Sunday, August 31, 2014

Bonnie Christine on CreativeLive.

So I spent three days with Bonnie Christine talking about 'Surface Pattern Design' on CreativeLive. Bonnie did a great job and I love CreativeLive.
Bonnie is a fabric designer for Art Gallery, and her fabric is featured in our pattern 'Sew ImPressed' (P209). She obviously has a whole range of talents which are very impressive. Watch out Martha Stewart!

Bonnie Christine's online class for Surface Pattern Design

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hugo's Amazing Tape

This glueless, reusable, self-adhesive tape is great! I use it to wrap around spools of thread, especially metallic threads. I also use it to wrap around pieces of trim. Really keeps things organized. I wonder how many different things this could be good for -- it really is amazing!
Hugo's Amazing Tape

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Rotary Cutting!

Rotary cutting is an accurate and efficient method for cutting pattern pieces with a length and width measurement. Our patterns use rotary cutting techniques when paper pattern templates are not provided because they are something other than a square or rectangle. Though it is possible to make our patterns without rotary cutting tools, using a grid mat, grid ruler, and rotary cutter is preferred. Note that rotary cutting tools are basic to any modern sewer's inventory of supplies.
Grid ruler and really cool tape for grid rulers!

If you were to have only one grid ruler, which size should you get?  The 5" by 24" would be my suggestion. But I have tons of sizes and use them ALL. I love my 4" by 36", my 1" by 12", my 12" by 12", and even my 20 1/2" by 20 1/2".

I also like the cool colored tape shown above. If you are cutting lots of edges, let's say at 1 1/4", the tape can be put on the ruler, helping the quick identification of the 1 1/4" mark.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Cutting up with scissors and rotary cutters!

The only scissors I will use are Elan 8" Dressmaker with Florine made by United Notions. They have a slight serrated edge, so they grip the fabric -- right up to the tip of the scissors. Since they have a serrated edge, they can't be sharpened but they do last a long time. After that, the price point should be under $20 so just go get another pair every few years.
I also use the smaller 28mm Olfa rotary cutters. I have tried tons of different rotary cutters, but I always come back to these simple and plain Olfa's. Why complicate things when they don't need to be?! I also use these cutters to rip out seams -- though I hesitate to say this because it takes great skill to not cut the fabric. Be careful if you do this!
Elan 8" Scissors by United Notions and Olfa 28mm Rotary Cutter

Friday, August 8, 2014

Ring Around the Patterns

Keeping things organized in the sewing room is a big battle. Love the way I have found to organize my patterns. Each pattern, in its bag, gets stored on my gigantic ring. Check it out:
The Big Ring!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Iron cleaner - a must!

I can't tell you how many projects I have ruined or almost ruined because of a dirty iron. The ONLY thing I have found to clean them is Iron-off. You put about a 1/2 teaspoon (in a line) on an old dish towel. Then rub your hot iron on the goo - for quite awhile, back and forth really hard. You will be surprised how much dirt comes off the iron and onto the towel!

Iron-off [Hot Iron Cleaner}