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781  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / Re: Does my sewing machine need to be serviced? on: June 09, 2005 11:45:22 AM
Try oiling the machine.  It often helps.  Use only sewing machine oil (you can get it at a hardware store).  You'll see holes here and there - put a drop in each one.  Then run the machine for a few minutes, without thread, sewing a paper towel.  This will pick up most of the excess.

782  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Re: How can I make a shirt more fitted? on: June 09, 2005 11:30:18 AM
It depends on where the extra size is.  Here are a few possibilities.

If the shoulders are too wide, take a tuck right in the middle of each shoulder.  Run it down the front and back of the shirt.  You can do this on the outside, making it a decorative feature, or on the inside.  THis is the easiest and safest way to get rid of some width because you're not messing with the armholes or the neck.

If the shoulders already fit, you can put in princess style darts, starting below the bust.  Try the shirt on inside out and pin the darts to try it and see if it improves things. 

Don't try to do much with the underarm seams, unless the sleeves are also very roomy.  If they are, you can stitch up the side and continue down the sleeve.  Add only about 1/2 inch seam on each side and taper as you go down the sleeve so you're not messing up the cuffs. 

Ruching takes up length and it sounds as if your problem is width.  If the shirt is a soft knit, you might be able to put a couple of rows of elastic below the bust.  Again - pin it first or even baste it in to see if it's going to work. 

783  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Re: making iron-on embroidery patterns on: June 09, 2005 11:21:22 AM
I transfer the pattern to very light weight tissue paper.  Pin or baste the pattern onto the fabric.  Embroider through paper & fabric, then tear away the tissue.

There are at least two ways to get the pattern onto tissue:
  1.  Trace it.
  2.  Get some freezer paper (in the grocery store, near plastic wrap, etc.)  Cut 8 1/2 x 11 piece of tissue and of freezer paper.  You can iron the tissue paper onto the waxy side of the freezer paper.  Carefully feed into your computer printer and print your pattern on the tissue.  Peel it off the freezer paper. 

784  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Re: I hate, hate, hate this dress (sing it with me, people!) on: June 09, 2005 10:57:55 AM
If you decide to improve the fit, try this:

Put the dress on inside out.  Then you can pin in princess darts, shape the side seams, maybe add front darts - whatever.  Then take if off carefully so you don't get stabbed with the pins.  Handbaste the changes and PRESS it.  Try it on, rightside out, and see if you've improved it. 

If you do add darts, there's an oppportunity for embellishment:  sew beads along the darts, or an embroidery stitch. 

Or - a really glam jacket or wrap would give it a completely new look.

785  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Re: And... what to do? on: June 09, 2005 10:46:24 AM
I'm concerned about the sag factor - if all your stitching is up and down,strips are likely to sag between rows of stitching.  If you enjoy a little hand stitching, you could easily do running stitches 1/4 to 1/2 inch from the edges, in both directions.  If you used embroidery thread (or something substantial) and mixed up the colors, you'd have a plaid effect. Leave the stitches pretty loose because the fabric is stretchy.

If you want to do it by machine, maybe a decorative stich, with at least a little zig-zag to it.  You should have no trouble getting access to the whole area.

Good luck,

LRS  (I'm new -this is my first post)
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