Monday, August 6, 2018



It is properly hot here—not out-of-bounds hot, the way it seems to be in Europe this summer, but just a regular hot summer, the way I remember summer, and the way I love it.  I point a big fan at my head and just read a book, quietly melting.  It’s not too hot for me to knit (it never is) but for reasons unrelated to the weather, the Cozy Things Sweater Knitting Machine is taking a brief hiatus.  I decided to sew something, because (see above: I like the heat) I apparently enjoy suffering and failure.  All my knitting projects are being confounding right now, and I seem to have backed myself into a situation where I have nothing to do except knit eight sleeves, and since that makes me want to scream a little bit, I picked out a really nice sewing pattern and some really questionable fabric and got to work.

Fabric.  You guys.  Okay, I’ve tried linen in the past, and I loved it, but despite all kinds of careful finishing and double-felled seams and neat topstitching, it fell completely to pieces in the wash and I am not having that, ya’ll.  Apart from linen and all the synthetic fabrics you could want, there isn’t anything left in the fabric store except quilting cottons and polar fleece printed in Dora the Explorer motifs.  Help!  Honestly.  I try buying fabric online, but it never looks or feels like I thought it would.  I don’t know what to do.



This fabric was a desperate move.  It is a very lightweight cotton, printed in India, perhaps using some kind of resist technique and indigo dyeing...okay, it is a curtain I bought at Home Goods.  I think it looks fine and it hangs nicely (because it’s a curtain) and the pattern was really good, with lots of interesting construction techniques that were fun to work on but not too hard (because, honestly, I have the sewing skills of an advanced toddler) and it fits and looks good.  But there’s still this problem:



It clings to everything.  Everything I sew clings to everything.  Am I just extra-staticky?  Sigh.  I will make another one of these in better fabric, once I figure out what that is.

31 comments:

  1. I liked your post, the fabric and the result :) Personally, in summer I wear nothing BUT rayon. Anything else,including cotton, makes me feel caged. And I absolutely don't mind the hand washing (tip for younger generation: do not wash rayon tops in the washer, even on delicate cycle). Once, many many years ago, I sewed myself a winter coat out of a pure wool blanket - that was a traffic stopper.

    Keep the creative spirit!

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    1. I don't mind hand-washing, either--maybe rayon is the way to go. I would LOVE to see your wool blanket coat. That sounds dreamy. xoxo

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  2. If I find prints I like in the quilting cottons, or even a plain color, I go ahead and use them. Also batiks are wonderful. I also have the same problem with static though, I think it's just me. Haha The top came out great! I love the print. :)

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    1. When you like a fabric, you just like it, right? :)

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  3. Love tbe shirt! Try rubbing a dryer sheet on yourself/the underside of the garment to reduce the cling.

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    1. Wow - never heard of that before - you would smell like fresh laundry!

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    2. Ooh, that's a good idea! :)

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  4. What a shame as the style of the top is lovely. Sometimes wearing a vest underneath can work.

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    1. Might have to do that anyway--it's pretty thin. :)

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  5. Your post is humorous - love it . Just LOVE the top , the fabric is AWESOME . Waiting for next post .

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  6. Try a cotton voile for that top, sans clingyness. (the cling likely is because that isn't actually cotton, but polyester made to look & feel like cotton)

    A double gauze would be lovely as well

    Don't count out quilting cottons, either. That's a staple fabric for me for summer skirts. The one draw-back is the need to iron them, but I don't mind that.

    I will echo an above poster, rayon is also a wonderful fabric to work with. I like ITY knits for simple tops and ponte knits for something more substantial (but not all ponte knits are created equal, some are wonderfully durable and some will pill if you look at them wrong)

    The top pattern is lovely, though, definitely worth giving it another go!

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    1. Unless the tag is wrong, this is definitely 100% cotton. Ponte knits is a new one to me--must do some googling. I do like quilting cottons for skirts--there are so many pretty fabrics out there, it might be time to revisit a few favorite old patterns. :)

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  7. I really like the look of this and the true tale of origins of the resist batik fabric made me laugh. I bought something, can't recall what now, that clung and I used a lot of fabric softener and it came right. I only had to do that once. Or a silk slip underneath will help without being hot and sweaty. But this pattern and the look are worth trying again.

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    1. Fabric softener! That might be just the ticket! Thanks, lovely. xoxo

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  8. I love the fabric and pattern! When you can’t knit, might as well sew with a fabric print that looks like knitting! I agree with the suggestion to try rayon. It’s a natural fiber fabric, though it sounds synthetic. I have tried a couple rayon prints from Joann Fabrics and ordered a few online and been pleased with how they have sewn, worn, and washed. And maybe you can rescue this shirt with a quick spray of Static Guard!

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    1. I am loving the idea of rayon, too. I shrunk a few rayon things years ago and that put me off it, but of course all the woolens get handwashed, so maybe it's time for me to make friends with it again. :)

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  9. Great story! Ditto to everyone's fabric softener tips. I like cotton gauze, hard to find, but wrinkly enough to stand up to sqwushing. Ixnay on rayon, hand washing ugh, wrinkles, wrinkles. Your top looks great!

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    1. Funny, I never hand wash anything I've made from rayon...maybe I've just been lucky? Everything goes into the washer, then the dryer, (if it isn't solar dryer season)

      Anything with acetate, on the other hand, UGH!! I won't go near that!

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    2. The dryer, too? Beckie, you rule-breaker! lol...

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    3. Cotton gauze is new to me--I'll try to hunt some down. I'm all about the sqwushing! :)

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  10. I'm staticky too, and from time to time have to lean against the cold tap at the sink to de-static myself. A strange sight for the builders who are working outside my kitchen!

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  11. I don't know if you were going for comedy in this post but I just had to laugh at the part where you said it hangs well because well, it is a curtain! I think it looks good on you and the pattern looks like a well done one. Are you sure that the fabric is 100% cotton? Being a curtain, it may be a blend and that would definitely give it some static problems. Next fabric you purchase, do a burn test on it. Cut a corner off somewhere and put a flame to it over the sink. If it burns with a pure ash then it is probably cotton but, if it looks like it is burning and melting at the same time, then you have a blend of some sort. Best wishes for the rest of your summer. I hope it doesn't get unbearably hot for you. I'm in Charlotte, North Carolina and it is unbearably hot AND humid this week. And the Dog Days of August are just around the corner!

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    1. I am always going for comedy... ;D

      It's definitely cotton, at least that's what the tag says. xoxo

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  12. the fabric could be a blend. pure cotton does not last long in sunlight so it is not often used in curtains. also if the pants are a synthetic blend that will make the cling worse. Static Guard was what we all used back in the day wheb a slip was a required garment

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    1. The tag says "100% cotton, Made in India". It feels like cotton, too...

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    1. Yes, I think this will be the answer. :)

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  14. No static hints but you could try rayon/viscose if you like it drapey. If linen doesn't work I use a linen blend which looks like linen but doesn't crease so much. Cotton lawn is also a light weight cotton which would work for this top. It is a lovely shape. Jo x

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    1. Hmmm, linen blend--will that hold up at the seams better than 100% linen, do you think? I love linen, but everything I've made with it has eventually fallen to pieces.

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