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Showing posts from January, 2013

DIY Tutorial: Zipper Pocket

I like a zip close pocket every now and then.
And at first I was a bit skeptical about how to do such a thing.
So I put my worries aside and searched the internet for some guidance and I finally found a combination that works for me.

 I would love to share it with you so you can make your own professional-looking pockets too!
A few things you will need to begin: Zipper Ruler Disappearing ink marker or other marking tool Pins Iron Sharp Pointed Scissor and of course, your project. First measure the zipper you are planning to use. I used an eleven-inch zipper that was about 12 inches long. (Measure the whole tape!)
From there I know that I have to make an 11" long slit by 1/2" high. I also know that my pocket has to be at least 12" wide. I typically add an inch to either side of the zipper tape to make it easier to sew around later. So I cut a 14" by 10" pocket for my 18" by 15" tote. You will need to cut two pieces for your pocket. 
Next you are…

Resource Library: All About Interfacing

Interfacing is so important when making a garment. It helps stabilize fabric, stiffen it where needed and all around help make a better garment. But choosing the right interfacing can be confusing if you don't understand the different types. I will be highlighting the most common interfacing, including my personal commentary.

Fusible vs. Non-fusible
I think this is a preference thing, but I personally like fusible interfacing. When ironed onto the fabric, it sticks creating a smooth, stiff piece of fabric. When using non-fusible interfacing, one must baste it to their fabric, therefore creating possible puckers and bubbles. (Plus it is just more work!)

Fusible Woven vs. Fusible Non-woven
Fusible woven interfacing is basically a thin piece of cotton-like material with fusible on it. Fusible non-woven interfacing is a bonded material (usually polyester) with  fusible on it. Both can be used in the same way. Use it for collars, cuffs, waistbands and some necklines. These can also be us…

Resource Library: Choosing the Right Needle.

Being confused by which needle you need to use is a very common problem among new and some old sewers.
So don't get discouraged!
With so many different numbers and fabrics to choose from it can make you quite uncertain of the correct needle for your specific project.
But don't worry! We're going to break it down for you and help you learn the basics about sewing machine needles.


 Let's start with the anatomy of a sewing machine needle.




Shank: Top portion of the needle, usually having a flat back, that is inserted into the sewing machine with the flat slide facing the back. Needle is tightened into place with a screw on the machine. 


Shaft: The body of the needle determining the needle size based on the width of the shaft.


Front Groove: Slit above the eye that allows the thread to be flat against the needle.


Point: Tip of the needle that penetrates the fabric and forms the stitch with the bobbin thread. Shape of point varies between needles. Important to pay at…

Sew Along - Winter Coat Finished!!

I'm finished with my coat! I cannot believe I did it. There was such a feeling of excitement when I finished this coat I probably did a happy dance! After days of cutting, interfacing and marking, it only took me about two days to construct the coat from first stitch to sewing on the buttons.

I don't mean to sound like I know what I'm doing (because I really didn't!) but overall it was easier than I thought. Taking the time to cut the plaids out correctly, then checking and rechecking everything made the sewing process much easier. I was so lucky to have all the plaids fall into place.


The coat is fully lined, underlined with flannel for extra warmth and has three anchor buttons down the front. It does fit although I probably could have made it a little smaller in some areas. I fixed that by overlapping the front flaps more, making it more snug. I also included the belt so it would help make it fit better. I didn't have my dress-form while making it (it was in use…

Resource Library: Burn Tests

IDENTIFYING FIBER CONTENT - BURN TEST
No special equipment is needed to do a burn test. Use caution and have water available when doing the test. Do the test on a non-flammable surface like the sink or a metal covered table away from any flammable objects (curtains, paper, etc.) Do not do the test near an air conditioner, fan, or open windows; keep your hair and face away from the flame. Use tweezers.
But before starting your burn test remember natural fibers, those harvested from plants or animals leave a breakable remain, either ash or a bead that turns to powder when crushed.
Man-made fibers are formed by combining monomer compounds into polymer molecules. Many of the polymers that constitute man-made fibers are the same as or similar to compounds that make up plastics, rubbers, etc. For this reason a majority of themwill leave a hard bead when burned.
Animal Fibers - Proteins: All kind of wool (including alpaca, angora, camelhair, cashmere, mohair, etc)
Plant Fibers - Cellulose: Cotton, …

Julie's Picks Sewing Contest Announcement!

Sewing Contest Do you enjoy challenges, winning stuff and having fun? Then this is for you! Fabric Mart is hosting a sewing contest! This contest is only open to Julie's Picks members. Members can pick any fabric from the January, February or March Julie's Picks mailer. Then make one garment using any fabric(s) from those mailers. The entries will then be judged on Facebook in April.  The grand prize winner will receive a $100 gift certificate good for any fabric purchase. Second prize will win a $50 gift certificate good for any fabric purchase. PLUS everyone that participates will receive a $5 off coupon good toward any fabric purchase online, including Julie's Picks. (Participants will receive the coupon after submission in April.) All members have received an email with the details and rules for the contest, but maybe you would like to join in! Julie's Picks is a great club that allows you to feel fabrics before buying them. Check out our website for more information

Guest Post: Sarah from Lou Bee Clothing!

Hi! My name is Sarah and I write a sewing blog called emmyloubeedoo.blogspot.com. I sew primarily for my daughter, Emmylou, but every now and then I whip things up for myself too. Come on over and say hey! Take a tour of my sewing room, or check out my dearest project to date. I recently started a small toddler clothing line on Etsy called LouBeeClothing. My store is closed right now (dohhh!) for the Holidays and to prepare for the addition of new styles! I hope you come check it out and sign up to get notified when I reopen! Very cool things are on the horizon. With, coincidentally, very cool Fabric Mart fabric. So this year I made Emmy's Christmas dress from a gorgeous black and dark turquoise brocade from Fabric Mart. I LOVE how it came out! Check it:
She goes nowhere without that lizard. :) The pattern I used is from BurdaStyle - here is the link to the pattern.. Problem I had though, was that this dress starts somewhere around a size 7 - and Emmy's not even t…

Resource Library: Helpful Books!

We hope you got everything you asked for this year!
Possibly a new sewing machine, gift cards to Fabric Mart, a cutting table, etc.

(I bought myself a Bernina machine!
Merry Christmas to me!)

We have a big month planned for January!
It's a new year and we're going to teach you some new things to get you going.

First up, a collection of books you should add to your resource library.
I chose books for all skill levels, from beginner to pro!
(Plus added a few just for fun too!)


For the Beginner:
Sewing in a Straight Line Just started sewing but want to sew something fun? This book is filled with projects that only involve simple straight seams. Make skirts, bags, and even a duvet cover! This would even be a great book to use with a little one who is just learning!



For the Crafty Sewer:

Fabric-by-Fabric, One Yard Wonders Make tops, bags, and gifts with only a yard of fabric (like those you can find in our mystery bundles!) Imagine all the great things you could make while using…

At Fabric Mart: Our New Year's Resolutions!

It's time to dump your dirty secrets and make a new year's resolution. Yes, I know, we all hate to admit that we fail in some areas. But it is a fact of life, and a new year means you get another chance to try to fix those hairy areas of your past.

I will be the first to admit that I am awful at finishing projects and in result I have way too much fabric for all the projects I thought I would have time for. I have come to terms with the fact that I do not have time to do everything and already began the process of elimination in my "collection." I vow to only keep the fabrics I truly love and get rid of those I cannot remember what I was actually going to make with them or those I just don't see myself wearing. I have to be brutally honest with myself in this process! And so far...I still have too much fabric.
To counteract my situation I have decided I need to do ONE project at a time and FINISH them. And how am I going to do this after so many failed atte…