Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Done with the Seam Ripper?

Bet that little job just about bored you out of your gourd. Sorry about that. I said this was a cool looking and cheap skirt, never said a thing about it being a quick project.

Now, at this point you should essentially have a skirt with ribbon hanging from it (those would be the legs). There should be no connecting bits between your thighs, and a good breeze should be whipping by your butt. There? Good.

Time to break out the steam iron. All those careful seams you pulled out, fold in with the natural fold and iron down. I should mention that this is gonna be what my gram called a rough ‘n’ ready item. It will look good to the people walking around looking at it, but I wouldn’t bother with a whole lot of inside finishing work on this project. The ironed in seam allowances are what will give it a finished look, keeping the hems clean… the panels inside are sewn on top of the folds, leaving the edges unfinished inside. (See why I don’t really teach this stuff?)

This is where you are going to have to take a deep breath… and accept it is all going to work out. Starting on a side seam, lay the skirt down, letting the legs form a natural triangle from the split. Decide now how wide you want that triangle. Do you mince? If that’s the case, go small. If, like me, you stride through life looking like you’re always in a hurry, widen the sucker up so you can run in it. Slide the contrasting fabric under. Admire how it looks. Nice contrast, right? Pin through the jeans (the double fold) straight down into the contrasting fabric, both side of the triangle. Pick up the whole mess, does it look right-ish? If not, keep fussing until it all lies smooth and you like the look. Take it over to the machine and sew the lines down. Both side down from the pocket (make sure you are going through only ONE layer of the contrasting fabric.), worry about the bottom later. Cut off all that extra fabric from the contrasting material. Use it to….

Repeat on the other side. And the back… come on, you’re in the home stretch.

The front? Same deal, tad trickier, I’ll warn you. You are going to spend a little while fiddling with the area under the zipper until you are satisfied (at this point, anyone who really wants it, drop me an email and I’ll put close-ups on my Flickr account. I’m trying to not bore the guys outta their skulls here.) but with some time with the iron and it will get finished.

Hemming… ahh, the bane of any seamstresses existence. Not hard precisely, just annoying. You can either finish with the standard hem all the way around (trimming your contrasting fabrics to the length of the denim), use the easier bias tape cover it method, think ahead and choose a material you like the look of frayed… or just pick up some fabric glue and go the lazy man route.

Cheap, resourceful, looks pretty good, and gives that well loved pair of jeans (you know, the ones that make your backside look marvelous) one last hurrah before they disintegrate completely.

Back to your regularly scheduled nerdom in the morning… where we cover a fad that is just a leeeetttllle too left of center even for this natural nerd. We’re talking the ultimate “Paper…. Or Fabric” decision.

1 comment:

A Soldier's Girl said...

Wheeeee! Thank you!

I've got some wonderful pink denim coming my way that will work nicely for this. :-)

Now, off to Goodwill to pick up some new (used) jeans or pants. :-)