Great, Kid. Don’t Get Cocky.

Remember the part in Star Wars when Luke blows up the tie fighter and yells, “Got ‘im. I got ‘im.” and Han Solo turns and says “Great, kid. Don’t get cocky.” I always hated that line from the movie. Why wasn’t Han Solo happy for Luke that he had blown up the tie fighter? I never understood Han Solo’s words until I sat at my sewing machine, stitching on the husband’s new bathrobe. After the successful sewing from the mystery boxes, a shirt that fits me great, the completion of two shirts that the husband likes to wear, two adorable kid’s sweatshirts from grey fleece, and then the  fit of the plastic bathrobe, I was feeling pretty cocky about my sewing ability. But, as I sewed together this bathrobe, I was knocked down a few pegs and I am now a lot more humble. Mama always said, “Nothing will teach you patience like sewing.”

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Let’s start at the beginning with the fabric. I went to Joann’s to get some buttons, but, of course, had to stop and see what was on sale that week. The husband is always good about going to Joann’s with me and as I looked at the fleece that was 50% off that week, he found a super soft, super fluffy, super stretchy fleece that he wanted his new bathrobe to be made from. Even though I could name you 3 pieces of fabric in the stash that I have purchased over the years to make him bathrobes with, and I am sure there is more than that I have forgotten about, we purchased enough of this fleece plus what remained on the bolt for the husband a new bathrobe. Crazy. Because it was 50% off, it wasn’t a bad price but I am sure that is was more than I paid for the pieces in the stash and that was why the pattern needed to be correct. I was going to cut right into this fabric instead of doing a muslin first and there couldn’t be any mistakes.

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With the new bathrobe pattern complete, I started the cutting process. I was careful not to stretch the fabric as I cut. I have already learned that lesson when working super stretchy fabric. Next, I started to sew. I figured my sewing machine would not be too happy about stitching this fabric and that I might have to use my walking foot, but it did fine. On the other hand, my serger HATED this fabric. I spent a fair amount of good sewing time trying to get this fabric to serge properly. I finally got the tensions and the differential feed set to where the serging was acceptable and so I continued on.

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After stitching and serging the shoulder seams, I attached the facing to the front of the bathrobe before the sleeves and side seams. Because of the serging problems, I was trying to minimize the use of the serger on this bathrobe, so decided to use the overcast stitch on my sewing machine to finish the edges of the facings. I really did not need to finish the edges of the facings because they are tucked under in the construction but I quickly noticed that the edges of this fabric pulled apart easily while working with it so I decided it was best to have all the edges finished. Overcasting took forever and it took two spools of bobbin thread to complete, but it did work and I got the facings sewn on. I then finished up the side seam and attached the sleeves. Wow, except for some detail work the bathrobe was done. Except I had missed one important part, fitting. And that is the reason why you sew the sleeves and side seams before the facings.

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I had the husband try on the bathrobe and let’s just say I had gotten a little too cocky about the plastic pattern fitting correctly because it did not. The back neck line was way too low. I knew what I had to do, unpick the entire back facing and take in the shoulder which would lift the back up. If I had just tried it on him before sewing on the facings, this would not have been a big deal. I hate to unpick, but I knew it was the only correct way to fix this, so I got started. As I sat down to get started, I thought of Han Solo’s words that I previously thought were so cruel to Luke and realized that they were not cruel at all, and that he just wanted Luke to keep his head in the game and stay focused. That was something I needed to remember too. Stay focused.

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Unpicking this fabric is not impossible but darn near. I worked for several hours on it but I only had a couple of inches unpicked. I could not find my stitches in this super fluffy mess. So, since the husband wanted to wear this bathrobe in this life time, a new plan was formed and I decided to put a dart in the back of the neck to bring it up. I only had to unpick a little more to complete that part. It was not the best option, but it was a workable one and now that it is done, it looks fine.

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I then started the hems which required some unpicking of the facings. More grumbling was heard from me at this point. Plus, it took much longer to do the hems with the overcast stitch instead of serging them. Then came the belt and belt loops and finally the pockets which I ended up making three times to get the right size. Oh, brother!

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Finally with the bathrobe completed I look back and see that I learned many things from the construction of this bathrobe. I just hope I with not have to relearn them as I continue my sewing journey, and that I keep my mind focused instead of getting cocky. Thanks for the advice Han Solo!

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One thought on “Great, Kid. Don’t Get Cocky.

  1. Pingback: A long time ago in a galaxy far far away… | Sew Forth and Sew On

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