Good morning. Six more days until Mother’s Day Sunday. I’m still pondering on what to get my mama as we’ll be going up to her house on Saturday for lunch while also celebrating my paternal grandmother’s 90-something birthday. I am to bring a salad, any kind is welcome. I also plan to bake my Yin Yin some cookies as she likes my sweets.
My sewing was still stuck in the land of flannel last weekend, but I’m proud I stuck to it to do it right. And oh boy were there a few more beginner mistakes! But before I get into all that, yesterday I made my husband set up the tripod so we could take this picture:
A close up of the materials…
- McCALL’s M7299 (for the girls, size 10-12)
- Simplicity 8022 (for me, size S, and for the husband, size M)
- (Jellybean) Snuggle Flannel Fabric 42″ – Watercolor Cat Faces
- (Coconut) Snuggle Flannel Fabric 42″ – Watercolor Feathers
- (me) Snuggle Flannel Fabric 43″ – Tossed Llama Teal
- (E) DC Comics Superman Flannel Fabric 42″ – Man of Steel
What I Learned
The proper iron setting for flannel is 4, the lowest steam setting, not 6 which is for cotton.
- I had to ungunk my iron plate which is a pain.
When buying a pattern, double-check what sizes it contains.
- I had originally bought the McCALL’s pattern back in December, thinking it was for the whole family because of its picture. Nope, it was just for kids.
Figure out body measurements and where they fall amongst the pattern numbers, but look at the finished garment measurements before choosing a size to cut out.
- Remember how my first pair of pants came out super big?
Pay attention to the diagram layout of fabric before laying out the pattern pieces. Ask myself, am I using a directional print? This affects how the fabric should be laid out + how pieces should be placed and cut.
- LOL, you can’t tell but the print of half of my husband’s Superman pants are upside down. I had folded the fabric where the selvages ran parallel to one another. With the Simplicity pattern it’s one pattern piece where you cut two of it out. So the top piece had the print going the right way while the bottom piece’s print ran the other way.
- When I was making mine Saturday, the pattern has you put one leg right side out into the other leg that is inside out so I can sew the curved, crotch seams together. Well, the sides were way off from one another, not lining up. I then realized I didn’t cut a piece right. Soon enough, when I checked the instructions, I didn’t do it right when having the flannel at a single thickness. Doh!
Measure from the grainline to the edge of the fabric before pinning.
- Very important as this affects how the fabric will sit and drape on your body. Good thing I had remembered last-minute this old lesson I had learned from my mum.
Shorten before cutting, but leave a hem allowance.
- Jellybean’s pants were made first. When she tried them on, they were a bit shorter than I had intended to make them, LOL.
After shortening, use your quilting ruler:
- See that double line? For a Simplicity pattern, how is a beginner supposed to know that’s where you can shorten or lengthen the pants? I only knew what to do b/c I did this step with the McCALL’s pattern (which labels it) for the youngest’s.
- It made me feel unsure to cut blindly as you see shortening the pattern creates that gap. So I then thought to use my quilting ruler to draw a line with a water-soluable marker so the edge of the pattern before the lines meets up straight with the bottom of the leg area.
Do not cut out fabric with pinking shears.
- I had done this with the cat flannel and when I was putting together pieces to sew, I felt everything was so uneven.
- For the pairs of pants afterwards, I would pink the sewn seam allowances and then iron them flat out.
Hemming pants is tedious!
- For the crew’s pants, I just winged it with folding. However, by mine I decided if I was going to make more of these, I better kick my lazy arse into gear and do it right. I had also figured other clothing projects would involve hemming as well.
- Not wanting to buy a hemming tool as I needed one right then and there, I got a piece of scrap, card stock and drew lines with Sharpies and a quilting ruler. Let me tell you, this really made a difference and gave the waistband and pants cuffs a more polished look.
There is a certain way to wear these pants.
- There is that bit of more material below the horizontal seam because of course you need more room in your pants for your backside. This is how you’ll know which side is the front of the pants.
- So the husband and the kids could tell, I machine-sewed a line in contrasting thread inside the waistband on the center seam, so they’d be able to tell which side was the back.
To Recommend or Not Recommend
I would recommend the McCALL’s pattern for kids only because the finished dimensions of the pieces for adults are extremely large to me.
The Simplicity pattern is perfect for kids, teens, and adults. I can’t wait to make more. Flannel prints are so cute and fun to shop for at the craft store. I’ve been wearing mine and they are absolutely comfortable. My husband wore his most of Sunday and he told me he loves them. *fist pump*
Thank you for taking the time to read this long post. I wanted to be as detailed as I could because if there are other beginning sewists like me out there, I want to be helpful in any way I can, especially if she is about to embark upon making the same type of project.
Have a good Monday and thanks for poppin’ by. TTYS.