went for blades, came back with a bit more..

This Sunday I had my freshly printed Joann 50% off coupon in hand as I drove into the parking lot of the store.  I've been putting off buying rotary blades for so long that I've developed a special cutting technique to get the most out of my old blade.  It's a sort of back and forth motion, rather like sawing...  maybe you've hear of it?

As Mom would say, "that Joann is one smart cookie"  Wouldn't you know it, all the rotary blades and accessories were already 50% off!  Considering how often you can get these things at a discount I wonder who pays full price unless it's an emergency?  So, feeling lured in to the store and downright tricked I checked out the clearance section.  OH YES!  It was marked an additional 50% off, that's like 50% off 50% which means you could find some sweet deals if you dig.

And dig I did...

I have a confession.  A rayon confession....   Ever since I discovered the evils of rayon I've been even more obsessed with the stuff.  I want a little rayon blended into everything I buy and knowing that it's bad somehow is doing the opposite of deterring me from wanting these fibers that come from the wrong side of the tracks.  So with that said:

I got three and a half yards of this beautiful "bamboo" knit (refer to evils of rayon).  Thick yummy soft and as the label said "Eco Friendly"  Hmm, yeah I'll go with that.  It's always interesting to me how rayon knits don't seem to shrink considerably while rayon wovens shrink in alarming ways.

Gotta love soft cotton jersey.  This is the thin stuff with the subtle color variations that makes favorite t-shirts.  

Poly/Rayon suiting of sorts.  This has pants written all over it.  Brown with some nice thin stripes.  

Thick poly/rayon denim, or should I say twill?  Depends on your definition of denim being of cotton or being twill.  Anyway..  this stuff is thick and has some good give to it possibly with a little lycra/spandex.  Because of it's thickness it has a softer more feminine feel to it which means I'll have to choose the pant style carefully so I don't look like i'm wearing ladies stuff.

One of my favorite pieces is this really nice summer weight pant fabric.  It looks a bit like twill/denim but it's not.  I believe it's a cotton/rayon blend and has a nice hand and good drape.  Feels like denim but much thinner.

I've been really liking unique denim lately so this piece jumped out at me.  I feel like this stuff has been around for ages so you probably recognize it.  After examination I see that it's made by using some sort of process where the lighter areas are bleached.  This is great because when it fades the design will fade with it.  Lends to some great distressing techniques I think.

I did mention I was going in for blades right?  I also treated myself to a 45mm rotary cutter.  I've only ever used the 65mm and totally learned to do everything I need with that size.  With that said, having two cutters means one is always within reach and I'm already enjoying improved efficiency.  I haven't tried the 45mm on any curves yet but I have a feeling I'm going to be hooked.  

16 comments :: went for blades, came back with a bit more..

  1. Aaaah! I want to live somewhere with 50% sales and coupons. Nice haul!

  2. There's no way you were able to use a 50% off coupon on 50% off fabric at Joann's. It's an evil plot that Joann's has used to manipulate us into going into the store with coupons in hand and not being able to use said coupons on a darn thing because everything is already 10 - 50% off.

    Well, anyway, if you got away with the 50% off coupon on 50% off fabric, good for you!

  3. Oh no I wish! The clearance was 50% off already because it was on clearance and then it was on sale for an additional 50% off. My 50% off coupon was worthless.... However I did get to use the 10% off my entire order coupon!

  4. I'm a recent convert to rayon jerseys, too. I made a cowl neck top last winter and I loved the fabric so much I ordered it in several colours. I bought a length of batik printed rayon and silk blend fabric in Asia a few years ago that I take out an fondle regularly, but haven't found the right pattern for yet. I have a rotary cutter and don't use it very often, but I need to learn to love it because I am sure it is easier.

  5. I was in there over the weekend and also bought some of that same dark poly-denim fabric, with the intent of knocking off my favorite pair of RTW jeans (I was inspired by your Levis from the RTW contest on PR).

    Here's a question for you folks: am I the only one who cannot seem to make it in and out of a Joanns without overhearing at least one customer/cashier argument over what's on sale and the coupons?

  6. Um... Brian, we're having some weird sewing psychic twin-action. Because just today I was thinking about Joanns and their smart/evil coupon policy. It gets to where I get panicky if I can't find a way to use a coupon! Like in a very small way they are running my life!

    AND the rayon thing. I just made two garments with rayon knit - a wide-collar jacket for my daughter (underlined and finished with Hong Kong seams) and a hoodie for my husband. I find the rayon to be a bitch to work with; however, it is so, so soft. Do you know how well the stuff holds up?

    AND - like you - I've been hoarding / buying denim! 100% cotton, no stretch.

    Maybe you are influencing all your readers through your poncho-wielding magic.

  7. Hey Brian!

    Love your blog!
    Love that you snagged those
    fabulous bargains on the rotary
    I just read about your 25$
    Husquvarna Viking! WOW!
    I want to go shopping with you!

    God bless,

  8. just and FYI on the Poly/Denim/Twill fabric: if you have the same thing that I have, the stretch is lengthwise and not widthwise if you line up the selvedges. I ended up folding it cut edges together because I am using it for pants and want horizontal stretch.

  9. Oh yes, I drive my rotary blades until they are flat too! Isn't it annoying, though, when a blade gets a nick and there is one uncut thread every few inches! Let us know what you think of the different blade sizes, if smaller really does work better in curves.

    I do know the evils of rayon but I cannot resist the fabric, it's my favorite along with good cottons. What a good JoAnn shopping trip you had, lucky guy!

  10. oh Kerry you're so right that fabric does stretch lengthwise, i'm super glad you mentioned that because I hadn't noticed. Do you remember what the exact fiber content of that fabric is? I keep wanting to say it has a bit of rayon but I really don't know anymore.

    Ahh sewitsliz fresh rotary blades... Yes the reason for the back and forth sawing motion is to cut all those little threads that get missed by the nicks in the blade. So far I have yet to try any curves with the new smaller blade but I'll keep you updated.

    I agree Kelly, those Joann coupons are a total sham, I always feel desperate to use them and almost never do. blah. As far as rayon goes... Rayon knits tend to wear out by getting fuzzy and maybe a little pilly. Depends on the fiber mix though on the pill factor. I don't think 100% would pill.

  11. Everyone, I bought a Tri-Sharp rotary blade sharpener at Jo-ann's and it really works. Doesn't help with nicks,and not as sharp as new, but definitely sharpens the blade. I think it was like 8 bucks with my coupon. Totally worth it!

    Brian, Your site is awesome. I look forward to new posts. Thank you.

  12. Brian which JoAnns did you go to? The Burlington one is closest to me but has louse fabric usually (when I bother to look at it).

    So glad you moved to my neck of the woods! Craig's List here is a great source for sewing-related paraphernalia too.

  13. Hey BetsyV,

    I went to the one out in the Framingham area. I'll admit that the fabric selection was fairly typical for a Joann. I almost exclusively shop the clearance section. However I do like the Acetate Satin they have for around $4.99. That is an item I'll use my coupon on and stock up, it makes great lining!

    I'll check out craigslist for sewing stuff, so far only been looking at sewing machines (not that I need any more!)


  14. You're going to love the 45mm size rotary cutter. I can't imagine cutting out clothing with anything larger. And new blades are such a luxury. One pass!

  15. Hey Brian - I don't have to contend with the evils of Joanne's in South Africa, but have just spent an hour reading your latest blog posts instead of sewing.... I also bought a new blade recently after reading at patternreview that the sharpeners don't work as well as expected. Apparently having them resharpened at a pro shop works well, though. Wasn't it great to use a new blade again? I had forgotten how well a new one cuts. I actually had to use some WD40 spray to get the nut loose to change the blade, because it had rusted - I haven't changed my blade for ages. I have three rotary cutters - two 45 mm and one 25 mm. I use one of the 45s for cutting paper (= very old blades) and the other for fabric (= relatively new blades). I have two because I "lost" mine when we moved, and of course it surfaced from a box a few days after I bought the new one. I rarely use my small cutter - maybe I should try it out again on tight curves.

  16. shhhh cant mention sale and fabric store too loud .....makes hubby really nervous lol.Great buys!

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