"Give us the tools and we will finish the job." Winston Churchill. One of the signs of a truly well-made project is that it looks nearly as good on the inside as it does on the outside. Finishing a project's inside raw edges will not only elevate the final appearance, it will also elevate your sewing skills to a new level. In general, the purpose of any seam finish is to prevent fray-prone fabrics from raveling beyond the seam, leaving a hole in your sewn project. It also helps to reduce bulk on certain fabrics, like fleece. And, finishing stitches always provide added strength to a seam and the fabric edge. However, it's often just about the look, and most professionals recommend you even finish fabrics that don’t appear to require it.
Summer yields to autumn this Sunday. In reality, September is the last month of summer, but I start thinking about flannel and plaid the minute I flip over the August calendar page. With every seasonal change, my color preferences shift; autumn goes to pumpkin, eggplant, olive and warm gray, plus my every-season fave: turquoise. Before it gets to the projected 90ºF this afternoon, this slightly foggy, cool morning has me inspired to go on a Love That Fabric hunt. See our Fun Fall Finds…
In honor of National Sewing Month, maybe you should do something sweet for your trusty sewing machine, like make it a little outfit! Many sewing machines come with a cover; some are hard plastic, some are soft vinyl... none are particularly pretty. Since I believe all my sewing machines have their own personalities, I think they deserve their own personalized covers to keep them protected from dust and sun exposure when not in use. Besides, these hard-working machines make so much stuff for us, the least we can do is make a little something for them! Our sample cover was created for my Janome Memory Craft 5200, a very standard-sized machine. This Janome is my mid-range model and is a real sweetie-pie. She deserved a cover with a kicky bottom ruffle and a bright turquoise ribbon accent. The fabric is the cheery red and white brights of Moda's Half Moon Modern.
THIS GREAT GIVEAWAY CLOSED 10/01/13. THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED.
September is National Sewing Month. It's time to celebrate being able to make something with your own two hands! It's also a great time for those us who sew to reach out and teach. Let someone new in on the "secret." Sewing is fun, it saves money, and it's an amazingly creative outlet. "I made this!" is a powerful statement for anyone. It's accomplishment, pride, ingenuity, and fun; all rolled up and tied with a bow. We encourage YOU to make it your goal to teach at least one new person to sew before the year is out. Then share the news in social media: Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. We have a beautiful fabric and notions prize package to reward your efforts.
THIS GREAT GIVEAWAY CLOSED 9/23/13. THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED.
A hole is simply a circle with depth. Cover the edges with a ring, and it becomes... a grommet! Here are Sew4Home, we are grommet fans, or as we prefer to be called: "grommeteers." Grommets look great, adding texture and dimension. But they're also quite functional, providing a stable opening for a rod or a channel for cording. We've all seen metal ones, and they certainly have their place, but today, we're talkin' fashion grommets from Dritz® Home. These easy plastic grommets have been around for a few years, and we've used them on a number of our projects, but the color selection was pretty basic. Recently, Dritz® amped up the options to include dozens of cool colors, designs, sizes, and added an octagon shape as well as the standard circle. Trace, cut, insert and snap together. It's as easy as that! There are no special tools required, just a pen and scissors. Let's make some holes! And, if you are a S4H Newsletter Subscriber, you could win your own package to try. We'll draw three winners!
Today's project has already won the Sew4Home Most Beautiful Quilt Award and we're betting it may also be a Most Popular Quilt winner. The different and unique motifs in the Eclectic Elements collection are a quilter's dream. You can isolate and piece together all these interesting little bits into a wonderful quilting collage. All the great shapes are also an inspirational bonanza for the final quilting. Seamstress, Michele Mishler really went to town on our sample, outlining the clock faces and butterflies, and doing some great free-motion stippling in the solid areas. This is not a basic quilt. If you have little or no quilting experience, you might want to browse through our Project Index first and start with some easier quilts. You could also review our five-part series on quilting basics that begins here with Tools, Notions and Other Stuff You Need to Start. But if you're already into quilting, this is a design you're going to want to put on your list along with the Eclectic Elements fabric.
Over the years, the constant on my desk has been the pencil cup my oldest daughter made for me in preschool from a soup can and construction paper. I'll never get rid of it, or the My Little Pony® pencil that came with it. But over the years, I have added some elegant versions by its side, like today's trio of pencil cups in Eclectic Elements. The vintage designs of this collection are the perfect choice since since pencils and pens themselves seem to have become part of the vintage world in today's iPad® driven environment. I still love my pencils and pens, and as long as I have soup cans and cool fabric, I have a way to make new ways to keep them on display. This banded set would also make a great gift, and could be your own little statement for maintaining a presence in the digital world for the classic pencil and pen.
Someone told me the other day he believed money would soon become completely digital and we'd be trading electronic credits online. It's happening already to a limited extent with Bitcoins, but it still seems so sci-fi to me. I think I'll hold on to a wallet for now, like today's pretty Eclectic Elements version. I like having physical money with me; a couple paper dollars and some coins just makes me feel happy. I think it goes back to being a kid, when every dime and quarter you hoarded put you that much closer to a giant gum ball from the shiny red dispenser. I still get a little thrill when I find a quarter in my coat pocket, although I worry what a gum ball would do now to my dental work.
All I want is a place for my stuff. Actually, I also want world peace and maybe to win the lottery, but for now... I'm good with a place for my stuff. Today we kick off week two of our Eclectic Elements series with these great round baskets. They're designed to hold all kinds of stuff and look great doing it. Use them one by one on a counter top, or make a bunch and fill up a shelf. We added a tab on the front with twill tape and an O-ring, which looks great and adds interesting texture, but is also functional as a pull tab. You can fill up a shelf all the way to the top with a row of baskets, then access each with its tab and ring just like a drawer pull.
We love the idea of concealing a cutting edge electronic device inside a vintage wrapper. Our Eclectic Elements device sleeve combines a great old-fashioned ticking stripe with a print made up entirely of old-school rulers and tapes. We've created three generous pockets to hold a selection of devices. Fusible fleece between the layers keeps everything soft yet stable. The inner sleeve is sized to easily accommodate a Nook®, Kindle® or iPad® Mini. Two 7" x 7" outer pockets can fit the smaller Nook® or your smart phone. The front pocket is completely sealed with a zipper, so it could also hold a wallet and keys. Or... go ahead and push against the electronic grain by tucking an actual printed book or notepad into one of the compartments. So many options in one convenient bag.