Here at Sew4Home, we’re quite well known for our bag designs; it’s even the focus of our recent book with Fons & Porter: Bags and Totes, 10 Fashionable Projects Anyone Can Sew. When we start a new bag concept, one of the first things we think about is hardware: buckles, slides, clips, hooks… the elements that provide both functionality as well as a professional finish. The right piece of hardware can even be the genesis of an entire design. Since it’s such an important element, you know we were thrilled when we found out about the new Dritz® hardware coming out this Spring. In particular, we were excited to see two brand new finishes: copper and gunmetal. So, in honor of Valentine’s Day - we’re celebrating Products We Love today – ones we think you’ll love too!
There’s no research confirming a link between the classic yo-yo string toy and the fabric yo-yo, but they are both round, both peaked in popularity in the 1930s-40s in the United States, and both are pretty, dang fun! So, we’re happy to link them together as two points along a playful continuum. A fabric yo-yo is a small, ruched rosette. It’s most often associated with quilting, and antique yo-yo quilts can be quite stunning, but it’s a fun bit of dimensional embellishment that can be used on any number of projects. At it’s simplest, the yo-yo is just a small gathered circle. When cinched up tight it produces a smooth “button” effect on one side and a pretty rippled confection on the other. You can make them by hand, and we summarize those steps below, but we prefer to use the Clover Quick Yo-Yo Makers. These small plastic devices are incredibly affordable, and make the job of stitching yo-yos easier and more uniform.
To be an artisan has many meanings across a variety of professions, but at its core, it is the desire to create a distinct handmade item with skill and creativity. Our friends at FreeSpirit Fabrics have a wonderful opportunity for you to showcase your inner artisan by making a quilt for the I Am An Artisan Challenge, featuring the stunning Artisan fabric collection by Kaffe Fassett. Win up to $4,700 in prizes, including a brand new Janome Skyline S9 sewing and embroidery machine!
Snaps are one of our favorite closures. They're small yet sturdy, like a cute little Corgi dog. But there's not always a lot of variety from which to choose. You can usually find nickel or brass, and the Western favorite: pretty pearl head snaps, every once in awhile, maybe a rhinestone alternative. But that's where the decorative options usually ended. So when Babyville snaps hit the market a few years ago, their bright colors and cute cover designs were an instant hit. They were immediately snapped up for their decorative flair. We've used them on several Sew4Home projects, and now we have a full tutorial dedicated to showing you just how easy they are to insert.
There’s something about the word fussy that sounds negative. We assume it means someone or something is being difficult, like a toddler turning up her nose at broccoli or the lawnmower that won't start unless you first pull the cord halfway and stand on one foot. But, words mean different things depending on the situation, and in the world of sewing, fussy can be a compliment and a fussy cut is a beautiful thing.
Since 2008, the Designer Mystery BOM has been one of Fat Quarter Shop’s most popular project events. For this 10th anniversary year, they have another amazing crew of designers lined up to bring you a beautiful 12” block each month from June 2017 through May 2018. There are limited spots available, so you'll want to be sure to reserve your place early. Read on to see who’s on the list of this year’s 12 designers as well as to find out about the FQS special anniversary free bonuses.
If you’re a regular visitor to Sew4Home, you’re probably familiar with our Re-imagine & Renovate series. It’s where we show you how new fabric can completely change the look of a design; the same way a fresh coat of paint can transform a room. The theory works just as well with the ten projects in our new Sew4Home Bags and Totes book. We selected one of our favorites: the Kid's Vintage Book Bag, and gave it a floral makeover.
Buttons are among the most basic methods of fastening one thing to another. They also make a pretty embellishment all on their own. We love them lots… until they come off. And, they almost always come off, especially from store-bought items, which often seem to be sewn with some kind of “quick release thread.” If you’re tired of buttons coming loose or popping off, you are going to love the new Secura Button Thread from Coats. It sews like regular thread, but the secret comes when you’re done sewing. Steam the sewn button from the back for just a few seconds and the heat activates the thread’s coating, allowing it to stick to itself. It doesn’t stick to the fabric or the button – just to itself.
How many times have you said it, possibly shouted it? “I can’t do that!” “I’m not good enough.” “This does not look like the picture!” We’re all guilty of the critical eye, especially when it comes to our own work. But here’s the real story: anytime you make something with your own two hands, it’s a success! Passion and creativity do not live in the same space as perfection and criticism. In fact, they’re not even friends. As you make your list of resolutions, we’d like to suggest our Top Five Things to Remember for 2017 (and beyond). You may want to write them on a post-it note to stick to your forehead.