Friday, September 26, 2008

Patternmaking Made Easy, Connie Amaden-Crawford

After a long wait of 2 and half months I finally got my chance to borrow this book from the library. After the library guys placed the order I was the first one who put it on hold.
You should have been there to see how happy I was to finally see and feel this book after such a long tiring wait. The market price of this book is $99.00 and before spending money I really wanted to make sure if I wanted to buy it. After going through this book I think it is worth adding this one to my book collection. It’s a 459 page spiral bound hard back book. It has detailed descriptions about Pattern Terminology and how to mark patterns. It has everything from basic sloper to drafting skirts and pants and sleeves.

It has a precise step by step instruction on how to make your own Paper Mache dress form apart from other things. But to make better use of this book, you should have minimum basic knowledge about Pattern Making and the terminology.

Overall it’s a good resource for someone who is exposed to Pattern Making. You can get more information about this book here.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tissue or Magazine Holder Tutorial

This is a Tissue holder or magazine holder which is very convenient to carry around when you travel or when you would like to have some tissues handy when you are in your craft room. My plan is to use it when I go camping.

To make this, you need:

1. One cotton canvas or home decor fabric for the base. (I used a placemat which I was no longer using).
2. One piece of fabric for the Pocket.

Step one:

Cut the base fabric 12 ½ inches wide and 18 ½ inches long (you could take more if you want more than two sections).

Cut the pocket fabric 8 ½ inches wide and 22 ½ inches long (Basically whatever length you take for the base fabric, just add 4 inches to the pocket fabric).

Now pin about 1/4th to ½ inch on the wrong side of both the fabrics and stitch on the all the sides picture below).

(If you are using a placemat you don’t need to stitch anything to the base as it is already made).

Step 2:

Now cut two pieces of the bottom color fabric for top loops measuring about 6 ½ inches in length and 2 ½ inches in width (the ½ inch is for seams).

Now pin and stitch on the wrong side. Picture below.

Now fold it into half lengthwise and stitch on the wrong side like the picture below. Do not stitch on the top or bottom as you will have to turn it inside out.

Once the stitching is done, turn it inside out like the picture below.

Iron and stitch corner seams on both sides just to make the edges crisp. Like the picture below

The loops are done now.

Step 3:

Now mark the pocket and base fabric for stitching lines.

Mark ½ inch on the base fabric (placemat) like the picture below (the black line) for the seam to stitch the pocket.

Now pin up the pocket fabric ½ inch from the corner on the base fabric on both sides (picture below).

This line is for the middle stitch of the pocket fabric. Picture below.

Pin up the center trying to match the line on the pocket fabric with the marking shown above.

This is how it looks once you pin it up (picture below).

Now stitch up all the three places (top, bottom and center). This is how it looks now (picture below).

Step 4:

Now add the loops to the base.

I marked the loops exactly where the pocket fabric is stitched.

Ta da!! We have our Tissue/Magazine holder ready to go!

This is how it finally looks when you hang it. Picture below.

P.S: The pictures look a little darker because they were taken in the night. Next time I’ll try to do a better job with the pictures. :)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Bagomania (A simple, all purpose tote bag) Tutorial

As promised, here I am, back with a tutorial. I am generally not into making bags. But recently while I was shopping with my cousin, she suggested I should try it out. I had been thinking about it for some time now and here is the result. Well, it actually turned out better than I expected. And it’s going with me to school from now on.
Here goes the Recipe:
Step 1
Things you need
1. Heavy fabric like cotton canvas or home d├ęcor fabric.
2. Interfacing (I used heavy interfacing for the sides and bottom and a light one for the front and back).
3. Scissors
4. Tape
5. Of course a sewing machine
6. And some pins.

You need to cut:
Two rectangular fabrics measuring 18 inches in width and 14 ½ inches in length. (You could increase or decrease this measurement according to your taste). Picture below.

Two handles which measure 26 inches long and 3 inches wide and 1 base and side strap (both base and side strap are one continuous fabric) which measures about 44 inches long and 6 ½ inches wide. (Pic below).

And interfacing with all the above measurements.
And a lining fabric.

Pin interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric for front, back, side and handles. Like in picture below.

If you want your stitch to be straight you can mark lines with a marker like I did.

Attach lining to all the cut pieces.
Place the interfacing on top of main fabric and the lining and stitch with a ½ inch seam on both sides of the fabric for both the handles. Turn them inside out using turn stitch.
This is how they look once you turn them inside out.

I marked 3 inches on both sides of the straps from the center and stitched up the handle like this (pic below). It makes holding the handles easy.

Join the bag on all sides(something like this pic below).

This is how the bag looks on the inside once all the sides are joined (pic below).

And once you turn in right side out, it looks like this. (pic below).

And stitch the lining same as the bag, and it looks like this (pic below).

I added a slip pocket, to carry my sandwich. For the slip pocket just cut a fabric as per your desired measurements (remember you need to fold it into half, so make sure you take double the length of desired measurement of two pieces separately of the same length. Attach the interfacing to the fabric, leave open to at one end for turning it right side out. Once you are done with this attach the pocket to the centre of one of the sides of the lining bag with the open end down and stitch around the 3 sides. Like this (pic below). I added Velcro on both sides just in case my sandwich does'nt fall off. :)

Well, pocket is completely optional. You can avoid it if you don’t need it.
Now take the main bag and top stitch a scant ¼ th inch seam from the finished edges of bag top, side and lower edges, starting and ending from corners. Like the pic below.

Top stitching around the corners gives a good shape to the bag. You can stitch it up with contrasting color to make it more decorative.
Now slip the main bag into the lining bag and stitch around the top corners. Now your bag looks like this (pic below).

At the top just stitch another stitch with 1/4th inch or ½ inch, just to make the lining stay inside properly. Like the pic below.

And finally the bag looks like this (pic below).

You did it!!

Thanks for being with me while I was making this bag my fellow bloggers. I love to have company while I work. :)

It was great working with you guys. (I never realized making a step by step tutorial would be sooo painful. I really appreciate and thank all of you guys who upload tutorials on your blogs. You guys are just awesome).

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Patchwork Pincushion

This is what I made recently. With my school and assignments I got so busy, that I hardly find time to enter my sewing room. Yesterday when I was passing by my room, I suddenly felt the urge to whip up something fast and easy. While picking up some fabric pieces from the floor, I noticed a few pins lying on the carpet. For a second I cursed myself for not being watchful, especially with a kid around. I immediately knew I desperately needed a bigger pin cushion, as the one I already have ( store bought) is too small for all my pins.

As I mentioned earlier, for smaller projects like this I generally like to use up my scraps. I went through my scrap box and found these two fabrics and in about an hour’s time the pin cushion is all done.

I machine embroidered around the patchwork, just to make it a little more presentable. May be next time when I get some time off my assignments I will make something more dramatic. :)

P.S: My next project is going to be a tutorial. Well I still haven’t decided what it is going to be, but I will try my best to keep it simple, fun and interesting. So do drop-in again. :)