Crazy Dog Lady Sewing Challenge: The RevealSaturday, March 21, 2015
I'm back, I'm back and just in time folks because today is the last day for the Crazy Dog Lady Sewing Challenge! I love dogs and I'm a lots crazy so let's sew something up to celebrate, aye?!
When the challenge was first announced it was a no brainer that I must make something with Pugs plastered all over it. Spoonflower was my first and only stop. I new the search word "Pug" would yield a ton of results. Boy was I right! After mulling over the choices for a couple days I ordered a few swatches. That only confused me even more because I wanted to order a couple yards of each swatch. Spoonflower is pretty pricey so in order not to break bank I decided on a pattern and forced myself to only order the yardage needed. I chose to make pajamas because I knew it would be the only way to pull off wearing Pugs on my body. Back in the day I had a pair of satin blue with white polka dot pajamas gifted to me by my Granny. I only ever really wore the shorts and they were the most comfy things ever. I decided upon McCall's 6659 , view C & E thanks to a $1.99 sale at Joann's.
The pattern called for 2.5 yards of fabric. With satin pricing at $18/yd and no half yards allowed I crossed my fingers that 2 yards would be enough and placed my order for the circus pugs on blue, (though it looks more teal to me) and got to work on my muslin.
Follow me on Instagram and you would of seen the above photo. I started with a bed sheet and the size 8. Because I was crushing on Closet Case Files' newly released Carolyn Pajamas I decided to copy the style and draft my own cuffs for the sleeves and shorts. After struggling for an hour setting in this first sleeve I tried it on and realized a lot of things..#1 My armhole was too low. I couldn't comfortably raise my arm up. #2, The size 8 was too small at my hips. How in the hell was I going to button it. #3, My sleeve was longer than I liked. #4, why do I always forget to check where the waist sits?? It's too long in the torso and #5, sleeve cap ease is bunk.
Back to the drawing board I traced & cut out size 10. Shortened the waistline by 1 inch. Shortened the armhole by 5/8 inch and narrowed the armpit seam by the same amount. Shortened the sleeve length 1 inch. After researching the validity of sleeve cap bunkness I followed this tutorial on how to determine how much sleeve ease I had and how to remove it. I threw caution to the wind and removed all the sleeve ease, all 1.25 inches of it. Fingers crossed I made another muslin and it faired well.
I purchased satin piping from Hart's Fabric. I pulled out my old Singer because she had a piping foot. The piping foot is the secret to piping perfection. Going through my stash for buttons I was surprised to find I had matching satin covered buttons.
The back darts give this top a nice shape. It is rather tight across the back which will need to be addressed should I ever make this pattern again. Oh and I almost forgot, two yards was plenty for the short version of the pj's. I did cut everything flat.
Satin can be a real bear to sew with so here are some tips I learned that will help you if it's your first time.
- Before prewashing serge or pink your edges to prevent unraveling. I only wish I would of done the same as I had a mess of threads after pulling out of the dryer.
- When cutting your pattern out lay your satin on tissue paper. The paper stabilizes the satin and keeps it from moving. Treat your fabric and paper as one layer and cut as one. Also cut on one layer, not on the fold.
- Iron on the lowest setting and on the wrong side of the fabric. If you must iron on the right side use a press cloth. No steam!
- A wooden clapper can be your BFF. To help prevent puckering at the seams immediately after each iron press I would press firmly with my clapper until the fabric cooled.
- Use sew in interface.
- Use a short stitch length. I used 2.0.
- Avoid using the seam ripper. It's really easy to accidentally pull your fabric threads when using a seam ripper. I did it a couple times and have runs in my fabric :(
- And of course sharp needle, sharp pins!
And we can't forget about the real star of the show here, Vito! I had to make him his own pair of pj's which he absolutely hates.
I used this free tank top pattern from Milla Milla. Pug bodies are so odd shaped especially when they dine on cat food when your not looking. Vito didn't fit in to any one size perfectly so I had to pick the size closest to his fat gut. In turn the neckline is too large as well as the armholes. I would take the time to alter the pattern to fit him but he hates wearing this so much I'm not going to bother. By the end of this photo session he had completely wiggled his way out of it and stretched it out beyond recognition. Vito would rather let it all hang out in the breeze. Who can blame him?