Best Pressed

I took a fine dress making class in 2013.  The information was so useful, I just wanted to share it with everyone.

I’ve seen so many garments that turned out so bad, because they failed to press their seams after each one.  My professor told us. When you want to make a great garment, you’ll spend 4x more time at the ironing board, than you will at the sewing machine.  I did this and I’m glad I did.

In the beginning, I wanted to just hurry up and get the garment done, that I was working on.  I wanted to take shortcuts, but I always turned out garments that really disappointed me and weren’t wearable.  I wanted a great garment, but I didn’t want to take the time to do things right.  After taking this class, I finally realized, I can’t have both.  I couldn’t take shortcuts and expect a professional looking garment.  I needed to take pride in my work. Sometimes, it takes hand sewing or hand basting or ironing after EVERY seam I sew, to get the best results.

 

This is how I was taught to iron after every seam  that I sew.

For every seam you sew, you’ll press it 4 times. Be sure to always use a pressing cloth. I didn’t use a pressing cloth because I just used a scrap of fabric.  It wasn’t a garment.

The first press.  After you sew the two pieces of fabric together, press, one side.  Press, don’t slide your iron over the seam.  Just hold and press.

Press 1

The second press. Now flip the fabric over and press the other side.

Press 2

The third press. Open the fabric and place the right side down.  Open and press the seam allowance open.

press 3 b

Sometimes, it’s easier to press it open on a sleeve roll or tailors ham

press 4 c

The forth press: Flip the fabric over and press the seam from the right side of the fabric.

press 6

 

press 7

I hope this helps! Have a great sewing day!

Narrow Hems- Tutorial

This hem can be used on chiffon, organza, lining, or any other type of delicate fabric.

To create a narrow hem on chiffon or organza, start by cutting your fabric about 1.25 inches longer than your desired hem length.  In the picture, I measured a 1″ hem.

1. Measure 1 1/4″ up from the raw edge of your fabric and mark your fabric. Do this all the way around your garment.

IMG_7447

2. Fold your hem on that line and press with an iron, being careful not to pull the fabric.

3. Sew as close to the fold line as you can get, without going off the fabric.

IMG_7448

4. Use duck-billed scissors and trim the hem off, cutting as close to the stitch line as you can get without cutting the threads.

IMG_7450

IMG_7455

5. Now, fold the hem up, just past the original stitch line and stitch close to the fold again.

IMG_7456

6. Press the hem again.

IMG_7457

McQueen and I – A Documentary

I found this video on Youtube of the rise and death of one of the greatest and I might add strangest British fashion designers.

While watching the documentary, I thought in certain times in his life, if this had been handled differently maybe his life could have been different, or if someone had noticed this or that, but we’ll never know.

You can watch the documentary here

Project Runway All Stars Season 5!

I’m so excited that PRAS Season 5 has begun! Is anyone else watching?  I’d love to hear what you thought of the first episode! Who is your favorite designer? you can check them out here. Has your opinion of them changed since their original season?

The only draw back for me is the DRAMA!!  I really don’t like it.  PR Junior is so much easier to watch because the kids seem to really like each other and there’s little or no back biting.

Tips, Techniques and gadgets for sewing

Tips, Techniques and Gadgets for sewing

In the upcoming posts, I’ll be discussing different types of presser feet, machine needles, a variety of stitches: machine and hand sewing.  Interfacing, stabilizers and a lot more! Including reviews of products that have made a huge difference for me.

Now, early on in my sewing journey, I used to tell myself that I needed to be the best! I held myself to such an unbelievably high standard, that sewing began to be a chore, instead of something I enjoyed. I would look at other people’s and designer’s work and think “it’s not really talent if you have to use fancy gadgets to make it look that good!”  I’m still shocked at the thoughts of that arrogant teenager.

It took many years to understand that it’s ok to use the latest and greatest gadgets and wonderful variety of presser feet for my machines.  I actually set out to own all the different feet for my particular machines. Since then, the quality of my work has improved and the stress level has gone way down. Now I want to share the information on tips, techniques and gadgets  for sewing, that will take the stress out and put the fun back in!

Check back often for product reviews.

Fashion is everywhere!

In an attempt to learn more about fashion, fashion design, and fashion business, I looked up fashion business on my podcast app and found some really great podcasts.  I realize I may be the last to know about these podcasts, due to the fact that I’m getting such a late start in the fashion business, but what I’m learning is so eye opening!

When I used to think of fashion, I thought of a woman or man that was really put together.  They looked polished, and sophisticated.

Wow! was I wrong! One of my favorite podcasts is The Seams podcast with Jacki Lyden.  You can find the website here.

I love old movies because I love the costumes but, have never given thought to cod pieces, but she give some interesting information on where they came from, why they were used and special unwritten rules when men wore them.

Did you know that in history, they put corsets on their children? Yeah, it seems odd, but their reasoning was interesting.  Check out the podcast to get all the info.

Oh! apparently, fashion is a big thing in Jockey silks and in football uniforms too!

A couple other podcasts that I like are:

New Mart Network-The New Mart.  I have a fondness for this one because I used to shop in the L.A. Textile district.

The Style Success Podcast with Mallory Sills

Have a great day!