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Susan's Blog – December 2009 Archive (19)

Do-it-yourself fashion: clothing label, classes teach teens sewing, design

Most emerging designers can only dream of having a built-in following before they unveil their first collection, but at an early age Emma Lewis was already crafting creations that resonated with fashion fans. So when the Toronto sewing studio

Sew Be It Girl decided to start a clothing label for teens, it didn't take long to settle on who would be the first designer.

"Emma was one of the reasons… Continue

Added by Susan on December 31, 2009 at 2:00pm — 5 Comments

Sew a Little Girls Pillowcase Dress

We've found a new method (and tutorial!) for making pillowcase dresses which eliminates the traditional drawstring casing that is a choking hazard for children. By using elastic instead of the drawstring, you… Continue

Added by Susan on December 31, 2009 at 2:00am — 8 Comments

Make Cloth Baby Shoes

Another scrap busting project! Just a few small pieces of fabric to make these cute little shoes, some

interfacing, …


Added by Susan on December 30, 2009 at 3:30am — 11 Comments

Tips for Adjusting Tension on Your Sewing Machine

tension tips I think everyone has experienced a problem with sewing machine tension at some time. Finding the right tension can be quite tricky and frustrating. Tension is resistance or frictional pull on your thread as it passes through your tension guides. A certain amount of tension on the top thread, and the bobbin thread is necessary for correct machine stitching. Correct tension is dependent on the type of thread and fabric.

Here are some… Continue

Added by Susan on December 29, 2009 at 6:30am — 2 Comments

Window Flower Holder Pattern

A very unique way to display fresh or silk flowers in a window frame. I love the simplicity of this project and it's overall design. You could stencil or embroider images or letters between the pockets. This would definitely make a lovely Mother's Day gift. Bring "spring" inside early this year!

Download the PDF pattern and instructions here… Continue

Added by Susan on December 28, 2009 at 11:00am — 2 Comments

Wash Cloth Slippers Pattern

Washcloth slippers make a wonderful gift for those who do a lot of traveling, as they take up almost no space in a suitcase. In addition, they make great bazaar or flea market items. Check the stores for “bundles” of washcloths, which would be much cheaper to buy, or use old towels and cut to fit. Velour is also a very nice fabric for these pretty slippers. You could make a pair for every day of the week, just throw them into the washer.… Continue

Added by Susan on December 27, 2009 at 8:00am — 10 Comments

Crayon Stained Quilt Art

Crayons are used to stain the fabric of a quilted wallhanging, accented with strips of fabric, free-motion embroidery and applique. Create a beautiful textile painting of your own. Carol Ingram prepares a small colored sketch of the design. You may get your inspiration from photographs, magazine pictures or cards. This helps you organize… Continue

Added by Susan on December 20, 2009 at 8:00am — No Comments

Rag Quilting - The Easiest and Newest Method of Quilt Making Revealed

Need a break from the common customary styles of quilt making, then give rag quilting a go. Anybody can make a rag quilt if you can stitch in a straight line. They're patchwork blocks with a twist using different fabrics like flannel,…


Added by Susan on December 18, 2009 at 5:30am — 6 Comments

Painting on Fabric With Inks - A Beginner's Guide

What is fabric ink?

Acrylic fabric inks consist of very fine colors suspended in a fluid that flows like children's watercolor paints and produces bold and vivid colors when painted on fabric. After they cure, inks are water resistant, light fast, and permanent.

There are many ways to paint inks on fabric. You can apply inks with: Paintbrush Air brush Dip pen Stamps Sponges Any absorbent applicator, like a Q-tip or rag. Ink can also be used to dip fabric in,… Continue

Added by Susan on December 17, 2009 at 6:00am — 2 Comments

How to make a hat and scarf from a sweater

This project would make a fantastic gift for any little boy, or girl. You could vary the eyes, ears, and nose to create any critter they might like. Penguins, teddy bears, rabbits, or stick to the owl that this easy and well written tutorial demonstrates. You would be able to also make matching mittens for the hat and scarf. Grab an old sweater… Continue

Added by Susan on December 16, 2009 at 6:00am — 6 Comments

Make a Bra

Making a bra is not as hard as you might think, and by no means out of the reach of someone with moderate sewing skills. If you're willing to put in a little time on adjusting your pattern, you can end up with a bra that fits you perfectly, which few commercial bras can do. Try to make your own and save some money on expensive boutique bras. This

step by step tutorial will… Continue

Added by Susan on December 15, 2009 at 6:46am — 13 Comments

Tutorial: How To Sew A Fagoted Seam

[ photo from Colette Patterns] Sarai of Colette Patterns shows how to add vintage detailing to your garments with a fagoted seam. This technique joins two fabric pieces with a litle gap showcasing a f**** stitch. A fagoted seam is a decorative seam that joins two pieces of fabric together with a space between them and a row of hand stitching. It’s a very pretty detail seen most often in vintage clothing. It’s easy to incorporate this kind of seam… Continue

Added by Susan on December 15, 2009 at 3:00am — 4 Comments

Sew Your Own Winter Dog Boots

The DOMESTIK GODDESS shares her excellent pattern for making dog boots for the winter. She makes her boots out of polar fleece, elastic, velcro, and vinyl non-slip sole. You can size the pattern up or down on your printer, to fit the size of your dog’s paws. Polar fleece dries quickly to be ready for the next outing. I would think that recycling an old heavy wool sweater would be acceptable too. You could double layer your boots without too much trouble (If… Continue

Added by Susan on December 14, 2009 at 4:30am — 1 Comment

Basic Sewing Supplies for Absolute Beginners

Everyone should have some basic sewing skills and own some basic sewing supplies. A tiny rip in a hem, or loose button, should never result in a discarded garment. Review some basic sewing tips if you forget how to sew on a button because minor issues are easy to fix, as long as you simply own a needle and some thread. To make a simple sewing and/or mending kit, start with a lidded container to hold everything in. You need a basic set of sewing …


Added by Susan on December 12, 2009 at 12:00am — No Comments

Holiday Star Garland

I might just give these a go myself this weekend to string atop our windows, and along the sills using some scraps I have stuffed in my sewing desk, pleading to be used. I may string them together with ribbon instead or fabric strips, or perhaps some jute twine depending on what type of fabric I decide to use. You could style these "primitive" with muslin or plaids, or… Continue

Added by Susan on December 11, 2009 at 4:30am — 15 Comments

Swiffer Covers: Patterns & Tutorials

I could not pass these tutorials by! This is a great project to use up some old towels or fleece to cut down on swiffer supply costs and paper waste. Clean green! These swiffer cloths can be used over and over again with just a quick wash. Try red and green fabrics for the holiday season ;) You can make them reversible. Clean your floors in style while saving money! Make use of these excellent tutorials and pattern by visiting …


Added by Susan on December 9, 2009 at 6:00am — 19 Comments

Ring Around the Rosies Toddler Dress - Recon Tutorial

We found this excellent tutorial on how to make a toddler dress out of a dollar store, or used t-shirt and just had to share it with you! This tutorial will show you how to make the ruffles and roses out of the scraps, and how to make hair bows to match for the lucky little girl who will wear this dress. The instructions are clear and the photos will guide you every step of the way. Make this dress out of polar fleece for winter months, you could substitute the roses and ruffles made… Continue

Added by Susan on December 8, 2009 at 6:30am — 17 Comments

Kehler’s U.S.E.D. finds fashion in the junkyard

Used is a good word for Trevor Kehler. Seven years ago Kehler had tried many different jobs and didn’t want any of them. “I just didn’t want to fill out another resume,” he told me when I asked him why he had started his company, U.S.E.D. (Unlimited Supplies from Everyone’s Discards), which makes new and useful items out of used materials. The first things Kehler made were a pair of sandals from old car tires. “I used old seat belts for the straps and had to teach myself to sew,”… Continue

Added by Susan on December 8, 2009 at 5:30am — No Comments

Super Easy Ruffled T-shirt Scarf Tutorial (Recon!)

A fantastic tutorial demonstrating how to take clothing made of jersey knit fabric, and use that fabric to make beautiful ruffled scarves very easily! Make them as gifts this holiday season!

If you'd like to learn how to create these gorgeous scarves, click here for the… Continue

Added by Susan on December 2, 2009 at 7:00am — 21 Comments

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