Back on the horse

Last night I embarked on making my third shirt in a row and suddenly decided that I needed new undies – right then! I have a myriad of patterns, some vintage, but decided on the one from The Makers’ Journal.

makers actory knickers

I’ve had this pattern in my stash for a while and have been really keen to give it a go. I used part of a sheet that Mark “borrowed” from his Mum to wrap my birthday sewing machines in for their trip home from Hobart. I wanted to make a muslin to check the fit.

So… I was rocketing along and with about an inch to go on the last bit of elastic, when I zigged and zagged right through my left index finger. Now I am a real baby about blood, so I staggered out of the sweatshop and collapsed on the kitchen floor (I also have really low blood pressure so any shock will make me faint). Mark, who loves a bit of blood and a crisis, was there instantly with ice and calm words. Archie appeared, quite nonchalantly, for a look, and was dispatched for tweezers as I had broken bits of needle sticking out of the finger. Now I have to say that he sauntered off for said tweezers (as only a soon to be 21 year old can), whilst I was having a conniption about his attitude – I may have suggested that he Get. The. Tweezers. Now!

I have to say that my finger was nothing compared to what he did to his finger, which he only still has thanks to the brilliance of a Perth surgeon – and he managed to get himself to hospital! I was bandaged up and made to lie around, feeling grumpy because the undies are still on the machine and I was so close to finishing. I must say that I did feel weird all night and was apparently pretty green round the gills – see? a real baby (or is that drama queen?)! Anyway, I still have my finger, and for the record, here are the two pieces of needle retrieved from it.


I did manage to get to work in spite of being awake all night. I have a 45 minute commute and today was one of those rare occasions when Mark didn’t come with me (we work in the same place). My finger was killing me; I managed to shut it in the door and knocked it on everything, and typing is almost impossible – so many errors to correct when typing with a finger missing!

I noticed that when I got home I didn’t go straight back to the sewing machine. I faffed around in the kitchen with Mark (my family firmly believe that I don’t know where the kitchen is, but that’s such rubbish – it’s where we keep the cake 🙂 ), did laundry, did some emails, had a walk, and finally, went and had a look at the machine. I was expecting a bloodbath, but there wasn’t a drop. Anywhere!

I set the machine on the slowest speed and finished the offending garment


I really like the pattern, but made the top too loose. In the interest of scholarly enquiry, I decided to make another pair and use an elasticator foot on my overlocker. First, master the elasticator foot!

These undies are made from stretch fabric and I used a Lutterloh pattern from 1986 which I “inherited” from my mother when she went into care.


The pattern consists of those two tiny pictures above and the system enables the tracing into a full sized pattern. Here is the finished article made from a piece of leftover t-shirt material from Potter’s. Look a bit “bloomerish” when off, but more fitted when on. I also didn’t change my overlocker thread, but quite like the cream on white!


These are pretty good. I think I made the right leg a bit tight but I have now officially mastered the elasticator!

OK, back to the shirts!


6 thoughts on “Back on the horse

  1. Oooh, you poor thing! I hope the finger heals quickly. I’ve got that makers journal pattern too, and I love it to bits. Such a pretty style, and its still slightly amazing to me that one can make cute and functional undies in woven fabrics… Liberty fabric, here I come!

  2. Ouch, ouch you poor thing. Lost a bit of finger when I was 10 so VERY sensitive about finger injuries. Take care of yourself.

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