It’s always exciting to begin a new sewing project. We’re eager to get started, and test stitching can feel like a roadblock to the creativity to come. However, ripping out a bad seam or ruining an expensive piece of fabric with a gnarl of thread is an even greater roadblock. Taking just a few minutes at the beginning of every project to test your stitches is another Quick Tip that leads to a pro finish.
High-tech accents; like snaps, hooks, locks, and more provide both functionality as closures as well as professional style. If you want a “you made that yourself?!” reaction to your bag, you need to add the very best finishes. This slim shoulder bag uses six different Dritz® fasteners, including a pair of mitten clips to tether a matching inner pouch.
Our recent Basic Shapes Cheat Card #1 brought you fun facts about the smooth curves of The Circle. Time to straighten up and fly right with the most common of the angular geometric shapes. Are these all of them? Not at all, but they are the ones you are likely to come across in your sewing projects and patterns. If you wanted to know more about obtuse angles, rhomboids, and parallelograms… you should have paid better attention in Mr. Crutchfield's math class. Oh he saw you passing notes, yes he did.
The trees are turning here in the Pacific Northwest, and although we’re well known for our stately evergreens, there are all kinds of amazing gold, red, and brown leaves swirling in the wind right now. We were inspired by these gorgeous fall tones when designing our Color Block Poncho. Made entirely from soft, smooth flannel, it has the weight and drape of wool but without any of the scratchiness, so it’s perfect to wear around your face and neck. We selected seven amazing herringbone colors from the Woolies Flannel collection at Fabric Depot.
This is a You Asked 4 It project that was on our list for quite awhile. We finally found the perfect fabric to make it happen: a home décor Jacquard by Waverly Fabrics. It's soft yet stable in a great neutral with a subtle texture. The French Mattress Edge is actually a hand-stitching technique. It's not at all difficult, but you do need a longer, stronger needle and heavy-duty upholstery thread for the very best results. As you'll see below, we also recommend quilting gloves to give yourself a good grip as you stitch.
Whether you make your own binding tape or purchase packaged bias tape, a cleanly bound edge is the perfect finish for so many projects. It’s definitely one of our favorites. However, getting a smooth and even edge along a skinny binding can be challenging. And we all know, the first thing that will keep you up at night is wavy topstitching. Well, there are probably other things keeping you up at night, but we’re kind of obsessed with straight seams. Hallelujah, there’s a new specialty presser foot from Janome that is letting us get a bit more shut eye: the Taping Guide Foot!
We’ve done several yoga mat totes here on Sew4Home (links are included below), but sometimes you don’t need or want a full bag. You’re dressed and ready, and your minimalist spirit says all you really need is to sling your mat over your shoulder and go. This style of mat wrap is easy to find on retail shelves, but we’re willing to bet none of them are as lovely (or as clever) as ours. We’ve used gorgeous jacquard ribbon from Renaissance Ribbons on one side with standard polyester webbing on the other. All the brain-twisting wrapping, turning, and securing challenges have been figured out, so you can put it together in a snap.
Double gauze is super soft, making it the top choice for layette swaddling blankets and other baby bundling. But it has lots of potential outside the nursery, especially when you apply a crinkling effect, sometimes called “contortion” pleating. We really like how this crinkling gives the double gauze an edgy, more modern feel. We’re working with Embrace Double Gauze from Shannon Fabrics, industry experts in all things soft. In particular, we selected one of their brand new Cotton Metallic Double Gauze options for a bit of extra holiday shimmer. We spotted a similar long scarf to ours at Barney’s selling for $270! Learn how easy it is to do it yourself – and create a look that’s unique to you and your wardrobe.
Keep your makeup brushes (or any other tall, thin tools) organized, clean, and tidy with this pretty roll-up pouch. We added a full size zippered pocket on the inside to keep smaller items securely tucked away. The lining of the case and the pocket is a ripstop nylon that provides a wipe clean, water resistant surface. There’s also a inner flap to protect the delicate brush tops. We chose fat quarters to make our sample, pulling together four fabrics from two different Tim Holtz fabric collections: Wallflower and Correspondence. Working with pre-cuts from a collection is an excellent way to get lots of perfectly coordinated fabrics.
While working on this gorgeous apron, I admit to humming that old nursery rhyme under my breath, “Tinker, Tailor, Solider, Sailor….” We absolutely love the vintage tailoring motifs that run through the Dapper collection by Tim Holtz for Coats. We took the theme and ran with it, designing an apron with subtle hints of bespoke couture. Along the bottom hem is a pleated accent panel that mimics the front of a tuxedo shirt – complete with five shirt buttons. Add to that, beautiful faux suede corner patches, echoing the elbow patches on a English Earl’s day jacket. A very cool double pocket graces the front, and leather lacing ties everything altogether. There’s even a matching oven mitt.