – yay! πŸ™‚

So let me introduce my favourite new toy – a pink and grey hoodie. Check out those matching stripes, oh yes yes yes.

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood ZoSews

Fabric is a Marc Jacobs cotton jersey like thing from The Fabric Store, and it was a bit of a shite to sew with to be honest. Stripes were mismatched and completely off grain – which made for some fun stripe matching smackdowns (otherwise known as easing and forcing and manipulating).

I didn’t self line the hood. Instead I used some pretty pinky cotton from Spotlight. I also bound the hood/neckline seam with the same pretty pinky cotton.

Undercover Hood lining and binding

Apart from the stripe matching smackdowns and moments of confusion over the cuffs (see cuff tutorial) this was actually a pretty easy make.

ZoSews Papercut Patterns

I cut it to the right size and then made it with 1.5cm seam allowances rather than the 1cm allowances as per pattern instructions. Funnily enough, I think I would have been better off sticking with the 1cm allowances (duh!), teamed with the thicker than recommended fabric it’s little bit snug I think.Β I also took about 4-5cm off the sleeve length.

ZoSews Undercover HoodI would heartily recommend this pattern. I would like to try it out in a merino too I think… Oh yeah, and the packaging is devine!

Tutorial: Knit cuffs – Undercover Hood

18 Aug

I am so close to finishing my Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood. All that’s left to do is bind the neck and topstitch – yay! If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter or InstagramΒ you would have seen a sneaky peak of this garment last weekend.

The one thing that confuzzled me during construction were the cuffs/bands. I was having some serious ‘I don’t get it’ moments when putting these together, so I thought I’d share the details in case anyone else suffers the same moments. The stripes were messing with my head… This method will actually be relevant for any knit cuffs too.

Please note, it’s unlikely you’ll find this technique used on RTW garments, it’s bit more spesh πŸ™‚

 

Step 1

Lay your cuff on a flat surface right side up, with the top of the cuff at the top and the bottom at the bottom (i.e. closest to you). Fold in half on the vertical. You’ll then have a fold on the LHS, wrong side up, and the two edges on the RHS. Pin and sew the seam down the RHS using the allowance the pattern asks for. Making sure you match up your stripes too if you dare go to stripetown.

Knit cuff tutorial

 

Step 2

Press the seam allowance open.

How to make cuffs - press seam allowance Step 3

Turn through halfway – with the wrong sides inside. In my case I had to make sure that the halfway point lined up with a stripe. Also, just watch the seam allowances and flatten them out again if they bunch up – avoiding bulk.

How to make cuffs - turning through

 

Step 4

Pin the open seam and baste in place – again, watching stripes if necessary.

How to make cuffs - pin and baste

Step 5

Take the cuff and insert it down the sleeve, lining up the raw edges of the cuff with the raw edge of the sleeve. Line everything up and sew the cuff to the sleeve. I basted first to make sure my stripes played nice. Don’t forget to line up your seams and notches. πŸ™‚

How to make cuffs - applying

And when sewing, make sure you’re only sewing one side and not catching the other also. It’s a bit fiddly, but just take it slow.

How to make cuffs - sewing to the sleeveStep 6

Overlock (serge) the raw edge. I don’t like the idea of having to unpick overlocking (as detailed in, ‘Renfrew you, Renfrew me‘), so I turn through and check everything is just so (just ‘sew’ lol) before overlocking.

How to make cuffs - sergingStep 7

Turn through and voila! A very nice looking cuff. A press probably wouldn’t hurt here too.

How to make cuffs - finishedAnd that’s it! Is this how you make knit cuffs? It’s probably a bit old hat, but I wanted to get it down in case I suffer from another case of sewers confusion! Hopefully it’s at least helpful for some of you!