After making Jack this top last week, I realized I should have continued while I had my machines threaded with brown thread.
This is the same pattern as before, the #26 Mahpee raglan long sleeve t-shirt from Ottobre 1/2012 in size 134. I didn’t bind the neckline on this one, I just used 2″x15.5″ of the same fabric I used on the sleeves and back, stitched the short ends right sides together and made the neckline from that. I think it works a little better.
My not always cooperative model:
Why yes, we do still have Halloween candy! Do you have children with blue tongues at your house as well?
Hey, look, it’s another wonky swimsuit picture! (wait, it’s the picture that’s wonky, not the actual swimsuit, really!)
I know, I know. Laying stuff out on the table and then trying to take a picture of it with the overhead room light hitting it in all kinds of strange ways isn’t helping me here. That’s okay, we’re not really here for the beauty of my photography, right?
Anyway, this is size 7 again, but this one is completely lined and I attached that pesky foldover elastic by straight stitching the back side of it through both layers of the suit and then folding it over and running the three step zigzag across the front, going through the swimsuit layers and the other side of the elastic. MUCH better than trying to apply this elastic in one step!
Using the foldover elastic makes the full lining a breeze since you can really just sew the suit up and then sew the lining the same way, put them wrong sides together and apply the elastic. Easy peasy!
The copyright on this pattern is 1967, 1975, and I think that’s part of what I love about it. This pattern has modest leg openings – read as: child’s butt is not sticking out.
After looking at the pattern measurements, I decided to completely ignore them and make a size 7. I probably could have made a size 6x, possibly a 6, but this one is pretty good and will hopefully still fit at the end of summer when the girl is half a foot taller. Seriously, it’s ridiculous how fast this child is growing.
I used foldover elastic (FOE) on this, shiny side out. As far as I know, it makes no difference if the shiny side is out, but that’s how Zoe likes it. Cuts were 12″ FOE for the leg openings, 13.5″ for the arm holes, and 28.25″ around the neck and back.
I really enjoyed seam ripping the elastic on one of the arm holes after I didn’t catch the suit fabric in it. Particularly annoying since that was a section where no stretching of the elastic is needed and it should have been a very easy application. Note: while it may seem like a good idea to attach the FOE in one fell swoop, resist the urge. The additional time needed to pick out the three step zigzag stitches negates any time saved.
This swimsuit fabric is one I pulled out of the sale bin and thought it would be good to practice on. It turned out to be one of Zoe’s favorites and this is the second year she has a suit from it.
Okay, I think this is officially my favorite top pattern for Zoe right now. Here are two more. I made these mostly when I got together with some fabulous local girls to do some sewing.
The one on the left has flutter sleeves, the other is the short sleeve I usually use for this top in short sleeves.
The directions for this skirt make it sound very simple. There are 3 tiers to the skirt, each tier contains 3 different sized pieces. The instructions tell you to simply cut 8 of each of the largest sized pieces from at least six different fabrics. Sounds easy enough, right? Pick out some fabrics…
Then you need to trim some of the pieces to the smaller sizes so that you will make 8 panels, each containing a piece of length a, b and c AND so that the adjacent pieces are different heights. Maybe some of you out there are confident and amazing enough to simply start whacking apart those pieces and have it all come out beautifully. I will admit that I am not such a person.
First of all, when I’m tracing a pattern piece that has three different lengths, I’m going to trace it as three different pieces because if I don’t, I’m definitely going to mess it up later. No problem there, but that means there are now nine different pieces for the main part of this skirt. In addition to keeping the adjacent pieces different in size, I wanted them to be different fabrics.
I made the following chart to use when cutting pieces and then assembling the skirt:
Each part of the table has the number of a fabric and the length of the piece. For the first panel, I need to cut fabric 1 using piece 1-b, fabric 4 using piece 2-c and fabric 3 using piece 3-a. For the second panel, I’d need fabric 2 cut using piece 1-c, fabric 5 using 2-a and fabric 7 using 3-b.
Since I’m using 8 fabrics, I’ll cut 3 pieces from each fabric. I simply checked the chart to see which pattern pieces to use and then cut the three pieces from each fabric and labeled them with a Post-It note. This is fabric 1, cut with piece 1-b.
Once they were all cut, I referred to my chart again to lay all the pieces out on my table in the proper order.
Next, I stacked each panel with its pieces, so I had 8 stacks.
Since I’m using 8 fabrics, it works out conveniently and the fabric number on the pieces in the top row also correspond to the panel number. Next I assembled each panel.
Since I didn’t want to worry about mixing them up, I attached the panels to each other as I completed them. I just kept attaching them to the right side.
Now, one of the nice things about this skirt is that, unlike the usual patchwork, there is no worrying about the corners in the middle of the skirt all lining up nicely because you’ve intentionally arranged the pieces so they are different sizes. This makes putting the assembled panels together less painful. Once you have all the panels assembled and sewn together, you’ll just need to put on the waistband and bottom frill.
I wanted to use a thicker elastic, so I cut the waistband piece 3″ wide. You can see where I’ve marked the quarters so I can attach it to the skirt.
After attaching the waistband, I use my zipper foot to help me get nice and close to the edge while I topstitch around the waist.
So far, so good!
We still need that bottom ruffle, though. Since I can’t just leave things alone, I also cut the bottom ruffle at a 3″ width. I hemmed it before attaching it to the skirt so I didn’t have to deal with all the fluff when hemming. For the hem, I ran one side through the serger and then pressed it under and stitched it.
I put about 5 3/4 yards of bottom ruffle on this skirt, but it could have easily taken more. I used my ruffler set at 12 to gather the ruffles.
Press the hem
and you’re ready for the last topstitching!
It looks a little odd on the hanger, but it’s done!
This is a size 128, with 20.5″ of 1″ wide elastic.