Harder than it looks and easier than it looks

My sewing student brought me one of those adorable craft books from Japan with directions for making cute little stuffed animals. She really wanted to make one of the animals from the book.

Before we started, I mentioned to my student that sometimes the directions in books are not written all that well.  So we got to work. Indeed, the directions in the book were not written well, and the project wasn’t all that well thought out.

Making this monkey was just much harder then it ought to have been.  All in all, it was a pretty frustrating experience.
But this was the end result.  My student designed the dress because she hated what the monkey’s legs looked like.
monkey (1)

monkey (2)

My student came today for her last lesson before she went away for the summer.  She asked that we make something that could be completed today. I suggested a skirt.  My student was dubious that a skirt could be made in one lesson.

My student went looking through my stash to choose a fabric for her skirt. When I saw that she chose a blue ruffle fabric, I knew that it would be easy to complete in one lesson. We drafted the pattern directly onto the fabric with sidewalk chalk. She cut out the skirt and sewed up the side seams. I own two huge rolls of wide black elastic. She decided that she would love to have a skirt with exposed elastic. I showed her how to join the elastic and then how to quarter mark both the elastic and the skirt ( side walk chalk again), and then sew the elastic to the skirt.  The ruffle fabric needs no hem, just careful cutting on the lines of the fabric. she tried on the skirt. It looked great but needed to be a smidge shorter. She cut it a smidge shorter
This was the result.
chloe skirts (2)
chloe skirts (1)
There was still time left in our lesson, so she made another skirt
this time with a pleated synthetic.   This time, the bottom edge of the skirt needed a finish so it wouldn’t ravel, so she did a wide zig zag over the raw edge to enclose the raw edge.  Fini!!
Both skirts look really cut on my student. She’s taking them  both to camp.
my student was relieved that this was so much more satisfying than the Japanese monkey.


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