There are three main types of puffed sleeves that are very simple to draft from the basic sleeve pattern. The idea is to create enough extra fabric for gathering, which means to “stretch” the pattern in places were the ruffling will accrue. The “stretching” can be done along the head and hem of a sleeve, but never in the underarm area.
The process itself is not complicated. Start with a paper pattern of a sleeve. Mark the middle third of your pattern with parallel lines 3-4cm apart, cut and open out the pieces. The fuller the sleeve you are after the further you spread the parts. Traditionally it cannot be made more then 5cm. For fuller sleeve cut the strips narrower. In some old pattern making books you can find the pictures of a puffed sleeve draft looking like a fan with the strips cut as narrow as 1cm.
Continue reading Three ways to draft a puffed sleeves pattern.
Bias binding is a widely utilized in all sorts of sewing projects. Its uses are far wider then just a hem finish. It can have decorative as well as functional purpose in a garment. Though the craft shops have a wide variety of ready-made bias tapes, they often are the wrong shade for the project, or not stocked in a particular width. Hence is a necessity to make your own. Luckily it is not hard to produce at home and gives your more control over the design. It is a useful technique to know either you a dressmaker or a quilter.
Bias binding making sequence:
- Iron the piece of fabric you are going to make the bias tape with.
- Spread it flat in one layer. Do not allow it to hang over the working surface to avoid stretching.
- Mark the strips of a desired width. Remember that fabric cut on bias stretches significantly when steamed, so make sufficient allowance.
- Cut. Quilters can put a rotary cutter and a cutting mat to use to speed up the process.
- Continue reading How to make a bias binding.
No matter what equipment you’ve got there are techniques that allows you to make a nice rib trim finish for your jersey garment. Here are the six examples using various equipment.
Sewing Machine. Straight stitch.
Use a rib trim as a bias binding. Baste the edges in , then fold it in half, baste to the garment, making sure it has the same width both on the right and on the wrong side. Stitch in place. Advantage of this method is that it looks identical from the right side and from the wrong one.
Continue reading How to finish a raw edge of knitted fabric with rib trim. 6 common techniques.
This full-skirt dress with a sash is a firm favorite with little girls for a good reason. It can be as dressy or as casual as you wish. With mothers it is popular because it is not a big headache to make and can be adopted for all occasions. Made with silk or satin it is fit for a any celebration. Make it in floral print and your girl will look pretty all summer.
For added interest you can make the sash out of different fabric, coordinated colour or contrasting, let your creativity decide. Another variation is to make the top in totally different fabric, might be useful if you working with leftover fabric from previous projects.
Frills and ruffles are very popular embellishments in dressmaking. There are quite a few methods to gather fabric, but double basting method is the universal one. Its main advantage is that it can be used with any fabric, be it knitted or woven and it is essentially the same done by hand or sewing machine. The beauty of the double basting method is the neatness of the result, it produces even and tidy ruffles and works equally well on straight or circular pieces.
Depending on the design, fabric can be cut on straight, cross-grain or on bias. Bias method is favored when the ruffle will be finished with the lettuce edge, and requires a fair bit of stretching.
Continue reading Perfect way to gather fabric – double basting method.
T-Shirt neck, casual dress or pj’s top, this is one useful techniques to have in your skill library. There are quite a few ways to finish a raw edge of knitted fabric. Depending on you equipment and experience your can go with an overlock, top stitcher or use just a sewing machine.
Cutting your rib trim band, go slightly shorter then a neck opening. How much shorter will depend on the stretch of your fabric and design. This is probably the trickiest part of the whole process. Make the neckband too long and the neckline will look overstretched and untidy. Too small neckband will pull and distort the entire garment out of shape. Finished neckband should lay flat and look like an integral part of the T-shirt. There is no universal advice as each fabric combination is slightly different. You can try to pin the neck band in place to get the idea of an optimal length and make adjustments accordingly.
Continue reading Binding the T-Shirt neck with a rib trim.
To make curved seams lie flat when stitched they need to be treated in a special way and it differs for concave and convex curves.
For concave (inward) arch slit seam allowance 3/4 way to the stitching line. It will let the fabric to spread without pulling and tagging.
Continue reading How to make a perfectly smooth curved seams.
Exposed zipper look became rather fashionable recently. When it is properly done it can elevate the whole design and add an interesting detail to your dress, skirt or jumper. Exposed zipper can be placed in the middle of a garment piece, between two components of a garment or into the seam. Besides obvious functional role (putting on a garment or closing a pocket) it can be used as a construction element or as an embellishment.
The following method of sewing an exposed zipper doesn’t requires a seam at all. The technique is similar to a bound buttonhole process scaled. A separate piece of fabric is used to make a faced opening. You can go with the same fabric, or with a piece of lining if the thickness is too great. Stay is used to achieve a crisp lines and prevent stretching and fraying.
Continue reading How to sew an exposed zipper.
Sewing circle skirt is not a time consuming project, this makes it a popular choice for home seamstress. There is only four techniques you have to be familiar with: how to sew a curved hem, insert a zipper, attach a waistband and cut a buttonhole.
1. Cutting circle skirt.
- Cutting a circle skirt can be done in one, two or three pieces, depending on the design and fabric width. When fabric is wide enough it is done in one piece. Since there are no seams you will have to use a welt or exposed zipper method.
Continue reading Sewing instructions for classic circle skirt.
A great variety of effects can be achieved using a bias-cut tape. Its pliability lends itself well to all sorts of sewing projects. It can be a part of the dress structure, embellishment, or wholly practical element of the garment. Bias binding has many uses thanks to its unique qualities.
Examples of applying a bias binding:
There are many ways to finish a raw edge of your skirt or dress. Hemming the dress with contrasting colour bias tape adds a visual interest to the overall design. It can be done in straight or wavy line. You can also successfully use it to finish a curved hem of a circle skirt, flap of a pocket or a petal sleeve.
Continue reading Bias binding uses.