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Gracious Threads Maple Skirt Sew A-Long

It isn't often that I get a really great, creative, themed idea. You all are probably thinking, you sew all the time, what do you mean y...

It isn't often that I get a really great, creative, themed idea. You all are probably thinking, you sew all the time, what do you mean you're not "creative?"

Trust me, creativity is not my thing. Sure, I can follow patterns and I can copy ideas, but come up with my own... pfft. But man, I did it this time, and it is super cool (at least as cool as I can manage).

Before I get too far into my blog post narrative, today's post is part of the Gracious Threads Maple Skirt Sew A Long.
Ok, so, back to my long soliloquy. For some families, today is a Holiday. I'm not talking about any of the holidays listed here on this wikipedia page. And not "Pardon Day" either.

Today is the Kickoff for the regular Football Season! You don't celebrate Kickoff Day? Meh, me neither, LOL. But it is Kickoff Day and I love a good theme so boom, Kickoff Day it is. :)

Now when I put Kickoff Day and Maple Skirt together, I knew that what i needed was football shaped patches. I also wanted football buttons, but I couldn't find those easily, so I just went with the patches.

I used my Silhouette Cameo and this file to make my football patches. I measured the included pocket to get my patch size. That said, I forgot to take out seam allowances, so they're a teensy bit big. I still love them though. I used the pocket placement marks for the pattern as placement lines for my footballs and it worked out perfectly.

The Maple Skirt by Gracious Threads is just the sort of skirt I would have worn as a kid. Heck, its the sort of skirt I would wear now if not for the baby bump (I might need to hack something). I used some left over Chambray from LA Finch Fabrics (I'm so proud of myself for using up my leftover scraps!) and am REALLY impressed with how nice it all looks.

I did run into a few minor problems when sewing this up. And thankfully, I quickly came up with solutions.

Here's how it went down. I had interfaced my waistband, attached the lining and outer waistbands together (They weren't quite the same size!)

Problem 1, my interfacing meant that the tiny bit of stretch in the waistband was now gone and it was as if the waistband had shrunk just a tiny bit. ERG. So it took a bit of stretching, pulling and hoping that I would get just 1/4" left over at the ends rather than 3/8" as it called for in the pattern. Annoying but I managed it. To avoid that next time, I suggest using the woven facing the pattern calls for and fusing the interfacing to the lining fabric and THEN cutting out the waistband piece. That way It will be exactly the right size and you won't have to worry about any distortion from the interfacing.

Problem 2, I attached the lining waistband to the skirt. Went to wrap the outer waistband to the right side and no amount of stretching would get it to cover the stitches from the lining. Again, the interfacing was the problem. It was bulky and didn't allow the fabric to wrap over. ERG AGAIN! To fix this (since I was already here and didn't want to make a new waistband) I ended up using a 1/2" seam allowance on the lining to skirt attachment and then brought the outer waistband over and it covered just fine. 

IF you want to avoid this all together (and I really should have considered this in the first place), cut your interfacing smaller than your pattern piece by removing all the seam allowances (left, right, top, bottom). That will keep it away from those seams so that when you press and understitch etc, it won't bulk up your seams.

Please note, my interfacing was a medium weight woven as called for in the pattern, but perhaps what the designer has is lighter weight than mine? I don't know. Just know, that if you run into the same problem, you have options! It isn't necessarily that the pattern has failed or that you have failed. Only that the combination of fabrics and interfacing or different than what the designer used, so there may be some minor tweaking to do.

Problem 3, either my kid is getting skinnier or I misplaced the top button (I can't say which, I sort of cheated on the buttons o.O ). So I ended up picking out the top button and making it tighter. Honestly, this is one of the few reasons I like buttons. You can take them out and make them slightly bigger or smaller. That can really save an outfit! You can't do that as easily with snaps since they usually end up showing.

One last little tip and something I learned long ago. If you want to ensure that your buttonholes don't start to fray, run a line of fray check (or super glue, WAY cheaper) along your buttonhole before you cut it open with your seam ripper. Obviously let it dry first, or your seam ripper will end up VERY sticky. :( That will keep them nice and neat and clean for as long as you use them. And everyone likes nice neat buttonholes.

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  1. Very cute!! And ditto on the fray check....I typically use it immediately after cutting. How easy is it to cut after it dries? Thanks.

  2. Fray check and super glue work the same. PLUS, the super glue stays better in the little container than the fray check.


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