Monthly Archives: October 2013
As I’ve mentioned before, my Dad gave me a few yards of beautiful Chinese silk he bought in Japan in the 1950’s. I wanted to make a jacket with it, and I needed assistance. Next thing I knew, I received an email from Craftsy alerting me to a new class – Sewing with Silks with Linda Lee. Perfect! I bought the class on the spot.
I love Craftsy, and I have enrolled in many Craftsy classes, but not all of the classes are perfect for me. The Sewing with Silks class was one of my favorites. Linda is an amazing seamstress and an amazing teacher. I sewed along with every step and created a beautiful silk jacket. I then grabbed a black and white silk-like fabric from my stash and followed along with Linda to make a flowy shirt. The class comes with The Sewing Workshop’s Liberty Shirt Pattern. In her class, Linda not only teaches her students how to sew with a slippery fabric, but also how to top stitch like a pro, how to do French seams, and how to make perfect mitered corners. If you want to make a blouse that looks like it cost $500 inside and out, I recommend this class!
In September and October I taught my first Palmer-Pletsch Fit classes. Each class was 8 hours long – 4 hours on 2 consecutive Saturdays. I taught the students how to alter and make a darted shell top (McCall’s 6355). I consider the shell top a “wearable sloper.” I wanted the students to learn the basics of pattern alteration, and have a finished project to take home.
The first class, which I taught at Creative Stitches, had only one student, who is a friend of mine. I was glad to be able to practice on her. We were able to tissue fit, alter, pin fit in fabric and start sewing the top on the first day of class. She finished the top during the week, and on the second day of class, we altered two other patterns to fit her.
The second class, at Selvedge Studio, had 3 students. We were able to alter the tissue and cut out the fabric on the first day. On the second day, we pin fit the fabric and sewed up our tops. I taught the group how to apply a bias binding and how to insert an invisible zipper.
I had a great time sharing my love of pattern alteration with others. I can’t wait for my next classes!
Of course, I had to make some practice perfect shell tops for myself!
Thanks to the recommendation of Sunni at A Fashionable Stitch, I decided to buy the Craftsy class: Sew Better Sew Faster with Janet Pray. The class comes with Islander Sewing’s Jacket Express pattern. The pattern came together so well and fit so nicely that I was able to concentrate on Janet’s instructions and method of sewing without pins. Yes, I sewed an entire jacket without pins -- cuffs, collar, sleeves, everything!
I made a medium and I would usually make a large, so I would suggest sewing a size smaller than your usual size.
I purchased a black and brown Moda twill from my local quilt shop and got to work. With Janet’s guidance, I double top-stitched all the seams, and created my first welt pockets.
I am thrilled with how the jacket turned out, and I now have some denim to make a true jean jacket. The only change I will make to the pattern is to lengthen the sleeves. I will also use a contrasting topstitching thread. Thank you, Janet Pray!