I run, I craft, I write, and I make your favorite clothes.

I have written books about sewing for children and adults and I'm the indie designer’s patternmaking secret weapon. I've taught video and in-person classes to anyone who would listen since 2008. I believe that sewing clothes is a radical act of self-love that increases your sense of self-worth. I'm basically your sewing fairy godmother.

It was time to sew for Peter, finally (he’s been so patient while I sort out the little kid designs), so I decided to use a new ottobre pattern that looked pretty cool (design number 39 from the Autumn ‘09 issue) and some of my tencel denim.  I chose to leave the extension off the pattern pieces for the legs, which left them the perfect length for Peter’s shorts in a size 152.  I’m using a lovely yarn-dyed stripe from Robert Kaufman that I found at Guildcrafters in Berkley a couple weeks ago for the contrast pieces, which I’ve decided are the pocket lining, under flaps of the back pockets, and the inside of the waistband (reinforced with interfacing of course, to match the sturdiness of the denim for the waistband application).

I have my spare machine back and set it up with a top stitching needle and thread, since this style is fairly topstitch-intensive.  I do enjoy having my two sewing machines up and running.  The elna 845 serger was getting a fair amount of use today, too, as this denim tends to ravel rather easily. 

I haven’t made big-kid clothes in a long while, so I naturally have forgotten how to install a full-fledged zip-fly.  (thank goodness for illustrated instructions!) I followed along very carefully, and yet managed to topstitch the fly facing to the front of the pants, so as to completely seal off any possibility of opening the pants front.  Poor Peter!  With Ella sleeping on my lap and Star Trek IV playing on the big tv, I unstitched the entire zipper area and will try again tomorrow.  I don’t dare attempt a waistband after the zipper fiasco!

Naturally, I was thinking “this seems to be going really well.  I may finish these all in one night!” … *sigh*

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Leave a Comment

  • Sew Lind July 30, 2009, 1:37 am

    Never mind, I often have to do things twice (the unpicker is my favourite – well most necessary – sewing tool)! All the best for your next attempt tomorrow, I’m sure it’ll seem easy :-)

  • teri July 30, 2009, 3:37 am

    i am sure they will be fabulous when you are done. :)

  • Kelly July 30, 2009, 11:57 pm Reply
  • Kelly July 30, 2009, 11:58 pm

    For zip flies I pretty much always use this Sandra Betzina video. I think you just need a fly extension that’s about 1.25″. It is fool-proof – I finish the extensions before I start.

  • Millie July 31, 2009, 10:35 am

    I’m fairly new to sewing clothes, but I have done a couple of zippers so far and I have a theory, once you start thinking you go wrong!

  • karenlepage August 3, 2009, 11:17 am

    Kelly – thank you! Next time I’ll use that. I completely forgot.

    There’s also a pretty neat technique in the Japanese “everyday bottoms” book (isbn9784418061204) I just picked up.

    I finished them…more later.


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