Skinny Tee

I recently had my serger in for a much needed tune-up. I find I rarely use it these days as I almost prefer the neat look of pinking shears, or alternate methods were the seams aren’t even visible. But sergers are still pretty cool for knits, so I got all excited and downloaded Made By Rae’s skinny tee pattern.

Skinny Tee

I love the look on her site, but I think the jersey I used was kind of cheap… it stretched and didn’t go back to itself – see how the bottom is all wiggly?  I bought the fabric on Etsy ages ago.  And I had some ribbing too which I attempted to use for the collar; that was a struggle.  Does anyone have any tips on that?  My instinct is the ribbing should be slightly shorter than the sleeve (or neckline) width, since it stretches so much, but even after a bit of experimentation, I’m not sure I hit the golden ratio. My model is asleep (actually he’s in the midst of a coughing fit, poor thing)  but I also feel like the sleeves look too short.  And then to top it off J walked it and was all “Cute shirt?  Who’s it for?  M?”  Um, no it’s a size 5!

Ah well, hopefully it will look cuter in the light of day, and the wonderful thing about P is he will wear just about anything so long as you dress him, so I will get some use out of it.  If I’m right and the sleeves are too short, I’ll make it into a t-shirt.


Skinny Tee on Skinny Dude

Better in the light of day. The neckline is still a titch too wide for my liking, but that is because I had to cut it off once.

The “Urban Hoody”

So this is a little dorky, but I’m kind of into dressing the kids in matching, (or rather coordinating outfits!).  Both the kids have gone through growth spurts recently, so they were in need of some hoodies.  I used Heidi and Finn’s Urban Hoody pattern.  This was my first time trying a PDF pattern bought online and I’m sold.  The instructions were really clear and well-written with loads of pictures.  My only issue was the instant gratification – it took about five or six hours for the pattern to be e-mailed and I was so ready to start sewing right away.  I was assuming it would be e-mailed out automatically as soon as payment was received.

I did run into trouble because I lined the knit hoodies with non-stretchy qulting cotton – a beginner’s mistake.  But in the end we recovered from that and I think they turned out okay.  If I hadn’t done that, the buttons would have been  on the side, like in the photo on the website, instead of centered.  I find these days the problems I run into aren’t necessarily technique, but in not understanding the qualities of the fabrics I’m using.  But I’m learning.  Even since I’ve made these a couple of weeks ago, I’m feeling a bit more comfortable about my fabric choices.  I guess this is progress!

It’s not easy to find information on fabrics, because for me at least, I think I only really get it once I have a chance to touch it in the fabric store, and work with it.  I’ve since made a voile project, and also a silk and linen jacket which I hope to show you once I get around to adding the buttons.  But here are some posts that have been useful at helping me understand the options out there:

Oliver and S: Knit Fabric Basics
Adventures in Dressmaking: Good fabrics for beginners
The Dreamstress: Voile and Lawn: What’s the Difference?

I will definitely make this hoody again, but I think next time I won’t bother lining the whole thing – just the hood.  Also, I’d size up.  I made the size four for three and 1/2 year old P, but I think a size five might have been better, although he’s a slim kid and not unusually tall.  I don’t think this is entirely attributable to my use of non-stretchy lining either, although that’s certainly part of it.  I made the 18 month for 10 month old M and it was perfect.