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Sewing and Upcycling

I haven't had in person classes for a while and last week my talented innovative student came over .


She loves to upcycle. She follows avante garde designers and then comes to class with her very interesting ideas.


Her main staple of upcycled pieces are men's button down shirts. This time she had seen some interesting sleeves and wanted to try her hand at ruching, gathering.


Her first step was to pin the sleeve to see if she could get the "look"


sleeve on shirt with pinned gathers


The first sleeve


mens button down shirt with one gathered sleeve



gathered sleeve on shirt


And then to create the effect on a piece of fabric. The "look" seems very casual but when creating it has to be measured and pinned. She sewed evenly measured "pleats" on a piece of fabric and created a "sleeve" from that.



measuring pleats on fabric



gathering pleats on fabric


Then sewn,


sewing a sleeve


After trying it on to create the casual look she will add elastic to the seam to ruche it up



gthered sleeve


The second project was copying and creating a pattern from a pair of gathered pants. This time the fabric to be used was not upcycled. Cottons purchased in Japan many years ago will finally be used to create something.



selection of Japanese indigo and beige cotton fabrics


Though in keeping with our upcycling philosophy we drafted a pattern from her pair of gathered pants onto newspaper and she then cut the pattern pieces out.



cutting out fabric in shape of pants pattern


She gave it some thought, as of course all of her pieces have to have that designer touch. How could she do that in a pair of simple gathered pants?


Well, the fabric had 2 different colors on either side so she thought about it and decided that the inner pocket pieces would use the contrasting color as would the back pieces of the pant legs.



pinning pocket pattern piece to fabric


The one side of the fabric has a beige color and the other a slightly indigo color



pocket on pants


Cutting the angle for the pockets



cutting pocket opening shape on fabric


The pattern pieces cut out



pattern pieces of pants cut out laid on a table


The fabric has not been prewashed. It was 100% cotton so as I did not know how much it would shrink after being washed we added some cm to the size of the pattern and would readjust the paper pattern after washing the pants.


Took out the trusted vintage Brother sewing machine


Turquosie vintage Brother sewing machine


And she sewed the pants



sewing pants on a sewing machine


The pockets



showing pocket of pants



and the pants. The fabric shrunk very slightly so the paper pattern was adjusted accordingly.


Sometimes the creation of the pattern takes much more time than the sewing of the garment itself. So if one has taken the time to draft a pattern it is worth it after all adjsutments to transfer it to thicker parchment paper so that can be preserved and reused often.



gathered elastic pants with pockets


A pair of casual very comfortable pants



gathered elastic pants with pockets being worn


That added extra touch



gathered elastic pants with pockets



 

There are online pdf tutorials and video classes available to purchase


The tutorials are available here on Etsy


and here on my site


and the videos classes can be viewed here on my site after purchase

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