How to make fabric covered buttons

How to make your own perfectly co-ordinated fabric covered buttons. Never search in vain for the perfect button again.

Do you ever have one of those Ah Ha moments?  After sewing around 2 1/2 years now, and forever lamenting at my local sewing shop about the terrible lack of nice colorful buttons, I was standing near the till waiting for pay when I spotted just what I needed! Ta dah – make your own fabric covered buttons.  At last!  I was working on a couple of wallets that needed a matching button and my eureka moment hit.  I felt such a dunce for not thinking of it before.  But would they be any good?  Time to give it a try. How to make  fabric covered buttons   Here is the pack I bought.  There are 4 buttons in the pack 7/8th of an inch across, plus ‘tools’.  You can get these in all sorts of sizes of button and pack sizes, … Continue reading

How to thread the Brother 1034d serger

I get it at last! This step by step shows it all nice and slow and easy. How to thread the popular Brother 1034d serger.

I know several of you also got the Brother 1034D serger for Christmas, or maybe another model.  No doubt you’ve all made more headway with it than I have, and are already threading experts. Just in case there is anyone still not quite sure or confident, here is my step by step video on how to thread the Brother 1034D serger. If you’ve also lost the manual or bought a used serger without the manual, this might also be useful.  Although I’m not very experienced in serging, I have watched the Beginner Serging Class from Amy on Craftsy and the principles of threading seem pretty much the same regardless of model.  Well, unless you have one of these super-duper self-threading sergers like this awesome serger package from Juki.  Now wouldn’t that be nice! It has some close up shots and … Continue reading

Spool Love Sewing Mug Rug Pattern

OOh, so cute. Need this sewing mug rug next to my machine for my coffee.

I’m back with a tutorial to make this cute little Spool Love mug rug!  It’s something a little different you might not have tried before – paper piecing.  This is the first time this technique has been featured on the So Sew Easy site; it is used to piece odd shapes together with precision. You can also use the paper-piecing pattern and tutorial to make multiple spools in a mini wall quilt or a table runner too! I’d love to see whatever you come up with.  Have your own sewing blog?  Please link back if you adapt it to create your own project. Ok, so – tutorial! To start with you will need to download and print the paper-piecing pattern. Be sure to select no scaling or print at actual size. To sew your sewing mug rug pattern Next you will need some scraps, as follows: background (gray), 1 about 4″ … Continue reading

Different types of interfacing and when to use them

Very useful to see all the different types of interfacing on video so I could really see how they each affected the fabric. I have a better understanding of what does what now.

Whether you sew bags or clothes, from time to time, you’ll need to use an interfacing on your projects and it can often be difficult to choose which one works best with which project. Many sewing patterns usually will make a suggestion, but not list an essential interfacing product, because availability varies so widely that what is available in one area or country, can not be found in another area, making a person in that area reluctant to buy a pattern when the stipulated interfacing can’t be used. So let’s take a look at a few examples today and you can see in the video how they change the structure of the fabric in each case. Comparison of different types of interfacing     Fusible versus Sew in   Fusible interfacing has a fabric ‘glue’ on one side.  You can usually … Continue reading

Pamper your sewing machine: a cleaning tutorial

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Ciao! MammaNene from Serger Pepper here, coming back after the article that helped you choose your first serger and the tutorial for making your own cute padded laptop bag. Today I’m talking to you about two of my favorite topics (but only if sewing-related!): cleaning and maintenance! How to clean your sewing machine As you may know, I try to be a frugal person, refashioning whenever I can, repurposing almost everything (my trash can is almost always empty!). To make thing last, the key is only one: regular maintenance! And this applies to almost everything, starting from your sewing machine and your serger, but also to cutting tools, measuring tools and, generally speaking, your sewing room. I’ll explain you here how I usually clean my sewing machine, since I already talked about serger cleaning routine on OneThimble issue 5 (and you can now read it on SergerPepper). Most of the things I … Continue reading

Free crossover top pattern – with a difference!

Great beginner video tutorial on pattern hacking. How to take a basic t-shirt pattern and create this top, knowing it will fit you.

As you know, every month I like to offer up a new free sewing pattern. But so many people have been asking me recently about how I make the patterns, how they can make their own, and how they can adjust patterns to fit them better or slightly change the style, that I thought a change was in order for this month. So the free pattern for February is one you already have, and might already have downloaded and sewn.  What?  Stay with me, because we are going to do something very interesting this month that will change one pattern into something completely different. Why learn more about sewing patterns? Understanding how a pattern works, how it is created and can be manipulated is a really important skill for sewing your own clothes. It helps you take a simple pattern … Continue reading

How to sew steeply slanted or bias seams

How to sew bias and slanted seams so that your edges line up properly. I had no idea about this until I saw it laid out so clearly.

This is something you may not come across very often, but it’s good to know for the first time that you are called up on to sew a slanted seam. It might be when you are piecing strips for making bias tape or just in a pattern that has diagonal seam lines as part of the design. Let’s take a look at what I mean and the right and wrong way to sew these sort of seams. How to sew a slanted or bias seam Let’s start with a square of fabric – any size.  Then we’ll cut it roughly in half, but not parallel to the edges or directly across the diagonal but on a steep slant from one side to the other. Ok, so far so good.  We end up with two strange looking pieces with a slanted … Continue reading

3 methods for boxing corners on bags

3 different way how to box the corners on a bag. One of these I hadn't seen before.

Take a look at some of the bags you own.  If you are a typical woman, you probably own more than 3, maybe even more than 10.  Bags can be made for all types of purposes, styles and occasions, but generally they are all designed to do the same thing – carry things.  To fulfill their basic function, they will usually have common features such as straps or handles, zips or closures, and pockets. They can be flat like a simple tote bag designed to carry a few light items and perhaps roll or fold up flat, or can be designed where their size and shape fit a certain function, such as the Easy Cosmetics Bag you see here. One common feature that most bags will have is some kind of volume.  Whether this is created with pleats, darts or … Continue reading

How to sew a fly front zipper

How to sew a fly front zipper. I;d always been intimidated but actually this looks easy!

I made some shorts last year, quite some time ago now, from a commercial pattern. A Simplicity I think it was. Not to speak ill of the large pattern companies, but well, they clearly assumed I knew how to sew a fly front zipper and that therefore they barely needed to bother showing it in the instructions. I battled with that project and used my seam ripper more times than I care to remember. Their tiny illustrations were cryptic and the sewing pattern instructions far too brief. “Install fly front zipper to center front of shorts.” I got there in the end, but it certainly put me off trying it again for a good long time. Fast forward to today and I’m designing a skirt. I know exactly the sort of skirt I want to make. I had one just … Continue reading

How to shop for knit fabrics online

Stretch fabric swatch kit - at last I can see and feel what all these knit fabrics are like so I know which one to choose for my project. Great idea.

Do you ever shop for fabrics online?  What about shopping for knit and stretch fabrics?  Are you confident in where and how to shop for knit fabrics online, and how to make sure you are using the right kind of fabric for your project? I came to sewing only recently so naturally when I wanted to sew clothes,  I wanted to emulate the types of clothes already in my wardrobe, and these days most of them are stretch in some way or another.  I think some of that has to do with the expanding nature of my body in the last couple of years – I’ve found a stretch garment will fit me over more size changes than a regular woven garment. Many of the sewing patterns I’ve developed have been for stretch fabrics, but I still sometimes struggle to … Continue reading

Must have features for your first serger

Must have features for your first serger - and those you can do without. Great tips if you are thinking of getting one.

Hi there! I’m Irene and I usually blog at Serger Pepper; today I’m here sharing with you all I know about one of my favorite topics: sergers! Yes, I’ll do my best helping you choosing your first serger (or overlocker, depending on where you come from)… aren’t you excited? I am! Let me start saying that the perfect model does not exist! It’s all relative! Read what you should consider before you start evaluating the models/features: What is a serger sewing machine? Maybe you already know what a serger is/does, maybe not: let’s define it! A serger is a fast sewing machine that produces professionally finished seams because it trims away seam allowances and encases raw edges with an overcast stitch…. wow! Can you guess how much it reduces the boring time spent trimming and zig-zagging seam allowances? One step does everything! Do I really … Continue reading

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