Aug 18, 2013
Digging through my fabric stash, I could find only one knit that was appropriate for making a muslin of Simplicity 9993, my vintage men's knit top pattern.
It's a stretchy terrycloth stripe I found at a thrift store in Provincetown, MA, last summer. I'll probably make the short sleeve version with the neck facing, instead of an exposed collar band.
Speaking of knits, I experimented with the stretch stitches on my Kenmore 158.141 to see if I could come up with a hem finish for knits I'd be satisfied with, in lieu of purchasing a coverstitch machine. Having read dozens of reviews of the Brother 2340CV, I'm not really inspired to spend $300+ dollars on it. Too many problems for too many people.
First I tried this double overedge stitch. I didn't carefully measure the folded-under hem so I didn't catch the hem in the stitches. Instead, I just trimmed the excess with my shears. I know this isn't a finish you'll find on most (any?) RTW knits, but I don't think it looks too Shecky-Home-Ecky, do you? Headache quotient = 0.
Next I tried the honeycomb stitch. Also quite nice. Even if I had a coverstitch, I'd still have to carefully measure and press my hem to make sure the raw edge is caught in the stitches (the coverstitch doesn't have a knife to trim -- something I only recently learned).
Somewhere I have a double needle: that's the next experiment. I think until Queen Coverstitch Debbie Cook is ready to sell me her Baby Lock (when hell freezes over?), I'll bide my time.
UPDATE: I tried the same stitches with slightly less pressure on the presser foot. There was still a bit of waviness whether I stitched along the crossgrain or the selvage. (I didn't press or prep the samples in any way, before or after. Not sure if it would still look like that after being laundered.)
In other news, I laundered (and machine dried) my new blue cotton twill pants and they shrank nearly 3" in length! I am very glad I waited to hem them. After trying them on a dozen times, I decided I wanted the legs to be narrower, so I extended the side seam allowance by an additional 1/2" from the hip (where I need the room) down to mid-calf. By this point the seam allowance was so wide -- 1 1/2" -- that I serged off half of it.
Finally, both Michael and I came down with a nasty case of food poisoning on Friday night. We're not entirely sure what caused it. Initially we thought it was the lunch we'd had out that day with my mother where we'd all either ordered or shared the same food. (Plus, I'd noted that despite the sign saying "Employees Must Wash Hands," there was no soap to be found in the men's room.) But my mother had no reaction at all -- thankfully, since it probably could have killed her. Now we're thinking it was the raw kale chips Michael bought earlier in the week, but we're not 100% sure.
I won't go into the gory details but I have never thrown up so violently or so often as I did Friday night: three times and the third time I thought my stomach was turning inside out; then seconds later after a good hurl it had all passed. Michael had cramps but no vomiting.
I won't talk about the diarrhea but yes, that too. I slept the entire day yesterday, I mean, literally I was asleep -- aside from occasional bathroom trip -- the whole day and night. Today I'm totally fine. You know those last three pounds you wish you could lose? I lost them -- there's a bright side to everything!
And on that note: Have a great day, everybody, and don't forget to wash your hands (and your food) before eating!