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

Category Archive: Sewing

Make Baby High Tops!

Ahoy, matey! Aimee at Homespun-threads made a PDF tutorial for these super adorable baby high-top shoes out of scraps of fabric from her fabric stash. These would be fetching made up on gingham and chambray, or even silk (for the wee-est member of the wedding)

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Vintage Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Blog!


Sewing machine mechanic par excellence, Rain, blogs about refinishing, tuning, and repairing vintage all-metal Singer Featherweight sewing machines on his The Vintage Singer Sewing Machine Blog! Check out his specific information on models 15-91s, 201-2s, 206s, 221s and 222s, along with directions on such topics as how to remove and replace the rotating hook assembly, polishing the silver bits, and how to restore your stitch length indicator plate. These vintage machines are beauteous black enameled stitching workhorses!

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Make an Ironing Board Cover & Pressing Methods

Sunni, from A Fashionable Stitch has a fantabulous assortment of sewing tips and tricks on her creation-obsessed sewing blog, including directions for making a dependable ironing board cover….and we all know that proper pressing is necessary for correct garment construction! As she so succinctly put it, she wanted “something that would last a good long while”, that would “use all natural fibers that would “breathe.”, and lastly “did not want that stupid drawstring thing, which does not really work unless the drawstring is encased in a casing along with elastic. Encasing a drawstring alone in a thread serged casing is AWFUL!!! The drawstring and casing has broken every time for me.” Well, the last wasn’t so succinct, but we agree nevertheless! And to work your new fancy-schmancy ironing board cover, here is Sunni’s method for ironing newly washed fabric in preparation for cutting and sewing.

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Sew Pocketed Kid’s Pants


The clever and creative Dana from Dana-Made-It, has posted a set of free tutorials for sewing children’s pants. We particularly like the fact that these trousers have flat front and lined versions, and include bodacious pockets…. humongous enough for a peanut butter sandwich, a rock collection, a handful of crayons, and with room to spare!

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Sew Sportif Norfolk Jackets for Fall!


There is hardly anything better to do with the hot lazy days of summer than to make an icy pitcher of mint tea or tangy lemonade, learn new sewing techniques, experiment with patterns, and make autumn duds. We forecast the recurrence of fabulously dapper casual clothing; the suave vintage-inspired Norfolk jacket is perfect for chilly days spent drinking hot chocolate while strolling through fall foliage. Kass at ReconstructingHistory has published patterns and directions for men’s Norfolk jackets and women’s Norfolk jackets, including embellishment suggestions, historical notes and period tailoring. We are planning on making our own sportif Norfolk jacket from coffee brown and cream wool tweed, lined with brown and cream geometrically patterned silk, and fastened with woven brown leather buttons….with all fabrics and buttons are available at Britex Fabrics!

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Très Cute Measuring Tape Pouch!


The ever clever Jodie from VintageRicRac made this zippy little pouch out of spare tape measures, a scrap of cotton and a zipper..and then posted instructions on how to make one ourselves. It would make a dandy pencil, knitting needle or luncheon utensil case! (Perhaps you could even make a matching bag to carry your sandwiches)

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Chiffon Dancing Skirt Pattern


Elaine from the SelfishSeamstress made up this classically simple ballet skirt pattern for grown-ups: a simple and elegant ballet skirt with no frou-frou! It is practically tailored. This floaty skirt only needs about a 1 1/2 yards of polyester georgette or polyester chiffon, and about 2 1/2 yards of narrow grosgrain ribbon. This skirt would be lovely in this Italian lemony floral silk chiffon…perhaps with a charcoal leotard and leggings.

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Free Drivers Cap Pattern


Ashley from BandyCanyon created a pattern and tutorial for this spiffy drivers cap on her blog and on SewingCrafts! Make it out of a scrap of suiting or vintage fabric for a swank retro look. This is perfect for summer; just tilt this chapeau to one side, take a long draw of your sweetened iced coffee, and hunker on down for an afternoon of doing absolutely nothing.

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Japanese Twill Shirt for Father’s Day!


Are you looking for a handsome fathers’ day gift for that special guy in your life? This downloadable men’s shirt pattern from the folks at BurdaStyle sews up into a shirt that would be stylin’ on any bloke. Make it up in this beautiful deep tea green and milk chocolate brown, Japanese cotton twill fabric for a shirt that could be dressed up with a dapper bow tie and vest, or down with a pair of favorite worn jeans!

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Free 1873 Paletot Pattern


The folks at Ladies Treasury and Tudor Links have reproduced a slew of free patterns to ensure that we never are forced to gad about unfrivolously. The patterns are reproduced from original period patterns and from cutting diagrams found in English, French and American publications of the 19th and early 20th centuries. This one is for a vintage 1873 women’s beribboned paletot. We adore the dramatically wide cuffs and excessive rows of cording. This would be a lovely fall jacket in black wool melton with black velveteen trim, and perfect to wear while feeding bread crumbs to ducks in the park on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

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