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  1. #11
    Join Date
    8th November 17
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
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    Well, it arrived and I'm slowly reading/ So far so good - I can see already why it's gotten such good reviews and I'll get on the bandwagon and suggest it as a must read for anyone interested in kilts whether or not you plan on making one.

    I've also taken S. Ashton's advice to heart and have gotten a variety of needles, some spools of thread on clearance and some remnant fabric and, with a variety of YouTube videos, have started to teach myself to sew. My plan is to sew a bit every day and get, at least comfortable with the four basic stitched Mr. Ashton recommended in a previous post in this thread.

    On that note, I've gone and started scouring various threads and posts for any kind of advice and I've compiled them into a single word file by subject including links to helpful videos. I kept running into some great advice and then would forget where I found it so I started copying and pasting.

    I've got topics from organization, thread types, materials, techniques, ironing, etc.

    Anyway, I've looked but haven't yet found any discussions about wool weight outside of numerous threads dealing with physical weight, how to weigh and interactions with various temperatures. If anyone has any thoughts on wool weight or can point me to a thread (no pun intended) I'd be grateful. Also, are there any discussions regarding working with PV vs. Wool? I also plan on adding pointers on sources of material. If there are any posts or suggestions on things like the leather straps and/or buckles I'd be grateful. Same thing on the cloth - admittedly, I haven't worked in that direction yet as I'm nowhere near the point of ordering material.

    Finally, when I'm reasonably done putting together my tip/cheat sheet I'd be happy to share with anyone who wants it. It's in a word document, too long (I think) to post and I'm not sure if I can attach such a file in a post.
    At a time like this one must ask themselves, 'WWJDD"
    What Would Jimmy Durante Do?

  2. #12
    Join Date
    30th November 04
    Location
    Deansboro, NY
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    Steve and I have the same advice for first-time kiltmakers. You're going to put a LOT of time into your first kilt, and you don't want to think of it as a "practice kilt". Buy the best tartan you can afford, and work carefully, and you'll have something that you're proud to wear when you're done.

    Steve can chime in on the type of fabric, PV vs wool, and he may well have different advice than I do. My feeling is that heavy weight kilting tartan is, in many ways, the easiest and most forgiving to work with for a first kilt, provided that you don't have a wool sensitivity.
    Kiltmaker, piper, and geologist (one of the few, the proud, with brains for rocks....
    Member, Scottish Tartans Authority
    Geology stuff (mostly) at http://people.hamilton.edu/btewksbu
    The Art of Kiltmaking at http://theartofkiltmaking.com

  3. The Following User Says 'Aye' to Barb T For This Useful Post:


  4. #13
    Join Date
    8th October 12
    Location
    Mitchell Ontario
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    I have limited sewing skills, but I am learning. The above comment about making the best kilt you can, I think has a lot of wisdom. The one thing I neglected to say earlier is that along with becoming much more proficient in sewing, you will also become quite proficient at tearing out stitches, and beginning again. (A lesson in both patience and humility.) But it does come.

  5. #14
    Join Date
    8th November 17
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
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    Barbara - yes, I have seen that advice as far as making a "practice kilt" in many different posts. I admit that that was exactly my thought at first but I will take the advice and when I get into making my first kilt it will be a real kilt with quality "ingredients" - same as my first batch of beer. My plan is to take my time (I'm in no rush), learn to sew, just practice stitching;right now I'm just practicing a basic stitch - taking Steve's advice using white fabric and red thread and doing a pretty fair job of getting an almost invisible line of stitching. I'm also working on my back stitch and fell stitch right now. Steve recommends also the catch stitch, pick stitch and pad stitch which I'll pick up by and by. I also will learn to do a basting stitch. I haven't gotten to the chapters on actually making a kilt - I'm on page 37. Depending on what I read (no spoilers now!) there may be some other skills that I need to pick up and practice - maybe pleating? But, yes, I will take the advice and when I'm ready to take the plunge I'll be all in - it'll take me that long to decide on the tartan anyway. I expect to take several months to learn to sew adequately enough and then a few months to make the kilt itself.

    My question on PV vs wool has to do with the heat and humidity here in Florida. My wool/acrylic kilt is bearable but my 12oz PV semi-traditional from USAK is really a good Florida kilt. I've heard that wool breathes but I've not owned any pure wool products to know first hand. All the posts I've compiled on the subject do agree on the point being that good wool is easier to work with than many other fabrics. Assuming that that holds true over PV then it'll be wool and my decision will be between a lighter weight 13oz or something heavier.

    Plaid Preacher - yes, I picked up on that needed skill of ripping out ones own work and starting over again in other posts - I am mentally prepared! I have some experience in that, though. When I was getting my degree in landscape architecture it was not uncommon to work on a design for days, decide it was no good, chuck the whole thing and start over from scratch.

    As long as I don't end up with with kilt that gets the "poor" caption in a future printing of the Art of Kilt Making!

    Thanks so much for the advice, all!!

    Mark
    At a time like this one must ask themselves, 'WWJDD"
    What Would Jimmy Durante Do?

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