Sportswear: Embellishing a T-Shirt with Coverstitch

Sportswear: Embellishing a T-Shirt with Coverstitch

One of my favorite items to make is a simple t-shirt.  It’s fast and easy when sewn with a serger. Then I use the Brother Coverstitch machine for hemming.  But what about embellishing the tee with coverstitching!  If you have used the Coverstitch before you will notice the back side of the coverstitch has a sporty look, similar to what we see in sportswear.  For this tutorial, I am going to show you how to utilize the 3-thread Coverstitch to create this fashionable look!  Let’s get started:

Materials:

  • Angela Wolf Ruched-T Pattern  (Click 👉🏻 here to order and use coupon code BROTHER20 for a 20% discount)
  • Stretch Fleece Fabric
  • 4 spools of serger thread
  • Tailors chalk

 

DESIGNING THE LOCATION FOR THE STITCHES:

Cut out the pattern. My T-shirt pattern pieces consist of 1 Front, 1 Back, 2 Sleeves, and 1 Collar. There are not princess seams, but I want to add the illusion there are princess seams.  Starting with the front pattern, on the wrong side of the fabric, draw a line from the armscye to the hem.  Use a curved ruler if you need help drawing the curve .

Fold the fabric in half and use your hand to brush the fabric.  This will trace the chalk mark to the other side of the fabric.

Open the fabric back up and you should see a faint line from the first chalk marking.  Use the chalk to trace over this line, making it darker and easier to see. Do the same thing for the BACK pattern piece.  For the collar and sleeve, draw randomly placed chalked lines.

SET UP THE COVERSTITCH MACHINE

Choose the color of thread for the decorative stitch.  Ideally the color should be in the same color family as the right side of the fabric, but enough of a contrast that you can see the stitches.

Decide which stitch looks the best on your fabric:

  • Stitch a swatch of fabric with a wide coverstitch (using the left and right needle)
  • Stitch a sample with the triple coverstitch.

Keep in mind you will be stitching with the wrong side of the fabric facing up.  Check the look of the stitch on both sides.

I prefer the triple coverstitch on my fabric, so I will set up the coverstitch machine with all three needles using 4 spools of thread.  It’s a little faster to stitch from piece to piece, so start stitching on a scrap of fabric and then add another piece of fabric.  This allows me to check my stitch quality and I won’t have to worry about threads falling off at the beginning or end of my garment pieces.  (All of these stitches rows will be sealed in a seam, so no worries on threads unraveling).

For the full tutorial, check out my post on the Brother Stitching Sewcial blog.  I always love to see what your are working on, be sure to share photos of your sporty tops using #angelawolf #brothersews

Cheers,

Brother Expert Sewing Consultant. This blog post may contain affiliate links.

DIY Upcycle & Recycle 2 Denim Shirts into 1 Dress

Upcycle Denim Shirts My husband was cleaning out his closet and handed me a couple of denim shirts to donate.  I couldn’t help but notice the logo on one of the shirts from a marina we frequent on our summer boating trips – I couldn’t bear to allow that one to go.  A...

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Embellishing – Fabricate with Applique!

  Fab-ri-cate (from dictionary.com unabridged – based on the Random House Dictionary) To make by art or skill and labor; construct To make by assembling parts or sections To devise or invent To fake; forge That definition pretty much leaves the door open for...

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Coupon Details: Get 50% off the full retail price of select Craftsy classes taught by Angela Wolf. Cannot be combined with any other coupons. Expires August 15, 2017.

50% OFF SEW WITH YOUR SERGER!

CLICK HERE

Coupon Details: Coupon Details: Get 50% off the full retail price of select Craftsy classes taught by Angela Wolf. Cannot be combined with any other coupons. Expires August 15, 2017.

DIY Upcycle & Recycle: Designing Shoulder Cutouts

DIY Upcycle & Recycle: Designing Shoulder Cutouts

How to Design and Sew Shoulder Cutouts

Spring cleaning time again and I have a stack of clothing items that I haven’t worn in a LONG time. You know the rule, if you haven’t worn the item in 2 years, it has to go!  What happens if you love the fabric, the print, or even just the buttons? Why not recycle or upcycle the items into something I might actually wear!  Here is an upcycle project for spring and summer and it’s right on trend … adding shoulder cutouts to a button down shirt.

Let’s Get Started!

Lay the shirt flat.  Locate the top of the shoulder and outside arm. Measure along the shoulder seam from the neck edge to where you want the edge of the hole to start.  In my case I am going to start 2” to 3” from the neckline.

With a fabric marking pen, mark the top opening of the hole at the shoulder position.
Mark the bottom of the hole opening. Choose a spot above the elbow along the outside edge of the sleeve.
Draw an oval like the one I have here.  The oval doesn’t have to be perfect, just free-hand draw the curve.  Keep in mind this includes the ½” seam allowance, so if you think you need a smaller opening after sewing draw a smaller oval.
Cut along the markings.

For the full tutorial, check out my post on the Brother Stitching Sewcial blog.  I always love to see what your are working on, be sure to share photos of your upcycles shirt using #angelawolf #brothersews

Cheers,

Brother Expert Sewing Consultant. This blog post may contain affiliate links.

DIY Upcycle & Recycle 2 Denim Shirts into 1 Dress

DIY Upcycle & Recycle 2 Denim Shirts into 1 Dress

Upcycle Denim Shirts

My husband was cleaning out his closet and handed me a couple of denim shirts to donate.  I couldn’t help but notice the logo on one of the shirts from a marina we frequent on our summer boating trips – I couldn’t bear to allow that one to go.  A friend mentioned making a quilt, but I don’t foresee that on the shortlist anytime soon.  Then it occurred to me – UPCYCLE!  I do need a sundress for the boating season and what better than a couple of denim shirts to play with!

Supplies

Let’s Get Started – Designing the Tank!

Try on the shirt and check the fit. Start by marking the width of the desired tank onto the shoulder seam

 

As I am holding up this sleeve, notice how wide the top is and how low the armscye falls. This will all be changed J

Measure from the back of the neck to your natural waistline and draw a line. Measure on the front of the top as well.

From the waist marking, measure down an additional 3” and place another mark.  (I am adding the 3” to allow a little blousing when the dress is belted).  Measure down another ½” to allow for a seam allowance.

Next, draw a line from the underarm seam up to the shoulder mark as shown.

For the full tutorial, check out my post on the Brother Stitching Sewcial blog.  I always love to see what you are working on, be sure to share photos of your upcycled shirts using hashtags #angelawolf #brothersews

Cheers,

Brother Expert Sewing Consultant. This blog post may contain affiliate links.

DIY Upcycle & Recycle: Designing Shoulder Cutouts

How to Design and Sew Shoulder Cutouts Spring cleaning time again and I have a stack of clothing items that I haven't worn in a LONG time. You know the rule, if you haven't worn the item in 2 years, it has to go!  What happens if you love the fabric, the print, or...

read more

DIY Upcycle & Recycle 2 Denim Shirts into 1 Dress

Upcycle Denim Shirts My husband was cleaning out his closet and handed me a couple of denim shirts to donate.  I couldn’t help but notice the logo on one of the shirts from a marina we frequent on our summer boating trips – I couldn’t bear to allow that one to go.  A...

read more

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 4: Sewing & Fitting Darts

Darts have a unique role in clothing.  The obvious reason for adding darts would be for fitting purposes, but they are also used as a design element.  After you try on your muslin, you might find that you need to add additional darts to the front or back waist - this...

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Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 5: Quilting the Lining

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 5: Quilting the Lining

Quilting the Lining

Why not add a touch of couture to your tweed fringed skirt and quilt the lining. Similar to a Chanel style jacket, the quilted lining is stylish and luxurious. There is a lot of hand-sewing involved in this process, but it’s worth every stitch 😉 As you know, I sew many of my skirts and jackets this way and once you wear a quilted garment you will be hooked!

Lining

I mentioned in a previous lesson in the Fringe Skirt Sewalong that is is best to use a natural fiber for the lining.  Here are some of my favorite options:

  • china silk
  • silk charmeuse
  • lightweight cotton
  • sueded silk
  • cotton knit

Cutting the Lining

When quilting the lining you will need to cut your lining fabric a little bit wider than your fashion fabric.  I usually lay my muslin or garment fabric on top of the lining as shown:

  • cut the sides of the lining at least 1″ wider than the skirt
  • fold up the fringe hem allowance and cut the lining 1″ longer than the top of the fringe marking

Preparing the Lining and Fashion Fabrics

  • Sew the darts on the lining, the same way you did on the fashion fabric.  Press the darts toward the side seams or the opposite direction the dart are pressed on the fashion fabric.
  • Prepare the zipper area on the skirt by pressing the fusible interfacing onto the wrong side of the fabric
  • If the fashion fabric fabric or lining frays easily, serge the edges of the fabric with a 3-thread wide overlock stitch (DO NOT serge the hem on the fashion fabric!)

Baste the Lining

With wrong sides together, lay the tweed fabric on top of the lining. Starting at the waistline, line up the darts on both fabrics.  Pin or hand-baste the fabrics together, starting at the center and moving out toward the side seams.  (see my blue pins in the photo below)

Mark the area that you will not be stitching:

  • Depending on the waistband: 1/2″ from the top edge
  • 2″ from each side seam
  • 2″ from the top of the fringe hemline

 

 

Quilting the Lining

Starting at the top of the waistline in the center of the skirt, line up the needle with the grainline and stitch from the top of the skirt down.  I am using a stitch length of 2.5.

Stop the stitching 1″ to 2″ higher than the top of the fringe placement

Continue to stitch parallel rows 1/2″ to 1″ apart, depending on the fabric design.

Stitch around the darts; stopping or starting the stitches around the dart, not through the dart.

Do not quilt rows within 2″ of the side seam.  This leaves room to sew the seams together and press the seam allowances open.

Quilt the front and both side back pieces

 

So what do you think – are you going to try this touch of couture on your next tweed skirt?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and don’t forget to join the Angela Wolf Patterns Private Facebook Group to share photos, ask questions, and share ideas with your fellow sewer’s!

Cheers,

The Sewalong Schedule:

  1. Fabric & Sourcing (February 10. 2017)
  2. Fitting & Patternhacking  (February 16. 2017)
  3. Cutting & Prep  (February 21. 2017)
  4. All About Darts  (February 23. 2017)
  5. Quilting the Lining  (February 28. 2017)
  6. Invisible Zipper’s  (March 2. 2017)
  7. Waistbands  (March 7. 2017)
  8. Hemming & Fringe  (March 9. 2017)
  9. Show off in the Angela Wolf Facebook Group! 

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 4: Sewing & Fitting Darts

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 4: Sewing & Fitting Darts

Darts have a unique role in clothing.  The obvious reason for adding darts would be for fitting purposes, but they are also used as a design element.  After you try on your muslin, you might find that you need to add additional darts to the front or back waist – this is common if you have a tiny waist.

Any easy way to determine if you will need to add darts is to measure your waist and hips.  A standard pattern will have the waist and hips with a 10 inch difference.

For example:  your natural waist measurement is 26″ and your hips are 40″

A standard pattern would have 40″ hips with a 30″ waist, you would probably need to add 2 darts in order to take in that extra 4″ or your waistband would have a big gap.  Get the idea 🙂

TRANSFERRING DARTS TO THE FABRIC

 

  • Start by clipping small notches at the waistband at each dart location: a snip at each dart opening.

 

 

 

  • Place a pin through all the layers of muslin and fabric at the tip of the dart

 

 

 

 

 

  • On the wrong side of the fabric, find the pin marking the tip of the dart

 

 

 

 

  • Fold the fabric with right sides together at the dart location

 

 

 

 

  • Match up the snips at the waistline

 

 

 

Sewing the Darts

 

 

  • Start stitching at the largest part of the dart

 

 

 

  • When you get toward the tip of the dart, instead of back-stitching, shorten the stitch length and stitch.  This is less bulk than back-stitching.

 

Pressing Darts

Pressing is the most important part of sewing!  Here is a “Dressmaker Ham”.   On the main side of the pressing ham, the curve matches the curve of a dart.  Why not just press the dart flat on the ironing board?  Because the point of the dart is to accommodate your curves, so you need to press the same curve. Remember to use a lot of steam and the tailors clapper for a crisp edge.

Angela Wolf’s Weekly Facebook Live Show … Lets Talk Dart’s

In case you missed last week’s show, I discussed fitting darts on a dress form and couture sewing tips for altering the curve of the dart for your shape. Click on the video below …

Fringe Skirt Sewalong

It’s not too late to join the fringe skirt sewalong!  Here is the full list of lessons.  See you in the Angela Wolf Facebook Group for comments and questions!  Can’t wait to see your skirts coming together!!!

Cheers,

Let's Talk Darts!

Angela Wolf's Live Facebook Show - Let's Talk Darts

Posted by Angela Wolf on Friday, February 24, 2017

The Fringe Skirt Sewalong Schedule:

  1. Fabric & Sourcing (February 10. 2017)
  2. Fitting & Patternhacking  (February 16. 2017)
  3. Cutting & Prep  (February 21. 2017)
  4. All About Darts  (February 23. 2017)
  5. Quilting the Lining  (February 28. 2017)
  6. Invisible Zipper’s  (March 2. 2017)
  7. Waistbands  (March 7. 2017)
  8. Hemming & Fringe  (March 9. 2017)
  9. Show off in the Angela Wolf Facebook Group! 

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