Saturday, June 27, 2009

Butterick 5215

One of the sewing tasks I wanted to accomplish this year was sewing knit fabrics. Whenever JoAnn's had their $1 Butterick pattern sale I picked up pattern 5215. It is a simple t-shirt. You know, a t-shirt you can pick up on clearance for just a few bucks but instead I worked from late afternoon until the wee early morning hours sewing. Ya. To be honest I did take several breaks for dinner and such but still it always takes longer the first time around.
Most of the time was spend preparing the pattern. I have to admitt that I was feeling impatient before I even started this project. I have been trying to get into the habit of tracing patterns instead of just cutting out the size I need. But I confirmed my size on the envelope and just went for it. Full on scissor on pattern paper action. I chose style A which is a more fitted t-shirt pattern. But to be honest, I couldn't really tell any difference between style B or C just by looking at the pattern pieces.

I had some clearance knit bought at JoAnns for $2/ yard. So I only had $2 for fabric and $1 for the pattern I just ruined by not taking the time to trace out my size. Stupid me.

It only had 4 pieces and the instructions were very good. No misinterpretation on my part. This was the first time I also sewed a sleeve. So that's 2 tasks checked off of my years sewing list.

I also was able to discover the best way to handle sewing stretchy fabrics on my sewing machine. I used a special needle for jersey fabrics and lengthened my stitch length until it sailed through my machine like butter. I do not own a serger so this was crucial.

Check out this neckline. I also topstiched the shoulder seams. The neckline is finished using a simple bias tape cut from the same knit. With all the folding there is 5 layers of fabric there which makes for a sturdy neckline.

Later on in the evening or early morning depending on how you define it, I was finishing up the bottom hem. My plan from the begining was to embellish this shirt using a reverse applique` technique like found in my Alabama Stitch Book. Probably the rose with a white background and aqua topstitching. So after looking through my trim box I found this vintage lace. At 1:30am I pinned it on and sewed with no hesitation. Everything looked great until I realized that this is not stretch lace and my hem is now never going to have any give.

None-the-less, I through this over my head and realized this was a very form fitting t-shirt and exagerated my chest quite a bit. I have the horizontal stretch bands in between my two boobs. Classy. The hem, even in its non stretch state, was fine. And I realized an easy fix would be to retrace the pattern one size bigger on top. But then my impatient self cut the sucker up. So there you go. I guess I'll have to reinvest $1 the next time on the same pattern next time it goes on sale. Lesson learned. In the mean time my best bet is to get skinny and save myself the $1 for the second pattern.


  1. skinny's over rated. That's one heck of a neckline!

  2. Great neckline binding! Very professional. For a $1 pattern, I wouldn't bother to trace, either. It doesn't hurt to save the tissue you cut off until you know you don't want it though. Scotch tape is our friend.

  3. oooh! I love me some Alabama Stitch book! It's SO amazing!

  4. soooo great! nice neckline!

  5. Whether it fits or not, that is one amazing shirt. The attention to detail - that neckline! - is impeccable.

  6. Hmmm, I love and adore your cute pins. Just regular pins with buttons hot glued on?

  7. Thanks for the tip for sewing a knit. I'm still working on that...


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