Sunday, January 30, 2011

If I can't have spring

I'll have new sweaters instead. With all the snow we've been getting, my office has been very understanding about wearing jeans to work. And then refusing to change out of them. And while a recent trip to the thrift store did expand my jeans wardrobe up to 4 wearable pair, I started to run out of decent sweaters to wear with them.

Don't get me wrong; I have sweaters aplenty, but my jeans, while not low rise, do still sit lower than my dress pants, and there was often an uncomfortable breeze up my back (and that's from the office's inadequate heat, not from being outside). I needed more sweaters, and longer ones.

Enter KwikSew 3740, one of the few KS patterns out there with a nearly non-frumpy pattern photo. Really. I've never seen a pattern company with better product and less appealing advertising.

We had a snow day on Thursday. Not an official one - the text I got from the office administrator said "dont kill urself 2 get in." So I didn't. I did 3 loads of laundry, made a fabulous dinner, finished my BWOF 1/2011 #107 blouse, and knocked out one version of this cowl necked top in a gray ribbed sweater knit from Metro Textiles. I made the first sweater in a medium, though I'm generally a small in KS knits (medium in woven patterns). I decided to err on the side of caution, and that particular fabric would work in a more oversized top.

From cutting out the pattern pieces - yes, I cut my KwikSews, I know, I'm going to hell - to coverstitching the hems, I think the whole thing took me about 90 minutes. At least 10 of which were spent searching for a 3rd spool of black thread for the coverstitch.

What I love about KwikSew patterns that makes up for their dowdy envelope illustrations: their pattern draft is a beautiful thing. Everything always lines up, everything tends to fit the way I think it's going to, and I'll always be grateful for making my first knit tops from their patterns so they could let me know that sewing sleeves in flat was a good thing, and not some form of cheating.

The second sweater, which I cut out on Friday evening after wearing the first one to work that day, and which I finished Saturday afternoon, is from PR Weekend fabric. I got this wonderful Italian wool blend sweater knit at London Textiles in Cherry Hill, NJ. I had purchased some previously from EOS in a different color, and while I don't remember the fabric care, I believe it's hand wash, dry flat or make a serious mess of your garment. So I'll be kind to this one. I think it's gorgeous, and it feels wonderful.

And hey, no drafts!

I think I'm still recovering from the wedding sewing, and then the lack of sewing surrounding the wedding. There's nothing to get you over an intense project or time away from the sewing machine (much less both!) than a good instant gratification project.

If that project fills an actual gap in the wardrobe, then so much the better.

According to the forecast, we're due for more snow. I looked out the window a little while ago, and it's flurrying again. It's not even pretty anymore when I see it floating down, because I already know it's going to hit the ground, get dirty, look awful and cause me to fall on my ass walking to the train in the morning.

Hmm, that sounded a little negative. I think it was. I think it's also probably the same thought floating through the minds of almost everyone on the East Coast, if they're feeling truthful.

Backing away from the computer to go play with more fabric. At least it's not arctic in the sewing room; that would make me even worse.

16 comments:

Debbie Cook said...

Lovely sweaters!

"if they're feeling truthful."

Hah! I always feel a little pang when I see pics and reports of snowstorms in the Northeast. And then I come to my senses and remember how NOT fun they are when you're in them, have to shovel them, drive in the them, etc.

Stay warm!!

KID, MD said...

These are gorgeous!! I like them both, but the solid grey is very elegant.

Must find some grey sweater knit...

My word verification is "outchit" = what you say when you fall in the snow. Heh.

KC said...

Beautiful sweaters! Every once in a while, when I see someone has sewn a luscious wool blend something, I miss winter. Then I remember what you reminded me of --what happens after the snow settles in. Stay warm.

Andrea said...

I like both renditions of this sweater, and like you, I am so tired of this snow. There is absolutely nowhere else to put it. CRAZY!!!

I just cut two sweaters out from this pattern. Hopefully I can get them sewn up before the end of the week.

Sheila said...

Cute sweaters.

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

"I know, I'm going to hell"

okay that caused me to roar with laughter...I can just see it a room of woman walking around hell with a pair of shears permanently forged to their hands because they cut the pattern tissue instead of tracing it! Well hell according to Dante.

Mostly though I'm just jealous. You sewed something and I haven't managed to do that yet. Not through a snow day or two weekends home from work. And it's two really cute somethings...

montanachic said...

Cute sweaters. I just discovered your blog and I will definitely be coming back. Good luck keeping warm, my brother in DC was without power for two days!

Toby Wollin said...

hahahaha... "go to hell". Carolyn's right - sewists who go to hell end up with scissors permanently forged to their hands..and pins in their mouths so that they can't speak. And, they are chained just out of reach of the sewing machine, the cutting table, and the stash. Permanent frustration forever. On the other side, those sweaters are awesome. (note to self - why are you messing around with skirts when you should be making sweaters?)

Karen in VA said...

Beautiful sweaters....and look really comfy...I should be working on my sewing instead of reading blogs getting ideas for yet more items I want to sew.....

bampitt said...

Ok, I'm not new to sewing but I've always cut my pattern pieces. Am I not supposed to do that????

badmomgoodmom said...

You are so right about KW patterns. The fit, pattern draft and instructions are fantastic; the photos are so dowdy.

I use their children's patterns a great deal, always tracing so I can use the next size as my child grows.

Rosie said...

Great sweaters. Ugh don't mention the snow; enough already.

Gail said...

Careful what you wish for. We have too much sun in Australia right now. Your sweaters are simple but stylish.

The Slapdash Sewist said...

So nice! Why are commercial sweaters so short? They really can't be worn with jeans. Luckily, the solution is within our grasp.

Kris said...

I always learn something when I read your blog, and I am going to buy some Kwik Sew patterns. I was put off by the illustrations, but they sound like winners. We are getting just as much @#$% snow. I am beginning to wonder if my child will actually have one whole week of school without some type of interruption! Your sweaters are beautiful, and make me want to sew some for myself!

gwensews said...

Those are really terrific sweaters, both of them. And, I love the blouse in your last post also.