Every crafter has experienced it, you get this great idea in your head, and figure you don't need a pattern to do it. If you just do a little tracing, measuring and problem solving the project will be simple. You get about half way though and something minimal goes wrong, you tweak it and get back on course, you finish your project, it looks somewhat like what you had in mind, then you try to put it on or slip it over your daughter and it looks wonky and terrible, or it just doesn't fit.
I've had enough of these projects to know it's time to step away from the drawing board for a minute and learn some techniques. I learned a little bit about sewing from my mom and grandma but it wasn't till I did a project with Grandma Jan that I realized I knew nothing.
It's great to have the internet and blogs to go to for inspiration and ideas but even then I realized that short cuts can only be taken after you know how to do it right. After Jan died I inherited her sewing room, I'm so thankful to be able to work with the same fabric she worked with, and to use her books that helped her trouble shoot.
I am totally inspired by these books, They are all vintage and best part, they teach you to do it right. There is another book not featured called "The Bishop Method," dating back to 1952.
Another book I've been reading is the book for my sewing machine, I encourage everyone to read it, whether you've had your sewing machine for a day or decade. I recently learned that I have 5 different feet for different techniques, including a zipper foot, yes that's right you don't have to struggle with that stupid zipper! As well as a button foot and an invisible hem. Seriously it's amazing how much you learn by just opening that sucker up.
I actually started this project last week with a vintage pattern I ordered via Kallie Designs.