Amazing Eco-Friendly Fabric Innovations

Eco Friendly Fabric

As humans become more aware of the harmful impact our daily living activities sometimes have on our environment, we are frequently encouraged to use non-polluting materials.  Different kinds of eco-friendly fabric and textiles are now being developed and those who are ecologically aware are keeping watch of these innovative and sustainable fabrics. Indeed, those who adhere to “green living” tend to stay away from traditional cotton or polyester, the production of which can be deemed environmentally harmful.  Cotton uses a huge amount of water and chemicals to grow and polyester comes from non-renewable petrochemicals.  And as scientists try to find more ways to minimize our carbon footprint, amazing discoveries and innovations in cloth production have also emerged.  These new “green” super textiles may be the fabrics of the future. First, however, let’s have a quick look at what might be considered more … Continue reading

The Lost Art of Hand Sewing

hand sewing

Considered as one of the oldest kinds of textile arts, hand sewing started during the Paleolithic Age, when Stone Age people made clothes out of fur and skin.  We published an article recently tracing the origins of sewing back over 25,000 years to the very beginning.  In another of our recent articles examined the sewing revolution and how sewing has changed since the invention of the sewing machine and the ready-to-wear clothing market to the present day. In this article we look at the time in between, when complex and beautiful garments we constructed by hand often over weeks and months of painstaking effort and what of that art still exists today in the form of the Haute Couture fashion industry. Hand sewing became a popular art and craft for thousands of years largely until the invention of the sewing machine in … Continue reading

30 Sewing Hacks You Should Know By Heart

sewing hacks

Are you a hacker? I am not talking about hacking on the computer here, but about a sewist who can work around with what she has on hand and sew easier and faster. Well, if you are not, it’s time to start hacking and here are a few tips and suggestions to become a certified sewing hacker. In the past, we’ve done whole series of Tool Tips focusing on finding and using the best sewing tools.  Here’s just a short list: Tool tips– budget or quality? The brass seam ripper Tool tips – budget or quality? Sewing scissors Tool tips – budget or quality? Wonder Clips Tool tips– Sewing storage ideas Tool tips – budget or quality? The Bodkin But these articles have focused on helping you find the best traditional sewing tools and supplies to get the job done.  Now, we’re … Continue reading

Sew Your Blues Away! – How Sewing Fights Depression

Sewing Fight Depression

The World Health Organization estimates that there are 350 million people worldwide who suffer from depression. It is also found out that women are more likely to be diagnosed with depression compared to men. The thing is –anyone can get depression and that includes you and me. Indeed, people around the globe can get depressed regardless of their socioeconomic standing or age. This is not exactly a very encouraging piece of news but it is also a fact that we can combat depression and one of the ways in doing so is to take up a craft like sewing.  You can literally Sew Your Blues Away! Many studies indicate that sewing is good for both our mental and physical wellbeing.  Just to reiterate, aside from the obvious benefits of sewing like having an up to date and well-fitting wardrobe or getting … Continue reading

Tips For Sewing Denim

sewing denim

Denim is a very popular fabric these days and is synonymous with jeans. Today term “jeans” usually refers to a specific style of pants, called Blue Jeans.  These“rivet-reinforced” denim pants were invented by Jacob W. Davis, along with Levi Strauss & Co., in 1871.  We did a post a few months about highlighting this story of Levi Strauss, who perhaps more than any other individual or institution has done more to expand the role of denim in our society. Origins of Denim However, given this important American contribution to the success of denim, what most people don’t know today is that denim was actually invented in France.  In fact, the word “denim” comes from the French “de” which means from and “Nîmes” which is a wonderful town in the south of France where denim was invented during the Middle Ages.  So denim literally … Continue reading

Tips for Testing Fabric Content

testing fabric content

Here’s a quick video on testing fabric content.  Before we get started, please be careful if trying this at home.  In the video, I’ve used relatively large samples so you can easily see what’s happening.  I’m also in a controlled environment and using fabrics I’m confident have not been soaked in anything or that may be overly flammable.  If you’re doing this yourself, use small samples and be very careful.  Adult supervision is essential. Many people are unable to easily detect the presence of synthetic materials like polyester in fabrics.  Milling and weaving processes have been so refined and material properties so improved that it is often next to impossible to tell the difference between all-natural fabrics and synthetics –until it’s too late sometimes and you either already bought the fabric or have made something you really wanted to be natural … Continue reading

How to Start Your Sewing Side Business + Free Giveaway!

sewing side business

You might be wondering how you can turn your sewing into a side business and start earning money from the sewing skills you’ve learned?  You may have a knack for repairing the kids’ clothes, creating costumes, making alterations and adjustments to clothes that don’t fit quite right. You might be really creative and sew your own clothing or design new ways to sew home decor together. If you’re skilled at sewing and you have a solid sewing machine, you can certainly turn your sewing into a side business and earn some extra cash! Here are 5 key things to think about to turn your sewing into a side business. Figure out what your customer wants to buy Use your skills to create products that you love, but also products that people will want to buy.  You may have a certain skill set … Continue reading

10 Tips for Buying a Sewing Machine

buying sewing machine

For me, buying a sewing machine, is a big decision.   I know it is the same for most of us.  If I buy well, hopefully the new machine will be lifelong investment and even something I can give to my daughter eventually.  However, I also know that if I choose badly, the new machine may be nothing but trouble and something soon discarded.  And who can afford to waste many that way these days?   What-is-more, once I get accustomed to using a machine, it’s a real disappointment when things go wrong and this can set me back days or even weeks on my sewing projects.  Hence we should be extra careful when buying a new one.   Here are few things you need to consider before buying a sewing machine. 1. Choose your features: The type of machine you buy should depend … Continue reading

Top 8 tips for Sewing Faster

Tips for Sewing Faster

People sew for all kinds of reasons. Some, like me, consider sewing as a passionate hobby –which I practice as often as I can. Whereas for others, it can be a means of livelihood or sewing to sell. Whatever the reason you pursue this wonderful hobby, there is nothing wrong in being well organised and getting as much done as possible.  After many years of sewing, I’ve developed some tips for sewing faster.  I’m sure many of you have your own which I hope you will share but first let me share mine with you. Get organised: This might sound silly, but I have figured out that this can create magic. Less the clutter, the faster I am able to finish the work. I make sure that all the essentials like thread, needle and buttons are neatly arranged in small pouches. … Continue reading

Sewing with Stretchy Knits

stretchy knits

For many sewists, working with the stretchy knit fabric for the first time can be daunting, but moving forward, many soon learn to love knits because of the elasticity and texture. Knits are also wrinkle resistant and comfortable to wear. The word knit is derived from “knot” and it originates from the Dutch word “knutten”. While knitting is the method that uses two or more needles to loop wool or yarn into a series of interconnected loops to produce knit fabrics or garments. It became popular in 1916 when Coco Chanel used knit fabric in her famous suits. Soon thereafter, knits became the fabric of choice for sportswear. Today, knit fabric is popularly used for sweaters, clingy dresses, cashmere turtlenecks, coats and various other knit wear. So what should we keep in mind when we sew using knit fabric? It is … Continue reading

The Sewing Revolution

Sewing Revolution

Sewing back then When ready-to-wear clothes were not yet popularly available, generations of women learned how to sew for home and hearth.  And they usually started stitching when they were still at their mother’s knees.  Others learned sewing from their home-economics and 4-H club teachers, but unfortunately this practice has been done away with some years ago.  And during the height of the feminist movement in the 70’s, many women stayed away from the sewing machine as an act of protest.  While we certainly don’t support any of the negative stereotypes, you have to ask how a skill that makes you more independent and self-sufficient should be seen as a negative.. photo credit: 1957 Simplicity Fashion Layout, with Singer & TV Star Gisèle MacKenzie, Sew for Spring in Rainbow Colors (2 pages, full color) via photopin (license) Sewing in the 1990’s It … Continue reading