Earlier this year, Art Gallery Fabrics offered me the chance to play with their new Capsules and Fusions collections. Believe me…there are some gorgeous prints in both those, and you should seriously take a gander at them if you haven’t yet. I immediately knew I had to try this luscious new rayon blend I spied. It’s designed by Maureen Cracknell and is one of the prettiest florals I’ve had my hands on in awhile! I have been itching to make a McCall’s pattern I’ve had for some time now, and this was the perfect opportunity to finally do it. Around the same time, Mister Domestic asked me to be a part of his sewing party showcasing the new AGF Capsules and Fusions lines, sooooo that timing worked out way too well in my opinion!
I went ahead and prepped the fabric for my stab-in-the-dark attempt to make my dress. I mean, it says “easy” on the envelope, so it couldn’t be too tough, right?! To prep, I washed the entire fabric cut with warm water and ran it through the dryer twice each. Why twice, you ask? Because that’s what I was told to do by a rayon aficionado. By washing and drying it twice, you eliminate a ton of shrinkage risk after the garment is made. And if you were a Seinfeld fan, then you know all about how bad shrinkage is. I also added a couple Color Catcher sheets to my wash since this fabric is so saturated and bold. No chances here for colors bleeding and running into each other. Also to note, rayon can become stretched out very easily if it’s pulled too taut or scrunched too much or looked at crosseyed or told a bad joke. I immediately gently folded it up after the final dryer cycle.
Enter LIFE. Crap, crap, crap, I won’t ever have time to get this done, crap. Donuts. Prosecco. Pizza. Sweats. No bra. Not joking. Not to mention…a garment sewist, I am not. Not really anyway. Not compared to the pros or even to tomorrow’s Fusions contributor who is a mad scientist genius with her garment sewing skillz. For realz.
It’s now the end of March, and I was packing my bags to head to work an event in Albuquerque for a week. *Perfecto* My mom and dad live in the ABQ East Mountains, so I knew good and well I could take advantage of my know-all amazeballz garment sewing mother on this trip! When I say she sews, trust me…she was the one who would sew matchy outfits for me and my two younger sisters when we were little. By the time I hit 12yo, I was done with that matchy nonsense. But I am so, so thankful she is amazing at this craft and especially last month when I was traveling out their way. Into my carry-on went the rayon and my pattern! “Ohhhh, Meeeeeeem!!! I need help, pleeeeease!” (She also posts some beautiful New Mexico scenery, quilty makes, and her motorcycle escapades on Instagram: @cnytz51.)
For the record, it was not just me thinking this particular pattern was written poorly. My momma confirmed that the order of operations was not well thought out and led to a few areas that I’m ultimately not thrilled with. But unless I point them out to you pointblank, I don’t think you’re noticing them either. So my lips are zipped because I love the feel of this dress too much to dampen it with any cloud of doom.
Notes for Working with Rayon:
1. Use a sharp rotary blade and cutting mat, preferably on the floor to prevent fabric from draping off a table and pulling/stretching
2. Use fine tip, sharp pins
3. Lift & Press, don’t drag, the iron
4. After cutting a pattern piece, roll it up and set aside to prevent pulling/stretching
5. Use a smidge smaller stitch length compared to piecing a quilt top (i.e. 2mm)
6. Let your garment hang loose and relax for a day or so before hemming
7. Run, don’t walk, to purchase yourself some AGF rayon! It’s divine!!!
Look at this drape!!! It’s soooooo delicious! Obviously I was NOT a model in any former lifetime! hahaha I would so much rather be behind the camera or staging things than the object on which the lens is focusing. Ugh. *paranoia*
Did you see last week’s and all of this week’s makers so far? There are some really inspiring ideas to add to your To Do Lists, like, ASAP!
Capsules (April 17 – 21):
Monday: Cristy Stuhldreher (@loveyousew_) http://www.iloveyousew.com/
Tuesday: Kitty Wilkin (@nightquilter) https://nightquilter.com/
Wednesday: Sharon McConnell (@colorgirlquilts) http://colorgirlquilts.com/
Thursday: Stephanie Palmer (@latenightquilter) http://latenightquilter.com/
Friday: Nicole Young (@lillyellasworld) http://lillyella.com
Fusions (April 24th – 28th)
Monday: Nicole Daksiewicz (@modernhandcraft) http://modernhandcraft.com/
Tuesday: Tara Curtis (@WEFTYneedle) http://www.tjaye.com/
Wednesday: Melissa LeRay (@ohhowsweetco) http://www.ohhowsweet.com/
Thursday: Sarah Thomas (@sariditty) That’s me!!
Friday: Jennifer Rossotti (@jennrossotti) http://gingerpeachstudio.com/
Last but not least…I will leave you with some outtakes from this afternoon that left me in tears laughing and then covered in a slimy coating of Neapolitan Mastiff dog drool and Thoroughbred mud from the farm!
I am *beyond* ladylike! Hah!But seriously…that drape!!! Gahhhhhh!!!