Sustainable Sewing: How your hobby saves the planet

sustainable sewing

What’s Sustainable Sewing? The whole idea behind “sustainability” in general and sustainable sewing in specific is that of leaving a minimal impact on the planet.  This idea incorporates issues like carbon footprint, waste creation and disposal, and labor practices.  Nowadays, producers and designers are always under public scrutiny and those who operate without eco-integrity face an onslaught of negative press, particularly in social media, given the connectivity made possible by the internet. When it comes to fashion and sewing, among other things, sustainability means quality and durability as well as the incorporation of more timeless designs that can be worn for years rather than replaced or thrown away as soon as the style or fad changes.  A garment represents sustainable sewing when it is well-constructed (ie. made-to-last) out of eco-friendly natural fibre fabrics that will last longer than your standard disposable/cheap … Continue reading

A Visit to the World’s Finest Fabric Shop

finest fabric shop

I know, I know..this is a big assertion, “the world’s finest fabric shop..”  After all, the world’s a big place and there are a lot of good fabric shops, but please read on and you’ll understand.  As I’ve written about many times before, I’ve been sewing all my life.  I’ve also been fortunate enough to have lived in quite a few different countries and travelled a lot.  So as you can imagine, I’ve seen a lot of fabric shops in my day.  All that being said, nothing could have prepared me for what I discovered in Florence, Italy a few weeks ago when we were on holiday there. I was walking down one of the beautiful side streets just next to the famous Duomo and I saw this window display with some of the most lovely fabrics I’d ever seen. I found myself … Continue reading

Easy Princess Dress Pattern: Have you seen Frozen?

fabric stencils

I am clueless about it because I don’t have a little girl in my house anymore, so I don’t really know much about the recent movie “Frozen” except that it was very popular.  Parents of a child under 9 will be more familiar with the lyrics and the story line.  A main character in the movie was the princess and as you would expect, the Disney artists made her gown magnificent and I’ve had a lot of requests about whether we could design a project to make something similar. While I didn’t see the movie, I am certainly still familiar with having “princess” in the house and I know how much little girls love the idea of princess costumes.  My daughter, who is now fifteen, used to parade herself around day and night in a tutu.  On “bad” or extreme princess … Continue reading

Great Gifts to Sew Roundup: Something For Everyone

great-accessories-gifts-to-sew-roundup

There’s no better feeling than making a friend or family member’s day.  It’s wonderful to see them smile and give you a great big hug of thanks. It’s such a delight being able to use my sewing craft to make gifts for my friends and make them feel special.  It’s even better to give them something useful that they can always remember me by. So Many Gifts to Sew There are so many nifty little accessories and gifts to sew which require only an afternoon or even a couple of hours to make.  These are things you’d struggle to find for sale in a fabric of your choice or things that would simply be too expensive to buy ready made. We’ve published a number of fun accessory projects on the site that make great gifts to sew –everything from Shopping … Continue reading

Contemporary Quilt Makers Who Paint With Fabric

contemporary quilt

We do not know exactly when and where quilting originated but there is no doubt that it was used as garment, decoration and furnishing in many parts of the world many ages ago.  From the carved ivory figure of a Pharaoh of the Egyptian First Dynasty to a quilted floor covering in Mongolia and quilted garments of the European knights- quilt making is an art that has been passed on for many generations. In the United States of America, the first reference to quilts goes back to the 17th century and the earliest surviving American quilt is the Saltonstall quilt that dates back to 1704. Quilt making flourished in the 1800’s as European colonists came to the country finding a home in the Great Plains, where quilts were sewn for bed, door and window covers, floor mats and sometimes used … 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

RFID shielded handbag: I’m calling it Gleam and the pattern is FREE

RFID shielded handbag

I have been looking for the perfect shopping handbag.  After a lot of research, I now realize there is no such thing.  Unless you want to walk around with a safety deposit box as a handbag, there is not a completely secure handbag.  However, there are certainly a lot of things we can do to make our handbags safer, more secure and functional.  I took some of the ideas from our last bag, the Anti Pickpocket Bag, added a few details from your comments and came up with this new shopping handbag that I’m naming Gleam. I have added RFID shielding fabric and made the bottom stronger.  I have kept the handles the same and added a removable pouch big enough for a camera.  The zippered internal pockets are hard for pickpockets to get to because they are hidden under the facing. … 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

10 Travel Sewing Projects Before Your Next Trip

travel sewing projects

With summer coming to a close and the popular travelling holidays of Thanksgiving and Christmas now on the horizon, we thought it would be timely to compile of list of travel sewing projects that will make your upcoming journeys a bit more enjoyable.  I did a lot of travelling this summer and how I wished I had had many of these helpful items with me at the time.  When I got back, I put this list of travel sewing projects together thinking of all the things I wish I had had during our trip. Travel is the time when you need lot of bags and pouches for storing and organising those itsy bitsy items. For long distance travel, you might even need few items to make your journey as comfortable as possible. The good news is that you need not have … Continue reading

Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag: Final Video Released

Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag: Final Video Released

Hi Everyone, here’s the final video in the the Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag tutorial series.  In this video we assemble the body of the bag and do all the finishing.  You can refer back to the original project by clicking HERE or on the image below. Due to a large number of reader comments on the tutorial on our website regarding the emerging threat of electronic pickpocketing, I have included some instructions on how to use anti-RFID shielding fabric to line the bag.  This should help prevent someone from being able to read your credit card, passport or other vital data by using an RFID scanner.  We’ve got a lot more coming out on this important topic so please stay tuned. If you’re looking for a good source of the anti-RFID fabric, we’ve put a good option in our sewing … Continue reading

Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag: New Video Released

sewing bag lining

Hi, just letting you all know that we’ve released the second video in the Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag series in which we sew and assemble the lining of the bag.  You can refer back to the original project by clicking HERE or on the image below. The first video in the series showing the making of the twisted fabric handles was released last week. There will be a third installment of the Sewing the Anti Pickpocket Bag series in which we assemble and finish the bag.  Expect that out in a few days.  We’ve also added some guidance for using anti-RFID fabric to prevent electronic pickpocketing as well. The pattern download has already been enormously popular, with almost 6,000 downloads in the first week.  In fact, the day this project launched, we had our biggest traffic day ever on … Continue reading