Maintaining Your Sewing Machine

maintaining your sewing machine

By Linda Ann Nickerson In today’s marketplace, the sewing enthusiast may spend hundreds, or even thousands, for a brand-new sewing machine. From a basic appliance to fully-computerized system, this is a capital investment. How can you keep yours humming along in good form? Notions Count Sewing machines can be costly, particularly if you opted for extra stitches, attachments, or embroidery capabilities. You will want to protect your investment by purchasing and using high-quality notions. 1) Thread Be sure to buy quality threads. Cheap thread is no bargain, as it can destroy your machine from within with fraying, knots, and uneven fibers. Those spools in the close-out bins at the fabric store are usually not a good deal at all. 2) Needles Sewing machine needles must be replaced regularly. If your needle accidentally hits a button, snap, zipper, or straight pin, … Continue reading

Sewing trip to Denver

Are you any good at keeping a secret?  We’ve had to keep something very exciting under wraps for a few months now, but soon will be the time for the big reveal.  Keep your eyes peeled for an announcement of the details soon here on the site.  Maybe sign up to the newsletter if you haven’t already done so, so you don’t miss the news. In the meantime, here are a few photos from a recent trip I took to Denver.  I stayed in the rather funky Curtis Hotel right in downtown.  Very retro!  I wish I had one of the Star Trek rooms, but mine was rather more tame, on Floor 9 – the Big Hair floor apparently!  Still a very fun place to stay if you get a chance to go to Denver for some sightseeing. It’s a … Continue reading

Fall Flowers Mug Rug – September Pattern of the Month

fall flowers mug rug

We have come to the end of our Mug Rug of the Month Pattern series. For the last one, I’m sharing these simple, yet pretty fall flowers. Since you are my creative friend, you already know you can swap out the fabrics and turn them into spring flowers. How fun! I want to thank everyone who has followed along on this fun stitching adventure. I also want to thank Mayra and Deby for this wonderful opportunity for allowing me to share these patterns with you. I’ve really enjoyed working with So Sew Easy on this to bring you some fun and easy projects. I’ll be adding all the links to these tutorials on my website in the very near future so you can find them easily. Be sure to sign up for my VIP Club (on my website HERE) so you don’t … Continue reading

Ship in the Sea Mug Rug Tutorial of the Month

I always think of my dad as an old sailor, which is funny because he’s the youngest 76 year old I know. He is the inspiration behind this ship mug rug. Back before I was born he spent many years with the United States Navy. Maybe that’s where I get my love for the water? Mug rugs remain so popular! For the past couple years they are by far my biggest pattern sellers. This is probably for many reasons. They are super easy to make, they can be made using your favorite techniques (hand or machine), they make great gifts, and they can be decorative as well as functional. Most of all, they are so much fun! I hope you will follow us along here on our Mug Rug of the Month Tutorial. What you will need for one ship mug … Continue reading

An Introduction to Sewing Sweater Knits

sewing sweater knits

Ah, sweater knits! These highly textural, stretch fabrics can be cozy, lacy, casual, or sophisticated. With a good sweater knit and a little practice, you can cut and sew a sweater in a day or less, even if you can’t knit or crochet. Yes, they’re enabling. And they’re beautiful. If I sound a little biased, well… full disclosure, I’m a designer of sweater knits and I love what I do! What exactly is a sweater knit? All knits are fabrics that are made by interlooping of threads or yarn; that is, by pulling one loop of yarn through a previously made loop of yarn, row after row and column after column, depending on the type of knit. A sweater knit is made with a heavier yarn and bigger stitches than what you find in a standard t-shirt fabric. You’ll know … Continue reading

Baby Kimono Onesie – Free Sewing Pattern and Tutorial

Free Baby Kimono Onesie Sewing Pattern: Make this cute kimono style onesie for your little one or as a lovely baby shower gift.

If you’ve ever dressed a little baby, you’ll know how much they like to wiggle; making it really difficult to put any clothes on them. Any item of clothing which needs to go over the baby’s head, or has lots of fiddly buttons can be especially cumbersome. That’s why I love baby clothes with a front opening, such as this baby kimono onesie. My baby girl, Umi, has been wearing a kimono as her pyjamas ever since she was born. She’s recently grown out of the kimono I bought for her in Japan, so I decided to make my own baby kimono in a bigger size. The Sewing Pattern This baby kimono onesie sewing pattern comes in two sizes, 3-6 and 6-9 months. Umi is 7 months old and she is wearing the 6-9 months size.  Make sure you print the … Continue reading

May Mug Rug of the Month – Puppies and Kittens!

may mug rug

Everybody loves puppies and kittens, and who wouldn’t? They have big, innocent eyes, ears they have to grow into, and watching them play is such pure joy. Mug rugs remain so popular! For the past couple years they are by far my biggest pattern sellers. This is probably for many reasons. They are super easy to make, they can be made using your favorite techniques (hand or machine), they make great gifts, and they can be decorative as well as functional. Most of all, they are so much fun! I hope you will follow us along here on our Mug Rug of the Month Tutorial. A FUN VARIATION: If you are a cat person, and not a dog person, make two cats, and vice versa for dog lovers. I have one of each, so I am putting one of each … Continue reading

Easy DIY Curtains – Luxury Curtains Made in a Snap

making curtains the easy way

Hi I’m Frankie, and I’m a self confessed ‘bodge it’ sewer, and today I’d like to share my journey to making easy DIY curtains! I love up-cycling clothes, making alterations, and sewing for the home. I like finding quick and easy projects that reward me right away, because when I’m not sewing, I’m doing yoga. With this small time frame in mind I made curtains. What!? You might be thinking, such a big project, and it sounds technical. Don’t be put off, it was really easy, and the finish, (I think), is pro! So, you must be wondering why I decided to make curtains? Well, I just moved to the country in France and bought a very old house with MASSIVE windows, which are too beautiful to replace, but too drafty to live with! Standard curtains were not long or wide … Continue reading

April Mug Rug – Blue Skies and Sunshine

Mug rugs remain so popular! For the past couple years they are by far my biggest pattern sellers. This is probably for many reasons. They are super easy to make, they can be made using your favorite techniques (hand or machine), they make great gifts, and they can be decorative as well as functional. Most of all, they are so much fun! I hope you will follow us along here on our Mug Rug of the Month Tutorial. Spring is finally here so lets celebrate with some fun birds for April. What you will need for one mug rug: Small scraps of fabric for appliqués 1/8 yard of light weight paper backed fusible webbing 6 1/2 x 10 inch piece of fabric for background 6 1/2 x 10 inch piece of fusible fleece 7 1/2 x 11 inch piece of … Continue reading

Free Coaster Tutorials & Patterns for All Occasions

coster tutorials free paterns

Hi! Stephanie from Swoodson Says, sharing a round-up of free coaster patterns and tutorials. Coasters are fun to sew for a bunch of reasons – they are great for busting scraps, everyone can use them, they are quick to sew, and there is lots of room for personalization and embellishment. It looks much more polished to have your guests place their drinks on a fun coaster instead of a stack of magazines! A set of four makes a nice gift by itself, but you can also easily  pair them with placemats, a bottle of wine, or a fun mug. One of my favorite things about fabric coasters is that you can stick them in the wash – no need to worry about stains. In my house, we have a coaster embroidered with each person’s initial – by placing our glasses … Continue reading

Fussy Cuts for the Look You Want

fussy cuts

What are “fussy cuts” anyway? Hi Everyone, first of all, for those of you not familiar with the term “fussy cut” I thought it would be helpful to define it.   A fussy cut is a term used in sewing and often in quilting, where a piece of fabric is cut in a way to place a specific design or area of print on a specific location or feature of the end product, rather than simply cutting the fabric in random pieces with no regard to the design. When I was showing my daughter some fabric recently that I was planning on making a wristlet from, she mentioned that one of my options had a design that was too big and would be best used for something large, like a tote bag. For the most part, she was right. However, if … Continue reading