Sewing is an art. But is does rely on science and technology as well. And there's math with all those fractions and geometry. But most importantly... there's your machine. A good machine makes the difference – not only in the sewing experience but in the professional look of the finished project. Janome America is the exclusive sewing machine sponsor of Sew4Home and we love our studio Janomes. When you have a great machine, you can literally forget about it, and put your full concentration on the art of sewing. To borrow a line from Janome that explains this phenomenon: the easier the tools, the more creative you become. Janome machines are precise and reliable from the top of the line to the most basic entry level model. One of the very first articles we did on Sew4Home explained the parts of a basic sewing machine. We've decided to update that article today as the first day in Janome Week – for the benefit of all the new sewing enthusiasts out there. Plus, it never hurts for any of us to dust off our skills and knowledge.
As we enter the final phase of making a quilt, you should be proud of all you've learned thus far. If you think back to Part 1 of this Series, you may have been skeptical about adding "how to quilt" to your sewing toolbox of skills. Now you can see it was simply a case of ignoring your fears and going forward with curiosity and confidence. We encourage you to remember this as we venture into the final phase!
We're back for the second half of our piecing tutorial – part Four of our Five-part Quilting Basics series. Quilters are very resourceful and innovative. You can see this trait revealed in some of the popular quick-piecing methods that have been developed over time. The mindset behind each is to save thread and/or time. They also often make the quilt-building process easier. As we move through today's article, we're going to assume you’ve reviewed the previous tutorials in the Series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4A. If you've not done so, we recommend starting from the beginning so you can make sure you have the appropriate set up, precut fabric pieces, etc.
In quilting, there are special techniques used to sew patchwork pieces into blocks, then assemble those blocks into a quilt. The precise execution of these techniques is paramount to a beautifully finished quilt. It's similar to putting together a puzzle; each piece has to fit perfectly in order for the larger picture to come into view. As we go through the specific piecing techniques, don’t be surprised to find you can apply many of them to other areas of sewing! This is part Four of our Five-part Quilting Basics series. If you haven't already, we do recommend you read parts One through Three prior to launching into today's tutorial. You'll find the related links listed at the bottom of the page. To keep these instructions to an manageable size, we've broken this Part into two sub-parts. And just like a good television soap opera, we're sure you'll be on the edge of your seat, waiting for tomorrow's installment!
The Fabric.com Rustic Wedding series is all about an amazing blend of unique and stunning fabric substrates. However, working with these specialty fabrics does require a little special handling; they aren't always as user-friendly as good ol' cotton. We picked the most common categories and provided some tips and techniques to make preparing, cutting and sewing with them easier, faster and and frustration-free.
You saw the appropriate tools and other stuff needed for basic quilting in Part 1. You leaned how to properly (and safely) rotary cut your fabric for patchwork piecing in Part 2. Now, you get to discover how to use those pieces you cut (squares, rectangles and triangles) to create some of the most popular basic quilt block patterns. We'll also teach you how to design a custom block of your very own.
Quilts start out as lots o' little pieces. So it makes sense the first thing you should learn about in quilting is how to cut your fabric! If you ask any quilter what she/he feels is the best cutting tool for the job, the answer will be: a rotary cutter. Many compare it to a pizza cutter, and if you've sliced up your share of pizza pies, a rotary cutter may not feel foreign to you at all. If not, pay close attention to all we have to tell you. In Part 1 of this series, we discussed the rotary cutter along with the other basic tools you’ll need to start quilting. If you haven’t done so already, we recommend checking out this article before proceeding with today's installment.
The word "quilt" or "quilting" has many different meanings. It's a special word because it can be both a noun and a verb. Quilting can describe the overall craft itself. What type of sewing do you like? I like to quilt, or I like quilting. It can also mean the act of quilting, which is the process of sewing the layers (quilt top, batting and backing) together in a predetermined pattern or method (we'll talk more about this in Part 5). Some quilters (there it is again as a noun) refer to the patchwork piecing (or sewing) of the quilt top itself as quilting. And, in the end, the actual finished item is indeed a quilt. However you refer to it, quilting is a wonderful and exciting craft to incorporate into your sewing skills. This new series is designed to help beginning quilters get rollin'. We'll 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.
We've made it to the finish of our seam finishes! In this final installment of the series, we venture into the world of the Hong Kong Finish and the Bound Seam finish. If you're not a 'finishing aficionado' (don't feel bad... few people claim that title), you may have been under the impression these techniques are one in the same. Both involve wrapping the raw edges of a seam allowance with a bias cut strip of lightweight fabric. When finished, they can look almost the same. However, the two options differ slightly, and today's tutorial will show you how.
We are not yet finished with our series of finishes! If you've been following along, you know we are working through the ways to make the inside of your projects look as great as the outside. Today, we're moving into a couple more unique options: the mock (or false) French seam and the French wrapped seam. The mock French seam uses a standard straight stitch, the French wrapped seam the straight stitch in combination with a zig zag stitch. These are basic stitches you'll find on any sewing machine, which means there’s no reason not to incorporate them into your seam finishes toolbox.