Saturday, June 2, 2012

Adventures in Sewing

I bought a sewing machine at a yardsale about 3 years ago, it's a Singer 247, so from what I gather it's from the 70s and I think it's made of cast iron lol  At the time I had all these visions of myself making beautiful curtains and dresses and quilts, so OBVIOUSLY I needed to have it because how else was I going to make all these things??

My Singer 247.  I think I should name it.  Maybe L'éléphant blanc since she weighs A TON!  lolz.

Fast forward to earlier this week.  I was cruising Pinterest and I see this tutorial of how to take an oversized men's tshirt and alter it to fit a smaller size.  WHAT A FABULOUS IDEA!  I have this Washington Capitals tshirt that I bought last year as a treat to myself once I'd lost my first 25lbs.  Well I've now lost 79lbs and it's not all that flattering on me, so this was the perfect solution!  Behold:

Yesterday I decided "Today is the day!" and got to work setting everything up to alter my shirt and at the same time, create a FABULOUS How-To blog post for you guys.  Well I gathered all my supplies and laid out all my tools and got to work.

The How-to that never was...

Step 1:  Lay out the oversized shirt.  Grab a shirt that fits you now and lay it on top of the oversized shirt.  Fold the sleeves of the fitted shirt inside .  Make sure both shirts are inside out so you can mark on them to make the pattern.  Also very important to mention here:  Make sure everything lines up and that any images on the oversized shirt are positioned so they will line up on the fiished product.

Step 2:  Trace the outline of the fitted shirt onto the oversized shirt.  I used a white colored pencil since I didn't have a chalk pencil on hand.  Remember that this solid line is the line you will sew along, NOT the line you cut.

Step 3:  BOOM!  Base shirt pattern!  I should point out that at this point I'm ridiculously proud of myself because I had stopped doubting myself and honestly thought this was going to work out. 

At this point I am going to stop calling these steps because it was all bad from here on in. 

The next thing I did was cut off the sleeves and put them aside to figure out later.  I didn't cut the sides of the shirt because I didn't see the point of possibly cutting something wrong and ruining the whole project, when I could just sew my pattern lines and then trim off the sides after.  So I put pins all along the sew lines just to make sure nothing moved.  Then I left the room to go set up the sewing machine.  I came back to this:

Note she's yelling at me when I'm telling her to MOVE.

I'm sure fellow cat owners can relate...

So anyway, we get the sewing machine working and I take the shirt in and sew along my lines and everything is going well.  I cut off some of the excess on the sides and try it on.  It fits!  I AM SO GOOD AT SEWING!  All I have left to do is to reattach the sleeves!

So I traced things and did everything they said in the video, but my mind just wasn't wrapping around the concept.  I asked hubs for his opinion and surprisingly all those hours of watching people doing upholstery for car interiors on "Car TV" (as I call it) actually paid off!  He had a plan, so we he started making a second, dotted line to use as a cutting guide about 1/2 inch away from the armhole lines I made on the original shirt.  He was working on the left hand side and I was sitting on the right watching him work.  He cut off the extra fabric on the left armhole and then switched spots with me to do the other side. 

I REMEMBER saying "Don't forget I didn't do the dotted line on that side" as I switched spots with him.  At this point Bittie was having some sort of OMG I FOUND MY FAVOURITE MOUSE freak out so I turned to watch her play for a second.  I turned back to see him half way through cutting the solid white line on the shirt.  Sadface.

As you can see in the pic below there is much more fabric on the other side of the "N" than there is next to the "O".  I can't sew the sleeves back on now because the "O" would be pretty much right on the seam.

So this is what I am left with.  I guess I could call it Redneck Couture, but no.  I think there's still enough fabric to use this in the Tshirt Quit I am going to make (one of the projects I saw in my Cinderella montage vision when I bought the sewing machine...).  I think it would have turned out pretty well if not for the slip-up, so I'm not completely disappointed.

 At least one member of the family was happy at the end of the day.  I used one of the sleeves to make Bittie a catnip filled toy.  As you can see from the wet spots,  she loved it lol 

Live and Learn.  Measure twice, cut once.  Blah blah.  I am NOT giving up on sewing.  I fully intend to make SOMETHING.  Maybe I'll just start at a beginner level like the sane people do ;)

1 comment:

  1. Love the way you got the whole family involved in your latest craft adventure!Never give are destined for great things with your Yard Sale step at a time. You learned a lot from our "cat toy" creation and made a purr-fect mistake in the process!Bittie will be excited next time she hears the sewing machine rev up!MMM-more catnip coming !Love your blog! Have fun with it! Crafty C