Saturday, July 9, 2016

Read the Instructions - Simplicity 1376

This is posted in my sewing room to remind me not to begrudge the time and energy spent on preparation. It is good advice for all kinds of sewing situations, like applying fusible interfacing, learning about your new sewing machine, choosing the correct fabric for a sewing project, and entering contests. And I obviously need reminding based on my latest sewing project.

This year, my American Sewing Guild (ASG) neighborhood group challenge is to sew a garment from one of the Simplicity ASG special collection patterns. It has to be completed for the November meeting.   And ASG was having their annual Anyone Can Win contest, which also requires sewing a garment from one of the Simplicity ASG patterns. The contest deadline was July 1st.  One sewing project to meet two goals. Wonderful. Full steam ahead.

 I decided to sew the dress and jacket from Simplicity 1376.  This pattern includes a cropped jacket, ankle length hi-lo dress, knee length dress, scarf and knit leggings with elastic waistband.

 I cut the jacket out first, from a knit remnant with horizontal color variations. The front band was cut on the bias. "Hmm a bit surprising for a knit" I thought, but no warning bells.

 For the dress, I selected a cotton/rayon print jersey knit from my stash. It was purchased 16 years ago and nicely aged.  It had very little stretch. I cut out the main dress pieces first, and left the bands  for the neck and armhole trim until last, to be cut out of the remaining remnants of fabric.  The grain line arrows on the bands indicated they should be cut out on the bias.  I thought “Why would Simplicity recommend that for a knit?  For a knit, the greatest stretch is usually in the width of the fabric.” At that point I decided to read the fabric recommendations on the pattern envelope. For the dress and jacket, B & E, the recommendations were for woven fabrics.

 Oops! "Recalculating,  With a  firm non stretchy knit, I should be okay" So I kept on sewing.  The dress and jacket turned out fine. In fact I wonder how well they would turn out in a woven fabric.   Note the V neckline on this dress is deep. On the pattern envelope both the top and dress are shown worn over some kind of garment that fills in the neckline. The pattern does not include a neckline insert/modesty panel.  I have no cleavage to speak of,  so I can wear deeper V’s than some folks and no one gets excited as all it exposes is bony chest
Simplicity 1376
Simplicity 1376 Dress and Jacket
Relieved that the two garments were completed and I had decent photos,   I went to the computer to enter the ASG “Anyone Can Win” contest. The last time I participated, 2 years ago, you entered the number of the pattern you had sewn in a text field and uploaded the picture.  This year the process was different. “What’s this, a drop down list of allowable patterns? Only 8 choices. But there are 34 Simplicity ASG in print.  24% chance that …aw crap  1376 isn’t listed. Do I have any of the listed patterns?   One, a jacket, pants and top. How much time do I have? The rest of today. How about tomorrow? What time does my plane leave? I hate it when business travel takes up my weekends!  Did I get TSA Precheck? Nope!  Whatever I sew has to be done today. Guess it is going to be the “quickest to make” garment on the pattern I do have – the T shirt.”

So my contest entry was a raglan sleeve T shirt from Simplicity pattern 1073 out of a textured knit purchased from JoAnn Fabrics.

 And now I have three garments for Show N Tell at the November ASG meeting.