December 9, 2010

Quick Sew

I'm not really a clotheshorse. Sometimes I wish I was. I like clothes, but I've never been the type to have a bunch of clothes, the latest or otherwise. In fact, I'm pretty excited that right now I have two separate pairs of jeans that I like. Usually I have a few pairs and I hate all but one. Or sometimes even all of them, so two is pretty good. I do, generally, try to dress with some sense of style, or I should say my style, since I'm not sure that it's actually style, but it's what I like. Not that I don't have days where yoga pants and a t-shirt are as good as it gets. I mean, I am a writer who works at home, working in your pajamas is practically required. But most of the time, I try, a little.
I think part of my lack of clothes-ness is that, other than my few years as a teacher, I've never had that life where you get up and get dressed up for work. And even when I was a teacher, well, it was the late 1990's/early 2000's. There was a lot of tan. And denim (but not the embroidered with little apple's an A+'s, don't worry) And then I was a mom and I needed things that were highly washable. But when Briton was about two, I made two big decisions about me and clothes.

The first was that I was going to stop buying crap. No more Target T's that lasted through one wash before falling apart. On my limited budget that meant that I might only have a few shirts instead of a bunch, but I liked that they lasted and that they looked nice. And for the most part I've kept with that (expect now and then, like yesterday, when I bought a cheap t-shirt at Old Navy only to find that it already has a hole in it. Grrrrr....)

The other one was that accessories were the name of the game. Because then my few (nicer) shirts and pants looked more interesting. I'm not any kind of fashion guru, far from it, but I like accessories. Well, really, I like scarves and flowers and the occasional bracelet.

My flower love has been well documented in the past but I don't think I've ever revealed my dark little secret about scarves. I, am a scarfaholic (I just heard that term and though, Yes! I'm not the only one! Don't touch my scarves! Mine!) I looove scarves.

One of the only things I dislike about living in Virginia is that there are months on end where it's just too hot to wear them. And I really do miss them during the late spring and summer. So every fall (way too early and when it's still to hot and I'm sweating wearing them but still carry on) I'm a little over excited to dig out my scarves.

So what is all of this leading up to? Well, it's just a long way of saying, I made a scarf.
I was at a friends Ladies Who Craft night the other day and in walked a lovely gal with the greatest loop scarf. I'll be totally honest, I stared. I was in love. I NEEDED one. But like an idiot, I didn't ask where she got it or even if I could look at it. Of course not, because that would have been smart.

However, in the back of my mind I was thinking, "that's pretty basic, that I could make, if only I had some wool." And then when I was at the fabric store the next day (not because I was looking for wool. OK, not just because I was looking for wool) there it was, the perfect wool suiting, on sale.

It was a sign.

Here's the rundown on how I made it. Because it's pretty darn simple. And warm and lovely and...just go make one.

You'll need 1/3 of a yard of 54 inch wide wool suiting. It needs to be wide enough that you can drape it over your shoulders if you need a little warmth but not so wide that it's bulky when you wear it as a scarf, and 1/3 of a yard was just right for me. You can go wider or narrower if you want.
Cut the edges so that they are even and serge the long (cut) sides. Or, if you are like me and you don't have a serger due to a flood in your basement, use an overcast stitch on your machine (that's a zigzag or zigzag-like stitch right on the edge, you probably have an overcast foot in the box of stuff that came with your sewing machine which you've never tried because what the heck are all those things?)
Once both sides are done, lay the selvage edges right sides together and sew a 1/2 inch seam. Press the seam open and top stitch on either side. Because I kind of liked the furry selvage and the seam sits at my neck, I didn't mind it being visible. But if you don't want it to be seen or you have raw edges on the ends, you could also sew a french seam (Sew the ends with the wrong side together, trim with pinking shears, press to one side, then sew again with the right sides together, encasing the raw edges, was that too confusing? Here is a link to a good photo tutorial)

And that's it. Done. Ten minutes at most. Hummm....maybe I need one in another color....