A new pattern from Vogue, and other odds and ends

It’s been a while since my last blog post!

My professional life has turned into a serious drama, and it basically has cut into my free time for sewing.  So, until my work situation clears up a bit, updates to this blog might be a little less regular than they normally are.

But, here’s a recap on things going on here at the Line of Selvage studio:

New Gadgets and Goodies

My new coverstitch machine has arrived from Ken’s Sewing Center.  This is a replacement Brother 2340CV for the one that arrived damaged from Amazon.  I didn’t want to risk getting another damaged/defective item from Amazon, and I’m no longer trustful of the way they ship large-ish machinery.

The good news is that the new machine seems to work fine; the bad news is I haven’t had much time to play with it other than do some test stitching.  More on this as it develops.

Also, after watching the new Craftsy class “Sew Better, Sew Faster” (see below) I’ve gone ahead and purchased the extension table accessory for my Brother PC-210 conventional machine.  I’m looking forward to using it on my next project.

PR Men’s Sewing Challenge

I’m going to try to enter the PatternReview Men’s Sewing Challenge, from August 1-15.  Two weeks isn’t a lot for me at the speed I complete projects, but I’m going to give it a try.

A week or so ago, I went shopping at the Fabric Outlet 40% Off sale and got a cut of denim-color chambray with a floral print that I thought would make a nice button-down shirt for the boyfriend. He likes the idea too.

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So I’m currently thinking pattern choice, fitting (I’ve never fit him for a shirt before), and whatever designer touches I want to try to bring to the project.

Craftsy Classes

I’ve recently finished viewing the Craftsy class, “Sew Better, Sew Faster” by Janet Pray.  This is a great class which I feel was well worth the money.  I’ve written a detailed review over on PatternReview which I may repost here, but for now, hit the link and check it out.

I’m also watching through another Craftsy class, featuring a Very Big Name in Sewing, which I’m less fond of.  I’ll have more to say when I’ve actually finished it.  I’ve been watching the class on my new iPad Mini.  The Craftsy app for iPad is a nicer experience than using the web browser on my Android tablet, but I miss having the 30-second rewind feature.

A New Vogue Pattern

It’s so funny that when there’s a new pattern for men — any pattern at all — that it’s a cause for celebration.

I got an email from Vogue announcing their new fall collection, and I clicked into it figuring there wouldn’t be anything of interest to me.

But it looks like Vogue has a new men’s pattern. Vogue 8940 includes a men’s jacket in two lengths. The shorter version (view A) looks like a peacoat, the longer version (view B) looks like a car coat or overcoat.

There’s also a nice pair of slim-fit, below-waist pants that are very fashion-forward. The pants use a yoke for shaping in the back, and have flap pockets.

What’s more, the pattern looks like it’s on sale for $3.99 for a limited time.   I’ve harbored a secret desire to make a peacoat for quite some time, and I’d love to make the pants as well.  So I’m definitely in on this one.

If you’re reading this, please buy a copy of this pattern to help encourage the pattern companies to produce more menswear patterns.

Sorry to dash off so quickly.  But you’ll be hearing more about all of these topics in the days and weeks ahead.  Chow for now!

6 thoughts on “A new pattern from Vogue, and other odds and ends

  1. Matt C.

    Thanks for pointing out the PR Men’s Contest… I didn’t even notice it even though I was looking for another contest to enter. They need to get an icon for it…

    I like that Vogue 8940 jacket. I would like to do some sort of jacket for the winter, although I was thinking less formal like a trenchcoat. However to complete it in two weeks, I think that is too much work for me.

    I think I will enter a shirt. Kwik Sew K3484 is one I bought that looks good.

    Is there a difference between a serger and a coverstitch machine? I have only used my serger once so I don’t know much about it yet.

    Reply
    1. mportuesisf Post author

      Hey Matt,

      Vogue also has a trenchcoat pattern (8720) that you may be interested in. Just be careful when you order the pattern that they make it available in different size ranges. You want to choose the smaller-sized pattern for your thin frame.

      Yes, there is a difference between a serger and a coverstitch machine. But before I go any further, I should point out that some sergers, especially high-end models, have both the features of a serger and a coverstitch in one machine.

      A serger trims the fabric, then wraps and seals the edge with two loops of thread that interlock with each other. Those two loops are anchored by one or two conventional stitches in the seam allowance, depending on if you are doing a 3-thread or 4-thread serger stitch.

      A coverstitch machine is similar, but it does not trim the edge of the fabric. So you can run a coverstitch anywhere along a garment, whereas a serger can only serge along edges. Further, a coverstitch machine has a single looper thread, which catches two or three lines of conventional stitches running in parallel. The conventional stitches appear on the right side of the garment, the looper appears on the wrong side. (A coverstitch machine can also use a single line of conventional stitching, which produces a “chain stitch”. The chain stitch is easy to remove just by pulling on one end, so it’s sometimes used for basting purposes).

      Go look at the hem of any commercially made knit shirt, such as a T-shirt, and you’ll see a cover stitch in action.

      The high-end sergers have a way to convert between serging and coverstitch capability, and yours might have that too. My serger, the Brother 1034D, is an entry-level model that doesn’t have coverstitch. The 2340CV is a coverstitch-only machine that complements the 1034D perfectly.

      All that said, a lot of people view a coverstitch machine as a specialized piece of hardware. Most sewers don’t have one, and even some people who do have one don’t have a lot of use for it. But if you want to do a lot of sewing with knits, and want professional-looking hems and finishing details, it’s a useful machine to have.

      Reply
      1. Matt C.

        Thanks, that was helpful. It seems my serger is just a 4-thread serger.

        I had wondered about how it could be used without the knife cutting. You explained it though… that would require coverstitch machine. Well now I at least know that a product like that exists.

        Reply
        1. mportuesisf Post author

          Matt,

          Most sergers will allow you to optionally disengage the cutting blades (I’ve never had the occasion to do this with my serger). But even if you do this, a serger is still meant to always work on the edges of the fabric.

          One sort-of exception is with a flatlock stitch on a serger. To do a flatlock, you fold the fabric, disengage the cutting blade, then serge the flatlock stitch over the folded edge. When you unfold and press the fabric flat, you get a flatlock stitch along the fold line – ladder-looking on one side, loopy on the other.

          Reply
  2. Josie Huber

    Hi,

    Thanks for posting: The sewing class sounds interesting and fun. I have not taking a sewing class. I will definately put this class on my wishlist.
    I feel that we are a community and it is great that you shared your knowledge about sergers/coverstitch…
    This is what I made so far….
    1. Hawaiian purse to donate to an action to benefit the community services. The last one I made was actioned for $25.
    2. Underwears that actually fit. (made from T-shirts) What a concept. The first ones where not so great yet, I persevered. Now I am happy with the results.
    For this week I want to start something big. However, I have a trip to Reno.
    Teaching at another school which is time consuming… so,small projects are on for now.
    Thank you again for sharing your sewing experiences, and your writing skills are impressive too. Something I an jealous…
    Aloha from Josie

    Reply
    1. mportuesisf Post author

      Josie,

      One of the reasons for buying the coverstitch machine was so I could make knit underwear. The coverstitch machine should be useful (I think) for attaching elastic to legbands, waistbands and other details. And I like the idea of recycling old T-shirts.

      Reply

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