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My Manipulation of Jersey

February 19, 2009

(Note: this post turned out way longer than I had intended.  Hope you stick with me cause there’s something at the end that you totally can’t miss!)

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This is a little overdue since I completed this over a week ago, but just wanted to show off my favorite thing that I’ve made so far.  It was an experiment.  I had bought a large blue jersey cotton bedsheet at Value Village a while ago and I’ve been trying to figure out what on earth I could make with it.  It’s not the sort of color or material that I would wear in public.  It’s so plain and has the color of stonewashed 80’s jeans, so I’d either have to get really creative with it or use it to make something I’d only wear around the house.  Well, the latter idea turned out to be brilliant and I came up with this wonderful little nightdress!

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I started out by tracing a favorite tank top onto tissue paper.  Then I thought that was too plain, so I looked up how to do smocking on BurdaStyle and found Casey‘s easy-peasy tutorial.  I added about 5 extra inches to the center of the bodice and smocked my little heart out (they’re a little uneven, but I sent it through the wash the other day after I had finished the dress and it actually came out looking perfectly!  All that agitation shifted and evened out the gathers nicely).  Then I traced the finished bodice and cut out a lining to fit.  I did this because I was afraid all the little threads sticking out would tickle and I also wanted more thickness and stability in that area.

The skirt part with the gathers was a little tricky.  I had no idea how much extra fabric I needed to create the look I was going for.  So I reassured myself that this was an experiment and in no way did it need to come out perfectly and I pulled the uncut fabric up to my waist and gathered it with my hands against my body to get the general idea and measurement.  Then I cut it, sewed in two basting stitches, gathered it up, and sewed it to the bodice.  Voila!  It turned out exactly how I wanted it!  (The back is all one piece, so no special treatment was needed there thankfully).  I did have to take in the sides quite a bit and raise the shoulders about an inch and eventually I want to add binding around the neck and armholes (and maybe hem the skirt to finish the edges), but overall I love this nightdress and I wear it ALL THE TIME.

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I also made a pair of yoga pants copied from another pair that I had bought ages ago and is now starting to become thin and holey.  These were not as exciting and I really had to make up a lot of it as I went along.  The original pair were stretched out a bit and because they’re black it was hard to see through the tissue paper to trace the seams.  The blue jersey pair came out tight in the hips and way loose in the waist, but they’re definitely still wearable!  I think I’m going to hack into the waistband and add a wide strip of elastic to help them feel more secure.

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And even after these two projects and all the fabric I wasted hodge-podging pieces together, I still have TONS of it left over.  Hmmm what other comfy thing can I make next…. ?

So here is the most adorable little French girl ever.  I came across this video posted on another blog (that I can’t remember now) and just about died right in my chair from an overdose of cuteness. (Click on the picture to be routed to the video)

capucine

Once upon a time… from Capucha on Vimeo.
It’s a “breathtaking story by Capucine.  Starring baby monkeys lost in frightening trees, a witch, crocodiles, a tiger, a ‘popotamus’ and a lion, and even a ‘tremendously very bad mammoth.’ There are also magic powers and an orange ring, but sometimes, ‘something goes amiss’. Bring your popcorn and enjoy the show.”

~ Erin

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