Essential sewing keeping me clothed and sane

End of Knits


Really and truly, how could I not venture into Alabama Chanin territory, what with all that jersey / knit / stretchy stuff just lying about like washed-up treasure on a beach in a spring high tide?

My fingers were itching and twitching; the hand sewing needles were singing like wind through railings; thread was twanging like guitar stings in an attic; it was calling, calling…

So, a marriage between the Tilton’s Artful T-shirt and Chanin’s plain foundation wardrobe pieces. Like all marriages (at least mine anyways) some things work out without effort and some things need a little bit of work. These items were mostly sewn on the machine and overlocker, not by hand – a compromise. …

AC basic T-shirt with contrast sleeves, neck band and uneven cuffs

AC A-line skirt. Double layer with asymmetrical top layer, tied waistband (not seen).

AC poncho: one rectangle sewn together off kilter, with contrast bands and inset piping to match the T-shirt body. This one was hand sewn with thick pink silk thread and coordinates with almost all my olive green and raspberry clothes that I have (or not) sewn for the failed SWAP ’16.

I know the poncho-thing is not to everyone’s taste and I have only worn it at home on the sofa watching House of Cards, but maybe I’ll venture out in it one day and demonstrate my 50 and Not Dead Yet styling.

The T-shirt pattern is in Studio Sewing and Design. I scooped the neckline way more than the original design. The poncho pattern is also there. The skirt is the Swing skirt from Stitch Book. Fabrics are from Fabworks for the print the solid.

There’s very little jersey fabric left now after this adventure, so I might venture back to wovens and see what happens.

Welcome to all new readers and followers and I hope you gain some nugget of experience or inspiration for your own sewing. It’s lovely to have you along for the journey. Thank you.


30 thoughts on “End of Knits

  1. I love the skirt! Just a great outfit all around.

  2. Very nice indeed…’failed’ SWAP? Surely not, lots of very wearable goodies along the way

  3. I really like the top and the skirt…such interesting details…as usual!

  4. I absolutely love this skirt, the two layers are lovely. Also the printed jersey hem on the sleeves is a great idea.

  5. Have to say that I love the poncho, and the skirt is great. Of course the t-shirts are all fabulous – the colour combinations work so well to get her. I have such a problem getting similar weight fabrics (as in buying different fabrics/colours that are the same weight as each other) so I am living vicariously through you!

    • The poncho is really quite versatile – I can push it up to make a scarf or snuggle under keeping arms warm. It is a problem buying fabric on the internet because cotton jerseys can be such different weights and thicknesses – to be honest I’ve just plowed ahead regardless. Thanks Twotoast.

  6. Love the cuffs and you are so lucky to be able to wear multiple layers in a skirt! Have you ever thought about making a garment in the AC style with a pattern on the underneath layer and solid on the top and then do the cutaway design? I’m dying to find a tie dyed t-shirt and layer a solid over the top and do some cut-outs.

    • That’s a really interesting idea Mrs Mole for an unusual skirt or top – might just let that one marinate a little….thank you

    • I did that with a gored skirt! Blue camouflage print underneath and a solid blue on top. I think it adds a lot of interest to the design.

      I’ve got some pink camouflage sitting in the stash waiting for a project. I’m just trying to find the right colour for the upper layer.

  7. I agree with DF. I am sure you have already made enough garments for an amazing SWAP set, haven’t you? I especially like this deep khaki green; you look lovely (I also like the longer slightly darker hair style Ruth).

    • Thanks Kate. My SWAP is really nothing special and therefore I feel like I’m cheating rather than contributing. As for the hair – some like it and some don’t, they prefer the very short blonde of a year ago. I just don’t want to look like a stereotypical 50-something without being weird.

  8. Great outfit with a winning combination of colours. Suits your figure and I agree with Kate that the longer, choppy look of your hair looks great.

    I’m not a fan of ponchos. Outdoors, where do you put your bag? Inside… well, I just know I’d set myself on fire at the hob but it looks cocoon-cosy!

    • Blame the Easter eggs for the belly! I’m not a fan of ponchos or capes for that matter either Marianna. Probably why I’ve only worn it at home so far. Thanks.

  9. I really like t he outfit with the poncho. The pink really lifts it all. Venture out I say!

  10. Whats this about a failed SWAP? Looks like you’ve got a terrific coordinated wardrobe. Isn’t that the plan? I like the idea of fabric shopping with a sort of plan way more than sewing with a plan.

  11. Love this outfit. The pinks and the greens look great together. You have been sewing a fabulous wardrobe.

  12. What a fun outfit. Great job Ruth.

  13. binge TV and Binge jersey’s go together so well! love the swap results and love the house of cards reference!

  14. Thanks for posting this! I’ve been pondering some of the Alabama Chanin tops (I’ve only done skirts so far), but I wasn’t looking forward to doing a FBA on them. The Chanin models are definitely not my body type… 🙂

  15. I love the khaki/pink combination. I don’t know how you can claim a fail with your output !?
    Baffled of Bewdley

  16. Great outfit, I particularly like the skirt and the colours. Ponchos are a bit like shawls to me I’m not sure I would wear them, but I like it with the outfit. I’m off to follow not dead yet, at 60 I’m raising my hems and wearing bronze lace ups! Xx

  17. Hm. Love your colour combination, the green is a shade I can’t wear and you’re making me feel quite jealous!! Love the shape of the skirt, and the tee, and love the colour blocking on the tee. Not really getting the poncho love, it looks good on you, but I know that wearing anything like that would drive me mad.

    Soooo, the million dollar question, are the Alabama Chanin books worth it? I read through your AC capsule last year (if that’s when you did it) and while I really really liked it, I’m very slow to sew things myself and can see me having the books and the jersey in a pile for a few years until I get around to doing something :).

    Either way, lovely update, really interesting to read.

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