Stretching Out

Ohhhh boy did I wait too long to update. Get ready for a lot of pictures! I think getting a smartphone has been detrimental to the blog's updating schedule because I get too focused on twitter/tumblr/instagram and forget that I'm not also posting updates here. Hopefully now that the novelty is wearing off I'll do better. 

So, when last we left the pile of old bathing suits, I had made a few nine-patches. A bunch more followed--in fact way too many, I have a lot left over now! Here I'm lying them out and taking a look at sashing. I wasn't sure about the sashing initially, but I'm glad I went with it. Now I needed a pattern!

These ridiculous shorts came from the thrift store, and I've loved them for working out and running, Tracing them out was a pain with the elastic waist, but I managed to stretch them out and tape them to the floor to do it. 
My latest thrift store run netted me this thick cotton plaid and this leopard spandex. I decided to use the leopard as a test run for my shorts pattern before messing around with my ninepatches. 

It came out quite well! I used another scrap of Hawaiian print bathing suit for the waist band, because why not? It was, like the original shorts, a little high-waisted, so I cut the waist down a bit on the pattern. 

Ok, ok, I know they look a little weird and wrinkled like this, just wait, they stretch out and look much better down the page when I put them on! But can I just say I'm tickled pink that the patterns match up pretty nicely? I wasn't even really hoping for that, but the patches were just about the perfect size to meet in sashing in the center seams.

Back. Next time around though, I will make them slightly longer so I get a full block on top, and the sashing forms the waist band. 

And they are actually reversible! There are so many seams from the patchwork, they definitely needed to be lined, or else they'd be really uncomfortable. I don't have access to a coverstitcher (on my short list of things to save up for) so I had to improvise with finishing techniques, and  full lining worked out well. 

See? Once on, all (well, most) of the weird wrinkling/rippling goes away! Hoping with more practice on a serger I'll get smoother seams.  And they are actually quite comfortable, a little thicker than normal shorts, but they still stretch just as well, and feel very sturdy. 
For laughs I decided to use the rest of the floral material to see if I could work out a singlet pattern. I just sort of stuck a tank top shape on top of the shorts pattern, I think next time around I'll add a side seam so I can get some more coverage around the arm/neck hole. I didn't really bother finishing this, it was a just a tester, so ignore all the nasty edges. 


In non-spandex news:

Took a regular XL thrift store sweatshirt, re-cut it to my size. 

Then, I traced a quilted pattern onto tracing paper, and basted it onto the sweatshirt, with a backing fabric behind it. I then quilted it directly through the tracing paper. The tracing paper then gets torn away as I finished. 

Finished quilting on the inside, you can see the back fabric here. Sadly, I didn't take an pictures of this process, but I then ran thick yarn through the 'channels' I'd quilted to create a raised quilting. This, if I'm remembering correctly is sometimes called Italian or Corded Quilting. 

Closeup on the quilting. 

Then, of course, I sewed the sleeves and body back together! One of my favorite 'wearable' pieces I've made lately. I've already worn it a few time this week, it's perfect weather for it right now. 

And this is just in it's beginning stages, but a new shirt is coming together! Finally cutting into this paisley/plaid fabric.