Friday 5 June 2020

So what exactly do avid stitchers, makers, crafters do with their time outside their crafts?

I don't know about everyone else, but my other love is....

Plants. Verdant, vibrant foliage. Just like Callie here (yep, I name my plants).

I'm a latecomer to the plant parent game. We live in an apartment so we don't have our own outdoor garden to tend. When it comes to the indoors, up until about 18 months ago we had carpeted floors. So what? I never ever entertained the idea of indoor plants with a carpeted floor.

What about accidental upending by a small running child? Or a stray elbow or knee? And my child is quite the whirling dervish, let me tell you.

But when we upgraded to wood floors I suddenly found myself consumed with the idea of a lush indoor jungle. It didn't start well. I was not a natural plant parent. I provided way too much love in the form of overwatering. I misjudged the amount of natural light they would need. It was a sad, sad massacre I tell you.

But I learnt and now my indoor garden runneth over.

So when I saw this amazing See You At Six watering can french terry made up into some delightful sweats by @happylat for her twin boys, my first thought was "I gotta get me some of that action!".

Kat of Seamstress Fabrics noticed my admiring and yearning comments about this fabric and reached out to me, offering the very last of her stock of this french terry and matching ribbing. Let me tell you, I didn't need to be asked twice.

If you haven't heard of Seamstress Fabrics, where have you been? Kat opened her online store in Melbourne about 2.5 years ago offering a beautiful array of swoon worthy fabrics, as well as patterns and haberdashery. Kat is an all round fabulous person (did you know that Kat ran Melbourne Frocktails from 2013-2017?) and will send your purchases within Australia, internationally and even offers free pick up for locals.

This 96% cotton, 4% spandex fabric is delightfully soft and warm and matches perfectly with the ribbing. Whilst my husband tried to convince me to make it into an adult sized onesie (I think he was joking...), I refused to comply and started a search for the perfect sweatshirt pattern.

And not your stock standard, run-of-the-mill, raglan-sleeved 70's style sweatshirt.

In the end it had to be an I AM Patterns Lion sweatshirt. Oh those puff sleeves.

That row of snaps closures across one shoulder...

Just enough quirk from both the fabric and pattern to elevate both.

I decided to use the matching ribbing for neck and hem bands, and stuck to self fabric cuffs. I like the continuous look on the sleeve.

Oh that perfect clean pale blue, those green watering cans. In my mind, the perfect colour pairing.

A few technical details: This is a size 38 chest and shoulders and size 40 hips. I've not made a sweatshirt before and neither have I worked with french terry or ribbing, so I really laboured over picking a size. I started with a 42 at the hem (matching my hip measurement), but ended up grading back to the 40 in the end. I don't like my sweats too blouson.

I shortened the body by 2" before adding the hem band so that it would hit right at my favoured high hip.

I used Vilene Formband Bias Tape to stabilise shoulder seams and the entire neckline. As I intended to use the shoulder snaps to close the left shoulder seam my neckline did not need to stretch. If you make the style choice to sew each shoulder seam traditionally, only stabilise your rear neckline or you'll have a whole lot of trouble getting it over your head.

I sewed it entirely on my serger, except for the gathering stitch on the sleeve head. Snaps were hammered in with bruised fingers and prayers that they worked. And they did!

I'm so happy and proud of the end product. This sweatshirt is exactly what I'd hoped for.

And don't think for a moment it will be relegated to gardening days. This baby deserves an outing.

Whilst this fabric was a gift from Kat at Seamstress Fabrics, all opinions are my own.

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