It’s shirr magic! Elastic shirring creates a wonderful stretchy texture and is the perfect warm weather technique. It occupies the space between the simplicity of gathering and the intricacy of hand-smocking. We’ve gathered together links to our full step-by-step tutorial plus three shirring projects: a flirty little top plus a full length sundress for both big and little girls. We think you’ll find it fun to learn and easy to do.
My mother was a very snappy dresser in her prime, and the number one piece of advice she passed along to me was that you could never go wrong accessorizing your outfit with a beautiful scarf. A perennially popular look is the infinity scarf, an endless circle of loveliness you can twist into a number of interesting shapes. It's a great look to dress up or down to suit any outfit or occasion. Best of all... an infinity scarf is very easy to make. And we do mean veeerrryyy easy! We made our sample scarf in under an hour... and that included stopping to take photos! This project just might become your favorite fast and easy (yet unique and elegant) gift.
How many of you loop a tape measure around your neck while you’re sewing? I’m pretty sure there are a lot of hands up out there! This cute little caddy is designed to capitalize on that habit by turning the measuring tape into its own mini caddy with scissors on one end and a pincushion on the other. All the basics will be close at hand. Wouldn’t this make a great gift for all your sewing pals?!
Paper and cardboard wraps certainly do their job; they keep your hand protected from the very hot – or this time of year, the very cold contents of the cup. But… are they cute and clever? Are they a green alternative? We think not! Make your own Cup Cozies, using our free patterns and easy instructions. We offer three unique wrap options: snaps, lace-up eyelets, and elastic; and each pattern is sized and shaped for its signature closure.
According to style watchers, one of the season's must-have accessories is the bandana. It’s featured regularly as a head scarf but is just as popular tied around the neck, the wrist, and even onto bags and totes. And here’s the latest fashion flash: you don’t have to use traditional bandana fabric. In fact, many sites and magazines are showing all kinds of patterns and colors. Excellent! We used the vibrant Joie de Vivre collection by Bari J for Art Gallery Fabrics.
It’s nudging towards summer, which means it’s time to show a little leg! We have a flirty little fast and easy skirt that’s perfect for strolling in the summer sun. It features the new Dritz® Woven Jacquard Elastics. Over the last few years, elastic options have really exploded, but these 1” and 2” wide varieties from Dritz® are the prettiest yet! So much so, we created a unique construction for the top of the skirt that allows the waistband to be fully exposed while keeping the fabric finished on all sides with a minimum of layering. Read on to get all the details.
One wedding accessory that has remained popular over the last few years is the bridal gown sash. We found them as a recommendation in wedding planning articles as well as for sale on a variety of sites, from high-end bridal specialty boutiques to Etsy. The going price was $200-$600 and up! With a few small cuts of luxury fabrics, such as lace, tulle, satin, and organza, along with some beautiful pearl or crystal beads, you can create your own custom wedding sash for much, much less. Plus, it will be perfect for your colors and your wedding. The key to creating a beautiful look, such as you see on our sample, is to experiment with color, texture and the placement of the flowers, beads and other embellishments until you get a look that's just right for the bride-to-be.
The name is due to its similarity to the wide, ornate straps musicians have always used to hold their guitars. By changing how the ends attach, they are now one of the trendiest accessories and a fun way to update any bag that uses a removable strap. We created ours to show off the decorative stitch package on our Janome Skyline S7. We love pretty stitching, and are always on the lookout for reasons to show it off. At a full 40” in length, this strap provides the perfect long, straight platform. To amp up the texture, we stitched with Aurifil 28wt 100% cotton thread in two solid colors and one variegated. The heavier weight of this gorgeous thread really makes the stitches pop and it worked great in both the top and bobbin, flowing through without a hitch.
Natural fabrics are amazing and beautiful. But sometimes… you need an option that has a few more “super powers” to help it perform in non-traditional situations. This is the first of a series of projects we’ve developed using Oly*Fun™ from Fairfield World. The fibers of this woven synthetic have been fused to create a flexible, multi-purpose material. It doesn’t fray, tear or fade. There’s no white core; it’s the same bright color on both sides. It’s even water repellant. You can sew it, glue it, staple it, pin it or tie it. (We’re wondering if it can leap tall buildings in a single bound!) Since there’s no need for hemming, we used it to make a set of very narrow, double-sided pockets. Clip them together as the perfect gift set for manicure or sewing tools.
Keep all your keys contained with one of these versatile key fobs. One end has a traditional split key ring; the other end is a swivel hook. You’ll combine just a small piece of thin faux leather with a short length of gorgeous ribbon. Layer, stitch, clamp, and you’re done! Our Fast Fridays projects are all about whipping up something wonderful in no time at all.