I love linen

I love linen
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I can’t say that enough. I love linen. I love linen. I love linen. It’s the fabric I’m the most drawn to  and that says a lot, because I have worked with ALOT of different fabrics over the years. But when it comes down to sewing or embroidery linen is my best friend. So it may not surprise, that when I went fabric shopping with a friend last Monday, 3 out of four pieces were linen. It’s just because the linen cupboard usually has a lot less variety than the other fabrics, that there was a printed cotton involved in my shopping cart.

I’m happy though, that the linen departement has grown a little bit in the years I did not shop in the biggest fabric shop of Berlin. The shop itself (I would compare it as the Berlin equivalent to Mood fabrics in NY, because all students of any fabric related course go there) has grown, too. It even has two cutting tables now – which is a relief, because there certainly was a larger waiting time with only two people cutting fabrics.

So this is what I got: 2 pink linens and a black and white cotton fabric. the cotton will become a skirt, the darker pink will probably just get embroidery fabric. I use the same fabric in other colors for almost all of my embroideries. The pink is slightly overwhelming so let’s see how it will work. The third fabirc is a lovely chambray half linen which has now destination yet, but I will see.

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The 4th fabric is an incredible dark blue linen fabric with off-white pin stripes. I fell in love with it immediately and knew I had to make some pants with it. That’s what I did. I found this wonderful summer pants pattern (Oceanside Pants by Blank Slate Patterns). It has a loose fit and is an easy sewing project – no zippers, easy pockets. The pattern contains a shorts version and I will definetly try these too as soon as I find the right fabric for that.

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Here is the side pocket. The pattern does call for a buttonhole, but I’m lazy and since I will never ever open the fold back up, I simply sewed the button through the two layers of the pocket. I the case of this button, maybe it would have been nicer to take the extra time though to make a buttonhole, because this kind of button stands out if sewn on. Maybe I’ll make some buttonholes or I change the buttons to flat ones.

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Finished pants and shirt (started last week). I’m not completely satisfied with the shirt. I think my old raglan pattern is just not fitting or never really did fit just right. I might buy a new standard raglan shirt sewing pattern for furture projects. Sewing is something I don’t do as regularly as knitting or embroidery, but I like how fast you get results and that it really is a practical craft. I plan to make more items for my wardrobe. I have a really minimalistic wardrobe because I hate shopping clothes. Yes you heard me right. As pretty as it may seem to have colors of the year dictated by Pantone, I just can’t stand going into stores and see the very same colors everywhere. Once you realize this, you cannot unsee it. Then there’re the sizes… I’m not very large, I would consider myself a german average size, but if you got another shape than straight down clothes simply don’t fit in certain parts of your body. I just leave out the mention of the bad quality of fabric in the normal clothes store that is outright unexaptable for a fabric lover like me and don’t get me started about the seams…. It’s the same with knit wear. I simply cannot purchase big store knitted items. It’s just so bad! As a knitter you will surely understand.

So I decided to stop shopping clothes in stores  and put my skills to use. The execption are T-Shirts, because I have not yet found a good way to do that without a serger and I hate sewing elastic fabrics. I would love to handsew jersey Alabama Chanin-style though. I have always had some clothes in my closet that I made myself, but I would love to have mainly homemade clothes. I’ll see where this journey get’s me. It’s so exciting to live in a time were we don’t have to make everything ourselves but we can. So many materials to choose from, so many tutorials to learn from, so many patterns available. Now is the best time to do such things!

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Anne is an embroidery enthusiast living in rural north eastern Germany.

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