Jennifer at GrainlineStudio has a deceptively simple tip for creating perfect necklines in lightweight silk fabrics such as silk crepe de chine, silk charmeuse, or silk chiffon; use a narrow strip of interfacing to hold the necklines shape and add strength, while remaining delicately flexible.
Category Archive: Sewing Techniques
Jessie from Some Things I Have Made created a four part tutorial on drafting a bespoke pencil skirt pattern, including a très chic French back vent. Once you’ve drafted this, you will have a pattern exactly unique to your charming curves! This style is perfect made up in nubby fall wool tweed. Jessie says, “It’s not that hard! Really. While a circle or A-line four-gore skirt may be simpler to fit, the classic pencil skirt is just as easy to construct, especially when you know it inside and out because you’ve drafted the pattern yourself. Furthermore, it’s a great one to make yourself because it’s so fitted–why wrestle with a pattern made for somebody else’s smaller hips and bigger butt when you can take careful measurements and make one that fits you perfectly? This pattern is unlined–I just wear a slip with mine and wash the slip instead.”
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!
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.
The ever talented, charming and handsome Peter from the sewing blog, MalePatternBoldness features these giddily detailed instructions for making a button fly. These directions are a small part of his current men’s jeans sew-along!
Just in time for all you debonair craftsters, who are coming to bow tie Craft Bar this coming Thursday, here are clear instructions on how to make a simple back stitch from Janet at Stitch School! And to sew the bow tie center piece, here is a simple whip stitch from the folks at Holiday Crafts and Creations. Come on over and let The Museum of Craft and Folk Art, Britex Fabrics, Bretts, and Avery help you get your suave on!
Gertie from the blog Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing: A Modern Homage to Vogue’s New Book for Better Sewing (pub. 1952), has posted a fabulous tutorial on French seam construction. French seams are a classic method of seam finishing, making back of the item as attractive and neat as the front, and are an ideal finish for sheer fabrics. This is another bit of persnickety attention to detail that lends flair and beauty to hand-sewn garments!
It is bridal season! Sherry from the Auckland, New Zealand-based blog, pattern ~ scissors ~ cloth demonstrates how to use silk organza as underlining for a fitted cocktail or wedding gown bodice. She says that she uses it a lot in wedding gowns because it is lightweight, crisp, and is easy to cut, sew and press. Underlining adds body and stability to your shell fabric, and allows you to catch stitch hems and seam allowances invisibly. It is this kind of persnickety attention to detail that makes bespoke items fit with flair and beauty!
We love the extra verve that judicious use of top-stitching adds to garments. A line (or two) of top-stitching can empathize the tailored angles of a jacket collar lapel, add decorative contrast with a coordinating thread color, or spiff up the pockets of a cowboy shirt. Carolyn of TheDiaryofaSewingFanatic gives us instructions and hints on top-stitching, including advice on needle type, the importance of consistent stitching line direction, and the top-secret scotch tape stitching guide method!
Kid Dandy, an Italian creative group, are in the process of finishing up a documentary on Neapolitan tailoring traditions. Here is a 5 minute trailer for their stunning documentary. This film is a must to watch for anyone who is enamored with the craft of traditional fine tailoring, hand-stitching, hand-made button-holes…..and the luscious beauty of Naples, Italy. I love watching the beautifully suited Claudio Attolini as he talks about the process of tailoring while making gracefully articulate hand gestures that mimic hand-stitching.