Fleece is one of our favorite fabrics to sew with. Garments created using this soft, comfy fabric are incredibly durable and tend to be water resistant. It comes in a huge assortment of colors and finishes. Lighter weight fleece can be used to make pajamas, baby blankets and even stuffed toys. Heavier weight fleece is incredibly warm and wind resistant making it perfect outer wear.
But despite all of its great attributes, many home sewers shy away from using fleece in their projects. Most worry that they will encounter problems sewing thru the thick layers or that they will be unable to create a professional finish.
Whether you are someone who has never sewn with fleece before or if you’ve have used it and have had less than stellar results you’ll want to check out the top tips from our experts on How to Sew with Fleece.
Nothing can compare to the rich feel and the luxurious drape of a well made velvet garment. But if you’ve ever had the pleasure of sewing with velvet, you probably shutter at the thought of doing it again. Just in time for the holidays we’ve complied our best tips for sewing with velvet fabrics.
Follow these tips and with a little patience you can achieve the professional “haute couture” results you’ve dreamed about. Click here to read more!
Are you interested in sewing for a cause? Well in the spirit of the season, we decided to put together a short list of some of the organizations in our country accepting charitable donations.
- Project Linus : Distributes blankets to children who are seriously ill, traumatized or otherwise in need.
- Every Child : works with organizations in the community to provide clothing, diapers, blankets, toys, books, and other essential items to infants and children in need.
- American Hero Quilts
- Blankets of Hope : Provides blankets to wounded soldiers in VA hospitals.
- Soldiers Angels : This is an incredible organization doing valuable work. Soldiers’ Angels relies on donations of items (donations in kind) to sustain three of their most important projects: Care packages, Vet Packs, and First Response (for the wounded) backpacks
- Blankets of Belief : Provides your hand made blankets to actively deployed soldiers.
- Baby Threads of NH : Helps needy children & families in New Hampshire.
- New Borns in Need: Distributes your hand made items to sick and needy babies.
- Quilt for a Cure : The Warrior Quilt project. Fighting Breast Cancer one square at a time.
- Pink Slipper Project : Helps women & children in shelters.
As you can imagine this is just a partial list of the the many deserving charities helping families in need. Please feel free to drop us a note, if you know of another charity we should add to our list.
Beginners, here’s a list of the top ten basic supplies you should have in your Sewing Box before beginning that next project.
The old adage that the “Right tools can make any job easier” is especially true when it comes to sewing. The right scissors, or needles can determine how professional your project will look once it’s completed.
If you are new to sewing you may be wondering where to start. Sure you have a sewing machine, fabric and tons of enthusiasm, but before you make a single cut, make sure that you have these basic items on hand to make the job easier.
Ready to build a basic sewing kit? Here’s what you’ll need:
- Tape measure & Straight edge Ruler- For measuring proper cutting lengths.
- General purpose Scissors – For cutting out patterns and general use.
- Pinking Shears
– Perfect for adding a zig zag edge to fabrics which tend to fray.
- Sewing Needles & Needle threader
- Beeswax – A wax coating strengthens thread and prevents tangling during hand-sewing. I always apply a bit of beeswax to my thread prior to attaching buttons by hand.
- Fabric Glue – Todays’s fabric adhesives can easily become the workhorse of your sewing room. Need to quickly repair a hem? Well just grab some iron-on hem tape. And just a drop of Fray Check can prevent the threads on your favorite trim from unraveling (this is seriously good stuff!)
- Seam Ripper – when you need to remove mis-placed stitches. Even and expert sewer makes mistakes, and this little tool makes taking your seams apart much easier.
- Fabric Marking Pen and Pencil – Use pencils, tailors chalk or vanishing markers to draw temporary cutting or dart lines on fabric project pieces
- Pin Cushion – I use glass pins when I sew and have a decorative pin cushion handy to keep my work area neat & tidy.
We recently had a chance to test drive the BROTHER CS6000i and must admit we were pleasantly surprised. It has tons of features, comes with a great selection of sewing feet but the real shocker was the price –It’s just $154.99.
MANUFACTURES DESCRIPTION: A computerized sewing machine with 60 stitch functions, and an oversized table for large sewing & quilting projects. This light weight computerized sewing machine is heavy on the features that you are looking for! The CS-6000i has 60 built in stitches including, utility, decorative, heirloom, quilting and 7 styles of one step auto-sizing buttonholes. Whether you sew for crafting, garment, home decoration, or quilting; this machine has it all for you at an affordable price! The CS-6000i also includes a wide assortment of sewing feet
WHY WE LIKE IT: There’s a reason the CS-6000i is so popular among sewing enthusiasts; It offers great features at incredibly affordable price (I mean seriously it’s just $154.99) . I learned to sew using a Brother and can personally attest that the brand makes solid, reliable machines. Plus the CS-6000i comes with lots of accessories,extra bobbins, a needle set, an extra spool pin, twin needle, seam ripper, cleaning brush, and much more. Best of all it includes additional specialty machine feet.While most machine only come with a zipper foot as an add on, the CS-6000i comes packaged with a Monogramming Foot, Buttonhole Foot, Blind Stitch Foot, Overcasting Foot, Zipper Foot, and Button Fitting Foot.
- It’s Quiet!!
- Drop in Bobbin winding system.
- 7 styles of button holes (yup this isn’t a typo, it really has 7 styles of button holes).
- 60 built in stitches.
- It’s very easy to use the automatic threaded. Plus the directions with steps & pictures are printed on the machine so even a beginner could do it.
- It’s surprisingly light weight.
- Forget about using that cheap dollar store thread in this baby- otherwise you’ll probably encounter problems with the tension.
- It doesn’t come with a cover or carrying case
- And while this isn’t really a CON, I thought that I’d point out that just like any other piece of technology, it’s important to READ the manual. Yup I said it,learn about your new machine first then start sewing!
BEST FOR: Every day use.
If you dread inserting zippers into your D-I-Y project because you’re afraid of turning your masterpiece into a dud, I’d like to tell you that with little bit of planning it is possible to ensure a professional result each and every time. Here are some of our favorite tips for perfect zipper installation.
- Always use a zipper foot when machine basting and permanent stitching zippers into your projects.
- To ensure perfect placement before permanent sewing, machine baste or glue the zipper into place first.
- To shorten a zippers that’s too long, first close the zipper. Then Measure down from the top of the slider to the desired length and mark. Next sew a straight line across the mark you just made and working from one side to the other making sure to stitch tightly across the teeth ( do this at least 8 times). Finally just cut the zipper 1/2″ below where you just stitched.
- Create your own top stitching guide. Prior to top stitching your zipper in place, apply a piece of 1/2″ wide transparent tape to the top of your fabric- then just sew around its straight edge.
- When top stitching around the zippers slider and tab, stop stitching just before you reach the slider leaving the needle in the fabric. Then raise the presser foot and pull the slider down below the needle. Finally lower your presser foot and just continue topstitching.
Need step-by-step help? Check out this great tutorial at Sew Mama Sew!
We’ve just added some gorgeous new decorative tassels to our online store. We now carry gorgeous beaded tassels, mini tassels, key tassels, ball tassels and more. Why not stop by our store. There’s No Minimum Order Amount Required to purchase and we ship fast!
We have a large assortment of by the yard fabric trims in our online store and if you Need something you don’t see listed? Contact us as we are always willing to see if we can get that special trim for you.
Here’s a Small Sample of Our New Arrivals:
Description: Wrights 1-1/2″ Mini Tassels from Wrights are the perfect finishing touch for many apparel and home dec projects. Use these mini tassels to adorn purses, scarfs, pillows and many other sewing projects.
Composition: 100% Polyester
Care: Hand Wash Cold / Reshape / Dry Flat
Description: Our Conso Princess Bell Tassel has a 3″ (76mm) Tassel awith 1 (25mm) Loop. It is composed of 99% acetate/ 1% cotton. The colors are Oyster, Shell and Sandstone. The Conso color name is: Dreamsicle, Color code: 11309 PR01
Composition: 99% acetate/ 1% cotton
Description: Our 6″ Trading Spaces Beaded tassel with tieback features a 16″ spread.