Desperate piecing

So, remember when I posted how I’d finished cutting out the last bits for Tyo’s bunnyhug and had enough fabric left for her pair of shorts?

Well, as soon as I finished cutting them out, I had a little niggle. What if. What if I messed up one of the pieces? What if I have a serging accident? I just officially used up all but the smallest scraps of my matching fabric, with no hope of replacing any of it.

Well, when I finally started tidying up, guess what I discovered?

One more pattern piece for the bunnyhug, which I hadn’t cut out.

Not only that, the single longest pattern-piece in the entire pattern, the sleeve sides. Of which I need not one, not two, but four copies.

I think there’s a sequence to this, kind of like the stages of grief. Denial—maybe I took the pieces off the pattern and they’re kicking around somehwere? Anger—how could I do this? Oh, I’m so stupid. Bargaining—maybe I can match in some other fabric? What about the scraps from hubs’ coat? no?

Fortunately with sewing, at least, there’s the potential for action, not just acceptance.

I gathered up my largest remaining scraps (most of which weren’t more than 6″ in any given direction.

I roughly, ever so roughly, matched the grain-lines.

And I pieced them together, using the same serge & topstitch methodology I used on Tyo’s shorts.

This was a wild affront to the sewing gods, peeps. If I die in a freak serging accident next week, you’ll know why.

And I cut out not one, not two, but four side-sleeve pieces.


Nothing like a new design feature or two 😉

Pieced sleeve (almost finished)

I’m actually pretty satisfied with how they look. Not exactly intentional, but not exactly unintentional, either. I used some black twill tape to cover over the seam on the top part of the sleeve, which echoes the topstitched ridges in the black nicely, I think. This is the same method I used for Syo’s hoodie here.

For the other sleeve, I decided to add a little pocket just above the top-sleeve seam.

Pocket sleeve

I even *almost* managed to match up that one piecing seam. So close…

So I think it’ll work. But I still don’t recommend it. Now tell me your latest offence against the sewing gods (intentional or otherwise) to make me feel better! 🙂



Filed under Sewing

28 responses to “Disaster!

  1. Oh boy… that’s a good save.

    Last offence against the sewing gods… well, I have done a lot of smaller mistakes, like not cutting out enough pieces (first Renfrew was the most recent) but I still had lots of fabric. I have in cutting out pieces for bras cut top cup pieces from fabric when I didn’t need to because it was going to be lace. I think for every single bra I have put the channelling too high at the sides resulting in twenty layers of fabric. Including last night (although I think I lowered it enough, I haven’t put the top elastic in yet).

    Butterick 5147 is probably where I’ve tested the sewing gods. I made the top from a stretch suiting but used a non-stretch lining. It was my second time making the top so I was more confident about the fitting and cut it a little smaller knowing there would be give. It fits when I’m 8lbs lighter and with a less umphy bra, but it’s not really comfortable. And that is okay, but I did it AGAIN sewing the skirt from the same fabric. So I tried to put a stretch panel in the lining so there would be some give. It is presently still in the UFO state.

    • I think bras would have like triple the normal opportunity for offences… I need to look into stretch linings, because I would probably do exactly like you! 🙂

  2. That is not a mistake, but a fashion detail. Once I managed to cut the sleeves in different length (even though I had the fabric doubled), I had to got for 3/4 sleeves then.

    • I won’t tell them if you don’t. 😉

      You know, I really like 3/4 sleeves. I just have a hard time sewing them because I can finally have long sleeves, dammit!

  3. Great save!

    Latest offense: I had a piece of pant-weight wool from my aunt’s stash in the 70s, and I noticed as I was ironing it that there was a 1″ tear in it. Since there were stitches holding it together using the exact thread woven in the fabric, I’m assuming it was a Seconds and the tear happened in the factory. Did I remember this a week later when I was all excited to *exactly* eek out a pair of Burda pants out of that fabric, with cutting the inside waistband out of broadcloth? No. I did not. Nor did I until I had serged underlining to at least one back piece and interfaced the waistband. The cut nicely centres on my front calf :(. If I knew it was going to be great fabric, I’d figure out some kind of embroidery cover (I don’t have an embroidery machine), but an earlier piece from her stash has pilled like crazy. Trashed. Sigh.

    • Oh, no! That would kill me. Sometimes I find hand-me-down fabric even more precious than expensive stuff, because it’s absolutely irreplaceable. Let’s pretend it was a nasty 70s poly blend or something…

  4. Watch out, now the kiddies will want all future sleeves to pieced.

    • LinB

      That IS a quandary: whether to confess to one’s children that Mama made a mistake, and have them respect you less; or whether to condemn one’s self to a lifetime of spectacular “design decisions” on every garment you construct for your children. My own daughter is now 21 — I did not confess sewing mistakes to her. She still wants me to sew for her.

  5. My affronts to the sewing gods are legion, but probably my most egregious (and frequent) abuse is the grainline. I always just eyeball it. *gasp* I know, but, it seems to work out fine.

    • LOL. I am guilty of eyeballing (or measuring with my fingers) the grainline ninety percent of the time. I think the only time I’m really anal about it is with jeans, because twisty jeans drive me NUTS.

  6. I think I was holding my breath until you got to the part about how you saved it! Great save! It looks really cool! My most depressing mistake was washing some silk suiting in the washing machine. Still heart broken… Then my latest was sewing two pairs of pants with the wrong seam allowance throughout and wondering how I had gained SO MUCH weight!

    • Oh, no! That’s totally something I would do—I hate dry-cleaning anything. Some of the sweaters I’ve made in the last year have definitely been degraded by machine washing…

  7. What a spectacular save! I love how the pieces-together sleeve looks, actually. Also, bunnyhug…hehehehehe.

    I don’t know if this is an offense against the sewing gods or just plain absent-mindedness on my part, but one time I sewed an entire woven skirt with the ballpoint needle that I forgot to take out after sewing a knit top. Also, this may or may not have been just three days ago, on my last project…

    • Hmm, I think I’ll rank that one up with skipping grace before a meal ;). I forget what needle’s in my machine all the time—90% of the time it’s fine. Of course the other 10% I want to stab myself in the eye…

  8. Great save, i think it looks way better than just a normal sleeve. You will be the coolest mom ever. Remember my recent post about the scrub top I cut too short? It is the one that I like the best. I think sometimes we need to challenge ourselves and this is the unconscious’s (spelling??) way of making it happen.

  9. I wouldn’t call that an offense, I’d call that exceedingly clever and resourceful sewing. 🙂

    There’s a flat fell seam on my new shorts that I definitely *SHOULD* unpick and re-sew (the CB seam) but I don’t think I will. It holds together ok, and I didn’t want to make shorts anyway. The sewing gods insisted. They mess with me, I offend them. It works for us.

    • Just don’t ever look at the flat-felled seams on my sailor jeans. Or the shirt I made my husband for Christmas (which I should really blog some day…)

      Someday I’ll manage a flat-fell I’m not ashamed of..

  10. That’s not a good save, it’s a brilliant design decision!

    I’ve made no offenses to the sewing goddesses lately. I just haven’t been sewing – easy!

    Oh wait…is not sewing an offense?


    • Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. Ah well, you’ve been too buys re-shaping the sewing blogosphere with your keen insight into blogspot mechanics 😀

  11. Great save! This is why we have stash, clearly.

    My offenses to the sewing gods usually involve cutting patterns out willy-nilly and sewing them from good fabric without making a muslin first. You can see the results in my UFO pile, which is full of mostly finished garments that don’t fit, have never fit and most likely will NOT fit anybody. I know I have more than 6 semi-garments in there — it’s less than 10, but not much less. Oops?

    As far as the above issue, I realized that I’m really only annoyed because I wasted all those zippers. The waistbands have been trimmed and finished, so there’s not enough zipper tape left to make it worthwhile to rip them out. 🙂

  12. I think just go with claiming its intentional. Random seams are cool. Heck, put in extra (or maybe just twill tape to look like extra) all over. Extra cool!

    • I did consider that. 😉

      As it turned out, there was another piece I hadn’t cut enough of (I cut 2, needed 4), so there’s even *more* piecing. I mean, design elements.

  13. What a spectacular save! (cue hockey night in canada crowd roar) I love the twill tape. I certainly would never have thought!

    I just hate that sinking feeling of dread when I realize I’ve gone ahead without thinking placement, grain, design – whatever! – through properly (thoroughly?). And my list is endless and would make you weep. Weep, I tell you! Cashmere, silk jersey, French silk tweeds…. UGH! I refuse to recall any further disasters. I do have my sewing pride!!

  14. Zena

    Perhaps the sewing gods are fickle, or perhaps they have gotten fussier in recent centuries. There is a tunic that is about 2000 years old, and reconstructionists (is that a word?) would likely make it out of 4 pieces (2 sleeves, front, and back) or even 3 pieces (if there was no shoulder seam). The extant tunic comprises 45 individual pieces (not including some that are clearly missing), out of 10 different types of textile. Grainline isn’t just optional – it’s irrelevant. (Heidemarie Farke, Der Männerkittle aus Bernuthsfeld: Beobachtungen während einer Restaurierung, in Bender Jørgensen & Rinaldo, eds., NESAT 6. Yes, I am providing a citation in a blog comment. I geek like that.)

    • And if I had to hand-spin, hand-weave, and hand sew all my fabric, I would totally be doing the same thing!

      And while I may not do much (any) reconstructing historical fashions, I spend enough time researching it to appreciate source-citing ;).

  15. That could totally have happened to me! My most recent offence was trying to cut out pattern pieces for a dress with a half-circle skirt from a 1m length of jersey (originally bought for making a skirt). Of course I started with the skirt pieces, and didn’t have enough scraps for even the tiny raglan sleeves after cutting out skirt and bodice parts. I should have gone for a less full skirt, but I think contrast bands will save it…

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