Saturday, September 29, 2012

It's the Knits

I may have mentioned that I was going to do my very first knit material project this past week.

Saying I am terrified of sewing with knits is understating things.

It's a bias passed down by my mother.

I made a knit shirt once when I was about ten or so and I accidentally cut the fabric the wrong way.

I spotted a pattern on Pinterest (again, thanks to Pinterest I will never have an original idea ever again) and went ahead and purchased it here.

It's titled the "Go-To-Signature Dress".

It has options for different dress lengths, different pockets, different sleeve lengths...

It says it's for "adventurous beginners".

Sounds good, right?

Like it won't be pure torture to have to sew it?

Maybe for others, but as you know I'm....challenged...special...not interested in details.

First of all, the local Joann has very slim pickings of knits.

Second of all, the pattern says it should only take 2-4 hours to make this dress. 

I think it took me seven***.

Mostly because I had to pick out pretty much every, single stitch I put in at least once if not twice.

Even at that, I should have probably picked out each stitch three times, but after the second time, I figured that whatever I put in would just have to do.

I even tried shirring.  I've never done it before.  I might never do it again.  It was horrid.  Or maybe it's just horrid on knits.

Anyway, after all of this complaining (there was also profuse sweating and some swearing), I actually did finish the dress.

I chose a maxi length, inset pockets (I apparently read the pattern wrong for them because the pockets sit about 1/4" above Carolyn's knee...she has to bend over just to get her hands into them.  However, I just didn't have the heart to pick out that stitch [the one and only stitch I didn't have to re-do] so we'll just have to make it work...), shirred waist, and 3/4 length sleeves

And if you don't look too closely (no one within 10 feet, please), I think it's almost cute (plus, I love a photo shoot where I have to bribe my kid):

I added the flower by the neck as an afterthought. 

The thinking behind it was that it might hide some of the super, super bad (and very visible) sewing up there, but it didn't. 

Either way, I'm super pleased with how the flower turned out.

I tried several different ways to attach it to the dress, but in the end, I just hot glued it - anything else and it was just kind of floppy.  Here's hoping it'll last through a round in the washer...

Flower tutorial here.

***Disclaimer: The problems I had sewing had nothing to do with the pattern.  It was roughly 99% user error.  The pattern was actually really, really nice and easy to use.  I'll give it another soon as I stop sulking over how long it took me to make the first dress.


Chamberlin said...

Genetics continue to scare me. My sewing experiences are almost identical (well, the ones when I had just Janet). Now I stick to only straight line sewing.
On a shirring note, I'm actually dying to try it after I read this tutorial:
from a one of my friends. How did you do it?

Erin said...

That's just how I did it! I actually looked at one of the tutorials in that blog post before I shirred...I'm pretty sure the problem was that the settings on my machine were off, but I didn't really know what to do to fix them (I had them set on the settings that all of the tutorial videos said).

I'll have to try again - that blog post has so many cute ideas!

Emily said...

Now, Erin, you are too hard on yourself. I think you did a great job!

Shelby Bingham said...

I admit it. I've had trouble sewing with knits. I actually think my ancient sewing machine is the problem. I made a beach cover-up for one of my girls this summer out of knit -- it had shirring on it too which I've done a million times without problems. Yeah, I only made the one and pretty much hated making it. I then made one out of regular cotton fabric which turned out fabulous. It's that devil knit fabric.