Monday, October 21, 2013

Claire's Genius Strikes Again & a COUPON!

Most of you are familiar with Clair Tharp and her ingenious measuring and finishing tools like the SA Curve for adding seam allowances, and the E-Z Pocket and Shirtmaker tools found at her Etsy shop , but the new SA Curve Measuring Wheel blows me away! Claire has graciously offered to give my readers a 20% discount when ordered on her Etsy shop. Use coupon code ARTATTACK20 for the discount!
When I first heard about the concept it didn't really make sense to me and a pizza cutter for sewing was as far as my pea brain could take it. However, the perfect opportunity presented itself this weekend for me to try it out. After pinning the sleeve of my jacket to the body, it had much more ease than I wanted. I got my magic wheel and set it to zero at one end of the sleeve head:

Then I simply rolled around to the other end. The wheel is segmented into eight 1" sections so counting is easy either by inches, or by complete and then partial revolutions, which is how I did it:

Then I measured the jacket sleeve opening in the same manner. I had a 1" difference. I recut my sleeve 1 size smaller and was then able to sew my sleeve in flat, with a perfect fit and no easing!

Give this little tool a try. Now that I understand the concept (many time simple ideas confound me more than difficult ones!) I know I will find a myriad of uses for it on my sewing projects. No more trying to get a tape measure to stand on its side!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Love My Minoru!

Well, I certainly see what all the commotion has been over this jacket! Sewaholic's Minoru is nothing short of brilliance. It's been quite some time since I've had so much fun watching a garment come to life as this one did.
I've seen so many cute versions of this jacket I soon realized that the possibilities were really endless as far as the look that could be created. I wanted mine to be what I would call "dressy casual". I found this cotton twill at Mood Fabrics. The toile print is large, and also had a 25" repeat, so I worried that it might overwhelm the jacket, but I think it's perfect. Especially in the back:

I used a waterproof zip which looked a little dressier since the teeth are not exposed and it has an appearance of being more of a satin strip than a zipper. I topstitched with black to tie it all together:

For the lining I used a cotton/spandex and wanted to use a print much less conservative than the toile. And, of course, I used snaps on the inside pockets because I could! So loving those snaps:

And lastly, the sleeve lining is Ambience Bemberg:

I vacillated FOREVER whether to make a size 6 or 8 and finally settled on the 8. It is perfect everywhere except the hips. One my next one I will grade down a size or two.  Oh, yes, there will be a next one and probably one after that!
I will post this on Pattern Review as my Lined Jacket Contest entry, even though I am not eligible to receive votes. However, I can vote for the Minoru to possibly be my favorite pattern of all time! Up until now, at least.