Adjusting stitch length isn't necessary for every project, but as you experiment with different types of fabrics and and start using stitches for embellishment as well as construction, a few quick tips will come in handy. When working with today's machines, which can zip along at up to 1000 stitches per minute, you can see how a little length goes a long way.
We are very proud to once again be featured in the Handmade for the Home Kitchen column of Where Women Cook! We designed a brand new apron expressly for their readers. Tough canvas on the front with pretty cotton accents on the back, this classic cook’s apron has the style and substance to be at home in any hardworking kitchen. It is also the very first product in our brand new Sew4HomeShop on Etsy.
This is one article we like to bring back often because it's so important to be nice to your trusty sewing machine. Do you know the number one thing you can do to keep your sewing machine running smoothly? Clean out the lint! It's an unavoidable by-product of sewing. The more you sew, the more lint sifts into the guts of your machine. A little regular cleaning will keep your machine running smoothly. And a clean machine is also a quiet machine. Not only will periodic "care and feeding" help your machine to run better, it can also save you money in major repairs. Our thanks to Janome America for taking us through the important steps of regular maintenance you can do yourself in between trips to your dealer for more thorough cleaning and service.
I know I should be able to do math in my head; I also know I should eat more fruits and vegetables and actually use my gym membership. I could continue to pretend all these things are going to happen, or… I could find some little workarounds. Our Cheat Card is a handy reference table that converts common yardage amounts into inches and centimeters – no math-in-your-head required. It’s small enough to tuck into your wallet or tack up on the bulletin board in your sewing room.
Finishing the corners when you're making a narrow hem can be a challenge. Making a perfect 90˚ fold at each corner is one option, and often will work just fine. However, it can be tough to keep your raw edges tucked in, and bulky or slippery fabrics can cause you fits. Instead, our go-to finish option is the folded diagonal point corner: easy, tidy, and pretty from both sides.
Here at Sew4Home, we’re quite well known for our bag designs; it’s even the focus of our recent book with Fons & Porter: Bags and Totes, 10 Fashionable Projects Anyone Can Sew. When we start a new bag concept, one of the first things we think about is hardware: buckles, slides, clips, hooks… the elements that provide both functionality as well as a professional finish. The right piece of hardware can even be the genesis of an entire design. Since it’s such an important element, you know we were thrilled when we found out about the new Dritz® hardware coming out this Spring. In particular, we were excited to see two brand new finishes: copper and gunmetal. So, in honor of Valentine’s Day - we’re celebrating Products We Love today – ones we think you’ll love too!
There’s no research confirming a link between the classic yo-yo string toy and the fabric yo-yo, but they are both round, both peaked in popularity in the 1930s-40s in the United States, and both are pretty, dang fun! So, we’re happy to link them together as two points along a playful continuum. A fabric yo-yo is a small, ruched rosette. It’s most often associated with quilting, and antique yo-yo quilts can be quite stunning, but it’s a fun bit of dimensional embellishment that can be used on any number of projects. At it’s simplest, the yo-yo is just a small gathered circle. When cinched up tight it produces a smooth “button” effect on one side and a pretty rippled confection on the other. You can make them by hand, and we summarize those steps below, but we prefer to use the Clover Quick Yo-Yo Makers. These small plastic devices are incredibly affordable, and make the job of stitching yo-yos easier and more uniform.
Snaps are one of our favorite closures. They're small yet sturdy, like a cute little Corgi dog. But there's not always a lot of variety from which to choose. You can usually find nickel or brass, and the Western favorite: pretty pearl head snaps, every once in awhile, maybe a rhinestone alternative. But that's where the decorative options usually ended. So when Babyville snaps hit the market a few years ago, their bright colors and cute cover designs were an instant hit. They were immediately snapped up for their decorative flair. We've used them on several Sew4Home projects, and now we have a full tutorial dedicated to showing you just how easy they are to insert.
There’s something about the word fussy that sounds negative. We assume it means someone or something is being difficult, like a toddler turning up her nose at broccoli or the lawnmower that won't start unless you first pull the cord halfway and stand on one foot. But, words mean different things depending on the situation, and in the world of sewing, fussy can be a compliment and a fussy cut is a beautiful thing.
Since 2008, the Designer Mystery BOM has been one of Fat Quarter Shop’s most popular project events. For this 10th anniversary year, they have another amazing crew of designers lined up to bring you a beautiful 12” block each month from June 2017 through May 2018. There are limited spots available, so you'll want to be sure to reserve your place early. Read on to see who’s on the list of this year’s 12 designers as well as to find out about the FQS special anniversary free bonuses.