hello, gorgeous. is she not a thing of beauty?
i've found that eliminating a center back seam helps very much in the fight against mount crackatoa. but a side seam zipper means no pockets. swallowed center back defeated! mais non, where's a girl gonna hide her flask! enter casey's delicious slashed zipper tutorial. zipper in the back, pockets in the sides, party all around.
too bad the maxi skirt it lives in is a complete and absolute hot mess. like surface of the sun hot. i'm not abandoning it, but i AM giving it a healthy stay in solitary confinement. the slashed zipper truly is its saving grace. i love it.
i'm also in love with this little gadget, hollie's handy seam allowance guide. i know you've seen this colorful beauty all over the sewing blogosphere, in fact the lovely lizz and karen have both done fantastic in-depth reviews of its major purpose: cutting out patterns that don't include seam allowances. (i haven't tried it as such yet, as i seem to lack the will to use a burda pattern.)
but here's where it works best for an i can totally eyeball that edge to a 5/8 seam allowance kinda gal like me. to be honest, i am that kinda gal. i have a ruler in my head. the cool clear kind with the grid and everything. but sometimes i'm tired, or boozy, or hormonal. what have you. that's when i throw this happy yella magnetic jammy on my ginghers and let it do the work.
after sewing up this patternless draped skirt, i wanted to trim the allowance down to a reasonable width. i just used my stitching line as the guide (ignore the part where i got drunk and veered off course, thankyouverymuch), matching it to the little black moveable hoop... et voila. instant perfectly measured allowance. no chalk lines, no held breath. this works great for any occasion needing a trim-- you know, every time a pattern instructs you to sew facing to neckline, and trim down to 3/8s? or attach bias tape, trim allowances to 1/4? SHABAM.
and if you happen to be the reckless sort of self taught draper i am, you can even use it to trim your fabric right on your dress form. maybe you're eyeballing a high neckline and want to hack an inch off of it. center your seam allowance guide up, and away you go.
i used it to trim my lace facing for le slashed zipper....
and now i've got a tip for you! after all, i think i owe one karmically. maybe it's something you already know, maybe it's a tidbit that will rock your world and build my karma up to Hot Mess Maxi Skirt saving levels.
ever worked with loose knit fabrics that fray like a burlap sack? part of this skirt's sentence to solitary had to do with the RAGE i felt sewing up seams. never have i missed my overlocker more. all the nice thick threads of fabric kept bunching up in front of my presser foot, they would just not lie flat. and unpicking wonky seams did not help the fray factor. fairly late in the game, a light bulb went off and i used a mini invisible ruler (my real one, not the one in my head) to hold the rapidly fraying edges flat, feeding them beautifully under the presser foot. do this slowly, of course, i will not take the blame for any speedracers out there who sew through a ruler or cause a broken needle to fly into human beings and/or cats... but if you proceed with caution, this works like a charm.
happy weekend everyone! in that area, may you proceed with WILD ABANDON!