It’s a Snap! Where and how to use KAMsnaps

Introduction to KAM Snaps. Where and how to use them, how to set them, examples of projects where they can be used.

Hi from Laura over at CraftyHour!  I’m excited to be here today to talk to you about how to use KAMsnaps! I’ve been using KAMsnaps for several years and I’d like to share some thoughts on installing them and where they are useful. I originally bought my snap press over 6 years ago when I was sewing baby garments to sell. I had a lot of snaps to set and some trouble setting the basic metal snaps with pliers, especially through the 2-3 layers of fleece I was using in my little BabyBean Ponchos. My KAMsnaps press is able to set snaps through several layers of thick fabric with ease! I’ve even seen ways to convert the snap press to a foot kick press to make it even easier. The table top snap press is not the cheapest tool, but if you are going to set a lot of snaps it’s definitely worth … Continue reading

40 Techniques every sewer should know-do you ?

Essential sewing skills for sewers of all levels. Review of the 40 techniques class.

I was fortunate, learning to sew at school  - it was one of the few lessons I took to but that’s a rather long time ago now. The course “40 Techniques every sewer should know” is great!! Divided into seven sections covering: Pressing, Stitching, Curves and Corners, Interfacing Tips, Beautiful Bindings, Getting Closure Each section covers a variety of tips. The division of the class into sections means you can easily refer back to subjects to refresh your memory. There is something for everyone in this course. Pressing Matters – This class has changed my relationship to my iron. Gail has converted me!!! A good press with the right tools improves the quality of the finished garment, within three minutes of the class starting I had learnt the value of pressing rolls. Stitch Perfect - Don’t you just hate wobbly top stitching?! Learn to use any foot with a guide (the guide is a … Continue reading

Tool tips – budget or quality? The Bodkin

Can you make sewing more fun, quicker or easier by using a quality tool compared to the budget version. Today - the bodkin.

I hope the series about spending in the sewing room has been interesting and useful these past few weeks. We’ve looked at whether spending more money on sewing tools, gadgets and gizmos can give you better sewing results, save you time or just make sewing more fun. Covered so far: Your sewing machine - can you notice the difference? Seam rippers - ooh shiny ! Sewing scissors - like a hot knife through butter Sewing storage solutions - some budget ideas for you Wonder Clips - should you buy the cheap ones? Applique pressing sheet - saves time Sewing pins – how many different types do you need? With the holiday season coming up, I felt like splashing out a little to treat myself on a few new sewing supplies and trade in my budget versions for something a little better. Today, the Bodkin What’s a … Continue reading

How To Make A Baby Quilt


Hi everyone!  It’s Jann from Newton Custom Interiors again.  I love sewing for my  grandchildren, and I especially love sewing something for them when they’re newborns.  Today, I’m going to share with you how to make a baby quilt.  This is what I made for my newest grandson when he was born, and I love how it turned out. How To Make A Baby Quilt The finished size of the baby quilt is 33″ wide x 38″ long Materials needed: 1/2 – 3/4 yards of 4 coordinating fabrics 1 1/4 yards of fabric or lining for the back side 1 1/4 yards of Warm & Natural Disappearing ink marking pen Thread to match binding fabric Thread to match quilt fabrics Instructions: Pre-wash all of the fabrics and the Warm & Natural (following package instructions).  Cut out your back piece of … Continue reading

How I found more time in the sewing room

If you like to sew bags or use fusible interfacing, you NEED to see this about how you can do it so much quicker!

Sewing is a great hobby.  You can pick up a quick project and sew for 10-15 minutes then come back to it tomorrow, next week, even next year.  Or you can sit and sew full-on for the full weekend if you like. Your sewing machine won’t complain it’s tired. Actually, finding the time to sew is the hardest part of sewing I think.  How many of us truly have the time we want to dedicate to our favorite hobby?  How many of us have rushed a project because we don’t have all the time we need, and then made a mistake and had to spend 15 minutes with the seam ripper?  Hands up – me too.  Many times. How I saved time in the sewing room We’ve been following along with a series about sewing tools, looking at whether spending … Continue reading

Tool tips – budget or quality? Wonder Clips

Looking at sewing supplies. Does spending more on our tools get us better sewing results? Today - Wonder Clips!

Next in our series of articles on looking at tools and equipment in the sewing room and asking if buying a better/more expensive/high quality tool will make sewing faster, easier or just more fun.  Can you sew well on a budget or will spending more money make you a better sewer? In earlier articles we looked at: Sewing machine Seam ripper Sewing scissors Today I want to look at one of the miracles in the sewing room and a tool I use all the time – the Wonder Clip.  Should you buy branded or budget? Wonder clips OK, these are a little sewing miracle that make so many jobs just that little bit easier.  I use these all the time, especially in bag making with the thick layers, but also for quilting and binding too.  Any time I don’t want … Continue reading

Pressing tools: how to use my favorite ones

Pressing tools, My favorites and How to use

Let’s start with a fact: I never (ever) iron anything: I just hang clothes on the clothesline “in the right way” (and please tell me I am not the only one)! Conversely, I’m a strong supporter of pressing seams while sewing: one of the worst things to see, when lurking someone else’s project on the web (just because in my real life I don’t currently meet anyone else who sews…) are badly-pressed (or even not-pressed-at-all) seams… aaaAAARRRGGHH! Ugly!  They can ruin a whole garment, in my humble opinion.  As I’ve learned along the way, pressing tools are what makes your life easier: you won’t go anywhere, with just an iron… lots of frustrations (and burned fingers) are waiting you! I have collected a few (and others are coming soon in my sewing room) and today I’m showing you my favorite … Continue reading

How to make clear vinyl zipper bags

How to make clear vinyl zipper bags. I use mine to keep fabric, thread, pattern and zipper together for planned projects, but these are good for lots of things. Think first aid kit!

Did you see the earlier article about the clear project and storage bags I made with the snap tops?  These have been very handy for sorting and storing my small sewing supplies.  I can quickly see what is in all of the bags without having to open them. Hubby even had me make him a couple for his work bag, so that he can keep stuff organised in this great big backpack he lugs around at work.  It really helps him that they are vinyl because he works as a scuba diving instructor and often puts damp stuff into his bag and the vinyl pouches keeps the damp off whatever else he is carrying, paperwork, money, phone etc. But I needed more bags, bigger bags and ones with a totally closed top so I gave it a try with a zipper … Continue reading

Tool tips – budget or quality? Sewing scissors

Should you buy a really good pair of sewing scissors or will a budget pair perform just as well?

We’ve been looking at sewing tools recently and asking if you can get better sewing results, save time in the sewing room or just have more fun if you spend more money.  Covered so far: Sewing machines Seam rippers Today I’m looking at another sewing essential and something you use in every single sewing and fabric project – our sewing scissors or shears. Is this an area where you get what you pay for?  Can a budget set of sewing scissors do just fine for most of us? Sewing Scissors I bought my first pair of sewing scissors at my local sewing shop.  Knowing how important this is for the sewing room, I bought their most expensive pair at about $35, probably worth less than $10 if I bought them in the US!  They aren’t any particular brand, just came in … Continue reading

How to sharpen scissors and other sewing tools

How you can sharpen your own sewing scissors and other sewing supplies such as your rotary cutter and pins

Hi Vicky here.  Sharpening scissors is a subject dear to my own heart. I am not the tidiest of people so over the years I have gained a few pairs of sewing scissors (whilst the original pair were lost somewhere in the sewing room!). Everyone knows that sewing scissors should only be used for fabric but I cannot guarantee my children have not borrowed them for paper…. The end result is three pairs of dull scissors, perfect for researching how to sharpen your sewing scissors. I tried three different methods of sharpening your sewing scissors yourself at home.  How would each of these methods work out? How to sharpen scissors 1. Cutting through foil: Fold several layers of foil. I folded the foil so I had six layers. Cut smoothly through the foil ensuring all the blade touches the foil with each cut. Repeat … Continue reading

Bargello Style Halloween Table Runner

Bargello style quilted Halloween Table Runner. Great idea to try out bargello patterns.

Just in case you missed this, last year I took part in a Halloween sewing blog tour over at GYCT and made this Bargello style reversible table runner.  Well, that was a year ago and no doubt there’s a lot of new readers here now so here it is in full again. You know how one thing on Pinterest leads to another sometimes.  Well I stumbled across this board on Bargello Quilts and was fascinated.  One link lead to another and before you know it husband was home and no dinner was ready.  Although I’m by no means a quilter, I wanted to just give this a very basic try so when my Halloween Jelly Roll arrived, I knew what it was destined to become. Making the Bargello Halloween Table Runner You will need: Moda Eerie Jelly Roll or 2.5 inch … Continue reading