Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Resizing and Hemming and Flannel, Oh My!

I'll start with the resizing of a shirt. Below you see the shirt and the tools I will use. The design ruler you see helps to make the correct curves for reshaping armholes. It also works for bodice and skirt alterations and any other kind of curve you would want to make for a garment.

This was my brother's shirt and he didn't like how the sleeves fit so he tried it on for me and I measured that he wanted the sleeves thinner by about an inch. By changing this, I also had to change the side seams of shirt so that it would fit back together. The seams of the sleeves were an irregular shape so my design ruler was a really helpful tool.

Above you can see the sleeves, labeled right and left, and marked with the new seam line. I didn't have to take the whole cuff apart to be able to finish the new seam.

Here you see the body of the shirt marked for new seams on the sides. I was able to measure accurately to accommodate the new sleeve lines by marking on my ruler the exact lines I needed and transferring them from the new sleeve lines to the body of the shirt.
It seemed a little wonky at first because the old seam lines were such a different construction, but after ironing and finishing the edges, it fit back together just fine.
Unfortunately, my brother was in a hurry to leave after I finished the shirt and I didn't get a picture of the finished product! Now he lives in Washington - Maybe I can get him to send me a good shot of the finished shirt...
On to hemming:

These were new dress pants for a wedding my friend was attending. Hem- jobs are pretty straight forward. I had him try the pants on with the belt he was going to use. Ideally he would have worn the shoes he would be wearing for the wedding as well but he hadn't bought them yet.
Not a big deal, we just need to pin up the hems to a good length where they don't drag on the ground and where they aren't too short that your sock garters show...unless you are into that kind of thing.

I pinned one side up high and one low so he could do a sit-test and walk around in shoes and see what side he liked better. Once one side was pinned to the right length, he dropped his drawers so I could iron a crease in the hem in the correct place. Then I measured the amount of fabric below the crease so I could copy the crease to the other pant-leg.
Since there was a lot of excess fabric I measured about 2.5 inches from the crease and marked this line around the cuff. Then I used an overlock machine to finish the edge and hand sewed the hems up. I used a simple loop stitch because it goes quickly and I was careful not to stitch too far into the outer fabric so that the seam is basically invisible when turned right side out.

Finally we have a well worn flannel shirt that needed some new elbows.


This material was worn pretty thin so it needed some larger patches to reinforce the surrounding areas. I cut the right shapes for these patches by laying the new fabric over the old and making sure the fabric covered all of the weak parts or high stress areas of the sleeve. Then I used an overlock machine to finish all of the edges of the patches. Then I pinned the first on in place and sewed it in around the edges and sewed around any holes that it was covering.

Someone had attempted to patch this elbow before me :)
I left this in place and reinforced around it.
This is what the inside of the patching looks like - The patches cover enough area so that regular wear of the shirt won't tear a new hole along the edge of the new patching.

The finished sleeve on the outside.


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Nomad Pizza Theater Curtains!

Hi Folks!
I'm going to catch you up on some projects from the last few months:
  • I have been trying to keep up with repair work - some well worn flannels, jeans and skirts needed some reinforcing. 
  • A handful of hem-jobs (haha!)
  • Resizing a button-down shirt
  • The beginning of my spring line of clothing: Plastic Spring
  • And my Theater-Curtain styled drapes
I'll start on the drapes and post the rest later :)

I finished the drapery project for Nomad Pizza in Philadelphia around November.
*Please note:
Nomad has the best Neapolitan style pizza in the city - If you haven't tried it yet, go. Now. And check out my sweet drapes! And get the Spicy Soppressata.

Nomad shows movies upstairs a few days a week so my idea was to create theater curtains to frame the screen. Each window has a valence and two panels which cover the pane and can be drawn open at the middle. 

Above you can see the process for making loops from which the panels hang.

I marked the floor with tape so I knew where to place each loop for each of the 6 panels. Then I taped the loops in place because the fabric was too thick for pins.

Here you see the liner pinned on top with the right sides together.

Always clip the corners :)

These strips below are for the back of the valences.

After sewing everything together and ironing like a madwoman, I had my sister and my mom help me hang the hardware and put the drapes up. Then we pinned the bottom of the panels up to the correct height.

My mom is the coolest.
My sister on coffee.
She is singing Led Zeppelin.

My sister had 2 cups of coffee, turned into Spongebob and then fell asleep promptly. 

My mom is a super-genius and the best seamstress I know so she was extremely helpful during this project :) THANKS MOM! 
Since the curtain panels were pinned individually they were all labeled for which window and which side they went to. This was important since we had a different sized space to cover for each of the 3 windows.

Here is my work space at home. After pinning I had to bring the curtains back home and hang them again so I could properly hem them. Then I added the gold fringe! Yay! I LOVE FRINGE!

I hand sewed the fringe in-between the layers of each panel and then pinned the fringe along the bottom so that it would hang about a quarter inch below the hem.

Then I sewed it in place using my 99k Singer. This machine has much more space under the presser foot than my Elna and will sew through anything you can fit under there like it ain't no thang.


 And after!