Free sewing pattern: this weekend only!

Free this Weekend Only!

We try to provide our regular readers with a fun and informative variety of sewing-related articles as well as one free sewing project and pattern each and every week.  However, as many of our regular readers know, I’m away on vacation with my family now.  You may not know it, but the weekly sewing projects takes almost a full week of work to design, document, test, illustrate and write up.  I just haven’t been able to do it this week. So, we’re going to do something special instead.  To make sure everyone has something fun and seasonal to work on, we’re going to make one of our popular paid patterns free for this weekend only.  Yes, that’s right, FREE.  As long as you download it on Craftsy this weekend, it will be free for you forever.  After this weekend, the pattern … Continue reading

$100 Giveaway – Only 1 Week Left to Enter

Free giveway

Hi Everyone, just a quick reminder to everyone that there’s only one week left to enter the Wandering Waistline Explained $100 Amazon eGift card Giveaway. Please get your entries in so you won’t be disappointed. The Wandering Waistline Explained

Why do we use the baby swaddle?

baby swaddle

So why do we use the baby swaddle? Swaddling is the the age-old practice of wrapping a newborn up tight and cozy in a blanket, in order to restrict the movement of limbs. It helps to keep the baby on it’s back and makes for a sounder sleep with less upsets and tears. The practice dates back millennia and has been practiced in varying degrees throughout history. Statues and engravings from Cyprus and Crete, depicting babes in a swaddled state, date back as far as 4500 years. In the Christian Bible, Mary is said to have wrapped her newborn baby Jesus in swaddling clothes, before placing him in the manger. The original swaddling garb was a linen cloth which was bound tight with bandage-like strips. Common practice was to wash and oil the baby down after birth and immediately bind … Continue reading

A Brief History Of Fabric

history of fabric

Well, there’s just so much to say about the history of fabric…It’s almost as basic a human need as food or shelter, truly. Where would we be without our clothing, our blankets, our sofas, our mattresses, our curtains? The list goes on and on. Indeed, many of us might not have been drawn to the art of sewing and the love of fashion were it not for the wealth of rich and intricate fabrics, the variety of textures and colors available for us to experiment with and express ourselves through. And that doesn’t just go for sewists and fashionistas, the number of industries which benefit from the myriad fabric types made available by development is staggering. Status Symbol: Throughout the ages, clothing has been a reflection of both the resources available to a civilisation and the level of technology in … Continue reading

The bralette, perfect undergarment for summer

bralette

It is warm –so warm that the heat sometimes almost knocks the wind out me.  I am blaming my bra for it.  I want to burn my bra! It is the right fit, but it is so hot here and I feel I should be walking around in a swimsuit.  When I walked back home from the train, it feels like I spread butter under my armpits, (too much info I know..). Seriously, it is warm and humid and I was walking under a dreadful sun on a shopping street called Orchard Road back from you guessed it, buying fabric.  I decided to go back and buy some stretchable lace to make myself a bralette.  I am not looking for extra support, just a bit of support and some modesty. I have made the pattern for the following chest measurements … Continue reading

The History of The Crinoline Petticoat

Crinoline Petticoat

Think Mary Antoinette, Queen Elizabeth or the recently revived 1950’s Rockabilly movement, think Swan Lake and the fairy tale wedding gown.  What do they all have in common? You’ve got it, serious petticoat action, brought to you by none other than the trusty, centuries old crinoline… Let’s take a closer look at this feminine phenomenon and you’ll see that the crinoline petticoat has been the backbone of so many fashion movements throughout the ages. Crinoline Petticoat Versions: A crinoline is in essence a petticoat, structured with wire, wood or other sturdy materials (in a cage formation or a hoop skirt) or made out of a stiff fabric of horsehair (“crin”) and cotton or linen, which would be gathered, layer upon layer, to make great big voluminous underskirts. The horsehair version was the original one, but was later replaced (in the 1850’s) by … Continue reading

Safety Tips for Sewing Machines

sewing machine safety

In terms of safety, sewing is certainly a lot safer than skydiving, bull fighting or even just driving a car.  That being said, sewing does still present some genuine dangers so sewing machine safety is critical.  Today’s sewing machines are run by electricity and have dangerous moving parts like sharp needles; this means there are bound to be some safety concerns.  Here are some helpful safety tips to follow in order to stay safe whilst enjoying the hobby we all love so much. Needles are sharp.  Keep fingers away: Getting your fingers sewn isn’t a fun experience. One way of avoiding this risk is to buy finger guards from the maker of your machine. Such guards will keep your fingers protected from the needle but frankly, most people chose not to wear them.  However, since more the 60% of sewing-related injuries which … Continue reading

Fabulous Fabrics Fit For the Summer Season

fabrics for summer

Hello Fabrics for Summer! It is the time of year once again when sewists like us have pull out our fabrics for summer and think about sewing projects that are not only fashionable, but also functional.  Indeed, the summer season means sun, sand and sea, and after the long autumn and winter months, it is also (finally!) a time to sew and wear colorful clothes that are comfortable. It’s the season for sewing relaxed- garments that we can wear to picnics, barbecues and a host of other fun outdoor activities. On the other hand, we now only have about half the range of fabrics available to us because wool, polyester, jersey, knit and the like are certainly not the kind of fabrics that we can wear under the summer heat. So what are the fabrics that are best for the … Continue reading

The Ultimate Beach Blanket

Ultimate Beach Blanket

When I was pregnant with my first child, my husband and I were living in Sydney, Australia.  The beach was never far –take your pick north or south you are bound to find one of the finest quality water lifestyles known to man.  Pristine, unpolluted water that can go on for miles along the coast.  So it comes as no surprise that the weekend activity for many Australians is generally beach-related. I was due around February 14th and I started to feel uncomfortable with a huge belly around New Years Eve.  It’s usually very hot at that time of year, and the only respite is to go to the beach.  However, the water current in summer changes and cold water from the south pole makes its way up the shore, dropping the temperature of the water to an average of 66 degrees.  So … Continue reading

For Fans of Bernina Sewing Machines

bernina sewing machines

Are you a fan of Bernina sewing machines?  I know I certainly am.  Along with a very small number of other storied brands, Bernina seems to represent the pinnacle in sewing machine quality.  I know many sewists who can talk about their beloved Bernina sewing machines that have been handed down from generation to generation and still seem to work as well today as the day they were new. Bernina Factory Tour I learned only recently that I was going to have the opportunity to travel to Switzerland in the coming weeks.  So, as any fan of Bernina sewing machines would do, I immediately researched the opportunity to organize a visit to the famous Bernina factory at Steckborn on the shores of Lake Constance about an hour north of Zurich.  I was, of course devastated to learn that the factory was … Continue reading

8 Tips for Pre-Washing Fabric

pre-washing fabrics

I believe that the success of a sewing project lies not just in purchasing the right fabric and accessories.  The way the fabric is cared for before the start of the project also has a profound influence on the result of the sewing project.  This includes pre-washing fabric and usually ironing the fabric before beginning the project. Why should the fabric be prewashed? There are various reasons why fabrics should be pre-washed Some fabrics tend to shrink once they are washed, so if you stitch the fabric first and then wash it, the final product may be two sizes smaller than what you had planned. If you combine a quality fabric with a less expensive fabric, the fabrics tend to shrink at different levels, creating an uneven finish to the final product. Some fabric fades or bleeds once washed and so, … Continue reading