How to add extra pockets to any tote bag

add extra pockets

This week I want to show you how to add extra pockets to any tote bag.  I’ll demonstrate this with the extra pockets I added at the bottom of the small canvas tote bag that was recently published on our site.  Please also check out the full video tutorial showing all the steps in making this wonderful accessory. I love totes, especially small ones.  They are easy to make and to carry because they limit the number of things you can put inside.  That makes it easier on your back and perfect for walking around. With a small tote, all the essentials are right at your fingertips for you and everyone else as well, unfortunately!  But, where do you put your money?  This is one of those sewing hacks when you are not entirely satisfied with the number of pockets that your … Continue reading

How to make a bell sleeve top, a pattern transformation made easy

bell sleeve top

The focus of this tutorial is to teach you how to transform an existing pattern to adapt it to the bell sleeve top design.  It’s time to use the patterns you already have and learn how to alter them to come up with different outfits. This tutorial works best if you’re modifying the sleeves on the popular High-Low T-Shirt free pattern that we recently released.  However, if you’re more practiced in pattern alteration, you can do this with almost any top pattern.  You can download the pattern for the High-Low T-Shirt here if you’ve not done so already. I have chosen the bell sleeve style because it is very easy to make and it’s going to be trendy this spring. We’re going to look at two options of the bell sleeve design today.  The first is the classic, long bell … Continue reading

The High-Low T-Shirt: How to hide your panty line..

high-low t-shirt

The High-Low T-shirt is the perfect item to hide your panty line.  Let’s face it, girls, sometimes depending on the mood and “time of the month,” we feel like wearing an underwear that leaves us with the dreaded panty line.  We’re not always in the mood for a tiny g-string, a sports undergarment, or a sexy lacy number.  There’s nothing good about a panty line, but sometimes you just don’t care. I’ve recently taken up Pilates and I’m determined to tone my Gluteus maximus aka my butt.   Not for the reasons you might think, but simply because this muscle helps us keep a straight posture.  In other words, no more back pain.  If that isn’t reason enough, this is simply a great high-low t-shirt that is easily made and transformed into a great top. With this top, the back is … Continue reading

Sewing the Bralette: Video Tutorial Released

sewing bralette video

It’s taken us a little while to release this video tutorial of sewing the bralette. We were trying a different format for our videos and we hope you like it. If you do, it would be great if you could leave a comment below or on the video. We really appreciate your support. In this video, we take you through all the steps involved in sewing this fun project. We look at the materials required, how to cut the pattern, sewing the lace and attaching the straps. This is a great first project for anyone who wants to start sewing lingerie. The garment itself is incredibly functional, particularly for spring and summer so now would be a great time to start getting your materials together if you want to be ready for those warmer months that are on the way. … Continue reading

Detachable collar: the easy way to bling your outfit. Part 1

detachable collar

A detachable collar is perhaps the easiest way to “bling” an outfit and make it more elegant without having to go and spend a whole bunch of money on jewelry.   A removable collar is also a great alternative to the current trend of chokers that are in every jewelry store these days –at least in my corner of the world. Here is a super easy way to make one that will take you only a short time, few supplies and little money to make. When making this collar, you should take into consideration the venerable Fibonacci sequence which is a pillar of design and even architecture.  This sequence of numbers is found all around nature and using it in your designs will make them really stand out.  We are more in tune with nature than you think and our brain recognizes … Continue reading

New Video Tutorial – Sewing the Small Backpack

There was quite a lot to show in this full video tutorial of Sewing the Small Backpack.  It took a while to edit it down, but this video will show you each and every aspect of sewing this project. Don’t be afraid to skip ahead or pause and come back to sections to see exactly how the Small Backpack is sewn. Here’s a recap of the whole sew-along. Small Backpack Pattern Download: Part 1: Small Backpack Pattern, for Small Budgets Part 2: Tutorial on sewing backpack straps, Small Backpack Part 3: How to sew the outside applied pocket & final assembly, Small Backpack

Small Backpack Pattern, for Small Budgets: Part 1

small backpack pattern

If you have been watching the size and style of bags lately, you’ve probably noticed all those impossibly cute little backpacks everyone is carrying.  Along those lines, I’ve made this small backpack pattern to be small (and cute) but still big enough to be practical. You can also use this small backpack as a cross-over or cross body bag as well.  I made that way because I like to have options and truth-be-told, I am a bit paranoid with a backpack.  I guess having grown up in Panama where, as the saying goes, “pickpockets can remove your socks without even taking off your shoes” I have had my share of missing money and wallets.  This is why I’ve added a pocket in the back with a zipper.  There’s an internal pocket, also with a zipper, and even the outside pocket … Continue reading

The Hoodie Pattern and Tutorial

hoodie pattern

This is the easiest hoodie pattern and tutorial I could come up with.  I have tried my best to simplify the method, but still, I believe it is for the intermediate to the advanced seamstress.  As promised, we are going to slowly work our way into comfortable workout clothing.  This is the first pattern on our “Sew Fit” storyboard. Hoodies are super popular these days.  They are very functional and can be worn not only as work-out wear but also on any trip to the store or just around the house. This hoodie is a zippered and slightly fitted but is not supposed to be tight, so please pay attention to the finished garment measurements.  It is meant to be worn with a tank top and sweatpants which we will be making later. By far, the best fabric that you can use … Continue reading

Faux fur scarf to complement your winter outfit

fur scarf

I have been traveling recently, so this is a short and sweet tutorial on how to make a cool and practical faux fur scarf to fight off the winter cold.  This scarf will not only keep you warm this winter, but it will also be a stylish and trendy addition to your wardrobe all the way through to spring. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you would have noticed the statement of the season is a furry “something” hanging from your body or handbag.  I am a practical person, but I do like trends.  They can be fun to follow and if you can make them yourself, you’ll save a bundle and only pay a fraction of the price of buying something trendy in a store. Fur is everywhere this season.  It shows a very feminine touch without being … Continue reading

Easy Gloves Pattern for Your Winter Comfort

easy gloves pattern

Making a pair of fleece winter gloves is not just a matter of tracing your hand on a piece of paper or drawing straight onto the fabric.  Believe me, I have actually tried this before and it makes for very uncomfortable gloves… To save you this exercise in trial and error, here’s an easy gloves pattern and tutorial for a pair of fleece gloves that can be made as a last-minute present or for yourself. The bit you must be careful with is cutting the fabric the right way.  I suggest that you fold the fabric in half so you have the right sides for each hand.  (I was watching a movie while making the first pair of these gloves and it wasn’t until I was about to start sewing that I realized my mistakes.  Fleece does indeed have a right and … Continue reading

Transformable easy cardigan: dressing in layers

easy cardigan

Dressing in layers with an easy cardigan was what was on people’s mind the day I took the survey on our Facebook chat group.  With almost 22,000 members, it’s sometimes hard to find a consensus, but this time, I happened to agree with what the group seemed to be saying. There are a lot of things to like about cardigans.  It can be a very functional garment and suitable for many situations.  It’s also very nice to wear when just hanging around the house.  Wearing a cardigan to protect the lining of a coat is one of the best money saving tips on dry cleaning bills.  Based on the feedback, I decided to design a pattern for a short, easy but transformable cardigan.  I decided to call it Kalinda. I haven’t lived in a cold places for very longtime, but I … Continue reading