That Learning Curve

The weather continues to be unruly, so I only have fuzzy dark iPhone pictures for you, but here’s a peek at what I’ve been working/failing on.

This is the first shirt I started. I’ve sewn pillows (honestly, I’ve had this sewing machine for at least ten years but I can’t for the life of me remember sewing much of anything on it until recently) but this is my initial stab at sewing clothing besides just hemming yoga pants. The material is a silky polyester so it’s pretty difficult to work with for a newbie, which was my first mistake. My trials and errors with bias tape are also pretty evident and my attempts to fix a saggy neckline are still not working, though I think all I need to do now is make some bias tape from the fabric to finish the neck and armholes with, and the shirt might actually be wearable. Let’s take a look…

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My seam ripper and I are becoming fast friends. As you can see, I’ll have to take off that little horizontal strap in order to attach the fabric bias tape to the neck, so that’s fun. I’m probably just going to leave it off instead of sewing it back on because I think it looks a little silly.

This should-be-super-easy-first-shirt pattern is this:

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So that project is almost done. After I clean house this evening, I’m going to settle down with some Netflix and spend my night ripping seams. Yay.

Project number two. All was going great, I got everything together fairly well, my homemade bias tape was looking good, I even fitted the shirt because it was like two inches two big on each side and the waist was about two inches too low. Final part: the zipper. The pattern called for buttons which I don’t really like (I only like buttons for decoration, not functionality) so I opted for a zipper instead. Got the perfect length zipper, got it all sewed on without any major hiccups. Then I go to try the top on…

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Aaaaaand it’s the wrong kind of zipper.

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I need a zipper like the ones they put on hoodies so that I can open the back all the way since there ain’t no way in hell I can get my big shoulders through the fitted waist of that shirt. So. Again. More seam ripping and yet another trip to the fabric store. Sure wish it was closer!

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I actually really adore this pattern, though, and if I can figure out what size I actually need to be sewing (both tops above were made from Size 12 but were too big despite my measurements saying I’m a Size 16… it’s very confusing), I have plans to make a couple more from some very cute lightweight cotton fabrics I got from the discount bins.

In an effort to discover what my real size is, I started a new SUPER EASY shirt last night from this pattern:

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I did View B in a really gorgeous fabric butttttttttt I made the stay seams too far from the edges of the neck pieces (there are three) so when I attached the bias tape, the seams showed on the front. Instead of ripping it out and starting over, I decided just to resew it with a second, wider seam. I’m sure you can guess what happened next — the bias tape was way too thin after that last seam to fold over the neck edges.


Now I get to rip out three seams. Just on this shirt. Plus all the other seams on the other shirts. Girl, you gotta get it together.

My grief process at the end of last night:

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Ah, that pesky learning curve. Oh, how I’m stumbling up it! Whoever wrote this article on NPR is clearly a way more natural seamstress than I!

The Munchkin has been spying on me out of concern:

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With that, I leave you for now. The sun is in fact shining today although clouds are certainly gathering, so I’m going to run out and catch a few rays to help get me out of this terrible funk I’ve been in lately partly thanks to two weeks of non-stop gloomy weather.

Keep on swimming.


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