You might have heard the term, "fabric grain." It sounds like it could be a breakfast cereal just for sewists. But in reality, it's a technical term that describes the direction your fabric has been woven. It's important to know which way the grain is running. Because, fabric that is off-grain when you are cutting pattern pieces can cause your completed project to stretch out of shape. We're here to give you a better understanding of fabric grain and some tips on how to straighten it.
The circle is, in my opinion, the Queen of the geometric shapes. Don't get me wrong; I like all those squares, rectangles, triangles, octagons and whatnot, but the circle is the coolest of the bunch: smooth and pretty and endlessly useful. But trying to draw a perfect circle without a pattern is a challenge, and figuring out the proper size of an opening into which a circle can be inserted requires working with Pi (or π), and not the delicious kind you can eat with a bit of ice cream. We're here today to help you with the steps you've forgotten since high school geometry class (or maybe never learned because you were too busy passing notes with Susan Ellery!). We'll show you the parts of a circle, how wide to cut fabric to fit a circle, and how to draw a circle without a pattern. We've also included a handy conversion from decimals to inches, which is necessary when working with Pi.
I call this a "flat top" zipper. I've also heard it referred to as a set-in zipper and a recessed zipper. You can make up your very own name; the Penelope Zipper would be one option. I'm sure you've seen this type of zipper on loads of handbags and totes. It sits below the top of the bag, running flat across the top (thus the vote for my name), featuring tabs at either end (making it easy to zip open and shut), and is secured to the bag's lining with a simple facing (which allows it to be recessed). When you want a professional look and the security of a full closure, you can't go wrong with the inset-set-in-recessed-Penelope zipper. Read on to see how easy it can be.
This is not one of those square-peg-in-a-round-hole situations. But, if the idea of sewing a two-dimensional item (a flat circle) into a three-dimensional item (a tube) sounds like something from another dimension, read on. We've broken it down into a simple step-by-step process and even show you two different methods.
You can't play Sonic Generations with this type of "X" Box, but you can use it in your sewing projects to secure all types of straps and narrow panels. It's simply a stitched box with an "X" through the middle. This stitching pattern provides a high level of strength and stability, and when done with precision, it also adds a pretty detail. Try it with a contrasting thread color for extra emphasis.
Hopefully, you're reading this article for one of two reasons. Either you know a teen who really wants to start sewing, or you know one you'd like to inspire to start sewing. In both cases, you can help them on their way with a little guidance. In this day and age, when young adults seem to be devoted nearly full-time to social media apps, it's easy to think none of them could possibly be interested in something so archaic as sewing. But, while you weren't looking, sewing became cool. Read on for our Top Seven Tips to pave the way to a great experience for a young sewist.
The magnetic snap is indispensable to the construction of purses, totes and bags. We've used them on dozens of Sew4Home projects and decided it was high time the technique had its very own tutorial. As with many notions and tools that add a unique professional finish, the steps for their use are themselves not necessarily difficult. The secret is having the time and patience to go through the instructions in the correct order, and with extra precision in your marking and measuring.
The turn or twist lock closure is one of those finishing touches that looks so professional, it fools you into thinking it must be crazy hard to install. We're here to bust that myth wide open. We used this closure on our Ribbon Flap Shoulder Bag with Renaissance Ribbons. Centered within one of the ribbons, this little lock completed the bag with high-end style. Read on to see the easy steps to follow. The trick is to measure one, twice, three times to insure both halves of the closure are perfectly placed.
Buttons are the perfect finishing accent to so many projects. Not to mention the fact they are also a very functional closure. But if you have to sew on a lot of by hand, you might think twice about using them. I personally find sewing buttons by hand tedious, time-consuming, and I can sometimes have trouble getting them to look perfectly uniform. Sew4Home exclusive sewing machine sponsor, Janome America has come to our (and your) rescue. There's an easy method for sewing buttons on by machine. You can be sure they're securely attached, perfectly aligned, and once you've done one, your machine can use the same settings for multiple buttons of the same size.
Little pieces of fabric sewn together. That's truly quilting at its most basic, but its just as crazy as describing cooking as: tasty bits of food mixed together. The creativity (and the love) is in the who, what, when, where and why of how it all happens. Our quilting series is designed to help beginning quilters get rollin'. We explain the basics of quilting, including the various tools you’ll need (and may already have), cutting techniques, how to create quilt blocks from basic shapes, piecing tips and techniques, and actual quilt stitching. One disclaimer: enter at your own risk; quilting can be addictive.