Friday, June 8, 2007

Preparação antes de começar a coser – Prep work before starting to sew

Uma parte importante da costura acontece antes de começar a coser; no meu caso esta parte compreende o pré-tratamento do tecido, o corte, a aplicação de entretelas e as marcações com alinhavos. É uma fase que demora algum tempo mas que é essencial para atingir uma peça bem confeccionada.
Some very important tasks are performed before getting to the actual sewing part; in my case these tasks are pre-shrinking the fabrics, cutting, fusing interfacing and thread tracing. All these tasks take some time but are crucial to get the best final results when making a garment.

O tecido já tinha sido tratado; o forro em cetim (sim, está decidido, vou usar o cetim!) foi passado a ferro com bastante vapor de forma a encolher se tiver de encolher durante este processo e não durante a confecção.
My fashion fabric was already washed; the satin lining (yes, it's final; I'm using satin for lining this dress!) was steam pressed so that if any shrinkage has to happen, it happens before and not during the making of the dress.

Este tecido é bastante escorregadio e como tal é difícil de controlar enquanto se corta; há vários truques para minimizar este problema, como cortar o tecido em cima de uma folha grande de papel ou de um lençol estendido na mesa. Usar pesos para evitar que o tecido deslize também é uma boa ideia. Como prego o molde ao tecido com alfinetes antes de cortar, não me dá jeito que a camada por baixo do tecido também fique presa; então, em vez de papel ou um lençol, resolvi usar uma toalha de mesa de vinil, virada com o avesso para cima; a sua superfície tem atrito suficiente para manter o tecido no lugar e é rígida de forma a evitar que os alfinetes apanhem também a toalha.
This fabric is quite slippery and cutting it right can be hard to accomplish; there are several tips for cutting slippery fabrics, such as covering the cutting table with a large sheet of paper or an old bed sheet; using weights to keep the fabric in place is also a good idea. I like to use a vinyl table-cloth with the wrong side facing up because these table-cloths are hard enough to prevent the pins from pining the table-cloth together with the fabric; this way I can keep using pins to attach the pattern to the fabric before I cut the fabric.

Em relação ao modelo original, decidi fazer uma alteração: não vou fazer a banda da bainha e sim costurar tudo como de uma só peça se tratasse. Faço isto porque neste estampado uma banda passaria despercebida e também para que o tecido chegasse bem para o vestido no comprimento máximo. Para conseguir isto basta cortar com o molde da banda junto do molde da saia, como podem ver a seguir (para uma das partes das costas - na frente o procedimento é igual):
I made a change to the original model: I'm skipping the large hem band and sew the skirt as a single panel skirt instead. I decided to do so because there is no need of a hem band in this printed fabric and also because I wanted to save fabric to make the dress longer as possible. All I had to do was placing the band pattern next to the skirt pattern and treat them both as one, as you can see in the next picture (this is one of the back panels; the front is done in the same way):
Outra coisa: o lado do direito do tecido está para cima, pelo que irei alinhavar as marcações do lado direito.
One other thing: the fabric's right side is facing up when laying the pattern and cutting so I'm thread tracing on the right side of the fabric this time.

Neste tecido é essencial reforçar a abertura onde se vai aplicar o fecho; para isso vou usar umas tiras de entretela de malha fininha, cortada no sentido do comprimento; podem ver nas figuras seguintes que prendo estas tiras à medida que vou fazendo as marcações com os alinhavos; as tiras ficam presas pelos alinhavos até serem coladas com o ferro:
This is a very sheer fabric and reinforcing the zipper opening is mandatory; I'm using on grain strips of that very thin knit fusible interfacing I've been using on other projects. See in the next few pictures how the strips are kept in place by the thread tracing; after the thread tracing is done, the strips can be easily fused in place:

Lado do avesso:
Wrong side:
Além das tiras de entretela decidi também entretelar as frentes e costas superiores de forma a dar mais estabilidade ao tecido na área do tronco. Esta entretela de malha é tão fininha que pouco altera o cair do tecido. A entretela fica presa pelos alinhavos de marcação e depois é colada a ferro:
Besides the zipper opening I decided to interface the upper fronts and backs to provide the fabric with more stability in the upper body area. The knit fusible interfacing is very sheer so it doesn't alter the feel of the fashion fabric too much, it still drapes well after being interfaced. See how the interfacing is kept in place by the thread traced lines, ready to be fused:
Quanto ao forro, cortei-o exactamente como o vestido, mas neste caso o lado do avesso fica par cima (se não fizerem isto, a bainha do forro fica inclinada para o lado contrário, é preciso tomar muita atenção a estes pormenores!). No caso do cetim o lado do avesso distingue-se bem porque é mais baço. Entretelei apenas as partes superiores das costas.
The lining is cut exactly like the fashion fabric but now the wrong side of the fabric is facing up while cutting (If you don't do this you'll end up with non matching hems on the lining and fabric so pay close attention!). It is easy to see which side is the wrong side on the satin because the right side is always shinier.

Na próxima figura podem ver as peças do vestido preparadas para começar a coser:
Next picture shows all the fabric/lining pieces ready to start sewing:
Todo o trabalho preparatório demorou até agora (contando já com o traçado do molde) 12h. Nada mau! Isto só foi possível porque hoje não fui trabalhar e passei uma boa parte do dia a fazer estes preparativos! Ainda me falta afinar as máquinas de costura e fazer testes com as novas linhas! Até breve!
All this prep work took about 12h until now (also counting the time spent tracing the pattern). Not bad! This was possible because today I didn't have to go to work so I've spent most of the day at the sewing table! I still have my sewing machine and serger to set up and run some tests on the stitches, though. See you soon!

9 comments:

Ariane C said...

Tany, I'm glad to see how you prepare before the actual sewing. I do have one question for you though, what books do you tend to go back to over and over, this also includes couture techniques? Thanks for your time.

Tany said...

Hi Ariane C, thanks for visiting! I'm a book addict so I collect sewing books and I tend to refer to them all because I like to compare different approaches to the same subject. My first sewing book is a Portuguese edition of the Burda sewing book (the title translates to “Sewing made Easy”) and I still refer to it often. A few weeks ago my Mother gave me the Portuguese edition of the Reader’s Digest Complete Guide to Sewing (published in the seventies) and I like it a lot; I think this is a good book for beginners and intermediate sewers. On the subject of Couture I have many books; my favorite is the “Clothing Construction” by Evelyn Mansfield, a vintage book that covers the basic and also some special techniques. I have the “Couture, the Art of Fine Sewing” by Roberta Carr, the “Couture Sewing Techniques” By Claire Chaeffer , the “High Fashion Sewing Secrets from the World’s Best Designers” also by Claire Chaeffer and the “Bridal Couture” by Susan Khalje. There are other subjects like tailoring, fabrics, patternmaking, etc. and I have several books on those subjects too. I will try to review all my books, one at a time or by subject lol. No matter how many books you have, Sewing takes a lot of practice and knowing others that can help you and point out the right direction makes all the difference! I was lucky to meet some great seamstresses over the Internet and benefit from their knowledge; some things you can’t get from books and a good advice from someone more experienced is always welcome!

toya said...

hey tany
can you tell me what is the purpose of those tread tracing, I never do that and I am wondering why and if I should start?

dawn said...

I'm glad you chose the satin. I was worried that the gauze would sort of "stick" to the other fabric.

12 hours! This is why I can't thread trace...I don't have any clients (yet) that are going to pay for that much time. That's why couture dresses are in the 10's of thousands, right?

Tany said...

Toya: Thread tracing is a very accurate way to mark the fabric pieces (stitching lines, knots, whatever) and it only works with patterns with no SA included, like the BWOF’s patterns. I learned to mark the fabric like that since I was little and only a few years ago I found out there are other ways (easier and quickier). I still prefer to thread trace everything though. It’s very time consuming but I think it pays in accuracy. With patterns with SAs included you can stitch at a predefined distance from the edge so no need for markings but I find it less accurate. Patterns with no SAs are easier to alter for a better fit too. Cutting with no SAs on the pattern is easy, just takes a little time getting used to. As I said, I’m used to do things this way and now I found out that this is the way they do it for Couture sewing.

Dawn: You're absolutely right! I tried the gauze draping it together with the fabric on my body and it did stick to the fashion fabric so I put it aside. 12 hours is not much, since I skipped the muslin and I don't expect fitting issues from this pattern; I didn't have to make adjustments on my previous Patrones dress patterns so I decided to trust this one! Normally, I would spend about 15-25 hours just to prepare for sewing, depending on the number of pattern pieces. This one was really quick because I was cutting a single layer of fabric so thread tracing is less time consuming (no tailor tacks!). I make things this way because time is not a problem for me; if i was to sew as a profession I think I would have to change my methods or else get some VERY rich clients (rich and patient!), lol!

Laura said...

Dear Tany,
Let me tell you once again how much I admire and envy your patience and workmanship! You're definitely an accomplished seamstress!
One tiny question if I may, regarding thread-tracing. When you sew over the thread-tracing, isn't it difficult to remove the thread afterwards because it gets caught in the machine sewed seam?
Thanks a lot
LauraLo

Tany said...

LauraLo: Thank you so much for your visit and compliment! I do admire your work so much and your words mean a lot to me! When I thread trace, I keep the pattern pinned to the fabric and the thread traced line of stitching is made on the outside, very close to the stitching line but in the SAs instead; to sew a seam, I pin both fabric pieces together, feeling the thread stitches with my fingers so they overlap exactly; I could make a second row of basting on the SA but with practice I began using pins instead and now I can get good results with pinning only (unless I’m dealing with a difficult fabric). When I machine stitch, the stitching line is made close to the thread basting but to the left (if the SA is on the right), on the true stitching line. Sometimes the basting thread does get caught by the machine stitches and I have to use tiny scissors to take it off. I never use strength when pulling the basting threads off; instead I cut them from time to time and pull them very carefully. On my next project I will write a post dedicated to thread tracing because I see that many sewing Friends are curious about this technique!

Laura said...

Dear Tany,
You don't have to thank me for my visit, I am visiting your blog everytime you post something (I'm subscribed to bloglines) with the greatest pleasure of all!
I love your work and your passion for detail, your cleanliness!
We are the same age, I've just realised :)
LauraLo

Tany said...

LauraLo: Not only we are the same age but also we share the same passion for sewing and beautiful clothing! I'm also subscribed to bloglines and I visit you often too! I love your sewing work!