7 April 2014

Don't Fear the Twin Needle: My First Lady Skater

I went shopping this weekend and had such a huge attack of 'I could so make that myself, and it would fit better'. This can be quiet an irritating habit because not only do you need to find the time (who are you trying to kid you have time for this), but also getting all the fabric/notions required to actually make the thing that you probably could have purchased for less than £20! Never mind. I did at least come home and do some sketches as well as making a pinterest board to keep my ideas together before I forget.

But that wasn't what this post was supposed to be about was it, no! Its a post about my first ever Lady Skater. I did it, not only did I conqour a fear of knits, but I mastered both the overlocker and had my first ever attempt at using a twin needle. My conclusion: Don't fear the twin needle, its great and really easy to use (even if my threads did tangle on one occasion).

A bit about the Pattern:
Pattern: Lady Skater by Kitschy Coo
Fabric: Grey Leopard Jersey Knit
Size: 3
Alterations: I took the hem up by 2 inches.

Verdict: I LOVE this pattern and can foresee many more versions of this in the future. Its so easy to fit, I fit it on my waist size and you can see that the girls are sitting in there fine with no major issues at all. The skirt is flared so there is no need to worry about hip adjustments either. All in all this is the perfect pattern for trying your hand at some knit/jersey sewing. The instructions were really clear and it has a simple construction. I ditched the iPad half way through as the construction was so obvious. This makes me happy. When making this up again I will probably try and scoop the neck a bit more by tracing one of my favourite vest tops. I will also shorten the sleeve as I am a bit strange and don't like a 3/4, I sort of prefer a 1/2 coming just to the elbow (you can see its already bunched up and will stay that way!).

At this point I want to impart a bit of wisdom on to you all. If you only ever buy one additional foot for your sewing machine make it a walking foot. I bought mine because I was doing some quilting but my goodness this thing is so useful for EVERYTHING. It basically 'walks' both layers of fabric through the machine at the same speed. Perfect if you have fabrics of different construction, or are sewing knits to stop them from overstretching.

Those of you who have already made the Lady Skater might notice the issue I had with the elastic on this one. I am not going to lie to you, its a mess! This pattern wants you to sew some thin elastic into the seam allowance on the shoulders and the waist to stop the fabric stretching over time. Wearing it I can see why you would do this, however putting it in was a mare! The elastic I used is very plasticy and so it wouldn't feed under the machine foot. I ended up having to pull it through the machine to attach it and it just stretched the seams way out of proportion. Thankfully the lovely Amanda who designed this pattern gave me some top tips which I will certainly test out to find out which works best for me before sewing up the next version. These were: try a walking foot (literally D'OH, why did I not even try this!); make the feed tension lesser, i,e treat it like you are sewing something very think; stick some masking tape to the bottom of the presser foot to stop it sticking (I have also heard this is good for sewing oilcloth, so I need to try it on PVC) or stitch through some tracing paper and then remove after sewn in. Hopefully the walking foot will work but there are lots of options to try if not (Thank you Amanda).

How cute are these tights! Meow! They were from Primark in case you want to snap up a pair.

So if you haven't tried this pattern I really suggest you do, overlocker or no, its really great and so comfy to wear. Not to mention knits come in the most amazing array of prints. Despite this being a bit of a glorified muslin I think it will still get worn with the belt as it covers up the biggest sin.

And don't forget, don't fear the twin needle, honestly, try this for knits it gives a perfect finish. I will leave you with some of the sketches and the pinterest board that I made instead of just giving myself an easy life!

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