Saturday, December 31, 2011

Big sewing project for the new year

One of my resolutions for the New Year (not that I really make them) is to use my sewing machine more.  That means more fun projects!  

Over at the KellyRachel blog, I stumbled across an awesome tutorial on making a bag and lots of smaller accessories that go with the bag.  It's an 8 week project, but we'll see how long it actually takes me to do.  I'm almost finished with one of my baby projects, and I'm hoping to start this one this week or so!  Stay tuned because I will be posting my progress here on the blog.  If you are interested in checking out the tutorial, sewing along with me, or to see the finished projects without waiting for me, click the make sew along logo (that I will be including with each of my posts as well)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Yay for the Internet!

I finished my first big, ok big for me the beginning sewer, sewing project and I'm very pleased with how it turned out.  Several people have asked what my project was, so here it is- I was checking out the lovely Internet for easy sewing tutorials and projects and came across this cool (seemingly easy enough) nursing cover from Our Seven Dwarfs. I bought the supplies for it and I did some work on the easier smaller parts, the straps.  Not too daunting, they came out pretty well.

 After doing the smaller parts I then kind panicked about how I was going to do all my long straight lines! So then last weekend I put out a plea.  This plea was answered on the blog, twitter and facebook!  Huge thanks to Stephanie, April, Lori, Rachael, Kelsey, Becky, Marcie, and Ana for all the great tips and advice! Many of the tips were of the same nature, so that helped my confidence greatly "if several of these ladies who have never met are saying the same thing, they must be right!" and I was able to get moving on the next steps of my project! Using the rotary cutter, straight edge, and mat that I did have in my craft room, I did the straight(ish) lines for the edges....

I discovered a neat tool at Joann's that is really for quilting, but I used it for the entire main piece of the project- it's a set of heat resistant plastic sticks.  You can use them to create hems with the iron, no gauge or pins needed. I found that they were really easy to work with and they worked pretty well. The only part that was difficult was adding in the terry cloth corners for the inside.  My machine didn't like all the fabric, 7 layers once you got around the corners, so I had to finagle the foot a little bit, but the corners came out nicely.  It was interesting working with the boning, but it wasn't a lot, so it wasn't too bad to work with.  While the end result (for me anyway) looks homemade and crafted, I don't care.  I really love the way it turned out and I'm proud that I finished it! I can't wait for Baby D to get here so I can use it!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

A Plea for Crafting HELP!

I've done some form or another of crafting my entire life.  It wasn't until last year though that I got an interest in sewing.  For Christmas I got a lovely sewing machine, some patterns and a "how to sew" book.  I love it!  While I haven't really gotten to use it nearly as much as I'd like, and I haven't gotten up the nerve to use any of the patterns yet, I have gotten to play with it enough to be comfortable using the machine.  I've done a few little projects on my own, but nothing fancy or complicated.

Now, here is where you come in.  I cannot cut a straight line into the fabric to save my life... Help!  How do I do this?  My current project is pattern-less, so it's not like I can just cut the pattern straight and then cut the fabric off of that.  However, it has long straight edges (or at least, it's supposed to) and I'm not sure how to go about that in a way that they will be straight! Even using a seam gauge, it still doesn't come out straight. So my crafty friends, what tips and techniques do you use to cut your fabric in a straight line?

My second cry for help is this.  After figuring out how to cut my fabric in that straight line, I'm going to need to  hem it in an equally straight line.  Short sections are fine, but somehow I manage to get into an angle or a bubble or funky section that ends up not making the edge straight.  What are your best tips for doing a straight hem?  I have learned that faster is not better when it comes to sewing, it's a lot easier to make a tiny mistake huge!  However working at Disney in locations that embroider the ear hats (all computerized) all you hear is the machines sewing at 500 miles an hour, so it's hard not to try to run my machine equally as fast.  I am much better at not "lead footing" it now though :)

Thanks in advance for any tips and tricks that you think of!  I can't wait to read them :)

The big question.... Answered!

Most  of you have already heard the news in person, through facebook or on Twitter. So here it is in case you missed it, or you just wanted to hear again (because I haven't gotten tired of it!).....