Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Me-Made May, Days 16-20 and a Wool Conundrum

Another Me-Made May update! Are you getting bored of these yet? I admit that, while I truly enjoy seeing other people's outfits, I'm very overwhelmed by the immense amount of pictures in the flickr group...
Day 16:  me-made halter top, leggins and (unseen) knickers.
Day 17: my very first me-made skirt and recently made yoked flower top, plus me-made knickers. The luxerious breakfast was because it was the anniversary of bf&my first kiss. :)
In Sewing News, I'm still in the cutting out stage for several projects (two blouses and a Lola!). But I had a rather panicked thought a couple of days ago: I have nothing to wear for Orals! Ok, this is possibly a lie, since I have an (ill fitting) white blouse and a couple pairs of dressy trousers, but no blazer. There's also going to be a few job interviews in my very near future. What to do?!? 
Day 18: me-made dotty jersey dress. Me-made knickers. And yes, I'm posing with an  umbrella, even though it isn't raining. It was raining earlier, I promise!
Day 19: me-made striped jersey dress and me-made knickers. Also: me-made bird earrings. 
Well, I only added the bird charms to the hooks. But it still counts, right? 
So, since I recently bought Gertie's Book for better Sewing, and also own her Craftsy Starlet Suit Jacket class, I was thinking it might be a nice idea to make a suit jacket and matching (Colette Rooibos) dress out of navy wool with white piping. It might also be a crazy idea. Brilliant? Crazy? I don't know!
Day 20: me-made black&white jersey dress and me-made leggins. Me-planted seedlings. The plentiful green stuff behind the watering can is lettuce! It grows crazy fast!
So, I bought 3 m of navy wool fabric today, and already put it into the drier with a couple of wet towels  for 45 minutes to pre-treat it, because it has been suggested on the internets that that is a good idea.
I fear that it wasn't, quite, since the only part that seems to have shrunk is a strip about 4 cm wide, running down the whole length of the fabric, smack dab in the middle where the fold line was. Umm, ok? I can probably cut most of the pieces around it (I hope), but I'm wondering if the fabric is pre-treated enough? It was pretty hot and steaming when I took it out of the drier. Nothing has actually felted (relieved sigh). But since it shrunk in that funny way, I'm not sure it has shrunk enough? Do any of you know enough about wool fabric to tell me what's going on?

After about 45 minutes in the drier with a couple of wet towels, on a high setting:
Should I steam/press it again with my iron? Is it alright to use it like that? I'm confused.
Have you ever sewn with wool? How have you pre-shrunk it? Is there anything else I have to know about sewing with wool?


  1. I think the plan for a suit jacket and Rooibos is GENIUS!!

  2. I've heard some negative reviews of that jacket from the Craftsy class... seems like some parts werent' very well drafted and it was a headache to sew!
    Here's what a blogger I met up with in Toronto had to say: http://line4line.blogspot.ca/2012/05/in-which-i-tell-it-like-i-see-it.html
    But then, i've heard good things about the patterns in the book!

  3. You used my preferred method for pre-shrinking your wool. I've used wet towels in the dryer to pre-shrink multiple pieces, but I've never had any of them shrink like that down the middle. I'd be suspicious that something might be off in the weaving of that area of the cloth. You could try pressing it to see if it's just uneven shrinkage, but I think if it were me, if it didn't press out absolutely perfect right away, then I wouldn't use that shrunk up part of the fabric. So sorry, since it runs down the center, it will be a giant pain to try to cut around (but not as much of a pain as putting in hours of work on a suit that will never look right due to a fabric flaw)

  4. I think all your outfits are lovely, and while I love seeing other girls; outfits too, I do have to admit I'm getting bored with doing my bit! And I agree, the flickr group is craaazy big this time!
    I've never put woollen fabric in the dryer, that is a new one to me! unless I'm trying to felt it on purpose, of course! and I don't pre-shrink woollen fabric, just wash it very carefully, always. This is how I was taught to wash wool: either hand-wash or a very gentle machine wash, with wool soap, roll excess water out in a towel, and dry flat.

  5. Oh, and happy first kiss anniversary!

  6. I would be too scared to put wool in a tumble drier like this!! Sorry about the bit in the middle I just don't know what to suggest.
    I have by and large given up commenting on Flickr because the group is so large that I feel bad if I can't comment on everyone's pictures as it doesn't seem fair, but I do try and make the effort.I think for that reason I shall make this my last Me Made!
    Your outfits all look very nice as ever and so sweet about the first kiss too!!

  7. I have always just hand washed wool too, usually in my bathtub. If I know wool, it's possible that it has started to felt in that little area, and if it doesn't press flat with the rest quite easily, I would cut around it.
    Other than watching out for felting (careful washing essential) wool is a total dream to sew. You won't believe how easy it is to ease it just how you want it, it's like butter in your hands, especially with a little steam. I think making a suit would be awesome!

  8. I love the outfits, especially the striped jersey dress. I have a piece of wool crepe that I am scared to use as I don't know how to prepare it! You are inspiring me to be braver.
    What a romantic first kiss breakfast! xx