Kwik Sew 4113 sewn in a nylon lycra something or other bought in the garment district. The second attempt at this pattern. The first was thrown away. A miserable failure that was just a mess after all the taking in here and there, as this pattern ran large. While this version is by no means perfect, it’s a serviceable outfit for the courts. My serger basically ate the waistband, when I tried to attach the skirt, shorts, and yoke together. My serger just can’t get through all those layers of fabric without creating a monstrous bulky seam. So I cut the whole seam off and sewed it with my zig zag stitch.Yeah, it’s a mess. How to get a smooth waistband attachment with a home sewing machine when sewing through 6 layers of thickish lycra? I have no idea. I sewed it with a narrow zig zag stitch as the pattern suggests. But the directions don’t have you finish either the top of the waistband yoke or the bottom. It was a lumpy mess so I topstiched witha zig zag stitch to get it to lie down flatter, but it didn’t really work.So how was this pattern? It was my first time sewing with Kwik Sew and the fit is large. According to my measurements, 37-28-37, I should have cut a medium. I did on the first version. but it was huge and I ended up distorting the fit with all my taking in and seam ripping of serged seams. So I had a little fit and threw the whole project in the trash, waited a couple days, and started over. This time I cut a small, which fit better.
A MAJOR problem with this pattern is there are no notches to line up the shorts, the skirt, and the yoke for assembly. They all have to be sandwiched into each other and I had one hell of a time figuring out how to line them up since the shorts underneath have no side seams, making figuring out where to sew even harder. I eventually just tried the shorts on, then put the skirt over, then added the yoke and pinned them together. I was NOT happy about that. Nope. Not at all. But I managed to get it together.An hour and a half of tennis with my buddies and all is forgotten!Here is my tennis partner Jessie wearing my Jalie 3463. Dang, she looks good in it!One cool thing I learned on this project was how to make a flatlock stitch with my serger.
How did I not know about the flat lock stitch on my serger until now?
It’s going to completely change the ambivalence I’ve had toward sewing active wear!
Of course, I still need a bit more practice to get it right.
Now at the risk of embarrassing myself on the internet, I’m going to explain how someone who has been sewing for twenty five years, albeit, not consistently until the last 6, has managed not to have any idea what a flatlock stitch even was.
I’ve been floundering with my “me made” active wear projects, since I really wanted to get the stitch look of the flatlock but didn’t think it was even possible on home sewing machinery. Here are all the not so brilliant ways I tried to work around it.
- Sewing with a serger, then using my coverstitcher to go over the serged seam on the outside with the looped part of the cover stitch on the outside. Probably the WORST idea ever. About 1/3 of my coverstitches broke, due to going over the bulk of the serged seam.
- Sewing with a serger , then going over the outside seam with a decorative stitch from my normal sewing machine, resulting in hugely bulky, stretched out seams. I threw away my last project because I did this.
- Sewing with a zig zag stitch, then going over the outside of the seam with a decorative stitch on my conventional machine. A little better looking than the two previous methods.
While perusing my reader, I came across Sewaholic’s tutorial on how to get a faux flatlock stitch with a normal sewing machine. A brilliant tutorial for those of you without sergers, by the way.
Is that what that stitch on the outside seams of active wear is called?
Don’t I have a flatlock stitch option on my serger? The thing was, I just skipped over that part in the manual because I didn’t even know that was what that type of stitch on activewear was called! I assumed you needed some type of industrial machine to get that look, and that was out of my reach.
I just skipped the flatlock pages altogether, thinking it was some type of stitch to make decorative napkins or something. Not that making decorative napkins is nerdy, it’s just not my thing. OK, maybe it is just a little nerdy. The photo in my serging book showed some old fashioned looking napkins utilizing the flatlock stitch. If it had showed activewear, something I’m interested in sewing, then I would have paid attention. Which goes to show you why it’s important to keep an open mind when reading about sewing techniques.
And that’s why it’s important to learn your sewing terms readers.
No tutorial for this today, as I hardly feel equipped to write one since I only just learned it myself!
Just a little PSA for those of you in the same boat as me.