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Somewhat Eccentric
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2,278 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I’ve procrastinated way too long! Our Halloween party is Friday so time to get to work on hubby’s costume:

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I did find a wide-striped red and white satin online but it was a minimum 5-yard order and by the time shipping was added, it was going to be around $75. The blue fabric with stars or anything remotely similar was not to be found. So I kept on the lookout for satin sheets and did find a few burgundy ones, but nothing else. Then at a thrift store I found a few pieces of white satin for around $2

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Fast forward a month and a trip to Goodwill yielded two graduation gowns in red and blue for $1.99 each

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Hmmm... would it be possible to sew the stripes?

I started to worry that I may not have enough satin so was thrilled to learn that Dollar Tree sells satin pillowcases, so I picked up four.

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They’re actually better quality than I expected. Now it’s time to get the fabric prepared.....
 

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Somewhat Eccentric
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2,278 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
The gowns and thrift store satin were all washed, the pillowcases were not. Time to grab the scissors and cut out the seams.

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The red gown yielded two large pieces of fabric, while the blue gown yielded one. The quality of the blue gown is superior to the red. The zippers won’t be used on this project but I’m sure they will come in handy on another project.

I opted to only use two of the pillowcases right now. I can open the other two if I need them and I want to save the large satin pieces for the top. They are pretty wrinkled out of the package, but an iron on a low setting gets rid of them.

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I’ve decided I want 2 1/2” stripes, so I need to do a little math. The standard seam allowance when sewing clothing is 5/8”, so I’ll have to add that to my measurements. Since I’ll be sewing several strips together to make a larger piece of fabric, I also need to add an additional 5/8.” So 5/8 +5/8 = 10/8 or 1 1/4”, so I’ll need to add that to my stripe size (2 1/2”) to get the size strip I will need. So 2 1/2 + 1 1/4 = 3 3/4”, which is the size I will need to cut the red and white strips.

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Note that I’m using a rotary cutter, mat and acrylic ruler to cut the strips. You could measure and mark each strip individually and cut with scissors but this is much quicker.

Since one leg is solid blue, I don’t need to do anything with the blue fabric at the moment.

Note at this point I’m really starting to hate satin! Look at the mess on my ironing board!

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Also note that the gowns are not actually satin, but some other type of synthetic fabric. Shouldn’t be a big deal in the end.

So as of now, I have $5.98 invested and need to take time to draft a pattern for the pants. Stay tuned for more!
 

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Somewhat Eccentric
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2,278 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
So I found the biggest pair of pajama bottoms my hubby owns and used them for a pattern.

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Then I tested the pattern out by making a trial pair of pants using a white sheet. This helped me see if the pattern would work and where adjustments would be needed.

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Had hubby try on the trial pants, made a few adjustments to the pattern and started sewing the strips together. Let me state that I really hate satin at this point! Because it unravels so easily, I knew I would have to make special seams to keep the pants from splitting apart when my hubby sat down. So I had heard about French seams and thought I’d give it a try.

With French seams you place the wrong side of the fabric together and sew your first seam. If you’ve ever seen much, you know this is opposite of traditional sewing and a bit hard to get used to.

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You then trim really close to that seam, fold the fabric over, press and then sew another seam. This time the wrong sides of the fabric are together.

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So after the French seams are finished, the back of your fabric will look like this

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And the front will look like this

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Somewhat Eccentric
Joined
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2,278 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I kept adding strips until I had a pice of fabric wide enough to make the leg.

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At this point I hate French seams almost as much as I hate satin. I realize that I will come really close to having enough red fabric and use only as much as I can get by with to finish up the leg.

The striped leg is set aside momentarily as I start to think about the top. Found a long sleeve shirt and had hubby try it on again taking note of the length and what adjustments need to be made. So next step is to dismantle this shirt and make a pattern for the top.

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With the sleeve dismantled, I see that I should have enough red strips to make both sleeves. The cuffs will likely be pieced from the scraps and I will have to go to plan B for the red bow tie

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Ugh! More French seams to do. :mad:
 
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