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September Sew-A-Long : Zoe Day 1

September 1, 2008

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Zoe Day 1: Gather Your Items


Today, is about gather all of the items that you will need for this tutorial and preparing them for use.  You will need:

The Farbenmix Zoe Pattern (There is no way around this one.  You have to buy the pattern to use it in the sew-a-long.  I recommend Fabric Hound or Banberry Place.)

Knit Material (Don’t be afraid!  You really can sew knits!  This would be the perfect opportunity to try sewing knits…you will have lots of help to get you through.  To know how much material you will need…consult your pattern.  You will probably choose two different prints or colors, since we are making a raglan tee.  I will be using an orange rib knit for the sleeves and a chocolate interlock knit for the body and neck band.  These are just personal choices.  You will have to find what you want to use.)

Here are shots of my materials:

I took an up-close shot of the rib knit so that you can see its texture.

Ball point or Stretch needles (This is not necessarily a must-have, but it will make your life easier.  You will need these for your serger and your regular machine.)

I took this shot of the schmetz needles so that you could get an idea of what to look for.  You need to consult your machine’s manual to know exactly what to buy.

Ball point straight pins (These are great, but again, not necessary.  They will help you pin your fabrics without leaving holes.)

I also keep a little canister that I found at Jo-Ann craft.  I can’t remember the brand, but it helps keep my used needles sorted.  Here’s a shot of that:

It has different compartments that are labeled for different types of needles.  It really is a great help!

Tissue Paper or whatever you trace patterns with (I’m using just regular tissue paper again.  You can use tracing paper, Swedish tracing paper, Pattern Ease, plastic sheeting, interfacing, muslin, or whatever you prefer.)

Marking tool (You need a marking tool for making marks on your material.  I’m using a white chalk pencil because I’m using dark colors.  Use whatever works on your fabrics.  Examples are: pencil, chalk pencil, tailor’s chalk, disappearing ink, and many others

I think that is it!  Gather these items.

Now, you will need to wash and iron your fabric.  Knits really shrink after washing so make sure that you do this step.  You want to use warm water and and iron.  You don’t want your shirts shrinking after your first wash.

The next and final step for today is to trace your pattern.  I will be making the straight bottom for a boy and short sleeves.  We still have a couple months of warm weather here.  You can choose to use the tapered pieces and long sleeves.  You will still be able to follow along.  The steps are the same. 

After you trace your pattern, add a 3/8 inch seam allowances to all sides that will be sewn.  Do not add a seam allowance to sides that will be placed on the fold. 

Now, cut out your pattern pieces.  You are ready for Day 2.

Share what you are doing with others.  Leave a link on Mr. Linky below, or head on over to flickr and upload to our flickr group.


5 Comments leave one →
  1. jenuinejen permalink
    September 1, 2008 10:20 pm

    I am interested in this. I have not purchased the fabric or the pattern so I would be several days behind when I get started. Mainly, I am interested because while I have sewn a good bit, I am totally intimitaded by knits.

    In the vein of no question is a bad question, why do you have to trace the pattern? I have always purchased patterns fromm JoAnn’s, Hancocks, etc. and have cut them to size.

    Do you recommend sewing machine or serger? I have a serger but have not used it to make clothes.

    Thanks in advance for taking the time to answer my questions.

  2. wondermommy permalink
    September 2, 2008 8:59 am

    I have sent you an email, but I’ll answer here as well.

    I’m so glad that you want to be involved in the sew-a-long. It really doesn’t matter when you
    begin…as long as you do 🙂

    First, let me answer why you should trace your pattern. Farbenmix patterns are made in the Euro tradition.
    They are not like American patterns. They do not include a seam allowance. This is the amount of room that
    you need when you sew. So, you have to trace the pattern and add this allowance to your tracing. Since I have
    started using Euro patterns…I have also started tracing my other patterns. This lets your patterns last longer.
    You poke all of your holes in the tracing, so you have your pattern packed neatly away.

    Now, as far as the serger question. I love my serger, so if you have one…I would recommend breaking it out. It
    allows you to skip a step. If you were using your sewing machine, you would have to go back and zig zag all of your

    I hope this helps, and we’ll be glad to have you join us when you can!


  1. September Sew-A-Long : Zoe Day 2 « The Adventures of Wondermommy
  2. September Sew-a-Long: Zoe Day 3 « The Adventures of Wondermommy
  3. Zoe Sew-a-Long « The Adventures of Wondermommy

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