5 December 2011

The thing with cheap Chinese satin..

..Is that it's awful to work with.

In my adventures into the land of lingerie, I thought it best that I should make some pretty simple pieces for myself out of cheap fabrics to get the hang of things, before I start attempting to ruin more expensive, prettier fabrics.

So in my last trip to Fabric Land [Honestly, I miss Shepherds Bush market so much], I decided that buying the Chinese costume satin at £1.45 a metre was certainly a good idea, and decided to make a pair of the french knickers from the New Look 6310, as seen below.

Picture from Antique Dollhouse of Patterns
I'd altered the pattern to my exact size as well as lengthened them to sit on the natural waist.

As always, they turned out pretty well in Calico. [Fashion school has me in a habit of making toiles of every. single. thing. I. make.] My only problems were, that with the pattern being a one-pattern-piece-and-cut-four deal, the front of the knickers just looked awkward on my body. And I underestimated the casing by about 3cm.

At the very least, they look like a pair of french knickers.

After sorting out the front panels, I skipped making up another toile and went straight into my lovely, tacky, awful satin. Have I mentioned that I hate working with cheap satin? Nothing goes right. I'd attempted a rolled hem, and that just slipped about and looked less than attractive, so I tried the next best solution I could think of;

Zig-zagged hem and lace encasing. This lace is my favourite thing ever - a friend bought this insane roll of about 100 meters at a craft bank for £2 and gave it to me. It's polyester, but not cheap looking, and has a good stretch on it - meaning that it's beautiful for encasing curved seams.

The only problem is with the encasing the seams didn't work too well, they're just really heavy and look ridiculous in my honest option. But nothing can compare to the horror that is;

This may be the worst gusset I've ever seen in my life.

I think it's safe to say that I should have really done another toile to sort out the crotch seam. As you can see by the gusset it's an awkward shape, and when I do another pair, that will certainly be amended as soon as possible.


Now here is my main problem. As you can see in the first picture, I basted on the casing for the waistband. I made sure I was actually basting onto the knickers themselves, and before I started sewing I made sure that nothing would slip though.

And it still did.

Oh, it was awful. I was going for good sewing this time, but in the end, even with basting stitches the knickers would fray at the edges and it would serve as the most aggravating experience with fabric to date. The second picture shows my nice covering-up of the mess that is the stitching underneath - I think I went around the waistband almost four times. And then I gave up.

In the end, I have a pair of french knickers. Not the greatest thing I've ever made, but I will blame the fabric.

The moral of the story is that cheap satin is never a good idea.


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