Thursday, May 22, 2014

The shorts have a secret...

It was really hard to sit down and write this post, because I feel like gushing all over the place!

Tank top blogged here.

Here I am sporting a new pair of shorts (Simplicity 1879). What's so special about them? Oh no big deal, just that they were MADE BY MY HUSBAND!

(artist's rendition)

He said I could blog about this as long as I don't include his photo, so I have provided this fantastic drawing instead. Just picture someone tall, buff and handsome and you'll be fine. Anyway, few weeks ago, out of the blue, my hubby said to me, "I want you to teach me how to sew".

...

...

That was the pause while I evaluated my hearing, sanity, and whether or not I was in the Matrix.

"WHUUUT?!"


But it was real, and I taught him, and he made these shorts. Well, I helped, but a good 75-80% was done by him alone, someone who hadn't used a sewing machine since 8th grade (although he WAS home ec student of the year). My husband has the advantage of being good at everything (it's maddening!), so I can't say I'm surprised at how quickly he learned. He even used the serger! Sorry ladies, he's taken.


I did some of the tricky bits like the darts and the waistband. But he did the zipper, most of the seams, the hem, etc. He even corrected a fit issue for me when I realized I had some horizontal lines on the front of the shorts (apparently my butt is bigger than it was last year when I made this pattern). There are still a few lines but the fit is much better than earlier. Seriously, having someone else to evaluate fit on you is SUCH a big help!

Yes, I'm sucking in my stomach!

What was nice about this project is that I had already made it once, so I had a finished example to show my husband when questions came up. The pattern is pretty simple, yet it has more challenges than, say, a pillowcase. I also already had it cut out, so we skipped that boring stuff. Yes, it's important to be able to decipher a pattern and learn cutting techniques, but it's not exactly riveting.


The fabric we used is the leftover cotton/ramie denim from these terrible no good very bad pants. I didn't quite have enough for both facings, so I had to use some scrap chambray on the back facing.

Inside view.

We also inserted an invisible zipper instead of a lapped one. Since my previous pair of these shorts from last year were...uh...snug...I went with 1/2" seam allowances instead of 5/8". Apparently you HAVE to have a 5/8" SA in order to do a lapped zipper. Now you know.

Front pleats.

We had our share of seam ripping, a jammed machine, and even a broken needle. The shorts are hemmed instead of cuffed, because just like last time I couldn't figure out the cuff directions. But unlike last time, I had a buddy to read them and tell me that they really didn't make any sense. I'm not crazy! (Errr...about this, anyway.)

I felt kind of crappy when we were done with the shorts and they were basically useless to him. He's already expressed an interest in making a t-shirt, so if there's a next time it will definitely be a garment HE can wear.

If any beginning sewists happen to be reading this post, I hope you'll be encouraged! A little guidance and determination go a long way. And to anyone who has become very jealous upon reading this braggy post...well, that was kind of the point : P

14 comments:

  1. Woah! And like that, your husband becomes legend!!!! Good on him for learning a new skill! I think he definitely deserves a Thread Theory pattern or two so that he can make something for himself! My husband diligently watches sewing shows with me (Project Runway, Great british Sewing Bee etc, and asks lots of questions about techniques, but he's never asked to actually sew something. My Dad sewed himself a hiking jacket back in the 70's - apparently before there were good outdooor outfitters, you could buy yourself a kit with the pattern and fabric and make your own!

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    1. Next time your husband asks about a technique, volunteer to teach it to him and see what happens! :)

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  2. Oh wow, that's SO cool - COOLEST husband ever! Good for him!!! He did a great job. And I agree with Gillian - he deserves something from Thread Theory for sure! My Mr. replaced a zipper in his work jacket once & I was pretty impressed with that (it looked TERRIBLE but it worked & that's all he cared about). But man, I'd fall over from shock if he ever asked me to teach him how to sew.

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    1. I was sitting on a tall chair when he asked me...let's say I was close to falling over!

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  3. An amazing man, indeed! And having a fit buddy is priceless. I can't wait to see what is next :-D

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    1. We just need to source some acceptable t-shirt fabric! I told him we could draft a pattern based on his favorite shirt so we don't have to mess around with a commercial pattern that he might not like.

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    2. I keep wanting to order from here, but I need to use stash fabric first. You order, and tell me how it is. ;-)

      http://organiccottonplus.com/

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    3. I ordered some swatches, I'll let you know how they are ;)

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    4. By the way, got the swatches and they're all lovely...now to find an excuse to order!

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  4. Good job! My boyfriend recently asked me to sew him a pair of shorts, but perhaps I should tell him to make them himself instead... :D

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  5. Love your shorts. I have got to the cuff instructions and they don't make sense to me either!

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