Saturday, March 01, 2008


Many of you have expressed an interest in sewing and how to start. I didn't know a thing about it. I found a machine on sale for $68 and bought it because i had been wanting to do some crafting with LD that required one. I wanted to make a pop up clown (which turned out horribly) but the clothing for it turned out good. Then i made simple square napkins because i wanted to quit using paper towels and napkins to be a little more earth friendly. Then Gulnari told me about a book on sale on amazon (it was $4 at the time). And i made a few easy things from it and then she told me about another and i was hooked. If you want to start sewing I suggest getting a kids book about it from the library or buying a simple one like bend the rules sewing. I like kids books though because they talk to you like you are five years old and well that's how i like it when learning something. Besides there's fun kids projects that are quick, not timeconsuming and your little ones will like them.

A great first project if you want to get into sewing is kids pants. They don't require any shaping at this age so even if you screw up, it's easy to adjust them or make another pair. I used my husband's old shirts that had stains on them. They are still our favorite pajamas of his because it was one of my husbands favorite shirts too. I used the good parts (and messed up twice before) and then made 2 perfect pairs. I make all my sons pajamas now unless i see a pair out there i really like.

When you begin sewing i suggest going to walmart for fabric. It is soooo cheap there. They have a section with dollar a yard bolts. It's perfect to practice with. I don't have a cheap fabric store here except that choice or a really expensive quilt store which i do use for quilting material. Once you get into sewing (because you will) here is an excellent resource for fabric on line. I recently finally used z & s and it was every bit as good as i've heard around the net. I couldn't believe what i got for my money, and they have items that are long sold out elsewhere. Ebay is occassionally a good source for new fabric but i don't use it much for that. I do buy most of my vintage stuff on there and in antique stores and i can't wait for this years rummage sale. I seriously scored last year. I sold most of what i bought on ebay after i was done with it and made more than what i paid.

If you want other cheap material to use at first, buy sheets. You get a ton of fabric, it's usually soft and there are some great prints. I used a few of our mismatched sheets at first to practice on. Don't the fitted sheets always wear out and you are left with a mismatched top? I bought some sheets from IKEA for $1.99 (over 2 yards of fabric and nice woven cotton) to use for totes. Ikea has cool fabric btw.

Most of all - don't be intimidated. Read your manual, use it. I had mine at my side until just recently. Start with small easy projects that make you feel like you accomplished something fast and then move on up from there. Have fun with it! Don't expect to do everything well. To this day, i can't follow a pattern from an envelope. Every.single.time they end up way screwed up. I have given up on them and the idea of making clothes for myself that way. I have however made a tunic using the same method as the pajamas above. I trace one i have onto paper, add seam allowance and sew it together. I don't do envelope patterns. I will one day but for now, they frustrate me and make me feel stupid so i don't. Kids clothes are faster and funner (more fun?) anyhow. Now dig that machine out and let's go!

I want to learn a few things that have been intimidating me - zippers, buttonholes, elastic and piping. Anyone interested in doing a few simple sewing projects along with me and take pictures to post? If you don't have a blog, you can email the picture to me and i'll post them. They'll be simple functionable things. Here's what i have in mind:

1. Kids pants.
2. Tissue keeper.
3. Tote bag.
4. Patchwork pin cushion.

We'll do one a week. Leave a comment if you are interested and we'll start in two weeks. That's time to get the machine out and get some fabric. I need 5 people to agree to do it with me. Any takers? If i get 5, i'll list the supplies you need for all projects in an email. After these four projects we'll learn how to do the things i mentioned above that intimidate me.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home