Sometimes…it’s better to BUY clothing

OK – so DD gave me a Groupon for $50 for Christmas (for which she paid just $25) at Coldwater Creek.  So yesterday I ventured out there before making my final packing decisions for my upcoming trip to the Northwest to present at 2 stores.  Searching through the store, I eyed this nice ponte knit pant in one of my SWAP colors:  Teal.  They fit just pretty great actually, so since the deal was $79.99 marked down to $49.99 and then 40% off that made these pants come to just $29.94!  At $12.99 per yard for Sophia ponte double knit plus my time – obviously this purchase was a no-brainer.  After washing them, it was obvious that the seams needed a press.  HOW does anyone dress without ironing/pressing is what I wanna know?  Not only did they need pressing to re-establish nice front creases (which make anyone’s legs look longer and slimmer BTW), the seams were going all over the place inside.  See photo below…  There’s no way that my hip line could look smooth unless those seam allowances are pressed properly!

helter-skelter seams inside my new knit pants

helter-skelter seams inside my new knit pants


The BEST, and FREE pant or sleeve pressing piece of equipment is a good, sturdy fabric tube.  I’m sure you can just go to any fabric store where they sell home dec fabric and ask, and they’ll be happy to let you take one for FREE!  See how slipping the tube inside of the pant leg allows you to press seams without creating an imprint of the seam allowance on the fabric, much less to the other side of the pant!

Sturdy fabric tube is the perfect seam roll for pressing!

Sturdy fabric tube is the perfect seam roll for pressing!

WARNING YOUNG MOTHERS:  Creative children like my son  (though years ago, I perfectly remember) ‘see’ a tube like this as a light saber or ‘sword’….. or even a great surface on which to COLOR with crayons!  I was doing dressmaking from home back then, and didn’t realize he had taken RED crayon to my pressing tube until I turned the SILK TWEED pant right side out to see RED CRAYON melted onto them!!!  Sew…….HIDE THIS ‘pressing tool’  FROM YOUR CHILDREN!!!

Once I had all four seam allowances tamed and steamed into place, it was time to press the pant legs from the outside, matching the seams in order to set good creases into the legs.  Another VERY INEXPENSIVE see-thru pressing cloth is SILK ORGANZA!!!    (I currently only have BLACK in stock.) See below how I laid the silk organza over the fabric for a pressing cloth – eliminating shine on the fabric.  For more information, consult FREE INFO at my website.  HERE is a link to my ‘Pressing Matters’ article.

Silk organza as the perfect pressing cloth.

Silk organza as the perfect pressing cloth.


I love to ‘learn’ from ready-to-wear.  I’m a little doubtful about the bulk of the top of these pants.  As you can see, the elastic has been stitched to the outside of the top of the pant, then rolled TWO times to the inside.  I only roll mine one time to the inside… but we’ll see.

inside of double-rolled elastic band at waist


Sew…there you have it.  Why it is smart to shop ready-t0-wear (RTW) for great bargains, making time for CREATIVE SEWING instead!



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3 Responses

  1. Ruth S says:

    I hate to admit it, but I don’t sew half as much as I used to. I do like to wear something other than what everyone else is wearing, but when I can buy a nice dress off ebay for $20, and I factor in my disabilities, it’s the more practical option. It is nice that I know how to alter if I get something that doesn’t fit quite right. I love it that we’ve taught our daughters how to shop right! I’m as pleased as she is when she calls to tell me of her great deals, lol.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks for your input. I agree – which is why I really enjoy CREATIVE sewing the most. Right now, I have some of my stashed wonderful black knit fabric (that I don’t think I’ll EVER find again!) for pants – which I do need, but it will be a BORE to make them – ugh!

  2. Nancy says:

    I learned a long time ago to “buy hard and sew easy”. With working full time , raising 2 children and trying to squeeze in several hobbies, sewing choices had to be made. Some times, I still chose to make a tailored jacket, just to keep my sewings skills current and try out the latest products hitting the market. Now I’m disabled with Rheumatiod Arthritis,that, unfortunately has hit my hands quite hard. So doing any sewing is a treat. So as long as these tired eyes and hands can manage, I’ll keep sewing. But buying ready to wear is disappointing too, the quailty just isn’t the same. We need more “Made in America” products. I was happy to see that this year, our Olympic team wore outfits designed and made here. Ralph Lauren learned a valuable lesson 4 years ago!

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