Saturday, December 31, 2016
My plan is to make toile versions of all the free dress patterns I have been collecting with my Simply Sewing subscription. This is the first step in my self challenge, the second step is to make one well fitting toile each month and finally the bonus will be to make one well fitting dress to wear.
I welcome any advice from more experienced sewist so feel free to leave a comment. Also you are welcome to join me in this challenge.
For the month of January I will work on 'The Rosie Dress" by Cotton and Chalk.
Here's to a happy creative year!
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
I also plan to make "The weekend tote" for mum. The fabric has been chosen, all necessary materials purchased now I just need to find time to make it before I leave for home next week.
What are you making to gift this year? whom is it for?
Wednesday, November 2, 2016
Two easy ways this can be done are:-
Purchase ready made applique letters. Follow manufactures instructions to adhere letter to fabric (my letter is by Wrights)
Trace alphabet letter in reverse onto the paper side of paper backed fusible web like Wonder under.
Cut out letter and fuse to wrong side of fabric.
Cut out letter from fabric.
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Thursday, September 29, 2016
Friday, September 23, 2016
To gather fabric start with a piece of fabric at least twice the length of your finished project. Gathers reduce the length of fabric.
Basic ways to Gather
By hand- sew a running stitch on the section you wish to gather, pull the thread to create the desired fullness. Tie off thread ends to hold gathers. Hand gathering works best on small projects.
Machine Gathers- use an all purpose presser foot. Set stitch length to longest stitch. Sew a straight row of stitching on the section to be gathered. Leave thread tails long. Do not back stitch. Pull bobbin thread only to create folds.
Alternatively you can use a zigzag stitch and cord. Place the cord along the section to be gathered and centred under the presser foot. Stay stitch the cord at one end then zigzag stitch down the cord length, encasing it in the stitches but not catching the cord. Pull cord to form gathers.
Finally other ways to gather fabric are by using elastic and gathering tape. Gathering tape is used in curtain making.
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Friday, September 16, 2016
|The bag so far. Still needs a zipper closure and lining.|
The hardest thing about creating is getting started. Once I begin there is no stopping me. Take 'The Melbourne Weekender' bag, this project has been sitting around and moved around my work table for probably 9 months, maybe more.
This past week I began it and am happy to say its almost finished, just need to make the zippered closure and lining, but first I have to go buy the right colour zipper.
Saturday, September 10, 2016
Wednesday, August 17, 2016
|my coasters using Minki's technique|
I first saw Minki Kim's work in Haute Handbags. I thought she had used free motion stitching on her bags and wondered how she had achieved such neat, accurate and controlled lines. Upon reading the article I realized that Minki Kim used a difference method, I was very eager to learn it myself. How happy was I to read she was releasing a book, of course I pre-ordered and it arrive last week. First I read the book cover to cover and then set about trying the technique myself using the coasters project from the book.
Other than the small design placement hiccup, the instructions are well written, easy to understand and follow. The photographic steps provide sufficient detail to demonstrate the technique.
The book contains 16 projects, divided into 5 categories.
1 Projects for the table ( the coaster project plus two more)
2 Projects for the crafter
3 Projects for everyday
4 Bags for every occasion
5 Art for your home
My favourite project (just making it on the cover ) it a precious family portrait. One I would love to make of my own family.
Sew Illustrated by Minki Kim and Kristin Esser, retails for $25.95 ( e-book available) There is a pullout iron-on transfer of all the designs in the back)
I used two different transfer techniques, for the teapot and cup (on the left in the photo)I tried the iron-on transfer method, using the pull out page. For the teapot only, I drew the design freehand using a frixion pen.
Both methods are simple to use. At present I do not have a preference.b
Wednesday, August 3, 2016
|Red, white and black the perfect colour combination!|
This little pincushion is made from two 5'' squares in different prints and the half -square triangle (HST) technique. A basic tutorial on HST's can be found here.
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
|Ice Cream Hoop Art|
Ice Cream Hoop Art
What you will need
5 inch embroidery hoop
fabric scraps in red, blue, cream and brown.
back ground fabric measuring 8 x 8 inches
ice cream template
1. Using the template cut out the ice cream scoops and cone.(or you could cut out the shapes free hand)
2. Assemble and glue the ice cream shapes in the centre of the background fabric.
3. Place the fabric into the embroidery hoop, (the opposite way to normal, so the inner ring is on the right side of the project)
4. Lower the feed dogs, change to a darning foot, place the hoop under the darning foot.
5. Using black thread begin free motion stitching around the ice cream shapes. For a bolder look stitch over the original stitching again. Don't forget the cherry stem.
6. Remove the hoop from the machine and remove project from hoop.
7. Place project back in the hoop, this time the right way ( as seen in the photo above)
8. Trim excess fabric to 1 inch around hoop
9. Hand baste around fabric edge. Gather the fabric into the back of the hoop. Tie off the thread.
|wrong side of project with fabric gather|
10. Hang up your new art work and enjoy.
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
My thoughts on Foundation paper piecing now are:-
1 this is a good project to use up small fabric scraps
2 very time consuming cutting all the tiny squares and rectangles
3 with the paper guide stitching accurate and straight seams is easy
4 NOT difficult or confusing.
My finished pouch measures 3 x 7 in. A perfect size to store my pens.
You will find more information on this technique here.
What new technique have you tried recently?
Sunday, July 17, 2016
Friday, June 10, 2016
Thursday, May 19, 2016
|left to right|
All purpose foot-Narrow Rolled Hemmer foot-Blind Hem foot
Monday, May 16, 2016
Monday, May 9, 2016
The book has about 30 projects, divided into four categories- handmade handbags ( 5 projects), sewing for little ones (this is the largest section in the book, it includes projects for soft toys, skirts and blouses for girls aged 1- 14), home style (6 projects including the ottoman, pincushions, storage boxes and a quilt), and personal style (8 projects for skirts, dresses and a tie). The book has something for everyone. Lovely photos, illustrations to explain each step, spiral binding and full size templates tucked into a back pocket. The projects range from beginner to intermediate level. 'Sew What You Love' retails for $24.99.
Overall I am happy with my purchase and my new ottoman.
Thursday, April 28, 2016
You need a darning foot, a embroidery hoop, to hold the fabric taut, thread and of course fabric to start.
To lower the feed dogs refer to your machine manual, on some machines you need to cover the feed dogs instead of lowering. I practiced on scrap fabric using a straight and zigzag stitch until I ran out of bobbin thread. I began with a small 5'' hoop but this was not big enough.On the red sample below I used a 12'' hoop this is a good size for my machine.The fabric is mounted on the hoop the opposite way to normal.
The stitch length is determined by how fast you move the hoop. If you move the hoop slowly the stitches are short, quickly and the stitches are very long.
It's fun and easy to freehand machine embroider, try it.
Wednesday, April 20, 2016
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Tucks will reduce the fabric, therefore you should begin with a larger piece of fabric, once tucked the fabric becomes stretchy.
To Pintuck-I began with a 12 x 20 inch piece of fabric. Using tailors chalk, I marked horizontal lines, 1 inch apart, on the right side of the fabric. Next, fold on the marked line, with wrong sides together. Stitch on the right side of the fabric, no more than 1/4 inch from the folded edge. Repeat with the next line. My finished piece measures 12 x 14in.
Experiment using pintucks to add interest to your next project.
Tuesday, April 5, 2016
If you don't own a pair of pinking shears another method is to use the zigzag stitch.
Zig-Zag- Set your machine to the following stitch zigzag, length 3 and width 4. Stitch close to the raw edge.
Friday, March 25, 2016
Linen 12'' square
fleece fabric scraps for inner ear and tail
embroidery thread for eyes and nose (brown or black)
1 Using template cut two bunny shapes from the linen fabric, adding seam allowance of 1/4''.
2 Cut two inner ears and one tail from fleece.
3 Using a zig zag or satin stitch sew ears to right side of front bunny. Sew tail to right side of back bunny piece.
4 Embroider eyes and nose to right side of front bunny.
5 Place front and back bunny pieces right sides together, sew together start and finish by back stitching. Leave an opening for turning right side out.
6 Clip into seam allowance up to stitch line every 1/4''. Turn right side out.
7 Stuff toy. Ladder stitch opening closed.
Friday, March 11, 2016
To make the cushion you will need-
One front piece 14 x 14''
Back pieces 11 x 14'' and 5 x 14''
Binding fabric 2 1/4 wide, length of fabric.
Bunny fabric and wonder under 8 1/2 x 11''
One zipper 18''
Instructions for the front of the cushion
1. Draw bunny shape on paper side of wonder under
2. Fuse wonder under to wrong side of bunny fabric. Cut out bunny shape. Remove paper back, fuse to right side of front piece, centered.
3. Zig zag or satin stitch around bunny shape.
4. Sew button tail on bunny
Instructions for the back
1. Place large back piece (11 x 14) right side up on work surface. Position zipper face down along 14'' edge. pin and sew together using zipper foot.(tip- allow the zipper pull to excess the edge of fabric, this way you do not need to move the zipper pull when stitching)
|small back pieces pressed under 1''. zipper excess fabric edge.|
3. Press one 14'' edge of smaller back piece under 1'' to form a crease.
4. Place this edge along zipper edge,(raw edge aligned with zipper edge) right side of fabric to right side of zipper. Stitch together.
5. Refold at crease (the crease should cover the zipper), topstitch, allow zipper foot to follow zipper teeth.
|Flap covers zipper. Zipper pull with in fabric area.|
6. Back piece should now measure 14 x 14''
7. Trim the zipper , but first make sure the zipper pull is within the fabric area.
8.Stay stitch at each end of zipper
Instruction to finish cushion
1. Place front and back pieces wrong sides together, using a 1/4'' seam allowance stitch all four sides.
2. Bind cushion edges. For instructions on binding follow steps 7 to 12 from my potholder tutorial.
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Further reading allowed me to gather the following advice. Firstly, my sewing machine manual suggests to replace a needle 'regularly, especially if it is showing signs of wear and causing problems'. Problems are skipped stitches , upper thread breaks, noisy machine or the needle breaks.
Shea Henderson in School of Sewing gives the following advice, replace needle each time you clean your machine, after every large project or after eight hours of sewing.
Good advice but I was thinking it would be lovely if my machine had a warning light that just lit up when I needed to replace the needle , like my car does when something is not working right.
A sharp needle gives the best sewing results. so if you are experiencing stitch problems or cannot remember the last time you replaced the needle do it today.
If this is the first time you will be changing a needle please refer to your sewing machine manual for instructions.
Monday, February 22, 2016
|number sequence|Quilt sandwich
The Pattern- Its The Jenny Dress by The Fold Line. This pattern is designed for knit fabric. The pattern can be made as a dress with the...
I made a new pair of slippers this week to replace the first pair I made last year. Again I followed the same pattern instructions as be...
This week I have been experimenting with the cording foot to embellish plain fabric. The cording foot has 3 grooves that are covered with...
I have made a new bag, the practical shopping bag project from issue 29 of Simply Sewing . This bag is an unlined tote that fold away in...