Velcro may not be fashionable and glamorous to look at, but they are strong, inexpensive and generally easy to open and close for most people. It has been an important part of fashion, a hard struggle is experienced on sewing a velcro because of its tough fabric.
Velcros are hook and loop fasteners, they are the most convenient way to close a piece of clothing. Velcro are not just used for clothes but also for bags and purses. When you are unsure of what you are doing, it is frustrating and disappointing, here are the ways and tips to sew to avoid those feelings and to easily sew your Velcro.
Line up the velcro properly. How to do this? The velcro has two sides to attach to, the prickly side and the soft side. Have one of each side to the opposing side of the garment, to make sure the Velcro will close as you want it to. This will help the Velcro pin down and to ensure the best fit. Leave the pins in place until you are about to sew.
When sewing on the hook side, try to sew between the rows of hooks. The thread is less likely to break if you sew between the rows of hooks. The prickly side is the side where the teeth are placed, the soft side is the loop where the side is soft and fuzzy.
Line up the velcro, then use a fabric marker or a chalk to draw brackets around both of the corners; may be at the top or at the bottom, or even the four corners. Hold the velcro as you are sewing along the guide brackets to keep the piece straight.
Sew the velcro to the garment by using an increased tension to medium or heavy weight tension with a heavier gauge needle instead of using the regular tension available on the sewing machine. Why are a heavier weight tension and heavier gauge needle needed? Simply because the Velcro is a heavier material to sew through, using a lesser weight tension and gauge needle can break the needle. The presser foot is a big help and works best with the hook and loop closure of Velcro.
If you the sewing machine does not have a special foot presser for hook and loop closures option, use the zipper foot. Move the needle either left or right and carefully sew on the part of the velcro where there are no hooks and loops.
Velcro sewn by hand is proved to be easier.
Use a thread that will match up the velcro you are using! The reason for this is to hide the thread because contrast threads make imperfection highly visible.
Velcro is tough to work with, apply some lubricant on the gauge needle you are using. Beeswax is preferred by most of the people. There are Velcros that has an adhesive back, do not use this kind of Velcro for it will gum up the needle you are using and can make the sewing even harder.
Chilly weather calls out for fleece outfits! Fleece can be a great fabric to work with, it is warm and lightweight. There are blankets, sweaters, and toys that are accented and made out of fleece.
Sewing with fleece is surprisingly easy and quite enjoyable and achieving once you have learned the proper ways and techniques in working with fleece, an amazing versatile fabric. Fleece is a relatively newcomer to the fabric industry, unlike silk or velvet. It is one of the most popular fabrics for crafts, outwears, and general sewing. It has an appealing property that has attributed to its popularity, which is its affordability. Fleece is a 100% pure synthetic fabric, that is made of 100% polyester fibers. The materials it is made gives off warmth, softness to the touch and has great insulative property.
These materials made the fleece easy to care for, it can be machine washed and machine dried, moreover it is a wrinkle resistant fabric material. Here are a few tips that can make your fleece project be easier for you.
- Fleece is a non-woven fabric, it has no real grain, however, its brushed appearance that moves in one direction can help ensure that the layout patterns is in one direction. To avoid skipped stitches, use a ball point or Microtex needle. Ball point needles are also called Jersey needle.
- You have to be patient enough, the fleece has a right side and a wrong side. When you pull along the cross-grain edge, even gently, the fleece will curl towards the wrong side. Use a longer stitch length, lengthen it to 3.5mm if the standard stitch length you are using is 2.5mm. A longer stitch length can give you smoother seams. The fleece’s raw edges do not fray, thus seam finishes are not that necessary.
- When using a sewing machine, choose the universal size for needles or for sewing most fleece fabrics, select size 12(80). You have to set the machine for a long stitch. A straight stitch or a narrow zigzag works best. Stitching with straight is fine for most seams, but a small zigzag stitch is recommended at points where the seam will endure more movement. 0.55mm is the narrowest zigzag setting, this can give straight seams to prevent them from popping under stress. This can either reduce the machine tension or presser foot pressure to reduce the foot shifting.
- Best seam finishes include faux flat fell, lapped or double topstitched seams, and serged edges, this helps the compact fleece to reduce bulk. Overcast, pinking or zigzag stitched edges are great options to achieve the best seam. Fleece, when pressed with a warm iron, will not hold the crease thus you should contain the seam allowances and secure the hems.
- Use a thread color that can blend with the color of the fabric. Thread tends to sink into the fleece and be covered by the fibers. It is safe to use colors that can blend than colors that can perfectly match the color of the fleece fabric.
Get your wardrobe ready for the hot summer outings! When the summer time comes, the temperature rises thus we recommend dresses or tops and shorts combination.
Have a very simple wrap dress pattern, this pattern is perfect for skill level beginners. An infinity dress is adorable in one sunny afternoon, the dress together with its pattern can be worn in 20 different styles that can be perfect for your spring and summer.
A summer outfit won’t be complete without a short! The skill level required to complete this Iris Shorts is beginner level, you do not have to worry about it! Here are the pattern and technique of an Iris Shorts. This is a simple, cute and easy and quick to sew shorts, you can make it with your desired color. The pockets can be set into the front side seam, and have an optional close with buttons pocket at the back. The zipper of the shorts measures 4 and a half inch inseam length and closed with an invisible side zipper.
A chic and fabulous outfit? Knit a new dress and top, a beautiful feminine twist for a front style will be perfect for modern drape fluid lightweight knits. Here is the pattern for your top and dress, make it with passion! It requires an advanced beginner skill level to complete the task. The pull-on dress and top have a V-shaped front neckline, the back neckline has a bound shape, the center front and back seams have a bound shape also. Whereas, the waist is elasticated. A feature of gently twisted and drape detail is seen on both of the dress and tops at the front waist. The top finishes at the lower hip while the dress ends at just below the knee. With a narrow stitched hems, a cap length Dolman sleeve and hemlines are completed. The said styles are your wardrobe essentials for this hot and warm weather!
A summer outfit will not be complete without a summer bag! Before you sew your summer bag, think of whether you have to tote heavy loads to make sure that the stitches are strong enough to withstand the wear and tear it goes through each day it is used. Here are some techniques to strengthen your tote bag.
Use double stitch and/or top stitch seams to add strength to the tote bag. Double stitch requires you to stitch the first seam and then stitch it again within the seam allowance, the allowance should be one-eighth away from the first seam line. The top stitch catches the seam allowances in the stitching. Try to use a contrasting thread from the bag’s color to make the top stitch grab some attention.
As it is hard to look and choose for patterns, deciding which fabric and style to use is another story. Here are some you can look into:
- Chelsea Rose, with a 3% elastane, the stretchy cotton can make you funky and comfortable
- Rayon Challis, an ideal for your summer sewing
- And the most popular, Blossom range.
A great way to keep up with the new releases from independent pattern companies or to the fashion trend! Here are few of the stylish high fashion sewing patterns.
Have a Stevie Jean Jacket, it definitely taps the oversized jean jacket trend. This pattern has quite a number of top stitches, every seam of this jacket is top stitched. The tabs of the jacket on the bottom are functioning, the welt pockets open up to full sized pocket bags.
The Style Arc Jemma is a loosely fitted woven dress with rectangular panels, a flared 3/4 length sleeves and a back closure compromising a button and a loop. The inspiration for this dress is from an expensive denim patchwork dress.
There is a clever pattern of a blouse, it creates a beautiful drape at the front while leaving the back of the blouse looking like a regular shirt. A perfect combination with this dotty blouse is a cami or a press stud to close the crossover at the front. Here are some helpful hints to do the dotty blouse! Cut out the pattern, take note the grain lines and the notes written on the pattern pieces. This can assist you in the construction of the top. Firmly lay the pattern on the fabric, pin, mark and cut. All notches on the pattern must be marked and clipped. The front body of the fabric turns back on itself, be sure that you have bought a fabric that has no right or wrong side. The neck tuck on the right side is stitched to the inside, the neck tuck on the left side should be facing the opposite side. Make sure that the seam allowance is 1 centimeter or 3/8 inch and the internal seam is 6 millimeter or 1/4 inch.
Try making a poppy zip top! Surely this is included in the trend. The back hem facing and the side hem facing seam has an allowance of about 2.7 centimeter or 1 inch and is located beyond the side back pleat seam. The allowance and location is done to minimize the bulk at the pleat fold, make sure that the mark of the notches at the hemline is carefully on both of the body panels and facing. This poppy zip top has two versions, the sleveless version or the short sleeve style.
Lastly, try the Mardi dress. For the dress detail, it has a strap threaded through chanel, a folded edge, an elastic chanel and ties for the front view and for the back view, it has a roleau strap and soft gathers. First, sew the main and lining shoulder seam together. With the right sides together, pin the bodice in place, the top shoulder edge should fold to the inside. Sew the main to the lining, once it is in place. Sew the same on the neck edge. Catch the 3 millimeter or 1/8 inch of elastic at each end. Sew above 4 millimeter above lower stitch and sink stitch through seam to create a lower elastic casing. Lastly, thread the ties through.
Style Arc is an independent pattern sewing company based in Australia. Their patterns and techniques have been out in the vast of social media, so we present to you their different patterns. The Style Arc has attracted netizens with their current and timeless pattern style, they have new patterns that reflect what is on trend. Style Arc promotes their own sewing pattern over the domestic tissue sewing pattern that can only be used once and is extremely difficult to follow. The sewing pattern they use is made from a 49 gsm weight paper, the sewing pattern provides an easy to follow construction sheet, with the pattern pieces numbered and easily recognizable.
Style Arc patterns are not for beginner skill level, the patterns assumed that you have an advanced skill level with enough knowledge to know how to layout a pattern and follow directions.
How to do understitch or flat stitching:
Understitch is sewn to keep facings and linings from peaking out, these usually come out around necklines and armholes or around the waist on a lined skirt to stop the lining riding up. The seam line tends to favor the inside of the garment when turned and pressed.
The steps are easy. First, attach the facing or bias binding to the garment as instructed in the sewing. Next, trim off the seam allowance to 1 centimeter or 0.4 inches. After that, clip around the curve up to 2 millimeters from the seam, and make sure that the stitching is not clipped. From the right side of the garment press the facing away from the garment, you have to make sure the seam allowance is press upward and it should be facing towards. Next, carefully and cautiously stitch along the facing 2 millimeters from the seam, the seam allowance should be secured with the stitching. For the last step, press the facing towards the inside of the garment. Finally! You have a completed flat stitch or understitch.
How to make a continuous binding strip:
First, make a square cut out of the fabric; mark and cut along the diagonal line. Next, with the right sides together match up the two top edges. Take note that the small tip of the bottom piece should hang on the left side and the small tip of the top piece should hang on the right side. Just make sure that the layers of the fabric are arranged so that both of the tips are hanging over the same amount. Then, sew along the edge, open and press the fabric afterward. Mark the lines of the binding strip clearly, the width of the strip should suit the desired binding. Place the fabric down in front of you with the right side of the fabric facing up, fold the two longer tip back towards the center, this should create a square. Pull the upper triangle tip on the left and pull it slightly over to the left, pull the lower triangle tip over on the right and pull it slightly to the right until the lines have all shifted over one line and re-aligned with the next. Lastly, pin and sew the edges cut along the marked lines from the right to have a continuous long strip of bias binding.
It does not mean that if you have no experience in sewing, you can’t do it. You can! You just have to set aside a little patience for practice. Practice can make everything easy and perfect. Embrace your lapses and failures, it can lead you to something worthwhile. You don’t have to worry about the designs and patterns, each of us is unique and everyone is creative. Confidence will grow and it can motivate you to create original and creative pieces. Don’t worry if you are lacking with ideas, there are a couple of references to look and scan through. Patience is truly a virtue, sewing takes a lot of time. Before beginning a project, you have to do some research about the style, the fabric, and the pattern. Moreover, making one will consume most of your time.
To start sewing, you must gather the following equipment:
- Embroidery surfaces
- Tracing paper
- Transfer paper
- Marking pens and pencils
To get started, you should know and practice these steps:
- Transferring a design
- Preparing the thread
- Hoop the fabric
- Anchor the first stitch
- End the stitch
To be the one sewing your clothes is an outstanding talent! It has also been said as one of the best pastimes or hobbies a person can have. If you are thinking of picking up a new hobby, we suggest you have sewing on top of your list! It is not only a wardrobe-wise method, but it is also a budget-wise hobby, moreover, this hobby also has a great mental health benefit. Sewing can save you money in the long run, whether you are thrifty, or you want to alter, to repair and repurpose your clothes.
The clothes you made from sewing makes you stand out from the crowd. The freedom of choosing the colors, patterns of the fabric and the sewing style you choose makes it liberating.
The wonders it gives for your mental well-being is self-rewarding. The sense of achievement it gives once the project is completed. Sewing can boost your self-esteem and in turn, can help you build your confidence. The good things in sewing might invite you to start sewing! You can with practice to make it perfect, and everyone is creative.