Sunday, April 14, 2013

Maxi Gone Wrong!

I've been wanting to make a maxi skirt for awhile, now.  
I even found this fabric that I'm dying to use at Girl Charlee Fabrics.  
Since I've never actually sewn with knits before and the whole maxi skirt is also a new thing for me, I figured I'd better do a test run first.  
So, my sister and I made a quick run to Joanns for some cheap knit.

What I ended up with was somewhat of a hot mess.  In the end, it turned out okay.  Not great.  Nothing to brag about or anything of the sort.  It's okay to wear as long as nobody is looking closely (and maybe just in the comfort of my own home), but it didn't turn out anywhere near as good as I wanted it to.  

Good thing I opted for a test run!  :)  I learned several things this go around.

#1: Trust my gut!!  I had this whole pattern/plan in my head of what I wanted to do.  And, I had a maxi skirt in my closet that I was planning on using for my first pattern.  But then?  I chickened out.  Told myself I didn't know what I was doing, so I better look for a tutorial online.

Bad idea.

Now.  I'm sure the tutorial's I followed were great for other sewers, they just didn't work for me.  My skirt ended up being probably 3 times larger than I wanted it.  My waist band (that I got from one tutorial) fit me perfectly.  However, the skirt portion didn't touch me anywhere, and there was no way it was going to fit on the waistband without a LOT of gathering.  My waistline, although it is getting smaller, does not need any kind of extra gathering around it.

Obviously, I managed to work around it and fix the problems.  But. Had I gone with my initial plan and trusted myself, I could have saved myself quite a bit of time.  And fabric.  And picked out seams.

Which brings me to Lesson #2:  Ripping seams from knit jersey is NOT fun.  Enough said.

And Lesson #3?  Using a zig-zag stitch really does work wonders on knit as long as it is done properly.  My seams that were at the very edge of the two fabrics (Does that even make sense? So it looks more like a serged edge than sewn...) turned out perfectly.  Gorgeous.  However, using them just down the middle of the fabric didn't work so great.  I got lots of puckering. Yes.  I was sewing down the middle of my fabric at one point (refer back to Lesson 1) trying to fix the size without ripping my seams.  I should have just ripped my seams and started over.  Regardless.  That's why it's a lesson learned, right?

Bottom line is that I will be doing at least one more test run before I dive into the fabric I really want to use.  This skirt will work well enough for bubble blowing fun in the back yard this summer with the cute boy above.  And you can't really have too many maxis, can you?


Bonny @ said...

One of my first skirts I sewed was with knit. I was too naive to realize knit is tricky. It turned out cute expect it started to stretch so one side was longer than the other. I re-cut it and re-sewed it, but I never got it quite right. It'll be a while before I'm brave enough to work with knit for clothing again. Thanks for sharing your story!

Charity said...

I think it turned out pretty well! I understand though I followed a tutorial on how to sew a pencil skirt with a knit fabric. The girl made it look so easy. However for me it took six tries before the waist was not gigantic! I am hoping to make another one and learn from my mistakes. Thanks for sharing that it did not turn out "perfect" as you had imagined. Nice to know not all seamstresses get it right on the first try.

HandJ Cobb said...

Great tips! I just made one of my own and I actually love how it turned out. It's weird because my first attempt was great, but I haven't been able to replicate it!

Danni Baird @ Silo Hill Farm said...

I don't sew, so I think it looks pretty good to me!

Lindsay(PACountryCrafts) said...

I am trying to get over my fear of knits! I made a skirt last week, too. It went a lot better than the first time I tried to make one, but I still have a long way to go! So, keep on practicing, I guess! :)

Elise@growcreative said...

I've been wanting to make one of these too. Thanks for the tips.

Charlene@APinchofJoy said...

Sewing knits definitely has a learning curve, but I think your skirt turned out cute! Thanks so much for sharing!

Amy @ The Stitchin Mommy said...

It still looks cute! I just started sewing and it all seems complicated so to me this looks fabulous! I'm stopping by to let you know that your blog has been featured on this week's Meet Me Monday Blog Hop. I hope you'll stop by and check it out!



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