Friday, October 28, 2011

Go Bananas!

While working on my squash door stops & pincushions, I kept a banana peel.  See, working out how to sew three dimensional objects can be really difficult.  Originally I wanted to make an heirloom zucchini as one of my squashes and a banana peel seemed like it would help me figure out how to design the curved edges.  
After a lot of finagling I realized that a fabric zucchini just wasn't cute..haha. 
However in the process, I did come up with some REALLY cute bananas!
Another advantage to having a bunch of bananas as pincushions is that you can keep each different type of pin or needle on a separate banana. 

Little man even has tried to claim the bananas as his own!

  • Scraps of three different fabric prints (about 1 fat eight of each fabric to make 5 bananas).
  • Matching thread
  • Poly Fil, emery sand
  • Hand stitching needle 
1.  Cut out the banana pieces from the pattern provided.  Trace them onto the top of your fabric scraps right side up.  Trace each piece onto it's own fabric print.

2.  Keep the pattern pieces by it's fabric print after cutting it out.
3.  Write the corresponding numbers on the pattern onto the BACK of the fabric prints.  
4.  With right sides together, line up the edges labeled as #1 and pin around the entire edge.  You may have to stretch one slightly and turn the fabric a bit, since the edges turn in different directions.
5.  Sew the #1 edges with a 1/4" seam allowance. 
6.  Repeat steps 4 & 5 with the #2 edges. 
7.  Now the three pieces are attached and you have just the #3 seam left.  Pin the edges together and remember to leave a 1" turning gap near the center of the seam.
Sew all the way around the curve, finishing off the bottom edge of the banana.
8.  Turn fabric right side out through turning gap. 
9.  Stuff banana with some emery sand and poly-fil or just poly fil. Leave the top of the banana unstuffed, that way it will really look like a banana stem. 
10.  Close off turning gap with a slip stitch. 
11.  Repeat steps 1 through 10, four times so that you end up with 5 bananas!
12.   We will be arranging the bananas in a bunch just like a real set of bananas!
Take three bananas and line them up side by side. 
13.  Starting in the right side of banana farthest to the right put the needle and thread through about 1/2" down from the end of the stem.  Pull the needle through to the other side, then gently tug the knot through ONLY the right edge.
14.  Pull needle and thread through the next banana at the same place, then push it back through the first one and back through the second one again.
15.  Sew on the third banana in the same way. 
16.  Repeat the method of sewing the three bananas together with the two bananas that will rest on top of the three.  Then in a similar fashion, sew the two bananas to the tops of the three bananas.
Voila!  Some more fruity pincushions to add to your collection!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Flat Felled Seams

Tailoring Thursdays™, Tips, Tricks and Techniques for Sewers
Flat Felled Seams

However it is my first post on specialty seams. 

Have you ever wondered how to sew a flat felled seam?  (In case you weren't sure, the inside hem of your jeans is most likely a flat felled seam.)  

Flat felled seams are a beautiful way to enclose a seam and is especially nice for garments.  Contrary to popular belief, flat felled seams can be rather easy even for a novice sewer. 

I love to use a fabric marking utensil (especially my sewlines!) for this seam method.

1.  Draw a line on the wrong side of the fabric that will be enclosed in the seam, 1/2" in from the edge.  Draw a line on the right side of the fabric that will enclose the seam, 1/2" in from the edge.

Fabric to be enclosed.
2.  With right sides together, line up the edge of the enclosed fabric with the line drawn on the enclosing fabric.  Pin in place.
3.  Sew on the line on the fabric to be enclosed.
4.  Press seam to one side.
5.  Fold enclosing fabric around the enclosed fabric and press.  
6.  Press seam to the side so that the edge of the enclosing fabric is now enclosed as well.
7.  Edge stitch along the folded edge of the enclosing fabric on top of the enclosed fabric. 
8. Press and voila!  Easier than you thought, Right? Right? 
Have fun sewing beautiful seams!

And now for the giveaway!

Want to win your own Sewline Mechanical Pencil?
To enter:

1.  Leave a comment telling me your BEST Halloween story! 

2.  Like the Fat Quarter Shop on facebook, come back & leave a comment saying you followed them for another chance to win!

Winners will be drawn this Wednesday November 2nd. 

Giveaway sponsored by Fat Quarter Shop

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