Friday, December 24, 2010

The Brother's Maiden Project

After I finally took the plunge and bought my sewing machine, I think it sat in the box for about a month.  I was excited to get started sewing but also intimidated by the idea.  So, to get myself going, I decided I'd volunteer to be a pattern tester for one of the ladies who sold patterns on etsy.  I knew it would force me to get the sewing machine out and get started on something, since I had someone else to answer to.  So, I volunteered to test out this cardigan pattern:
I think it turned out pretty cute. 

I’m a total geek, because I got so excited watching it come together.  The first part I did was the sleeves, and when I put together that teeny tiny sleeve, with a little bit of gather on the shoulder, it was so cute, I could have died.  I showed it to my husband, but he didn’t quite share my enthusiasm for how cute it was.

Working with knit fabric was a little challenging, but it wasn’t too bad.  The hardest part on this project was doing the ribbing around the front placket area and the neck area.  The ribbing material kept bunching up.  It wasn’t moving with the bottom fabric, so there are places where I had to sew over the bunching.

Oh, and the buttonholes gave me a heck of a time, too.  The fabric would get stuck in the machine and the thread would bunch up.  I ripped a lot of thread out.  I finally managed to make the buttonholes by putting stabilizer underneath.  That allowed the fabric to move.  It’s not that pretty, but they are buttonholes.  I think if the thread matched the fabric more, the ugliness might not be as obvious.

And they say to cut open the buttonhole with a seam ripper?  Um, no.  I had to cut that thing open with scissors.  It was impervious to the seam ripper.

But, overall, not bad for a first project, no?  (If I do say so myself.) 
I also learned that the sewing machine can sew on buttons.  Kind of snazzy!

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, this is not fabric from the “nice fabrics” pile.  I bought this at the local fabric store to use as a “test” fabric.  But I rather like this fabric now that I’ve seen it take shape.  I might try to remake this cardigan in a larger size.  I think I have enough of the purple fabric to do it.

I think she likes it:


  1. Thank you for inviting me to read your blog!! I just got all caught up and LOVE it. I am so impressed...a cardigan for the FIRST project? Now that is ambition!

    I'm loving all the projects (not to mention your writing style and photography) and am excited to follow along. I may even get re-inspired to break out my machine.

  2. Okay, I need to go to bed, but I'm so fascinated by this and really do think I should pick it back up again so I'm curious about what machine you have...I can see it is a Brother but what model? Do you like it? Have you just been teaching yourself as you go? So many questions...

    I have my mom's OLD sewing machine from the early 70's so if I start up again, I'm wondering if I should go for a new machine with all the bells and whistles.

  3. Lauren ~ I'm so glad you're following along!

    I sent you some info. about the sewing machine I have. I did pretty much teach myself, although I'm sure there's a lot the sewing machine does that I haven't figured out yet. I just read the pattern very carefully, and I read some sewing blogs. I like trying different patterns, because each one kind of teaches me some new technique. If I get stuck, I google. :)


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