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15 December 2011

Cotton Candy Poncho

I am Lucia. I am a fabricholic. I buy and buy and never make anything. Here is to changing that!

I sometimes come across a fabric that is so outrageous-looking that I can't move my eyes away from it. And of course, I must have it even though I am clearly also a bit scared of it. "How will I wear it?" "Will I look ridiculous in it?" "What could one possibly do with it?" It's the kind of fabric that in the hands of Versace or Lacroix easily becomes art; the most attention-grabbing coat, a to-die-for skirt. But with me...

This was one such fabric, from the remnants table at the Linton Tweeds mill. My limited imagination, plus the fact that it is only slightly more than a meter have conspired to produce: a poncho!

The pattern is Burda 09/2005 #125 and it has the easiest ranking: one ball. So, after the 3.5 ball challenge of the Marjolein dress I thought I would be safe with this choice. But once again my amateur cluelessness came into play and made things "interesting". The fabric is very loosely woven, so I had to finish all edges, even though they would be encased in binding, lest the binding came off with a fistful of threads at the first stiff pull. To be fair, finishing all edges was not so much difficult as it was tedious. For future reference I used stitch #16, the three-stitch zig-zag. This is a zigzag stitch, but the needle makes three stitches on each zig. Nifty!

And that wasn't all of course... I couldn't find ready-made bias binding in the perfect color for the edges, so I decided to make my own. All 6.5 meters of it.

Once again Claire Shaeffer's Complete Book of Sewing Shortcuts came to my rescue with her quickest method to make lots of yardage of bias binding. Yup. I've decided I will never saw anything again without first checking what Claire has to say about it.

And finally, I also decided to sew the second side of the binding by hand, since I don't want any machine stitches to show. So again, not so much hard as tedious, VERY tedious.

But it is finally done! Now... on