Call +1 (406) 540-4068

Monthly Archives: August 2015

  • New Favorite T-Shirt Pattern

    I have a new front-runner in my never-ending search for a flattering t-shirt pattern. What am I looking for in a t-shirt pattern? I'm looking for a top that minimizes my bust, and makes me look slim without clinging. Welcome to my life, Jalie 2682.

    I'll be carrying Jalie patterns on The Confident Stitch website SOON! As I mentioned in my yoga pant post, Jalie is a Canadian company that makes great patterns for regular clothes. I love them, my 20-something daughters love them, and they come in small children's sizes, too. 

    I have made two versions of this V-Neck top. The first version was crafted out of an awesome soy knit. Soy knits feel like bamboo, but they don't pill as much. Yes, they'll be available in the shop! I can't show you the first version, because my 23-year-old daughter snagged it on her last visit home: "Oooh, Mom, this shirt is so flattering on me. Can I have it? Thanks." In case you're not the mother of girls, the previous quote can be interpreted as HIGH PRAISE.

    This second version is made of an Art Gallery cotton/spandex knit. The fabric, and many more Art Gallery cotton knits will be available in the shop. The only alteration I made was to lower the underbust seam by one inch so that it would actually go under my bust, and not across the apex. I wish I had done a more traditional full-bust-adjustment because there is some pulling at the front underarm seam. Next time, I will do a complete FBA and show you how I did it. The v-neck and shawl collar are created ingeneously, so the FBA will be a little tricky.

    Andrea Jones did not move to Missoula with me, so we all have to put up with my fiance's Andrea Jones did not move to Missoula with me, so we all have to put up with my fiance's "artistic" sense. Gotta love the tree in the eye.

    In this side view, you can see that I need a little more fabric across the bust so the armseye will lay flat against my body. In this side view, you can see that I need a little more fabric across the bust so the armseye will lay flat against my body.

    In addition to constantly searching for the perfect t-shirt, I am always looking for the best way to hem clothes. There are so many options! This top called for simple, single-turned hems for the bottom and the armholes. I decided to use 1/2" SewkeysE double-sided fusible stay tape to hold the hems in place before I stitched them. The tape is extremely fine and pliable. I pressed one side of the tape to the edges of the hems, turned and pressed the hems, removed the paper backing on the stay tape, and re-pressed the hems. (notice the all-important hyphen. No one wants a "repressed" hem.) The stay tape held the hems perfectly in place for stitching -- no bubbling or shifting.

    Emma Seabrooke has a huge variety of stay tapes, all of which help with sewing knits. Emma Seabrooke has a huge variety of stay tapes, all of which help with sewing knits.

    I also used my new seam allowance guide that screws onto my sewing machine. Pushing the fabric against the blade of the guide ensured the zigzag stitching was even on the right side of the garment, and the stitches caught the fold on the wrong side of the fabric. The stay tape and the guide made the hems so nice and easy. Double score -- great t-shirt pattern + great hemming method!

    Extra precision with the seam guide! Extra precision with the seam guide!

  • Big Day Coming....

    John Lennon sewing! What could be better? John Lennon sewing! What could be better?

    October 9 is an AUSPICIOUS day. How auspicious? John Lennon was born on October 9, as were his son Sean, and Tony Shalhoub! And....my new "baby" will also be "born" on October 9. The Confident Stitch will open a brick-and-mortar store in Missoula, Montana, and simultaneously launch a web store in seven short weeks!

    Both in Missoula and online, the shops will be welcoming places to feel inspired, supported and uplifted. The website will have beautiful photographs and detailed, fun descriptions of everything for sale. My website designers are making the site looks gorgeous and is easy to search.

    The hands-on shop, formerly an art gallery, will be appointed with beautiful fixtures, inspiring samples, and knowledgeable staff members.

    The walls have been painted. New carpet is next, then cabinetry and fixtures. The cardboard The walls have been painted. New carpet is next, then cabinetry and fixtures. The cardboard "furniture" is a button rack and buttons!

    I love the industrial ceiling and the lighting. The windowed enclosure will eventually house a seamstress. I love the industrial ceiling and the lighting. The windowed enclosure will eventually house a seamstress.

    I have spent the past year traveling to trade shows in search of the best fabrics, tools, notions and indie patterns from around the world. Many of the voiles, denims, linens, knits wools and sateens I have found are one-of-a-kind.  Others are the best from major fabric manufacturers like Robert Kaufman. 

    The Confident Stitch will also carry modern quilting cottons from great young designers like Cotton + Steel and Alison Glass, and from all-time favorite artists, such as Amy Butler, Kaffe Fasset, and Charley Harper.

    Most exciting for me is the back room of the store, which will be a classroom that opens onto a deck overlooking the Clark Fork River. I have taken many classes from Pati Palmer and Marta Alto at the Palmer/Pletsch School of Sewing in Portland, Oregon. I can't wait to teach Pati and Marta's methods and help people make beautiful, well-fitted clothes that will last forever.  I will also teach beginning sewing classes. And, as soon as I find a great quilting teacher, he or she will be teaching quilting classes.

    If you were to open your dream fabric shop and sewing school, what would you be sure to carry? what would you be sure to teach?

2 Item(s)