Monday, April 16, 2012

Cycling Jersey on the table

I decided to attempt making a cycling jersey. I happened to be near my favorite fabric store today, Budlee Fabrics in Lodi NJ. Lycra Spandex? Of course he has many rolls. Which presented me with my first challenge. I didn't realize that Spandex comes in a two-way or four-way lengthwise and a crosswise stretch. And there's Raschel Knit and a Tricot Knit. So I did my best.. and guessed. At $3.00/yard for 60" it's cheaper than playing mega-millions.

According to the pattern innstructions, I was supposed to pick out four-way stretch with about a 166% stretch. What I got is hard to say. The knitting is so fine and tight that it stretches more on the crosswise, but there's still a little stretch on the lengthwise. There's no way I get 166% stretch. The pattern instructions say "just go up a size". Really? Well, I did.

I also researched what I bought. If you haven't a copy, I highly recommend the Simplicity Fabric Guide.

I think I bought a Raschel knit. Would love to know what you think? Here is my best attempt to stretch it and take a picture for comparison with the book. For a moment, I thought I'd bought a double knit, but comparing it to a fabric that I knew was a double knit I could see a number of differences.

Since I have no idea how the pattern and this fabric will work together, I traced the printed pattern. This gives me a chance to get familiar with the pieces and the markings too. I have many cycling jerseys. None of them are made with this fabric. The 'pro' jersey fabric has two very different knits on the right sidee and wrong side. The right side has a flat fine finish and the wrong side has a sponge-like texture for it. I imagine this enables perspiration to wick away quickly. All of the seams are serged, not sewn. I do have a serger and a coverstitch machine. I'll give it some thought.. sew.. serge.. or coverstitch.

I could be making a very bad jersey for myself. Any tips to avoid complete disaster are greatly appreciated.


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