Wednesday, August 21, 2013

S9776 Tank 2: update and construction details

Thanks for your comments on my last post---I love those action shots!

I wore the second tank to the gym last night for balletone (45 min of toning using ballet moves).  I figured the class was low impact enough that if the tank wasn't comfy or was any trouble, I could deal with it.

S9776: second tank

I am happy to report that it was totally fine!  My classmate Sara, who is a huge cheerleader for my sewing, said it was super cute. I thought so too, and did not bother me in any way. It is still not officially hemmed, but I thought I'd wait and get some stretch lace to hem it with.  The pink underlining was creeping out periodically, but I think cutting that back a bit will help, plus sewing down a stretch lace hem will help too.  :)

I *love* how stretchy it is. The lace  has 50% stretch in both the crosswise grain and length of grain. The pink jersey underneath has similar stretch.

So, I definitely want to make more of these tanks for the gym! I also want to try to copy my favorite rib knit tank.

So here are some general construction notes.
As the fabric went through my machine, it was getting all scrunched up for some reason. It wasn't gathering the thread, just getting bunched up. It turned out to not mean anything! Just a gentle tug on the fabric released the "gathering". Woot!  It is actually quite easy to sew stretch lace...and fun too!
That's my new teflon presser foot.  I read in a comment on someone's PR review of a knit dress that a teflon foot can help with sewing knits.

The pattern has a dart, which was pretty cool and easy to do.

I thought I'd show you how I mark darts using wax tracing paper. This is on my muslin, that was not underlined. For my underlined tank, I did this on the pink knit, not the lace.

I learned about this method through The Seasoned Homemaker blog, specifically this post.  That post also shows how large the wax tracing paper is!!!  It's HUGE!

So I cut out my front piece, then took a strip of wax tracing paper (I had cut this strip from the huge sheet of wax tracing paper. This paper I bought from the source The Seasoned Homemaker recommends, but I've since seen it at other places, including Sunni's shop and also Mood in store).

Anyhoo, I sort of wrapped the wax paper around the fabric where the dart would go:
Easy way to mark darts with wax tracing paper and spiked tracing wheel
and then I traced with a spiky tracing wheel.   It's actually tracing onto both sides of the fabric (which I had placed on the fold) at the same time--pretty cool huh?

Thee dart looks like this:
and then it looks like this

When I trace the dart, I use a spiky tracing wheel and that little triangular quilter's ruler.  I love that little ruler--it is the best thing to use when cutting smaller straight lines, like shoulder seams, with a rotary cutter.  PERFECT!
S9776: altered
Argh!  I photographed my smooth tracing wheel, but I use the spiky one.

Pretty easy and simple.  I really don't like the chalk or wax strips of tracing paper from Joann's.  The big pieces of wax paper are much higher quality!!  It really makes a difference, so much less frustration.  I just run my wheel over the line twice and it looks great.  You do need to be careful with the wax paper, though--I have accidentally marked clothing I was wearing!  and it doesn't always come out--I have heard that it irons out but that wasn't the case with one of my garments...

Oh, the pic above also shows how much I curved the front piece side seam. Here's how much I curved the back piece side seam:

S9776: altered
It's a pretty significant amount.

Oh, and the FOE for this black/pink tank was from the ASE in 2010!  Long time resident of my stash.  Felt a little softer than the FOE from Pacific Trimming but still worked great!

I'm excited to make more stretch lace tanks!  Just have to get more stretch lace fabric, though.

Here's the pattern envelope:
All the handwritten notes are from 2007:
Be well!


  1. Great workings on the top. I'll have to try wax paper too.

  2. Glad to hear the top wore well in your balletone class - it would have been a bit embarrassing to split a seam! So do you think the Teflon foot has made a difference to sewing knits?

  3. So glad to hear that the tank is useful and wearable as well as pretty!

  4. What pretty gymwear! I've had similar experiences with the good wax paper.

  5. I really want one of these tops now! Not to wear to the gym, though. My flab is way too profound. =)


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