Alabama stitchin'

laurahere.jpgIt is hard for me to believe, but my clock making obsession has been (temporarily) derailed by a book about making clothes. I have not tried to make any garments for decades, nothing ever fit right and it is usually cheaper to thrift. The thing is, The Alabama Stitch Book, shows you how to use recycled T-shirts to hand stitch stylish clothes. I have  enjoyed reading a couple recent sewing project books, but they did not make me toss down the book and pick up a needle like this book did. (No offence Amy and Lotta.) You don't need to buy any designer fabric to make these super cool projects, just XL cotton tees. The methods of working and constructing the pieces are unconventional and clever. Have I gushed enough to make you check out this book? I hope so. I interlibrary loaned it, thanks to Katie's tip and will have my own copy soon...Here is what I am working on so much my wrists hurt from stitching:


After hitting my favorite thrift spot for tees-one for the lining and one for the outer layer- I got busy tracing and cutting.


I then cut a 18x24 inch piece of poster board into a stencil and did a test to see what color paint to use.


Settled on grey-liquatex 'cause it was what I had. Then pinned the painted layer onto the lining and set to work stitching around each leaf.

After stitching I cut away most of the painted part to reveal the lining. This technique is known as reverse applique, but I never would have thought to use it like this. This is the front, and it is now seamed together. I have the back 2/3 of the way done. I hope it fits. (If it doesn't I'm going to hand it on the wall as art...or give it to Katie.)