Thursday, September 01, 2011

Black linen caftan almost done

Yesterday I finished the hemming on my new, heavy weight black linen caftan.  It didn't take me as long elapsed time as I expected, in part due to several hours spent waiting at the BMV drivers testing station with my son last Friday.  Basically I stitched the outside hem down all the way around, then yesterday I did the neckline.  Most of the stitching was done riding in the car, as expected, which is a bit slow due to being bumped around a bit.  I used a sharp needle, which I usually don't with linen, and I won't again.  I managed to stitch my fingertip into the thread a couple times.  Probably wouldn't happen if I didn't have a nice callus on the tip of my finger, but still!  I like the way it came out.  The hemming is basically invisible on the right side, and the stitching nearly so on the wrong side.

I decided to wash it before finishing the side seams, so it is in the dryer waiting for me to get home tonight.  I've not decided yet whether to hand stitch the side seams, or if I should just do it on the machine.  It will take just a couple minutes by machine, so I'll likely do that.

Since I like the way this is turning out so much I stopped by Hancock Fabric yesterday afternoon to see if they have linen fabric.  The JoAnn I got this linen at only had a couple bolts, no fun colors and very little option in the way of weight, thus the plain black.  Lo and behold, Hancock's had a nice selection of 100% linen as well as some blends, in different weights and colors.  I didn't see any handkerchief weight in white, so I'll have to continue to get that online, but I found a very nice black with turquoise embroidered flowers & leaves as well as a beautiful bright medium blue.  I got yardage of each enough to make a caftan with some left over, even with shrinkage.  I serged the cut edges of both this morning before work, and the embroidered black is in the washer waiting to be dried.  I'll wash and dry each piece of fabric a couple of times of course, so it does any shrinking before I make it up.

I need to get pictures, too, of course!

The finished width is 44 inches, length is 46 1/2 (shoulder to hem). The bottom outside corners are rounded.  The side seams will start 8 3/4 inches from the shoulder seam, 6 inches from the outside edge, and stop 9 1/2 inch from the bottom edge.

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