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Information and tutorials for folks interested in antique Italian lacework, nouveau fashion, sewing techniques and much much more!

Category Archive: Projects

Free Geek-tastic Knit Potholder Patterns


Ilana of Off the Hook Astronomy is a scientist of the finest tradition and a grad student in Astrophysics. She has designed these free patterns for double-knit potholders. One set is emblazoned with a Star Trek Next Generation sign, and the other with a Buffy the Vampire Slayer “B”, and the cartoon demon from the video game Zero Punctuation. These would be perfect gifts for your geek-tastic friends to prevent them from scorching their delicate digits while removing fresh-baked chocolate brownies from their oven.

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Make a No-Sew Leather Kippah כיפה (Yamulkah ירמולקא)


This year Hanukkah starts in just 15 days, on December 1st! Britex (and Bretts) have made a tutorial with a pattern for a beauteous no-sew leather kippah (yamulkah). These are amazingly suave; it would be easy to whip up a clutch of them in one industrious evening. Make kippot as gifts…and then later fry latkes and sing “S’vivon Sov Sov Sov”. All are made with leather scraps purchased from Britex Fabrics.

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“Where The Wild Things Are” Stocking


The multi-talented Pip from Australia made this clever tutorial on how to make a Maurice Sendack Where the Wild Things Are holiday stocking. This would also be perfect gift bag for any wild and wacky child or adult. “And now,” cried Max, “let the wild rumpus start!”

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How to Turn a Vest Lining


With the turning of the leaves, it is vest season, although M. Du Jour claims that every season is waistcoat season! Katherine from Bloom’s Fabric Obsession wrote and photographed a beautifully clear tutorial for making a lined vest. She has included instructions how to turn the lining through the side seams. This method practically guarantees a smooth finish to your bespoke garment….and as we all know, being smooth is essential to all well-bred dandies.

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Make a Lunch Bag


It seems like everyone we know is in the midst of a creative flurry of home-cooking and virtuous thriftiness. Dorie from TumblingBlocks has a great idea for holiday gifts; super-duper easy to make lunch totes. We think they would be perfect packed with a bag of make-it-yourself brownie mix. You can sew this lunch bag of the suggested oilcloth or any sturdy fabric. We have a pal that made one of a scrap of heavy herringbone wool lined with bandanna fabric for a chic urban feel. Oilcloth can be found on Britex Fabric’s 4th floor.

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How to Make Box Pleats


Pleats and autumn go together like ducks and bread crumbs! Here are clear directions from the folks at BurdaStyle on how to make box and inverted box pleats. These would be equally wonderful with an ankle-length smoke grey wool skirt, or perhaps a snappy tartan plaid hip-hugging mini-skirt.

Posted: Sewing Techniques
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How to Make a Muff


Winter is coming, and with it long snowy moonlit ambles at midnight. Faux fur muffs are a genteel and fashionable way of keeping your paws warm, snuggly, and free from chilblains. Muffs were introduced to woman’s fashion in the 16th century and were worn by both men and women in the 17th and 18th centuries. BurdaStyle and ElaineMay have developed this step-by-step tutorial on working with faux fur and making a lined muff.

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How to Jimmy a Brother KH-930e Knitting Machine


Here are hacking shenanigans from Limor at LadyAda, and Becky from SternLab! They have written instructions on how to talk electronically to a Brother KH-930e knitting machine, then create unique custom patterns and load them from your computer to the machine. Did you want to knit a portrait of your favorite bowser? A tastefulArt Nouveau pattern? A Dia dos Mortos motif? A groovy Pop art image? Now you can.

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Wee Felt Bunnies Tutorial


We think that bunnies are the new black. Straight from stylish New Zealand and the ever brilliant HazelnutGirl, comes a tutorial for making wee felt bunnies. She says that she was keen to resurrect this pattern because her grandmother used to make similar bunnies back in the 1950s. I’d like to see a festive flock of felt bunnies in autumn shades of warm browns, surrounding a cornucopia of pumpkins and dried corn

Posted: Hand-Needlecraft, Projects, Sewing
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Easy to Sew Lined Curtains


Rachael at Sew, Mama, Sew made up this easy to follow tutorial for making basic lined curtains. She demonstrates by sewing up a pair of charmingly classic gingham kitchen curtains. This method could be used for any simple lined curtain; I would love to make them up in luxurious mustard velveteen, lined with violet cotton sateen.

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