Tuesday, August 7, 2012

RIP overcasting foot, & narrow hemmer is not my friend

I've been working away at my dotted dress, and i've made some progress despite a few setbacks and many distractions. On sunday i killed my overcasting foot. I stabbed it right in the heart. The needle came down and broke the middle bar off the foot. Needle survived, but i have decommissioned it. mainly because i think people would get mad at me if i continued to use it. it looked fine to me (AKA not bent)! but i hear you should replace your needle after every project, so after a needle smashes into a small piece of metal, that's probably another time to replace it. right. can i still use the overcasting foot? is that middle bar a must-have? i was getting to be good friends with that foot… using it to zigzag all of my edges, having picnics in the park, liking each other's facebook updates. so i thought about trying to use it without the bar. Good idea or bad idea? i guess i could order a new one =(

oh, yeah the reason i killed it was that i set the stitch width too large, oops. and in the manual there is a warning that tells you to slowly lower the needle down to make sure it doesn't crash into the middle bar. i didn't heed the warning. but mainly because this is a computerized sewing machine, how hard would it be for it to make those stitch widths Not Available when using that foot!!! I mean come on, it beeps at me every other time i try to do something stupid. 

so i tried to friend my narrow hemmer foot, but i think it's a stuck-up bia-tch. i even looked at tutorials online. i looked in the manual and it's not mentioned once. is it not even the foot i think it is? did someone at the brother company throw in a foot that doesn't do anything, just to screw with me? anyway so if you have some genius advice, do tell! I was going to use the narrow hemmer on my sleeves, but instead just did a small double-turned hem.

enough about feet. it's photo time! Here is the inside neckline of the dress…

I actually enjoyed adding the interfacing and thought it turned out well. Here you can see the underside of the interfacing, and look ma, i clipped my curves!

but i forgot to zigzag the top shoulder seams, oops! they never mention when to finish any of the edges. they think i'm smart enough to know that, but the outside of the pattern says "Easy" so i want it to hold my hand.

Neckline from the right side after i ripped it out and re-did the topstiching. And here's an up close shot.

i used the serger at the shop to edge the interfacing, which is why you can see the white serger stitches. i thought about using bias tape, but worried the added bulk would create a visible line. Here's one of the sleeves…

Easing in the sleeves was a chore. my bobbin ran out midway through the first sleeve and then i saw i had sewn 2 tucks in, so i had to go back and re-do it anyway. on the second sleeve i only had 1 tuck to fix. if there was a third sleeve, maybe i would've gotten it perfect

Tallia is still in residence, so i draped the dress over her so that you could see the sleeves better. on the floor it looks all wavy.

It doesn't really fit the dress form because she's too big, so i just have it hanging around the front and the back is gaping open. i hope the dress ends up fitting me well because I've had some issues with the fit. The top ended up being very baggy, gaping under the arms, so before i sewed the sleeves in, i took in both sides of the dress another 5/8" and then fading out to the hips and leaving them as is because i didn't want it any tighter in the hips. and then i took in the sleeves a bit too so that they wouldn't be too large. i'm still worried that it's going to look like a pillow case because the waist isn't defined. i was thinking about adding in 2 darts in the front to help? or i could get a belt i guess.

next dress will have a defined waistband. this looks all wavy on the floor, but it's just the floor being a flat surface. although now i notice the dots don't line up correctly at the bottom of the dress. drat. i haven't hemmed the bottom yet. tonight i'll be installing the back zip. this will be a first for me. fingers crossed.

i'm sure you've seen the new alma blouse by sewaholic, (you might have even been one of the pattern testers) but i think it's super cute. i'd love to find a pattern that actually fits right off the bat. not sure if i can do the peter pan collar though because i think it will make me look younger. but i love the long sleeve floral version she has on the blog. this top would be perfect for work. i already have some fabric in mind that i've been eyeing at the store. so I'm going to check to see if they have the alma pattern in stock yet. and then i need to figure out how to become one of the lucky pattern testers! sounds like fun! yeah i probably need to keep working on my sewing skills first. but hey, if anyone wants to test out their patterns on a beginner, i'm your girl.


  1. Hey cute dress and nice job finishing it. Congrats too (slightly belated) on starting up a blog!

    1. Thanks! It's been fun! I love checking out what other people are sewing and it's a great way to share advice - which i need a lot of!

  2. First of all, I love the fabric and I love the dress. I find a lot of these speciality feet take quite a bit of getting used to. I bought mine on Ebay for about $2 -5 a foot because I am not good at using them and I figured I would ruin a few. So far so good though...I really enjoy your blog, too.

    1. Thanks! I'll have to check ebay for a new foot, and try not to break the next one!

  3. It's looking good! When in doubt, belt it. Save a more fitted piece for your next project. As for the zipper, I'd recommend watching a Youtube video or two on how to do it, to give you a visual idea :)


Thanks for reading! I welcome any advice, insights, witty remarks, snarky comebacks, commiserations or just a quick hello. I'd love to check out your blog as well, so let me know where you're posting. Happy sewing!