Monday, March 7, 2011

A Poncho with Panache

I bought this pattern years ago, back when I had a toddler and thought I might sew. I never perfected that. How to keep the toddler out of the pins, buttons and other sewing notions and still be able to pay attention to the ins and outs of a given pattern. I also did not have the pattern know how and patience I have today. (I really cannot say enough nice things about the Intro to Sewing classes at JoAnn's. Totally helped me step up my game and inspired me to just give it a try.)

I also have a thing for the remnant bin. I have collected an impressive collection of fleece remnants over the years, as well as other bits and pieces. Recently I have made a costume, a curtain for my BFF and some of those fantastic shopping bags, all from remnants. I think remnants give you the chance to experiment. This poncho I made from two remnants. I fell hard for the fabric and just bought all that was in the bin.

Having been achieving some sewing success, I decided to try and finally make this Poncho. I had to go with option C, as that was all the material I had and lucky for me, I had two generous remnants of this very bold print, but not enough for options A or B.

The pattern is a McCall's Easy Stitch 'n' Save pattern. (M4902) Sometimes these patterns are really easy and sometimes not so much. This one, particularly option C was in fact very easy. It is basically three steps and three pieces of fabric. It took me longer to lay it out and cut it out than it did to assemble and sew. My only complaint is that the 4 yards of trim is not enough, I think you need to get 4.25 or 4.5 yards to be safe. I was short and had to go back and get a bit more. I was able to disguise this, using seam sealant and some clever hand stitching, but it was annoying to have to do so, when I followed the directions to a T.

I also don't love the neck line completely. I went with the large size to achieve the proper length, but I think if I make it again, I will size the neck down just a tad. The neck line has ended up being almost a cowl neckline and I am not sure that is what I was going for, but I am overall pleased with the results. It looks sharp, the fabric is fantastic and this will be just the thing for the spring and fall walks back and forth to the school.

(photos by L. She is my fashion photographer.)

I think you could use something other than fleece, but fleece is a nice way to start. It does have some stretch, which can trouble those new to sewing, but it does not fray and you can get away with not hemming it, especially if you are handy with your scissors and cut very straight lines.

The next project, using fleece is going to be a poncho for L and maybe a shrug also. I found a pattern on line for girls and she is anxious to help!

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