• Baby changing mat
  • Twist Front Top
  • Color block dress
  • Sew your own undies
  • Wrap skirt
  • Easy summer dress
  • Moved to Tiers Tunic
  • On Safari Skirt
  • The perfect baby burp cloth
  • The Ultimate Wallet
  • Cosmetics bag with brush roll
  • Turning Japanese Handbag
  • Easy cosmetics bag
  • 30 minute skirt
  • Summer Drape Top
  • Color Block Skirt
  • Perfect Wrap Dress - free pattern
  • Teeny tiny zipper pouch

You’ll love these patterns and a giveaway

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You know how sometimes you are just looking for something and then quite by chance you come across something else that catches your eye.  Happens to me all the time – short attention span.  Etsy can be the worst for that and it was while browsing for some trim, that I came across the store for Maria Palito – she makes the most amazing felt toys, patterns and kits. Check out The Pattern Hub on Etsy. You know me well enough by now that when I find something I think you might like, I try to do us a deal.  So I asked Maria if she would create a pattern just for us, and give you the chance to win something from her store.  She said YES to both – what a star!  So enjoy below as she shares with … Continue reading

How to mark and sew double ended darts

The easy way to mark and sew double ended darts. Now I KNOW I can get them exactly level with this method.

Have you seen this shape of dart before?  It will typically appear at the waistline in a dress that doesn’t have a seam at the waist.  You might find them on the front, on the back or both.  They add in shaping between bust, waist and hips and help the fabric to curve to your body. Imagine if you had a dress with a separate bodice and skirt.  The bodice would have a dart between waist and bust, and the skirt would also have a dart between waist and hip.  So if you have a dress without a waist seam, then these two darts meet up and make this ‘double ended darts’ shape. They need a little extra care when it comes to marking and sewing them, and a different technique to the single darts.  Check out these earlier articles … Continue reading

Interview with the Dragon Charmer !

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Our sewing chat group has been so inspiring to me.  From time to time I see things there I would never have discovered otherwise, different aspects of sewing I’ve never tried.  Many times I’m just so impressed with all of the design, sewing and fitting skills from the members, but then other times I’m just blown away! We have one member, Sabine, who is fairly new to sewing and only recently started to use a sewing machine, so when she showed us photos of her first doll she made – well, the internet went crazy!  Since then she has been taking our breath away regularly with her gorgeous sewn creatures and dolls of all sorts, so naturally we were all clamoring to know where she got the patterns from. Etsy comes up trumps again and she pointed us to the … Continue reading

My serger jelly roll quilt is finished

Quick and simple jelly roll quilt, made with a single jelly roll plus a solid for sashing. Love the modern look.

My jelly roll quilt top was the first thing I sewed with my new serger.  It was fun to just run strips of fabric quickly through the machine at varying widths, to get used to using the new serger – putting in the mileage on it.  A nice and easy way to get comfortable. You can read about how I started out with the serger and made up my large fabric piece I used for the quilt here – 1034d Licenced to Serge. Then I turned my jelly roll strips into a jelly roll quilt top.  I cut large squares on the diagonal and serged them together in opposing directions, with sashing strips in between, to get this result.  Truly the simplest way to make a quilt top and I was able to use almost the whole piece of serged … Continue reading

Sewing for profit. Projects that are great to make to sell

Ideas and tips for sewing for selling. What do you need to consider and links to some great projects that could be good profit-makers.

Hi! Stephanie from Swoodson Says again, with a really fun round up of things that I think would be great to see and then sell at a craft fair or on Etsy and other online handicrafts venues. I am an avid handmade shopper, so I not only looked for things I’d buy myself but also considered how long they’d take to make, how much fabric they’d use, and if they’d make good gifts! I think you will find some fun new ideas if you sew to sell, or maybe just some new projects if you don’t. I have a round-up of fabric scrap gift ideas that also has some great ideas too! What makes a good “sew to sell”  project? Supplies – if it uses small pieces of fabric or basic sewing supplies, you don’t have much of an outlay.  If … Continue reading

Design your dream dress with the Corset Academy

Julia Goncharik

An introduction to what you can learn with the Corset Academy     Have you ever wanted to create amazing Haute Couture evening or wedding dresses? But you never found any information about the secret technology behind their design and construction? My name is Tatiana and I know how you feel! That’s why I founded Corset Academy – online Haute Couture classes. Here you will receive the knowledge and skills required for the creation of wedding dresses, evening gowns and high class Haute Couture dresses. These skills and know-how’s will enable you to stand out among others. But remember that you should not focus only on one particular technique of corset garment production. There are plenty of varying techniques for the creation of wedding and evening dresses and I commit myself to teach you to use them. Please don’t forget … Continue reading

The Perfect for Work Dress pattern – free

Just what I've been looking for. Free pattern for a work dress that looks smart but fun.

You might have noticed that I lost some weight this year.  35lbs !  Yay.  Gradually it had crept on over the last 3 years and now it’s gone again.  So to celebrate, I wanted to make something figure-hugging, a new dress I knew my husband would love.  Something for work and formal occasions, but which could also be a date-night dress too. The Perfect for Work Dress fits the bill perfectly and yes, hubby loves it!  When I modeled it the first time, he suggested we go out to dinner tonight and show it off – he’s a good guy!  It’s the sort of smart dress I used to wear when I had an office job – oh a gazillion years ago now. It’s easy to sew, comfy to wear.  You don’t have to make yours as figure-hugging as mine. … Continue reading

Variation on the Tech or Tablet Tote Bag pattern

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I love to make clothes for my kids and for myself but I also greatly enjoy  making bags. The multi-purpose tech bag is a great pattern that I truly love. I have already made two – one for the tablet and another one for my netbook (it fits the multi-tech bag size!). When I was testing the multi-purpose tech bag I had to use smaller grommets than those required because I couldn’t find any bigger. As a consequence, I had to use two grommets instead of one and also make two straps narrower than the regular one. This resulted in an alternative way to make this bag and to close it. Today I am sharing with you a simple tutorial on how to make these modifications. Materials needed: Two small grommets. These will be used instead of the Large round grommet … Continue reading

Fold over clutch bag pattern

Fold Over Clutch Bag Pattern - denim and cotton fabrics combined to create stylish unique clutch

Whats not to love about a simple clutch? Perfect for holding keys, wallet and mobile they are so quick and easy to whip up you can easily make one per outfit. Have fun playing with different fabric combinations. The denim bag makes the most of various cotton scraps (including quite a few shirts) which have been pieced together. The shimmery evening fold over clutch is made up with curtain fabric. This has been hand embroidered to embellish the existing pattern and tie the colours in. How about using quilting cotton? Simple to whip up, perfect to accompany your summer dresses. They take less than an hour, and are so easy to customize too. To make a fold over clutch bag you will need: Two pieces of lining fabric 11 by 9″ Two pieces of your bottom fabric choice 5  by 9″ Two pieces … Continue reading

Selling what you sew – how to price your work

Sewing to sell. How to price your work. Several different methods discussed and a handy worksheet to give you a range of selling prices.

Handy Calculator below that will give you guidelines on pricing your work to sell. –>  We’ve mentioned previously at a few articles about sewing to sell, or selling what you sew, either online in marketplaces like Etsy, or locally at craft fairs. For example, How to get traffic to your Etsy Shop. In the sewing chat group, people often post pictures of what they’ve made and make enquiries about what to sell it for.  Or just ask for general advice on how to price to sell, based on cost of materials used etc.  Too often the likely selling price is no more than the cost of the materials, so you don’t make a profit, or even get compensated for your time. Sadly some people just don’t recognise the value of ‘hand-made’ goods these days so you can’t always achieve the price you need. … Continue reading

Sew a pretty summer sundress pattern

I love the fact this dress is reversible. The v back is so cool for summer, and would make a nice date night dress too. And the pattern is free - can't beat that!

Summer is here!  Time for more summer dresses and here is my Empire of the Sun-Dress.  It has a cross-over bodice front and back, and an elastic fitted empire-line waist, and a softly gathered skirt.  Pull it on and go – it’s actually reversible!  The front and the back are the same. The free clothing pattern for July comes to you a little early this month because I’m taking part in the 30 days of Sundresses series over at Melly Sews.  Melly is gathering up all of your favorite bloggers to share their summer sundress tutorials during June, and there’s a giveaway each week too.  Drop over to enter her giveaway here. If I can get the time, I’ll try to do a bonus extra pattern in July too – no promises! Features of the Empire of the Sun-Dress Cross-over … Continue reading

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