My First Smock
For my birthday my husband totally surprised me with a new sewing machine. I had my former machine for a good five years and there really weren't any complaints about it, but I'd recently had the conversation with him that there would come a day when I would want an upgrade. He took that and ran with it and now my machine reads: Viking Husquavarna instead of Kenmore. I think it's a lot more solid,(way less vibration) with more stitch choices, and even a needle-threading feature! Wow. It keeps tripping me up the way the top spool of thread is on its' side. (There must be some reason for this!) but I am really pleased with it overall. My old one will be there when friends need a machine to borrow or I want to sew side by side with someone, perhaps even a daughter one day. Oh the luxury.
I, like everyone online, recently bought a copy of Bend The Rules Sewing by Amy Karol. If you don't know who she is, I came across her blog at some point and love it. Her book is just like her blog, fun to read, something I go back to again and again. In both, she reveals wise tips, (about crafting and life) a sense of humor, and a brilliant sense of creativity and taste. I consider myself a medium level seamstress and though her book is geared for beginning sewers, I've gleaned many a worthwhile tip from it, as well as refreshed my knowledge of basic sewing methods. It's also SO PRETTY. Check it out and prepare to be inspired.
Armed with a new machine and a book full of 30 amazing projects, it was time to dive forth into a project and I chose to make Amy's adorable and simple smock. The biggest challenge, seriously, was having the pattern copied at 235% at Office Max. Other than that it was totally simple and straightforward. I used thrifted fabric, and for the pocket a piece from a Ralph Lauren bed skirt that I demolished and made into valances in Julia's bedroom. I modified the pattern by making the pocket long with tiny little segments to hold little clothespin friends, as Amy had suggested here.
For me the bias tape finish is genius but I still struggle (despite the special foot my machine has) with getting it on completely (especially if it's narrow) and sewing it neatly. I'd like to be more of a precision sewer I guess. I think it's a matter of sewing more often to perfect my skill, and slowing down or, putting less pedal to the metal. My machine will no doubt lift me to the next level of my sewing and carry me forward for the rest of my sewing life. Did I mention its' substantial feel? It totally makes me excited about sewing.
Overall, I think this little smockaroo turned out fine for my first. I want to make a few more in new fabrics, as this one is a gift for a friend's soon-to-be one-year-old. It will be pretty roomy on her, (the proof being that it was big on my two year old) but there will be lots of time to grow into it.
Yeah. Me likey.