I’ve always seemed to have a knack for being able to look at something and then being able to recreate it, provided I had the right materials and/or technology. So, when I recently took up sewing after purchasing a sewing machine, I put that skill to good use in making dog collars and leads, and I’ve even not to say “invented” but rather “improved upon” the idea of a dog’s no-pull harness. Of which more later, as my experience with needles breaking (12 so far!) and a very long wait for a walking foot to arrive put me off for a while.
Meanwhile, I got a hankering to make my own clothes after watching BBC’s “The Great British Sewing Bee” on TV. They’d only started by showing Series 4 here in Australia, but luckily I was able to track down and watch the 3 previous seasons online.
Anyway, back to reverse engineering. I had this old favourite tunic top that had seen better days. It was made from t-shirt jersey material, which is sadly pilled now, as you can see in the photos below. I liked how it draped, and the ties at the back meant I could adjust the bodice.
To reverse engineer this tunic, I first folded it in had lengthwise, and placed it on top of my tracing “paper” (which is actually made of a material similar to interfacing and comes on a roll).
Then, I transferred this onto fabric and cut out the pieces for the front (1 piece) and back (2 pieces).
And then, it was time to sew the pieces together. I decided that the original tunic’s patch pocket was too small and in a not very convenient spot, so I would instead create 2 roomy pockets on the front of my tunic instead.
I started sewing mid-morning, and took a break after lunch to do some pet sitting and dog walking, then returned to finish the garment off in the evening. I finally put the finishing touches to this garment at 9:30 in the evening. Yes, it took a while, about 8 hours in total, but I’m really proud of it. Every single seam has been bound (no fraying), and I learnt and practised several new techniques at once.
In tomorrow’s post I’ll show you what the tunic looks like on my person. Yes, I wore it out to the cinema, to watch Bridget Jones’ Baby (a very enjoyable rom-com, by the way).