While I had to wait with my sewing with jersey practice for about two weeks (until the new twin needle arrived), you do not have to wait to read more about my jersey t-shirts. Having left off in my last blog post on ‘sewing with jersey’ rather pessimistically with a broken needle and somewhat broken dreams… I feel that it is important to put jerseys back into a more positive light.
More Sewing with Jersey Practice
After making two t-shirts from the book ‘Oberteile nähen’ (in English: ‘Sewing Tops’) by The Couture Kira Denecke, I felt not comfortable enough to move on to the more fancy long sleeve shirts with stand-up collars or zippers. So I decided to give my basic round-neck and V-neck shirts a second chance and start a second trial of both.
I started off with the V-neck shirt as it seemed more straightforward to me (because this special cuff jersey still scared me a bit). The jersey I chose this time was lighter and more soft. It was very nice to work with and the outcome was so much better than the first trial.
Having my ‘lessons learned’ list noted down in my sewing diary, I knew exactly what to pay attention to. I finished off the seams on the sleeves and lower hem with my newly imported (super expensive) twin needle and cut off the excess fabric. The sleeves are slightly longer which I feel is a bit more ‘elegant’ (if a jersey t-shirt can actually be elegant at all). The overall length of the shirt is also better and not too short or not too long.
And the best thing is I did not break my needle! 🙂
Round-neck Shirt 2.0
Afterward, I also dared to work on the round-neck with the cuff jersey for the neckline. And I tell you – it is so easy to work with these special cuffs! I had to laugh about myself and that I was afraid to cut it at first.
My second challenge for this shirt was to try out the overlock machine again to finish off the inside seams. I had refrained from this for the last shirt as it was such a hassle to thread the twin needle. Now I sat down with my manual and did it slowly, step by step. And it worked much better than the first time.
I chose the option of having the seam finished off and cut in one go. If the machine works properly it is actually an amazingly fast alternative to using a zigzag stitch. But it needs more practice and a lot of patience (which I often don’t have)!
My first pretty Jersey Shirts
I guess you can see from my smile in these photos that I am much more comfortable wearing these shirts. They fit well and look good as well. The grey one is a bit ‘too boring’ for my taste, but the glitter in the cuff fabric makes a bit up for this. And I can tell you that I actually wore this jersey shirt a lot during the Covid-19 lockdown of the last months. 🙂
Sewing with French Terry
As sewing with a normal jersey turned out quite a nice experience after all, I decided that it was time for the next adventure. I also bought some ‘French terry’ which is similar to jersey but has more of a knitted texture with loops on one side. It is often used for sweatshirts as well.
I found this amazing light grey French terry with silver shimmer at the ‘Kingdom of Fabrics’. When I bought it I had the turtle neck shirt in mind already. But when I started preparing to cut my fabric I noticed that it might be enough to actually make both the simple turtle neck and the one with the zipper from it, if I made both shirts a bit shorter in length.
In this context, I have to say that I am super economical when cutting fabrics. Usually, I buy the required amount, but when I am done cutting I always have so much left over. It makes me sad as these leftovers live their lives in a box in my wardrobe. Seldom I can actually put them to use and make something else from them.
Well, I guess in times of Covid-19 I could make matching masks out of them. But remember, this sewing adventure took place in January 2020 and we were not considering wearing masks yet back then. Little did we know that it would be a lot different only a few weeks later!
Falling in love with French Terry
So, I prepared both shirts in parallel and also sew them in parallel. And this fabric was just amazing! It had such a nice feeling to it and it was so easy to work with. The overlook machine also loved it apparently. It worked very well for finishing all seams this time. I guess it is because it prefers heavier fabrics in general to lighter ones. 😉
Also attaching the zipper was almost no issue at all. I had used the ‘chance’ that I had to order a new twin needle for ordering a nice metal zipper from Germany as well. A good decision as the zippers I get here in Qatar are usually not the best quality. And they would not have matched the shimmer of the amazing fabric!
The only downside that I have to note down here again. Never sew over a metal zipper by mistake! This will make your (this time not twin) jersey needle break. 🙁
Good that I ordered some more spare jersey needles as well… you never know when you might need them! 😉
By the way, Kira Denecke’s book has three more chapters to explore: one on blouses, one on tops, and one on shirt blouses. I haven’t started working through these yet, but I keep you posted!
So, here they are! My slightly shorter shirts are made with French terry. Tell me what you think about these shirt options in the comments below.