Page 1

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d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a nu a r y 2 0 0 5

3

2004


CLEVER FIVE-STEP BAGS

DECEMBER

2004 I

JANUARY

2005

NUMBER

features

up front 6

Contributors

8

Letters

14

18

Packing garments shipping, working with border prints,

Starting and ending needles, identifying threaded bobbins, sewing circles easily, keeping deep V-necks modest

Questions for wrinkle-free

Tips seams, smoothing

76

116

32

To add embellishment and finish edges at the same time, cut facings

online sewing classes

22

For Flair and Finesse, Turn Facings Face Out in contrasting fabric and turn them to the right side of your garment

Basics

by Linda Lee

Creating ruffles

28

Fitting Add a dart at the bust

37

Winter Fashion Report: The Best Styles to Sew Classic elegance and a refined sense of femininity set the stage

or shoulder to make a

this season

gaping vest armhole fit

by Anna Mazur

44

Three Smart Approaches to Bias Pants The cutting and sewing rules for these fluid pants differ from the usual Online Extra: The author's article, "Bias

101"

by Marcy Tilton

Cover photo: Jack. Deutsch; hair and makeup: Sylvia Pichler

CREATING RUFFLES

22

BEST WINTER FASHIONS

37

TO

SEW


www.threadsmagazine.com

FINISH SHEERS WITH A FLOURISH

58

cover

48 35 Secrets for Successful Velvet Sewing Lured by the luxe, but panicked by the pile? Let our experts show you the way ...

by Saskia Wassing-Shepherd

54

To Fit Your Body, Measure Your Clothes Don't overlook your single best source of information about how you'd like your clothes to fit: the clothing you already wear the most Online Extra: Print the clothes measurement charts

by Susan Lazear

58

Finish Sheers with a Flourish Cleverly positioned trims add support and camouflage to sheer seams and edges

by Rae Cumbie

in the back 66

Machine Embroidery Design with color

72

Tools of the Trade Sewing/embroidery machine, book reviews

76

78

Index Issues

88 90

111-116

Advertiser Index/Web Directory Closures With strings attached

Quick to Make Clever five-step bags

92

Back Cover Sheer blouse

The Taunton Press Inspiration for hands-on living"


Contributors Susan Lazear ("To Fit You r Body, Measure You r Clothes") started sewing at age 1 0 because she wanted to make clothes in styles her mother wouldn't make for her. By the time she was in h i g h school, she knew she wanted a career in fashion and garmentmaking. She earned her master's deg ree i n clothi n g and texti les, enabling her to teach at the college level, which she's done on and off ever s i n ce; cu rrently, s he's a professor at San Diego Mesa Col lege. She became fascinated with computers and their possible appl ications for texti les i n the mid-'80s, when she became the proud owner of an Amiga, which was, at the time, the fastest and most capable computer for anyone i nterested in art and color. By 1 9 89, she'd started Coche n i l le Design Studio, and was a publisher and developer of computer prog rams for garment design, patternmaking, and stitch design for kn itters and other g rid-based stitching arts; you can learn more at www.coche n i l le.com. She's still an avid kn itter and sewer, and loves to combine these two skills i n the same project.

TH READS' Editor

Carol Spier

Art Director Robin L. Mazzola

Associate Editors Carol J. Fresia, Judith Neukam, Jennifer Sauer Copy/Production Editor Jennifer M. Themel Editorial Secretary April Mohr Contributing Editors

("Finish Sheers with a Flourish" and "Creating Ruffles"), of Baltimore, is a custom clothier who has sewn more than her fai r share of evening, bridal, and prom dresses. She first played with seq u i ns, beads, ruffles, and sheer fabrics while working at a tiny bridal store d u ri n g the '80s. Rae altered and repaired d resses there, in addition to fitting and sel l i n g them. Needless t o say, Rae can take o n any project her cl ients bring her these days. In fact, at the time she was developing her articles for this issue, she was creating a wedd ing dress, a mother-of-the-bride dress, and seven prom dresses, which were all hanging arou nd her basement stud io in various stages of fancy, colorful construction. Rae Cumbie

("Design with Color") is known for maki ng wearable art that's really wearable and for teaching students how to do the same. Before she began des i g n i n g her own l i ne of elegant and playful mach i ne-embroidery desig ns, Bobbi sold computer software to major corporations. She finds mach ine embroidery to be the perfect combi nation of technology and art. Her loyal fans are delighted that she's chosen this path, electing to share her talent for embellishing u nique clothes with them in the Bobbi Bullard

6

TH R E A D S

many classes she teaches around the country. View her designs at www.bullarddesigns.com. ("For Flair and Finesse, Turn Facings Face Out"), of Topeka, Kansas, is a contributing editor as wel l as the author of n ine books on creative sewing ideas for i nterior projects and fine garment sewing. She's also the Di rector of I nteriors for e.architects. Linda is the owner of the Sewing Workshop Pattern Collection, which focuses on timeless but u n ique styles for home sewers. Rounding out her portfolio is a series of machine-embroidery designs for the Embroidery Collection and a new embroidery collection for O ESD! Bern i n a. You'll see Linda in select Bern i n a advertisements, where she's featured i n the "Portrait of an Artist" series. Linda Lee

Threads

Threads

Barbara Emodi, Linda Lee, Mary Ray

Publisher Elizabeth Agren Senior Marketing Manager Karen Lutjen Marketing Manager Nancy Clark Single Copy Sales Manager Mark Stiekman

Advertising Director Jeff Dwight Advertising Sales Manager Angelyn Termini National Account Manager Tracey Lenahan Advertising Sales Support Supervisor Marjorie Brown Advertising Sales Support Associate

Debbie Valentine

("Clever Five- Step Bag") is a home interior sewing expert whose favorite job is teaching the tips and tricks for making fine home-decor projects. She covers all of the facets from fabric requ i rements and su itability to attaching the final button. Debbie's extensive experience led her to coauthor (The Taunton Press, 2002), a book with more than 50 home projects. For i nformation on her classes visit wwwDebbieValentine.com.

Sandra Betzina Sews for Your Home

Patricia Solomon

0882-7370) 064705506. 203-06470 426-8171. #123210981. $54.95 $78.95 $32.95 $96.95$6.99$38.95 $8.9$66.9 95 Threads,5506, 63 06470-5506.

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$72 retail value 40"x60" SewFit@l Pinnable Cutting Mat with purchase of six units. READER SERVICE NO. 142

d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

7


Letters FROM THE EDITO R

ber Ann Person and her "Stretch

&.

Sew"

lessons, where I first learned to sew. I still have most of her patterns, and since they

If you sew gifts or finery for the holidays (or any time, of course) you'll find inspi­ ration and support throughout this issue.

are multisized and meant to be copied, not cut out, I can still use them (however not in the same size). I am dying to try out the nice-looking pull­

Our authors share their expertise for the best ways to embel­

on pants, but I wonder if I would do better

lish sheer fabrics and sew with luxurious velvets, and explain

using a separate waistband because of my

the basics of rufflemaking. Marcy Tilton invites you to cut your

high hip. Well, anyway, I have the fabric

next pair of pants on the bias, and Debbie Valentine's quick­

and I will try them out. Ing a B au e r, M i l waukee

to-make ruffled bag just might be the perfect gift. You'll find our twice-yearly pattern review too-we've added icons to help you quickly identify petite and plus sizing as well as styles that are easy or challenging to sew. The Threads staff is planning more than our next sewing projects-we're about to celebrate our 20th anniversary and are busy creating special editorial features and show activities for the upcoming year. Our theme: Celebrating 20 Years of Sewing Inspiration. So get ready to enhance your skills and indulge your creative impulses. Carol Spier, Editor

Past issues provide marvelous inspiration As an avid subscriber of your magazine, which to me is an ongoing sewing course, I often reread old issues, learning and discov­ ering things I wasn't necessarily interested in when that issue was current. Chan a Zweig , P hi l ad e l p hi a

Machine price correction In Tools of the Trade on p. 88, issue No.

115

these did. Usually I admire the workman­

I have spent the past 10 days reading all my

ship, but feel the aesthetics leave something

Threads issues (I have 27 and wish I had

(October/November 2004), the price for the

to be desired. This striped group had some

known of the magazine at the beginning).

Innov-is 4000D was incorrect. Brother's sug­

extremely elegant results, and I'm looking

What a wonderful time I've had! It was as if

gested retail price is $7,999.

forward to seeing more about them.

I had signed up for a marvelous course in

As long as I'm writing, I may as well add

sewing and embellishing. Now I'm ready

that I think the Web site looks great. I think

to implement the many new ideas whirling

Kudos to PACC Stri ped Fabric Design Challenge ta kers

very highly of Threads and it's great that the

The article and pictures reviewing the en­

quality of the Web site is as high as that of

tries in the Striped Fabric Design Challenge

the magazine.

(Exploring Design, issue No.

115) exempli­

L o ri B e rho n , vi a e m ail

fied what I love most about Threads. The range of creativity (and obsession with de­

The editors reply: Photos o f the PACC

tail) was truly inspiring. I was taken well

2004 Striped D esign Challenge finalist

outside my normal range and given per­

garments are o n our Web site, www

mission to explore and get involved with

. threadsmagazine.com.

Next Issue's Highlights • Fabric buttons to make • Pro finishing tips • The logical order of construction

• Inspired by

Threads

fussy details that make the difference in the finished product. I like the tailoring

Ready to sew good-looking pa nts

Challenge

how-to articles as well, but if necessary,

Every one of your issues is an adventure,

garments

that information could be found in books.

and there is always at least one very special

The creative efforts of other sewers are not

article that delights, inspires, or reminds

documented anywhere else.

me of days passed.

M arg aret Kim b e l l , vi a email

In issue No. 1 15 , it was Robbie Fanning's "The Ultimate Guide to Sewing Pull-on Knit

I don't remember ever seeing Design Chal­

Pants." I remember Robbie fondly from

lenge results that impressed me as much as

other publications, and I like her. I remem-

8

TH R E A D S

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Letters

( continued )

around in my head. Thank you for a won-

very least the artists should be wearing skin

derful magazine.

coverings and respirators.

O n the roa d

D o rothy A. M il l e r, A rl ington , Va.

Je nn ifer Ove re e m , vi a em ail

The editors reply: Many previous issues of

The editors reply: Thanks for the reminder

listed here. If you attend, please stop by

Threads are still available. The index and ta­

about protein fibers. Both lois Ericson "Dye­

to say hello.

www .threads

ing with Bleach," Threads No. 72, and Karen

magazine. com. You can place an order on­

Tornow, " Negative Printing Techniques,"

International Quilt Festival

line, or by phone at 800-888-8286.

Threads No. 1 1 5 , urge caution when work­

George R. Brown Convention Center

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Houston, TX

Threads will have a booth at the shows

bles of contents are posted on

Caution for working with bleach

Michael Crisanti to comment on the tech­

Stop! I have to write to you about repeat­

niques described; he assured us only repeat­

ed articles in your magazine about using

ed extreme exposure could be harmful.

chlorine bleach for removing dyes. First, basic chemistry will tell you not to use chlorine on protein fibers (wool or silk). They will dissolve. Second, when chlorine bleach molecules are combined with dye molecules, benzene molecules, which are known carcinogens, will be released. At the

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'Twas the night before Christmas And you search in the store To find serious stitchers Great gifts they'll adore.

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activa 230 BERNINA


F R OM READERS TO R EA D E R S

Start and end seams with a fabric scrap I start seams on a scrap of fabric and continue sewing right onto the seam. At the end of the seam I run my stitching onto another fabric scrap. Of course I cut the scraps off and can use them more than once, but my method eliminates all those little threads around my sewing space and keeps thread from snarling under my fabric when I begin stitching.

-Karen Minturn Brown, Livonia, Mich.

Use a whetstone to smooth machine needles

and end machine-sewn seams, but my method is much neater.

of each bobbin. With j ust one

I was without extra needles and

I begin and end seams using

look I instantly know the kind

had to continue sewing when

short machine stitches-such

of thread I've picked up.

a needle burr started catching

as 18 to 20 stitches per inch. I

-Peg g y White,

do this by either changing the

S p r i n gfield , M o .

in my fabric and making my machine noisy. I tried using a

stitch length on my machine

whetstone (usually designated

for the first and last

inch

Keep a deep V-neck modest

for sharpening kitchen knives)

of sewing, or by holding the

Here's a never-fail way to hold

to remove the burr-it worked

fabric tightly in front of the

a deep "V" front or back neck­

beautifully. Afterward my fabric

needle for the first

stitches,

line against your body. First, cut

didn't catch on the needle and

so the feed dogs can't pull the

a piece of l/s-inch-wide elastic

the machine ran quietly. With

fabric while it sews. This way

twice the measurement of your

this discovery I plan to extend

I have a much smoother seam

waist. Stitch (or pin) the center

the life of my needles and may­

than backstitching allows.

be some of yours as well. -Terri Ragot,

5

1(2

Neat seams without backstitching

TH R E A D S

of the elastic inside your gar­

-Susan Lafo ,

ment at the base of the V-neck­

S pring Val ley, Calif.

line. For a front V-neck, put on

G roton, Mass.

14

write "poly" or "cot" on the side

the garment, reach underneath

Find the right threaded bobbin

posite directions behind your

to wrap the elastic ends in op­

I use a permanent marker to

waist and back around to the

I've seen instructors recom­

label the type of thread I've

front, and then safety-pin or tie

mend backstitching to begin

wound on my plastiC bobbins; I

the ends together. The elastic


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READER SERVICE NO. 48

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15


Tip S

(coctio",,)

holds the base o f the "V" close to your body. Share your tips,

-Li n d a Viel haber,

tricks, and sew­

Sterl i n g Hei g ht s , M i ch.

ing/embellish­

Send us details,

Shed light on serger threading and clea n i n g

sketches, pho­

I've discovered that a back­

tos, or samples.

packers' headlamp makes great

We'll pay for

hand's-free illumination for

each item we

dark, tight places, like inside a

ing resources_

Wearlampa backpacker' s head to shed inSide a 'TIachine.

light

publish. Please

serger. A headlamp consists of

send them to:

a strap headband that holds a

as

Threads Tips,

tiny, very bright lamp on the

lamps cost from $ 10

PO Box 5506,

forehead; the light therefore

the lightweight, less-expensive

Newtown, CT

aims where you're looking. By

versions are all you need for

ric bag for each foot. I used the

06470-5506.

using a headlamp I can see the

this purpose.

built-in alphabets to write the

www . campmor.com. Head­

to $50, and

tice new stitches, use up extra fabric, and get my presser feet organized, I made a little fab­

dust and lint in my serger when

-M arg aret-Ann El l i s ,

name of the foot on each bag,

I clean and the path when I'm

M as s il l o n , O hio

and decorative stitches for em­

threading.

bellishment. I put the foot and

Learn ing a new machine

a small blurb about what it does

good backpacking stores, or

For a fun way to get acquainted

and how to use it inside the bag

from mail-order sources such

with my new machine, prac-

and store them all in a small

You can buy headlamps at

box near my machine. -Mi chelle Ne wco m e , Atl an t a

Sew a circle easily Sewing a perfect circle is tricky, but my method simplifies the process. I find a shallow, round object that is about

1i2 inch smaller in diameter

Stabilizer frees up sticky sewing For drag-free sewing, I tried to use tissue paper between the machine and an extraordinari­

than the circle I want to sew. Depending on size,

ly sticky vinyl, but found that

the top of a vitamin bottle often fits the bill, as do

tearing away the tissue paper

flat-topped lids or mint tins. I cut a circular piece

distorted my stitches. I then

of fine sandpaper to fit the tin and attach it with

replaced the tissue with clear,

double-sided tape.

water-soluble Solvy stabilizer and discovered that I could see

I then position my fabric with the needle on the circumference

where I was sewing, the stabiliz­

where I want to start sewing. I lower the presser foot, hold the

er tore away without distorting

tin (sandpaper-side down) against the outer edge of my presser

the stitches, and any remaining

foot, and start sewing. The tin acts as a template, the sandpaper

whiskers of stabilizer dabbed

holds the tin to my fabric and causes it to rotate as I sew a very

away with a bit of water. Sub­

nice circle. I sew slowly and stop with the needle down and lift the presser foot to ease the fabric if it begins to pucker. I've even achieved excellent results using a decorative stitch.

-Judith Long, Cranberry Townshi p, Pa.

16

TH R E A D S

sequently, I found that older, slightly dried-out Solvy works even better for this kind of sticky sewing. -Li n d a Soeder, Kit chen e r, O N, C an ad a


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A N S W E R S TO Y O U R S rW I f\.J G Q U I LT I N G , A N D E=M B r l I S H I N G O U E R l r S

Packing garments for wrin kle-free shippin g What's the best way t o ship a garment? I want t o make sure it arrives at its destination looki n g fresh and wrin kle-free. -Col/een Davis, Enfield, Conn.

With a bit o f planning

use a large box, and pad the bot­

and the use of appropri­

tom, top, and sides with tissue

tissue and also

ate packing materials,

or qUilt batting. Fold the gar­

waterproofs the

you can make sure your gar­

ment to fit the box, and place

garment. It's also

ment will emerge from its box

tissue between the folds. If the

a snap to unpack

looking freshly ironed-not as if

fabric is prone to wrinkles,

and immediately

it was slept in the night before.

loosely stuff sleeves, legs, and

hang the item.

First, plan for inclement

other areas with crushed tissue

weather: use a coated box (most

or small plastic bags filled with

the box shut with

tic substitutes for

Finally,

tape

courier services provide them

crumpled paper or plastic foam

sturdy packing

free of charge) or line the inside

pieces. Fill in any empty spaces

t a p e- m a s ki n g

of an uncoated box with plastic

with lightly packed tissue or

tape and narrow

dry-cleaning bags. Also avoid

bubble wrap.

transparent tape

colored packing materials (such

If you're packing several gar­

as colored tissue paper), which

ments, layer them as if you were

enough and tend

will bleed when wet.

packing a suitcase (see "Ques­

aren't

strong

to slip or break. These simple

Pad your packing to keep

for

steps will ensure dry, wrinkle­

wrinkles at bay.

of wrinkles. The longer a gar­

details). Or do what contribut-

free travel for your sewn mas-

ment stays in a box, the more

ing editor Linda Lee does when

terpieces.

Next, keep the garment free

tions" in Threads No.

III

susceptible it is to wrinkling, so

she ships garments to shows:

ship using overnight or second­

place each garment on a hang-

day delivery. And never cram

er, cover it with a dry-cleaning

secretary, and s hips hundreds o

your garment into a small box;

bag, then fold the garment and

garments every year to readers,

doing so will set folds. Instead,

plastiC to fit the box. The plas-

authors, and sewing shows.

Working with border prints How do you correctly determ ine where to place pattern pieces on fabric that has a border? -Deb Kruczek, Pembroke Pines, Fla.

18

TH R E A D S

April Mohr is Threads' editorial

j

A border print fabric,

commodate the pieces if you

which has a pattern po­

are turning them so the hem is

sitioned along the sel-

parallel to the selvage. For ex­

vage, can inspire many creative

ample, you'll be able to fit pat­

garment or home-decor designs.

tern pieces for a floor-length

The border can look striking

dress on 54-inch-wide home­

when positioned along the hem

decor yardage, but you won't fit

of a skirt, dress, top, pants, or

the same pieces on 35- or 45-

sleeve, as well as in a curtain,

inch-wide goods. How far the

shade, or bed skirt hem. I also

border sits above the hem fold

like to use border prints in the

is dependent upon its distance

mitered flange of a pillow sham.

from the selvage.

As you plan your layout,

I also suggest making some

make sure the fabric will ac-

slight pattern adjustments to


A WHOLE LOT OF PRACTICE.

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Q u esti o n s

(conti n u ed)

perfectly match the border de­ sign at the seams. Whenever possible, straighten belled or tapered sleeves and legs as well as shaped side seams. Always

r----

lay out your pattern pieces on a Single layer of fabric. Place a dot on the seamlines of each

interruption from one piece to

piece to indicate the center (or

the next. Then space out your

distance from the hemline

other key point) of the border

pattern pieces along the bor­

on adjoining pieces; match or mirror motifs at the seams.

pattern, then line it up accord­

der so that the motifs mirror,

ingly. If a motif is repeated in

match, or look as attractive as

the border, as in the example

possible at the seams.

Keep border prints an even

above, you'll need to decide

a mo use-cl i ck away

School is j ust

To learn sewing techniques, pattern drafting, and garment design from the comfort of your

whether the motif should be

Debbie Valentine is the coauthor

centered on each pattern piece

oj Sandra BeLzina

or if it should continue without

Home

Sews [or Your

(The Taunton Press, 2002).

The sco op on online classes I've been hearing a lot about online sewing classes lately. What classes are offered and how do they work? -Jennifer Som ers, Jamaica Plain, Mass.

own home, visit these Web sites: The Cost u m e Classroom (classes on costuming, including bustles, gloves, and parasols)

Sewing used to be a soli-

subj ect. When you sign up for

pleted project to be critiqued by

www.costu meclassroom.com

tary hobby, learned from

a class, you'll receive a series

the instructor.

family members and in

of downloadable lessons that

Most Web sites offer free sam-

home-economics programs, but

you can study at your leisure.

pie lessons, which give you a

and design detail courses)

not anymore. Sewers can now

Each lesson contains detailed

chance to test out the process,

www.mysewingclasses.com

tap into the Internet and learn

instructions, step-by-step pho-

the quality of the classes, and

My Sewing Classes

(creative pattern d rafting, draping,

PatternReview.com

from like-minded sewers around

tographs, illustrations, some-

the site's technical support. I've

(beginner and advanced sewing,

the world. Several Web sites of-

times even video clips, and

provided a list of sites that offer

serger, and embroidery classes)

fer online sewing classes that

usually concludes with a short

online classes at left, and also

www.PatternReview.com

cover a variety of topics: begin-

assignment.

recommend that you inquire

Sew Fast Sew Easy

ner, intermediate, and advanced

The price of a class also pro-

about learning from fashion

(online video lessons)

sewing and serger techniques,

vides access to some sort of in-

design schools or universities.

www.sewfastseweasy.com

pattern drafting and alteration,

teractive discussion: an online

More and more of these institu-

costuming, and embroidery, to

message board, an email-based

tions are offering online degree

name j ust a few.

mailing list, or real-time chats

or certificate programs.

Sew 'n' Sew: The Sewing Resource for Des i g n i n g Women

Online classes cost signifi-

for live discussions. With some

style sessions)

cantly less than taking classes

courses, you may receive a kit in

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TH R E A D S


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B a sics C re a t i n g r u ff l e s

by R ae C um b i e

G at h e ri n g t u r n s str i p s of fa b r i c i nto a v a r i ety of fa s h i o n a b l e fr i l l s

I

f I had to describe ruffles

mend avoiding are super-thick,

by-step application process in

in just one word, that word

unyielding types such as bro­

your garment's construction.

would be fun . They're easy

cade, tapestry, or heavy denim.

and enjoyable to make, and a

In terms of creativity, everything

trip to wear. And I absolutely

else is fair game.

love the versatility of ruffles:

3-4-2 choice

depending on their size, place­

The

ment, and fabrication, the over­

Don't get me wrong, ruffles

Depth and length considerations Once you've made the basic style and application choices, decide how deep you'd like

all effect can be soft or crisp,

aren't all play and no work­

the ruffle to b e from top to

sophisticated or perky, subtle

they do require planning, which

hem. Then give thought to the

or over-the-top. Ruffles can be

I call the 3-4-2 choice. There are

amount of fullness you'd like so

fashioned from all sorts o f fab­

three types of ruffles: strip (al­

you know how long the ungath­

rics, even ribbon and novelty

so known as straight), header,

ered strip should be-commonly

trims, so I urge you to experi­

and double, as described be­

anywhere from two to three

ment. The only fabrics I recom-

low; four ways to gather them

times the length of the gar­

(see p. 24); and two application

ment edge it will be applied to.

methods (see p. 26). Whenever

The exact ratio depends on the

you wish to use a ruffle, sim­

thickness and drape o f the fab­

ply choose a type that will look

ric (lightweight or sheer fabrics

smashing on your garment, de­

generally look better gathered

cide the best way to gather it,

more tightly than heavy ones),

and anticipate how you will in­

the ruffle's depth (usually, the

corporate the appropriate step-

deeper the ruffle, the more full-

3 types of r u ff l es Ruffles come in three iterations: strip, header, and double. All three types can be cut on the straight grain or on the bias.

Strip A rectangle o f fabric finished on o n e edge (or cut on the fold) and gathered along the seamline of the other. The gathered edge is sewn into a seam or to an unfinished garment edge.

Header A rectangle o f fabric finished ( o r folded) on both edges a n d gathered a t a determined distance below the top edge. It's then topstitched to a garment along the gathered line.

Double A rectangle of fabric finished (or folded) on both edges and gathered along its center. It's then topstitched to a garment along the gathered line.

22

TH R EA D S


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READER SERVICE NO. 1 51


4 ways to g a t h e r

U s e a ruff l e r attach m ent o r g a t h e ring foot

Mark the fabric strip at key match points, such as the center front and side seams. (Place safety pins just below the seamline; they won't get lost when you begin gathering.) Gather the fabric along the

A ruffler attach ment

seamline using one of these methods:

allows you to m a ke a

Sew two rows of ba sting stitc h e s

perfectly pleated ruffle.

Machine-sew two rows o f long

A gathering foot sews

basti ng stitches, one o n each side of

nonadjustable gathers.

the sea mline; leave long thread tails.

Refer to your sewing

Tie the top tails together, then tie

machine manual for

the bobbin tails together. Working

specific instructions.

through a small area at one time, gently pull the bobbin tails to evenly gather the fabric.

Zigzag o v e r c l e a r e l a st i c M a ch ine-couch a h ea vy t h re a d

For a stretchy ruffle,

For tulle o r other loosely woven fabrics, or

cut clear elastic to the

anytime the strip is very long, cut quilting or

desired gathered length.

buttonhole thread a bout 10 i n ches longer than

Quarter-mark the fabric

the strip. Secure the thread to the wrong side

strip and elastic; pin

of the strip with a pin, leaving a S-inch thread

the elastic to the strip's

tail. Zigzag (set the stitch length and width to

wrong side, matching

4mm to S m m) over the thread. Pull the thread

the marks; then zigzag

to gather the fabric, then pin the thread to the

over it, stretching the

fabric to secure the gathers.

elastic to fit.

ness it needs), and, of course,

The fin ish comes first

your personal preference. There

The next step is to hem one

is no need to start brushing up

edge (or both) of the strip. This

on your math skills here, j ust

might sound counterintuitive,

test the ruffle-to-garment edge

but it is best to hem now while

ratio with a few scraps of your

the strip is flat. It is very awk­

fabric until you're pleased with

ward to finish an edge on a

the results, then cut your ruffle

gathered strip.

accordingly.

that is consistent with the fab­

few fabric strips together to get

ric and overall mood of your

the length you desire. Once

ruffle. Hand-rolled, serged, or

your pieced strip is gathered,

baby hems are ideal for most

the joining seams will be barely

ruffles, but a very deep ruffle

visible. But to further downplay

can handle a deeper hem. For

1

the seams, often cut and piece

24

TH R E A D S

Choose a hem technique

Often you'll need to piece a

a crisp edge with attitude, add

the strips in increments that

a binding of bias fabric or rib­

will ensure the ruffle seams line

bon. If you'd prefer to forego a

up with the garment seams.

hem altogether, cut the ruffle


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december 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

25


B a siC S

(cooti o ",d)

2 ways to attach Strip ruffles must be inserted in a seam o r attached to a n unfinished ga rment edge. Header or double ruffles must be topstitched to the right side of a garment, usua lly as a last step.

I n s e rt a s t r i p r u f f l e i n a s e a m o r a t t a c h to a n e d g e Align and baste. Pin the ruffle to the garment, right sides

together; a l i g n match pOints and m a ke sure the gathers are evenly spaced. Machine- or ha nd-baste in place. If the gathers i n the seam are thick, press with the tip of your iron to flatten them. If you are i n serting the ruffle i n a seam or between the garment and its facing, m a ke sure the right side of the ruffle will be i n the desired orientation after sewing.

Sew, press, and finish. If you are

inserting the ruffle in a seam or between the garment and

with the loose edge on

its facing, p i n the

the fabric's selvage.

second garment piece

Once the edge (or

to the piece with

edges) is finished,

the attached ruffle,

gather the fabric fol­ lowing the instruc­

garment right sides together, a nd then sew just inside the basting l i n e. For both

tions on p. 24. Then

edge and seam applications, lightly press the ruffle away from

apply the ruffle to

the garment, and the seam allowances toward the ga rment.

your garment using

Trim the seam a llowances to

one of the methods

a ppropriate, bind or serge the seam a llowances.

outlined at right. All that's left after that is to put any

To p s t i tc h h e a d e r o r

final touches on

d o u b l e r u ff l e s to t h e

your garment and

g a r m e n t s u rf a c e

wear it. Nothing will make you feel

Align and baste. Pin the ruffle

more feminine and

to the garment, a l i g n i ng match

smart than a fancy

points. M a ke sure the gathers are

r uffle . . . or two . . . o r

evenly spaced. Machine- o r hand¡

three. Rae Cum bie is a custom clothier who sp ecializes i n s p ecial-occasion a n d bridal garments.

baste in place.

Topstitch. Topstitch along both

sides o f t h e basting l i ne. I f desired, cover the topstitching with a piece of ribbon or trim, and h a n d- or m a ch i n e-stitch to secure.

Y4

i n ch ; topstitch if desired. If


e R E A T E 0

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27


F itting Ad d a dart at the bust or sh o u lder to make a gaping vest armh ole fit Every vest I make has gaping arm holes. I often have to put a dart i nto the arm hole after I 've made the vest. What causes this problem ; is there a way to fix it without a dart ; and how can I fix it before makin g the vest? -Penelope Kogan, Danbury, Conn.

Fa b r i c c a n ' t w ra p s m o o t h l y i n t w o d i re ct i o n s at o n ce bends over and around your hand, ripples result. A similar thing happens when fabric wraps over your bust.

aren Howland replies: The

over it simultaneously, folds or

cause of your gaping arm­

ripples occur at its edge. These

Knowing how darts work helps you fix a gape

hole is that the pattern

folds you observe in the fabric

Imagine the shape of a wagon

you are using is not contoured

are exaggerated versions of

wheel like the one below drawn

to match your curves. To best

what happens on a vest when

on a piece of fabric. If you sew

illustrate why the gapes occur,

the fabric tries to curve around

consecutive spoke lines together

take a stable woven fabric and

the bust (or back) in all direc­

to make a dart, two things hap­

drape it over your hand. Notice

tions at once, as in the bottom

pen: the circumference of the

how the fabric falls into folds,

left drawing: a ripple of fab-

circle (wheel) is reduced and

as in the top left drawing. Fabric

ric-essentially an unstitched

the flat circle becomes a cone.

can bend around the body, or it

dart-escapes at the armhole,

As long as the spokes are the

can bend over it, but when you

which is the closest open edge,

same distance apart at the cir-

ask it to bend both around and

and makes the armhole gape.

cumference, the angle between any two consecutive spokes is the same, and it makes no

H o w t o re p o s i t i o n a d a rt Think of a dart as the space between spokes on a wheel, with your bust point at the hub. Sew two consecutive spokes together, and a cone will form. Sew a different pair of consecutive spokes together, and the cone will be the same shape even though the seam is on a different axis. To move a dart from one position to another on a pattern, pin the dart closed and then slash the pattern from any point on the edge toward the dart point, along an imaginary spoke. Make the cut as long as is needed for the pattern to lie flat when the cut edges are spread apart. This spread opening is the new dart, its angle will be the same as the angle of the original dart.

Wheel

® Cone

difference which pair you sew together-you'll always get the same results. And even if the spokes were extended beyond the circumference, making the dart appear larger because of its length, the size of the dart angle, which I call the dart con­ trol, would remain the same. Herein lies the fix for your gaping armholes: reduce the cir­ cumference of the armhole with a dart that makes the ripple dis­ appear. And once you discover the size of the dart angle (the control), you can rotate the dart around the apex (or hub, using the wheel analogy), away from the armhole to exit on any edge of the pattern piece. For

28

TH R E A D S


e R E A T E 0

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READER SERVICE NO. 1 54

d e c e m b e r 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

29


F it t i n g

(co ntin ued)

garments, some exit points just

order to reduce the circumfer­

need to distribute elsewhere on

look better.

ence of the armhole.

the pattern piece.

Pin out the gape

pattern tissue or muslin by pin­

Relocate the armhole dart

The ideal strategy for eliminat­

ning the ripples into darts in

Decide whether you want to add

ing excess fabric at the armhole

the front and back armholes as

a new dart or enlarge an exist­

is to correct the pattern's fit be­

needed to take up the excess

ing one. If you want to add a

fore you cut out the fabric. As

fabric. You'll end up with a

dart, determine where you want

you'll see, you can accomplish

temporary dart in the armhole.

it to be positioned, and mark

this by adding or enlarging a

This pinned-out dart establishes

the place where it will cross the

bust, shoulder, or other dart in

the amount of dart control you

pattern edge. (For some ideas,

Have a friend help you fit the

see the illustrations at left.) Cut the pattern [rom this mark

T h e r i g h t d a rt p o s i t i o n i s a m at t e r of p refe re n c e

toward the bust (or shoulder

Once you understand the principle of dart control, you can explore myriad ways to relocate the excess fabric that makes a vest armhole gape.

blade) apex (not to the exist­ ing dart point). Or to enlarge the existing dart, cut along its

Move the excess fabric to a traditional d a rt position

I n corporate d art control i nto seam s

center line. With the fitting dart

If your vest has

still pinned at the armhole, flat­

princess seams

ten the pattern, allowing it to

passing through

spread along the dart line you

the shoulders, move the excess

j ust cut. Tape the pattern to

fabric from the

permanently close the pinned­

armhole to the top

out armhole dart. Patching the

of the princess seam.

If there are

tissue, tape the new dart open­

princess seams

ing into place; then mark its

at the armholes,

seamlines, tapering them to

they offer a natural place for remov­ ing the excess,

meet 1 to

11/2 inches before the

bust (or shoulder blade) apex.

as does a yoke.

Or try a dartless solution I f the armhole ripples are Fitted vests are often shaped with darts placed hori­

minimal, this fix will give the

zontally and vertically at the bust; or dropped vertically

control of a dart without actu­

from the middle of the shoulder; or extending up diagonally from the side seam. Add the extra fabric

ally being one. Gather or ease

from the vest armhole to an existing dart or move it

the excess fabric into the arm­

to create a dart in one of these positions.

hole seam and secure it with stay tape , thus reducing the circumference of the armhole.

Nontraditional d art positions create design i nterest

You'll need to adjust the fac­ ing or the lining correspond­

Relocating the dart control often

ingly, preferably by darting

enhances a design. You can break a

the excess out of the pattern.

single dart into two or more smaller darts as part of the repositioning. The positions don't need to be the same on each half of a garment.

30

TH R E A D S

Karen Howland wri tes and fi ts i n C hi l licothe, Ill.


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d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

31


A straightforward facing steps into the limelight. (Blouse: Sewing Workshop

Pattern Collection, Elle Sh irt, adapted)

32


Fo r F l ai r and F i n esse , Tu rn Fac i ngs Face Out or many of us, learn­

ing to apply a facing

was one of our earli­ est garment-sewing lessons. We stitched, trimmed,

graded,

pressed, understitched, and pressed again, hoping for a neat, clean finish at the neckline or armhole. The goal was for this

To add e m be l l ish m ent and fin ish edges at the same t i m e , cut

fac i n g s i n contrast i n g fabric and t u rn them to the rig ht s i d e o f yo u r garment

facing to be invisible when the garment was worn. But there's

by L i n d a Lee

no reason, beyond garment­ construction convention, for hiding facings. In fact, if you

echo the precise shape of the

think about reversing your fac­

opening it finishes, made from

ment applied to a lightweight

ings and turning them to the

a fold-over fabric extension (of­

garment. And they can do all of

outside, you'll realize they offer

ten used on straight edges and

these things without ever being

terrific opportunities for decora­

called a self-facing), or cut from

in direct view.

tive design. So let your facings

a straight strip of bias fabric,

do double duty: finish garment

its role is to create a crisp edge

edges while adding style.

while also providing stability

Faci ngs can look great doing their job On the other hand, why not

and support.

Faci ngs have a job to do

stabilizer for surface embellish­

If you're working with a very

spotlight these helpful struc­

soft or unstable fabric, interfaced

tural pieces by moving them to

garment construction, used to

faCings will add body where you

the public side of your garment?

finish edges at necklines, arm­

need it most, without altering

Making this change can be as

holes, front and back openings,

the hand of the outer fabric.

simple as reversing the applica­

hems, vents, and slits. Whether

Facings can increase the opac­

tion of an existing facing: sew

a facing is drafted separately to

ity of a sheer fabric, or serve as a

it with its right side against the

Facings are a classic element in

d e c e m b e r 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

33


G i ve t h e e d g e s s o m e re a l e d g e Turn and topstitch the edge For a tidy finish, turn the facing edge u nder and stitch it down to fasten i t to the garment. Sew a l i n e o f staystitch i n g

1/4

inch from the raw e d g e of the

facing, and use the stitc h i n g line as a g u ide when pressing the raw edge und er. The staystitc h i n g controls a n y stretch on the b i a s o r a r o u n d c u rves. Consider using a narrow, l i g h t fusible tape to hold the facing i n place before topstitc h i n g.

Line the facing One of the neatest ways to finish a facing edge i s to create a l i n i n g for it. Simply cut a second facing in the same or a contrasting

(

fabric consider using a lig htweight fabric if

)

the facing itself is heavy or b u l ky . With right sides together, j o i n the facing and its l i n i n g along the outer edges; trim, c l i p, and u nderstitch the seam allowances, and t u rn the facing right-side out. Sew the facing to the garment; leave the facing edge free to show off the lining.

Add a binding for a clean, defined contour Use a bias strip of fabric to make a binding for the facing. To save time, wrap the loose edge of the bias stri p to the wrong side of the facing, and use a single pass of stitch ing to attach the binding to the facing unde rside as you anchor the facing to the garment.

Pipe the edge Sew narrow, decorative piping along the facing edge, then stitch i n the ditch to anchor the facing.


with these fi n i s h e s

wrong side of the garment, then turn it to the outside. It's easy to do something even more creative. Reshaping

Double up the facing to

the outer edge of a facing is a

create a layered effect

very straightforward bit of pat足

Layer two or more facings and leave the outer edges loose. Try using contrasting or sheer fabrics, and vary

tern drafting: either draw a new contour at the edge of the facing piece provided in the pattern, or make your own pattern by tracing the garment edge to be

the width and shape of the

faced, and designing a shape

faci ngs for interest.

that appeals to you. To make your exposed facing

Opt for an unfinished finish

Take a cue from cu rrent

into something special, consider cutting it from a contrasting fab足 ric (even a simple textural con足 trast will add an elegant touch),

fashion trends and leave

embellishing the facing or its

the edges of your facing

edge, layering two or more

raw. To control frayi ng,

facings, or attach-

add one or more rows of

ing the facing in

stitching along the edge;

an unconven足

you can use this stitching to fasten the free edge

tional way. You can

of the facing to the garment if you wish. If you'd l i ke your faci ng to ravel on all edges, apply the fac i ng to the garment with an exposed seam: s imply lay the facing, wrong-side down, on the garment right side, and sew. Adjust or trim the seam allowances as needed.

Outline a large facing with piping to create a princess"seam look. (Jacket: Sewing

Workshop Pattern Collection, New Yorker Jacket)

/


even use facings as casings for

made easy," Threads, No. 108,

In a traditional facing appli­

Next time you select a pattern,

drawstrings or elastics. Since fac­

pp. 20-22 for more informa­

cation, the allowances of the

take a look at the configuration

ings are a relatively small part of

tion), you'll need to decide on

seam joining the facing to the

of the facing pieces and see if

a garment, they provide a great

a couple of other points when

garment are understitched,

there's a way to use these shapes

place to play with surface-design

you're putting a facing on the

that is, sewn to the facing us­

to add interest to your garment.

techniques or to showcase a fab­

exterior of a garment-namely,

ing a straight stitch. This step

Once you think about facings as

ulous, expensive fabric, without

how to handl e intersecting

prevents the facing from roll­

opportunities for design, you'll

seams that might peek into

ing to the outside of the gar­

wonder why you ever kept them

view (such as a shoulder seam

ment. When the facing is on

tucked in and hidden.

Plan ahead for neatness as wel l as specia l effects

with a neck facing), and how

the exterior of the garment, the

to finish the facing edges. For

understitching should instead

L inda Lee, of Topeka, Kan . , is a

In addition to the usual steps

more on seam and edge finish­

attach the seam allowances

designer, the owner of The Sewing

required for creating and at­

es, see "Seam finishes," Threads

to the body of the garment, to

Workshop Pattern Collection, and

taching a facing (see "Facings

No. 98, pp. 20-22.

keep it from rolling out.

a contributing editor to Threads.

going way over the top.

Sew an inside-out seam under the facing One way to conceal i n tersect i n g g a rment seam a l low­ a n ces under a n exterior facing is with a French or flat-felled seam. Better still, sew a portion of the seam inside out so the al lowances will be covered by the facing.

RS

Prepare the facing and the garment seam al lowances

Stitch the garment seam i n two sections

Attach the facing

Join the facing pieces, if more than one, to

Sew the garment seam wrong sides

create a complete facing; leave the garment

together from the faced opening end

facing right side against the garment

seam unstitched. Measure the finished fac­

to the clip, then reverse the seam

ing width at the point of intersection with

allowances and continue se wing with

the garment seam, and mark this length

the garment right sides together. Press

on the garment seamline. Clip the garment

the allowances open under the area to

seam allowances to the stitching line

be faced, and finish the remaining seam

about

allowances as desired.

36

1/2

inch inside the mark.

TH R E A D S

Sew the facing to the garment, with the wrong side. Trim, grade, and clip the seam allowances as necessary, and press the facing to the garment right side. Fasten the facing edge to the garment.


wi nter fashion report ...." IVERS. ry RY �

the 8S

Classic elegance and a refined sense of femininity set the stage this season by A n n a M a z u r

he latest fashions are inspired by vintage silhouettes, especially from the 1 940s, and are cut from the most luxurious of fabrics-satins, tweeds, velvets, sheers, and fur. The new twist is the way texture, color, and embellishment (see "The season's fine points" on p. 43) are combined: think country estate meets old Hollywood glamour. This season's offerings include a variety of silhouettes-something to suit every figure. Modest coverage is also the name of the game: hemlines are longer, waistlines higher, and tops skim the body. I encourage experimentation with proportions-try a fit-and-flare combo like a shrunken jacket and full skirt, or opt for long-and-Iean with a skinny jacket and pants. The patterns highlighted on the following pages are easy to wear and fun to sew; even basic styles take on a new role when crafted in lush fabrics and pep­ pered with a little ornamentation. This season is a sewer's dream: good lines, sumptuous fabrics, and fine details.

LOOK FOR THESE ICONS O N TH E PATTE R N REVIEWS

• PETITE OPTI O N S + I N CLU DES S I Z E 24 AND U P

.... CHALLE N G I NG TEC H N I Q U E S • FAST EASY

&


jackets & Goats

• Capes, shrugs, capelets, ponchos • M i l itary parkas and A-li ne coats • Shrun ken, belted blazers • Exaggerated collars Design

&

Sew Patterns, In

the Studio-Three (www.design

(www .sullivans.net) is a semifitted A-line coat that comes in two lengths (35 1/2 or 4 1 % in. long/size 1 0) and includes three pocket variations and two collar styles (4 or 6 in. deep). The wider collar is designed for fur, but we also suggest creating it from the fashion fabric and encrusting it with beads. I nstructions are so precise that a beginner could easily tackle this coat. Seam and hem allowances aren 't included. (Sized 8-20, for

andsew.com) lends itself to a variety of wearable art renditions. The jacket (30 in. long/size M) is extremely easy to put together and i ncludes i nstructions for adding shaped facings, un usual button placement, decorative topstitching, and shaped inserts to the seam at the top of the sleeve. A lining is optional and fabric choices can range from coat weights to soft silks. A pullover blouse (23 1/2 in. long) is also offered and sports a three-piece sleeve and low armhole. (Sized XS-XXL, for

Neue Mode S232 1 5

busts 3 1 1/2-4 1 in.)

busts 30-48 in.)

+.

- --: \ -��� � .

-.'

:------------:::::::= ::::::-=_.� =� �}�������1������-

IL

(www.simplicity .com) has it all-two poncho styles and a loose-fitting pullover top, as well as a scarf and top-knot hat. All items accommodate a variety of figure types; our tester tells us that a petite person m ig ht want to scale down the dimensions a bit. Fleece is fine for the pUllover, scarf, and hat, but a drapey fabric such as soft novelty wool or some type of hand-woven fabric is a better choice for the ponchos. This pattern is fun, qu ick to make, and offers n ice embellish ment ideas i ncluding fringed edges, ribbon trim, or rows of hand-stitched yarn. It is a great choice for teens or young sewers. (Sized Misses XS­

Marfy 8839 (www.marfy.it) is an oversized mil itary parka with th ree­ piece sleeves and a detachable hood. This coat screams to be personalized with fur, novelty trims, and fancy hardware. Going beyond the trad itional fabrics for such a design, our tester envisions a dressy coat of silk duchess satin with feather and bead trim along the hood. As with all Marfy patterns, there are no instructions or seam and hem allowances, but the construction is straightforward.

XL, for busts 301/2-46 in.)

(Sized 1 2- 1 6, for busts 34-39 in.)

S i m p l icity

Neue Mode 5232 1 5

McCall's 4662

Petite Plus Patterns 202 (www .petitepluspatterns.com) is a roomy tailored jacket (26 in. long/size 20) but offers subtle shaping in all the right places. This wardrobe essential is fully lined, has double welt-flap pockets, a two-piece sleeve with mock vent, and two neckline options. Includes detailed instructions for sewing and customizing the fit. (Sized 1 4 -24,

for busts 40-50 in.)

• + £.

4782

} �

+•


dresses

• Waist-defi ning, belted styles • Vintage fit-and-flare frocks • Jersey wrap dresses

The Sewing Workshop

(www .sewingworkshop.com) is a semi­ fitted, funnel-neck shirt (28 in. long/size M) that can be worn as a blouse or jacket, depending on the fabric used. For a more curvy look, the tester recommends nipping in the darts and side seams at the waist. There are no facings (all edges are sim ply turned under and topstitched) so using a fabric with more body prevents the neckline from flopping over. The faced buttonholes are a nice touch, but you can use oversized snaps instead. (Sized XS-XXL, for busts

Collection, Tribeca Shirt

3 1 -46 in.)

Silhouettes by Peggy Sagers,

(www .silhouettepatterns.com) is a l i ned, notched-collar, knee-length dress with princess seams that gently follow the curve of the body; handy pockets fit i nto the side panels. To personalize the dress, use contrast fabric for the u pper collar, facing, and pockets. The instructions are nicely organized into sewing sessions and tips are sprin kled throughout; narrower seam allowances speed the sewing process and mini mize clipping. Sagers' pattern sizes are based on finished garment measurements and include ease.

Jene's Dress 4 1 00

+

(Sized 1 -8 \11/, for finished bust measurements of 34-57 in.)

+

(www.loeshinse design.com) is a dropped-waist, jewel- or V-neck dress (49 in. long and 84 in. at hem/size XL) that can be sewn in a day. The wrap panels of the V-neck version have two tucks at the waistline, which flatter a smaller bust; for a fuller bust, you may need to remove the tucks. The fitted set-in sleeve is attractive even for a larger arm, and the skirt godets elongate the look, add comfort, and can be embellished. Although this dress can be sewn with a conventional machine, using a 5-thread serger made the process a breeze for our tester, who says that the envelope photos don't do justice to the great fit and flow of this dress. (Sized XXS-XXL,

Simplicity 5876 is classic movie­ star g lamour-simple when viewed from the front, but jaw-d ropping from the back with its plunging V-neck and plain or tiered skirt godet. There are two sleeve options (a double-layer circular flounce or 3/4-length sleeve with partially attached cuff); a waistline cummerbund and circular hand bag (8 in. diameter) are also included. If you add weighty embellishment to the godet (layering, fringe, beads), stabilize the short center­ back seam as well as the V-neck to prevent distortion at the back hemline. For bustier women, the underarm zipper could be moved to center back to make it easier to get in and out of the dress. There are two darts at the bust; additional darts will improve the fit for larger sizes. (Sized Misses 6-20, for

for busts 33-47 in.)

busts 301/2-42 in.)

Loes Hinse Design, Portofino Dress 5304

• + •

Folkwear Patterns, Glamour

(www.folkwear .com) will make you feel like you are stepping back in time. This stunn ing exam ple of early '40s style is highlighted by a narrow V-neckline, 3/4-length sleeves, high armhole, close-fitting bodice that gathers under the bustline, and i nteresting obi-li ke yokes. The knee-length, m id-calf, or ankle­ length dress has just the right amount of fullness (711/4, 791;4, or 87 in. at hem), and the sleeves are detailed with shirring. (Sized 6Girl Dress 233

Folkwear Patterns, Glamour G i rl Dress 233

1 6, for busts 301/2-38 in.)

december 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

39


• Cropped and/or skinny pants • Slouchy menswear trousers • Flared, tiered, and pencil skirts

Stretch The Sewing Workshop Collection, Hollywood Pant

includes two styles of classic pleated trousers ( 1 6 1/2 in. at hem/ size 1 6): one has welt pockets and a raised waist on the front with a separate menswear-like' two-piece back waistband; the other has simpler diagonal side­ seam pockets, and a com pletely separate waistband. A basic fitti ng pattern (without seam allowances) is also included ' onto which alterations can b e made and then transferred to both styles. The trousers have a flattering Italian cut with the crotch point set slig htly forward. This isn't a beginner pattern, but the i nstructions and diagrams are easy to follow. (Sized 6-26, for hips 34-5 1 1/2 in.)

(www.lafred.com) is a classic skirt (36 in. long/size 1 6) with a contemporary twist: the back panels wrap around a front panel, the center back is slightly bias, with a fishtail effect. There are no side seams; darts shape the fabric over the hip. The tester loved the tips in the instructions, as well as the suggested options to vary the look from business attire to eveningwear.

Cassandra Skirt

7935

79 1 0

Sew, Elegant Pants

32-48 in.)

•+•

+

Clothing Designs by LaFred,

Vogue Vogue

&

(www.stretch-and-sew.com) is a comfy pull-on pant, but it doesn't look at all like sweats. The pant, with slightly tapered ankle-length or slightly cropped options, is designed for kn its with less then 25-percent stretch, but our tester tells us that a soft tweed with just a bit of Lycra would also fit the bill. The pattern calls for 1/4-in. seam allowances. (Sized 32-48, for hips 720

(Sized 6-26, for hips 321/2-50 in.)

+•

McCall's 4662 (www.mccall.com) appeals to a wide range of ages, depending on the maker's ability to see beyond the options shown in the pattern catalog. You can create a busi ness skirt, a dressy rendition, or a completely casual, flirty style. Since the skirt base is straight, the flounces (5, 8 112, or 1 0 in. deep) can be sewn anywhere below the hipline; the number, depth, and position of the flounces used will determ ine the length of the skirt. To get this season's menswear look, feel free to use a m id-weight tweed, but if you use one of the soft recommended fabrics, the tester suggests creating a center-back seam and moving the zipper there to ensure smooth side seams' ' also divide each side dart into two smaller darts to ensure a smooth fit at high hip. (Sized Misses 4 - 1 8'

hips 3 1 1/2-42 in.)

(www.vog uepatterns .com) is a trio of fit-and-flare designer skirts. They're all fitted at the waist and high hip, but vary in the amount of flare. The eig ht­ panel version is extremely full ( 1 44 in. at hem/size 1 0); for it, our tester tells us to ignore the fabric recommendations on the envelope, and Instead use a very lightweight fabric with a soft touch. The version with the set-in side panels (63 in. at hem) and the six-panel version with side pockets (94 in. at hem) can both use the wider range of fabriCS. The flare in all three skirts can be reduced by narrowing the panels a bit, which is a good idea if you r fabric is on the heavier side. (Note: narrowing even a l ittle reduces the yardage requi rements dramatically.) (Sized Misses 6-22, Vogue 791 0

for hips 32 1/2-46 in.)

40

TH R E A D S


tops

• Card igans, twin sets, c h u n ky sweaters • Sheer, bow-tie, and ruffle blouses • Boxy vests

is a must-have this season. The blouse set offers plenty of mix-and-match options­ just pair whichever sleeve and neck/front opening you like-and accommodates a feminine shape without being tight. The bias camisole is nice-fitting and sews up beautifully. The tester envisions one of these whimsical-sleeve blouses paired with a match ing bias skirt for a dressy holiday ensemble. (Sized Vogue 7935

Simplicity 4879 flatters all figures and makes a good overblouse. The blouses (22 in. long/size 1 0) can be made dressy or casual depending on the fabric, and the shaped hemline lends a sophisticated, tailored look. The well-placed princess seams have just the right amount of curve to make adjustments and assembly a cinch. (Sized Misses 6-22, for

busts 30%-44 in)

Misses/Misses Petite 6-22, for busts 301/2-44 in)

. � ' rOJ '--" CIJ : OJ ' , ,------,

)

(www.simplicity .com) offers quick, easy pieces that will add an instant u pdate to a dress or ensemble. The trendy s h rug, capelet (20 in. long/size 1 0), and bolero jacket ( 1 7 1/2 in. long) look darling in th is season's fabric of choice: fur. Extend your options by making any of them reversible. The pattern also i ncludes a smart handbag collection. (Sized Misses XS-XL, New Look 6426

The Walkabout Vest 1 1 3 (www .revisions-ericson.com) will stretch you r i magi nation: the instructions are full of design ideas and embellishment tips, and it's an u nconventional pattern for which you can throw out picky sewing techniques. The vest is "fit as it is sewn:' which means the pattern is pretty much a shapeless rectangle of fabric and you slash and overlap the pieces to make it fit. There are different pockets to choose from and the curve of the hem changes depending on which one is used. Our tester called this pattern "fun, fun, fun:' (Sized XS-XL, for

finished bust measurements of 29-44 in)

Collection, Hollywood Pant

Revisions by Diane Ericson,

The Sewing Workshop

for busts 301/2-46 in)

+•

,

l, 'o, ) r

, I

'- --�-

,

r

l,

- - - - ---

- - --- -

, :I

"

- -- -

(www.kwiksew .com) is a wardrobe staple. The timeless card igan comes in two lengths (23 1/4 or 28 1/4 in. long/ size L), and is g reat in jersey, Slinky Knit, velour, or a chu n ky knit. The self-fabric band can be embellished to m i m ic runway offerings, but you can also cut it out of a lig htweight coordinating fabric such as chiffon. For stability, our tester faced the neck and armhole edges of the sleeveless tops (22 in. long) with clear elastic at a 1 :1 ratio. To hem the edges (if you don't have a serger with cover-stitch capability), she recom mends using a double needle and woolly nylon in the bobbin. (Sized XS-XL, for busts Kwik Sew 2948

3 1 1/2-45 in)


ensembles

• I ns p i red by the '40s and ' 50s • I m peccably cut, tailored suits • Fit-and-flare ensem bles

Christine Jonson Patterns, Ruffle

(wwwcj patterns.com) is an up-to-date modern ensemble, but isn't too trendy. The fem i n i ne top (22 in. long/size M) wraps n icely and has a bias ruffle at the neckline; slight bell sleeves give it a contemporary feel. The ankle-grazing, elastic­ waist skirt (30 in. long at center front) has a curved bias flounce. Both are designed for lightweight knits or stretch fabrics, but the skirt also works up well in heavier knits or wovens with drape. (Sized XS­ Top and Swirl Skirt 41 9

is one of the most becoming and elegant suits to sew this season. The well-placed and well-designed shawl collar is the focal point of the easy-fitting, almost double-breasted jacket ( 1 93/4 in. long/size 1 0) with h idden snap closure. The simple skirt ends at mid-knee or g razes the floor (55% in. or 77 1/2 in. at hem), is fast and easy to make, and has a superb cut, even without darts. Vogue 7963

XL, for busts 301/2-48 in. and hips 33-50 in.)

•+•

(Sized Misses/Misses Petite 6-20, for busts 301/2-42 in. and hips 321/2-44 in.)

(www.butterick .com) incl udes a stylish, knee­ length fitted jacket with a two­ piece sleeve. The sleeveless, jewel neckline dress (40 1/2 in. long/size 1 4) has vertical back and diagonal bust darts, wh ich are slimming, and can be cropped to create a tank top (23 in. long). The front and back double darts of the straight pant ( 1 9 in. at hem) ensure a smooth, tai lored fit. This is a useful pattern for a traveler because of the combination options and fabric possibil ities. In particular, the tester envisions a duster (i.e. m id-calf length) with piped seams. (Sized Butterick 41 39

is an original 1 940 fem inine dress (42 1/4 in. long/size 1 6) with pretty l ines, a shaped midriff, and a shallow V-neck. For the left side closure, you have the option of a zipper or snaps. The coordinating above-hip jacket has g reat dressmaker period details such as lapped seams, bound buttonholes, and gathers. The tester recommends making the dress i n a soft fabric because of the gathers; the jacket works well in a slightly stiffer fabric. I nstructions are well written and are very detailed. (Sized Misses 6Vogue 2636

22, for busts 301/2-44 in. and hips 32 1/2-46in.) ....

Misses/Misses Petite 8-24, for busts 3 1 1/2-46 in. and hips 331/248 in.)

•+

Burda 8263 (www.burdamode. com) is a sophisticated suit that looks complicated to sew but is actually very straightforward. The hip-length jackets feature V-shaped bias inserts, which give the illusion of a smaller waist and longer torso. Our tester recommends making a full-size pattern piece for the back "V" instead of trying to fold fabric on the bias. The armholes are characteristic of a European cut, and the two-piece sleeves don't include vents, but they can be added. The shorter of the two straight skirts (38 in. and 57 in. at hem/size 1 2) has an inverted box pleat, surrounded by two knife pleats. Instructions are easy to follow because the seams are numbered. (Sized 1 0-22, for

busts 321/2-44 in. and hips 341J2-46 in.)

+ ....


The seaso n 's fi ne pai nts

This winter's fashions are truly a study in contrast. Pretty much anything goes in terms of color, fabric, and detail. Antique dusty shades and rich earth tones are just as important as vibrant jewel tones. All sorts of fabrics make their way into the spotlight, as long as they are luxurious, have an i nteresting surface texture, and are mixed in an unusual way; don't hesitate to try chiffon edged with velvet or tweed paired

with And and lace.

for all fabrics, ornamentation is key: elaborate embellishment is no longer just for eveningwear-it is also appropriate in workplace attire. Finally, a well-chosen accessory-or two-helps personalize an outfit, rounds out the vintage look.

Colors

• Emerald green, olive, moss, fennel, peacock • Violet, orchid, periwinkle, aubergine • Aqua, royal blue, cobalt; silver, dove gray, charcoal • Crimson, mahogany, wine, salmon, mauve, shocking pinks • Chocolate brown, bronze, camel, gold; ivory, vanilla

Details

• Flounces, ruffles, fringe, lace insets • Embroidery, dimensional appliques • Sparkle: beads, crystals, pearls, charms • Ribbon bows and ties • Fur trim and sequins, leather binding, feathers • Hardware: oversized snaps, studs, grommets, zippers • Oversized and mother-of-pearl buttons

Accessories

• Waist-defining belts: skinny or large and contoured • Bags: bracelet, satchel, doctor, frame • Embellished footwear, round-toe pumps and boots, wedges, kitten heels, ankle straps

• Brooches, bangles, cuffs • Seamed stockings, patterned tights • Cozy scarves, cloche hats

Fabrics

• Velvet, Persian lamb • Brocade, jacquard, corduroy • Wool, boucle • Smooth or prepleated satin, • Fur, suede, textured leather • Menswear tweed, houndstooth,

silk

herringbone, stripes

• Plaid, argyle • Chunky sweater knits, jersey, crochet • Metallics, lace, gossamer sheers • Prints: retro, ethnic, floral, animal, paisley


T H R E E S MA RT A P P R OAC H E S TO

B I AS PA N TS The cutting and sewing rules for these fl u id pants d iffer from the usual b y M arcy

Tilton

ias skirts, dresses, and tops are

o f the three styles you wish to create), then

well-known for their beautiful,

adapt it for bias.

supple drape, but for a reason

Choose a pattern that already fits you and

I've yet to discover, bias pants

is fairly loose-fitting (with at least 4 inches

can be likened to a rare, mys­

of ease in the hip, 5 to 6 inches if your fig­

terious bird-defined by infre­

ure is round) because bias-cut fabric tends

quent sightings and more questions than

to cling to the body. The pants can be full­

answers. I first came upon a pair of bias eve­

length or cropped, straight-leg, tapered, or

ning pants a few years ago, and as soon as

full-though bear in mind that bias fabric

I stepped into them, I was captivated-they

tends to flare a bit at the hem, no matter

were fluid, elegant, and supremely comfort­

the style.

able. I knew instantly that I had a new mis­

In terms of details, simple is best. I often

sion: to figure out how to make bias pants

opt for a fold-over elastic casing because

for myself, and I didn't want to be limited

bias-cut actually reduces the bulk common

only to eveningwear.

in straight-grain elastic waists, but you can

I've experimented with many bias pants

use a separate straight-grain waistband in­

styles and fabrications; fine-tuned the nec­

stead. I also recommend eliminating details

essary pattern alteration, layout, and con­

that can interfere with the bias drape, such

struction processes; and have come up with

as slant pockets, yokes, or pleats.

three styles that are especially flattering and versatile. So without further ado, let me in­

M a rk a n ew stra i g h t g ra i n l i n e a n d

troduce you to a lovely version without side

w i d e n t h e sea m a l lowa n ces

seams, my trusty side-seam classic, and a

As shown in the follOwing illustrations, I've

qUirky side-panel rendition.

provided the adjustments needed for the pants without side seams on p. 45, the side­

C hoose a p a ttern a nd strea m l i n e

seam pants on p. 46, and the Side-panel

i t if n ecessary

pants on p. 47; draw in two new straight

The successful fit of bias pants hinges upon

grainlines at 45-degree angles to the origi­

the pattern you use, and since I've yet to

nal lengthwise grain line; these will enable

find a commercial bias pants pattern, you'll

you to align the original grain with the fab­

need to select a straight-grain pattern (with

ric's bias when you lay out the pattern (use

or without a side seam, depending on which

a 45-degree right-angle triangle as a guide

44

TH R E A D S


Visit www.th readsm a g a z i n e

What and why: bias pieces need wider seam allowances

. c o m to see the author's related article, "Bias

101:'

from Threads No. 76.

The bi as runs at a 4S-degree angle to a fabric's lengthwise a n d crosswise g ra i ns. When fabric is cut o n the b ia s, the edge doesn't ravel, but the yarns at or near the edge do relax and open u p. This means that the weave can be loose a s much a s

%

i nch in from the edge (a traditional seam

a llowance) and the cut edge i s n't an accurate stitc h i n g g u i d e. Wider-th a n -usual seam a l l owances will help prevent d i stortion a l o n g

Cut, sew, and press to control stretch

the seam l ine. Wide a l lowances als o a llow y o u

Bias-cut fabric req u i res special h a n d l i n g

to m a k e fitt i n g adjustments to compensate

to e n s u re a s mooth f i n i s h a n d great fit.

for a ny narrowing caused by the bi as drape.

o Cut your fabric in a single layer to best align your pattern pieces (create right

Lengthwise and crosswise grains

and left fronts and right and left backs if

Bias

necessary) exactly on the bias grainline.

o Place a piece of paper under your fabric and lay the pattern pieces on top. Secure the layers together along the pattern edges to keep the fabric from shifting when you cut.

o To remove unwanted stretch, steam­ press each fabric piece firmly, gently, and evenly along the bias from top to bottom.

o Then lay the pattern back on each piece a n d trim any excess fabric. Mark the Increase the seam allow' ances as marked. Lay out the pattern pieces on a single layer of fabric. Plac'

seam lines on the fabric with chalk.

(/) IIco<"I ID

o Stretch bias seams slightly as you sew to keep the seam from popping when worn.

ID

Use a 2mm stitch length and the marked

ing one of the new straight

seamline as a stitching guide.

grainlines parallel to the

o Press each seam as sewn, before

selvage, orient the original

pressing open or to one side, to eliminate

straight grain on the

the ripple created from stretching the seam.

fabric's bias.

o Check the fit after you sew the inseam If your pattern has a fold-

and crotch seams. Pin the side seams (or

over casing, no alteration is

side-panel seams), wrong sides together, try

necessary at the waist. For

on the pants, and adjust as needed.

a separate straight-grain

o Trim seam allowances to

waistband, use 1 -inch seam as shown.

/

+

%

inch; this will

eliminate some bulk, but leave enough width

allowances at the waist

to prevent the allowances from curling.

o Leave the seam and hem edges alone. Bias edges don't ravel, and a finish may = Bias

III 1:11

'iiďż˝

(/)

= Lengthwise and crosswise straight grains

The Cutt i n g L i n e Des i gns, O n e Seam Pants (www.fabric

cause the edge to stretch.

o Keep the hems simple. Fold the hem a llowance up, and loosely hand- or machine­ stitch in place.

o Occasionally trim and resew the Front

hems. Bias pants grow in length after you wear them.

o Fold your pants and store them flat to avoid further stretching.

collections.com)

d e c e m b e r 2 0 04/j a n u ary 2 0 0 5

45


Increase the seam allowances as marked. Lay out the pattern pieces on a single layer of fabric. Placing one of the new straight grain­ lines parallel to the selvage, orient the original straight grain on the fabric's bias.

1

in.

GI Cl IU >

(/)Gi

(/)CD<" coCDQI /=

If your pattern has a fold-over casing, no alteration is neces­ sary at the waist. For a separate

Bias

+=

straight-grain waistband, use

Lengthwise and crosswise straight grains

1 -inch seam allowances at the waist as shown.

Loes H i nse Des i g n , Cruise Pant, No. 5 0 03 (www. loeshi n se d es i g n .com)

when marking). Also add wider seam allow­

grain so it's important to test its bias char­

ances as shown for each style.

acteristics. Unfurl a length and hold it on

Each pair of pants requires a unique lay­

the bias to see how it will drape. Also crush

out to ensure that the grain is correctly

it on the bias to see how it will gather in an

aligned at the seams and balanced on the

elastic waist.

body. All layouts work on any width of fab­

Firmly woven, lightweight fabrics (linen,

ric, but the yardage needed ultimately de­

cotton, silk dupioni, fine wools, and non­

pends on the pants style, size, number of

slippery silks like silk broadcloth and silk

pattern pieces, and fabric width. A good

linen) are the best choices for bias pants.

rule of thumb is to simply double the yard­

For a subtle effect, choose a solid color with

age amount speCified for your original

little or no texture, or if you want to draw at­

straight-grain pants pattern.

tention to the bias, pick out a nubby texture

Test t h e f a b r i c b e h a v i o r

a s 4-ply silk crepe or charmeuse, are sump-

or directional pattern. Slippery fabrics, such A fabric cut on the bias appears softer and

tuous on the bias but are more difficult to

thinner than it does cut on the straight

handle. Loose weaves stretch and distort


Increase the seam allowances as marked. Lay out the pattern pieces on a single layer of fabric. Placing one of the new straight grainlines parallel to the selvage, orient the original straight grain on the fabric's bias.

1 in.

If your pattern has a fold-over casing, no alteration is neces­ sary at the waist. For a separate

+=

straight-grain waistband, use 1 -inch seam allowances at

Lengthwise and crosswise straight grains

the waist as shown.

The Cutti n g Line Desi gns, O n e Seam Pants (www.fabriccollections.com)

on the bias, and stiff, heavy, or crisp fab­

first pair as an experiment-if they're less

ri.cs don't drape well. Also stay away from

than stellar, don't be frustrated, just chalk

twill weaves, which look odd on the bias,

them up as a learning experience and look

and rayons, which tend to keep stretching

ahead to the next pair. Once you get the

throughout the life of the garment.

hang of working with the bias pieces, each pair will go together quicker, and

Construct c a refully to avoid

you'll find i.t hard to return to run-of-the-

u nw a nted stretch

mill straight-grain pants.

I've listed some tips for cutting, sewing, and pressing bias fabric on p. 45. To see suc­

Marcy Tilton teaches courses in making bias

cess with your first pair of bias pants you'll

pants at the "Design Outside the Lines"

need some prior experience in handling

retreats (www. revisions-erieson. com).

bias-I don't recommend these to rookie

held at various locations throughout

sewers, and I do suggest you approach your

the

u.s.


am a textile artist whose first choice of

ing words will inspire you to work with this

fabric, for many years, has been velvet.

irresistible fabric too.

L u red by t h e l uxe , but

I've used this lush, tactile fabric to make

pan i cked by the p i l e ?

bags, scarves, slippers, curtains, cush­

All velvets need sim i l a r h a n d l i ng

ions, and stuffed birds and animals, as

There's a wide range of velvets available­

Let o u r experts s h ow

well as to cover ottomans, chairs, and

made from cotton, silk, mohair, rayon,

sofas. Velvet can be a demanding fabric to

synthetics, and various blends-each offers

yo u t h e way . . .

unpredictable, but still love it, even though

uses, but they're all similar in structure. Any

by S a s k i a Wass i n g - S h e p h e rd

sew with; it'll slip, shift, stretch , fray, and be

1

I've had to develop a large bag of tricks to

velvet is the combination of a woven back­

bring it under control. I'll share all the tech­

ing and an inserted pile, which can be the

niques and precautions I've learned over the

same fiber as the backing, or not.

years, and on pp. 5 2-53, two clothiers join

It's the pile that both attracts us to velvet

me to share their favorite tips for sewing

and creates the problems we'll have sew­

1

velvet garments. hope that these encourag-

48

TH R E A D S

different qualities, weights, widths, and end

ing with it. The pile provides the plush and


a nylon/acetate back and rayon pile, and

luster, but it marks easily, makes the fabric

man heavyweights are silk or mohair vel­

reflect light differently depending on the

vets; they're very luxurious, considerably

they drape beautifully and come in nar­

direction from which we view it, and makes

more expensive, and usually have a longer,

row widths. They are probably the most

it difficult to position or hold two layers to­

plusher pile.

easily accessible velvets and are available

gether, pile side to pile side. The techniques

M edium-weight velvets-typically used

in the widest range of colors and patterns,

that follow apply equally to all velvets as well

for drapery or wearables-tend to have a

but I wouldn't suggest them to a beginner

as to other pile fabrics such as velveteen and

less dense and shorter pile. One hundred­

to velvet sewing as they are more slippery

corduroy. As a general rule, the heavier the

percent cotton, drapery-weight velvet comes

than cotton or cotton-blend velvets. They

velvet the easier it will be to handle (heavier

in wide widths and hangs beautifully, and

are lovely, and when properly handled, are

fabrics are usually more stable than lighter

it can be used for much more than j ust

as rewarding to use as their medium-weight

ones), assuming you can get the multiple

drapes. I've used it successfully for scarves,

and heavyweight cousins.

layers under your presser foot.

bags, cushions, and coats; it's my favorite of

Most heavyweight velvets-typically used

all the velvets.

for upholstery-are either all-cotton, all­

Lightweight synthetic velvets are typi­

synthetic, or a blend of these. Less com-

cally used for wearables. They often have

Saskia Wassing-Shepherd wri tes and designs i n Toronto, Canada. Visit her Web s i te at www .saskiadesigns.com.

d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

49


\

sto ri ng an d wash i n g

1. Store velvet rolled firmly onto a tube or hang it from

the selvages, as shown at left. Velvets that have been stored when folded develop permanent crease marks along the foldl ines.

2. Don't put sticky tape o n t h e back of velvet. The

tape can pull the pile out when it's removed.

3. Test your fabric for washability and dryability before you wash the entire piece. Many velvets are washable, especially the l i g hter-weight synthetics, and may be machine-dryable too. But

I

don't wash my velvets u n less

absolutely necessary; I don't think they look q u ite as rich after washing, drying, or pressing as they d i d on the bolt.

Self-lined velvet scarves are easy and elegant: For each scarf, make two same-size rectangles, piecing a contrast band into each end of each. Embellish with free­ motion or digitized embroidery. With the right sides together, sew around all the edges; turn right-side out.


p lan n i n g , l ayout, an d em bel l ish i ng 4.

Before cutting out, draw arrows with

chalk to show the nap (pile) direction on the wrong side of the selvage.

5. Start your project by deciding how

you'll arrange the nap d irection on each piece. In most cases, you'll want to use a with-nap arrangement, i n which the nap is running down o n every piece, which will look lig hter. But piecing with the nap i n alternating directions

9

i s worth considerin g o n some projects; it can be effective so long as the final result looks planned and not like a mistake.

6. Cut out one layer at a time, with the

9. If you want to embroider or embellish

1 0. Always get enough velvet yardage so

velvet face down. Allow lh-inch seam allow­

your velvet, it's usually necessary to d o

ance o r more to make it easier to hold the

so after y o u have marked the pieces,

new velvet for pressability, then try stitching

fabric as you sew; trim after sewing.

7. Rotary cutters are a good choice for

velvet. Using a transparent gridded quilter'S ruler helps to guide straight cuts.

you'll have some for testing. Routinely test a

but before you cut them out, u nless the

it i n different d i rections and i n curves. Bias

piece to b e embellished is big enough by

i s the most demanding direction (as with

itself to place i n a hoop. Wrap the inner

almost any fabric), and cross-grain or up-pile

hoop with a bias strip of fabric, as shown

are usually more slippery than lengthwise­

above. Tighten the hoop only as much as

grain or down-pile.

necessary to support the work; pressing

8. Mark all seamlines on the wrong side

and steaming the embroidery heavily will

of the fabric with chalk or pins; avoid hard

the stitching and the imprint from the

or sharp marking tools, which can make an

hoop. B e sure to remark the seamlines

impression on the pile i n front.

before you proceed.

usually remove both any d istortion from

1 1. Avoid combining different weights of

velvet in the same project, especially if you're a beginner. If you need to combine weights, sew with the heavier velvet o n top ; it'll be less likely to slip than the lighter layer.

, I d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

51


sewi n g â&#x20AC;˘

12. Stitch ing l ines are permanent i n del icate velvets, so test your pattern with a muslin.

1 7. Stitch slowly, using both hands. Guide the seam

with your right hand on the seam allowance, and move the fabric with your left hand.

13. Invest i n a walking foot, l i ke the one shown above, to mini mize the slipping

of layers as you sew. I put off buying one for years, and immediately regretted the wasted time as soon as

I

tried one and saw

18. Sew with your longest serger stitch and about

1 0 stitches per i n ch on a standard mach ine.

19. When sewing velvet right sides together, squeeze

the layers at the seam line to meld the nap.

the huge improvement. Teflon -coated feet are helpfu l, but they aren't as effective in reducing slippage.

20. Sew seams i n the direction of the nap to minimize sli ppage.

2 1. If your seams are still slipping, undo and press the

slipped seam, then repin the top layer about

Va

inch away

from its intended place, and in the d i rection opposite

14. Loosen your

top tension slig htly,

especially when working on heavyweight velvets. I use standard threads, except

to w h ich it has sl ipped ; when it slips again, it'll slip into place instead of out of it.

22. Reduce fraying by zigzagging the edges of the seam allowances after trimming them.

when working with heavy fabrics that will be stretched or stressed, in which case I use heavy nylon thread. Use a size

80 or 90 un iversal or sharp needle on lig htweight to What could be

medi um-weight fabrics, and a size 1 00 on heavyweights.

23. Avoid making buttonholes i n velvet if possible; use loops and buttons instead. If you must make

buttonholes, make them bound and use a bias strip of organza as a stabilizer.

more fun than

a sm i l i n g velvet fish handbag? This one features

15. Baste each seam or pin carefu lly, placing pins 1 to

1 1/2 inches apart, at right ang les to the seamline, and taking

24. Binding an

colorful circular

a tiny bite exactly on the seam l i n e . Remove the pins as you

edge precludes

a p p liques.

get to them; don't sew over them.

the backing from peeking through

1 6. Don't leave pins i n velvet for any length of time. Mark

with pi ns, then hand- baste right away, and remove the pins.

at a facing or hem fold.


29 25. Use s i l k organza as interfacing for silk velvet and muslin

for cotton velveteen. For other velvets, use o n e or the other, depending on their thickness and drape.

28. Double-stitch the hems of a drapey velvet for extra support. 29.

26. Use lightweight, nonmetal zippers; sew them in by hand.

Before maki ng velvet piping, check the depth and density

of your nap. The backing sometimes shows through when velvet is

2 Z Line pastel s i l k velvets with a flesh tone or an accent color so they're not see-throug h .

folded, and if the nap is very th ick it can make for clumsy, out-of­ scale piping. Use a zipper foot instead of a cord i n g foot to stitch the piping, and press the seam allowances to flatten the nap and

p ress i n g •

3 O. Don't press any seam until you 've checked it for accu racy. If

you have to resew it, pull the threads and press the seaml ines first to min imize any marks.

3 1. Test your iron's heat and steam settings on a scrap of velvet

before you begin press ing. Al l-cotton velvets can take lots of heat and steam.

-

32. A good steamer elim inates or reduces the need for a velvet

board. If you do use a wire-bed velvet board, be very careful not to press along the edge of the wire surface.

. max

-�

i

33. To m i n i m ize crushing of the pile or imprinting of the seam

allowances, always press velvet from the back, with the pile face

(

down. Press against a piece of face-up velvet use your heaviest,

)

deepest- pile velvet for this . or even against a folded towel. Or use a velvet pressing pad such as the Velvaboard or a wire-bed board like the one shown at left.

33

34. If you have to press on the pile side, use self-fabric as a press cloth and press with the tip of the iron.

35. If you have prewashed sil klrayon velvet, you can wash and dry the garment after sewing to eliminate all marks from pins or right­ side pressing.


To Fit You r Body,

Measure Your Clothes

D o n ' t ove rlook yo u r s i n g le best so u rce of i nfo rmat i o n about how yo u ' d l i ke yo u r c l othes to fit : t h e clot h i n g you al ready wear t h e m ost

by Susan Lazear ost sewers I know have mea­

switched on the lightbulb: I'd stand in front

already own. In most cases they've allowed

sured their bodies many times

of a dressing-room mirror using my hand

me to eliminate a test garment.

over the course of their sew­

span and other key body measurements to

To be sure, comparing measurements

ing careers, but very few have

work out the dimensions of the garment I

alone won't solve all your htting problems

ever thought to measure their

was trying on. The "pinch test," described

or answer all your questions. To alter pat­

own clothing. Why bother?

on p. 5 5 , helped me learn the garment's

terns that diverge Significantly from your

Well, wouldn't it be nice to know exactly

ease at various points. I learned quick ways

preferred measurements, you need specific patternmaking skills. But comparative mea­

how high you like the armholes on a vest,

to measure armhole depths, neck widths,

or how deep a V-neck you prefer, or how

and sleeve-cap heights, as shown on p. 57.

surements can help you judge if an altera­

much ease you're comfortable with in a fit­

Soon I became quite adept at analyzing

tion is feasible or if a new style is worth

ted skirt, before you cut out your next one?

a garment, and could copy most things I

trying even if its dimensions are off your

For years, I overlooked this obvious source

tried on. But the real eye-opener has been

personal chart or it's not similar in style to

of detailed information about what consti­

how useful my clothing measurements are

your existing clothes, and they'll then guide

tutes a comfortable and attractive fit for me.

when evaluating and adjusting commercial

your alterations. There's no question that

It was copying ready-to-wear that eventually

patterns that are similar to clothes that I

knowing your preferences for what you wear

54

THREADS


Test ease with a p i n ch

M EAS U R E M E NTS FROM MY FAVO R IT E CLOTH ES

o

To measure the ease on any

Ease

garment, put it on, then pinch out the loose fabric on each

Preferred ease for fitted clothes

side at the bust, hip, or bicep.

Bust

Try to distribute the ease equally between your hands, then measure the pinch depth in one hand and multiply the

X

Bust

ease. Multiply the bicep pinch

2

___ inch pi nch

to get the total

sleeve ease. Add these ease totals

X

X

Hip

____ i n ch pinch 4 ____ total

Hip

___ inch pinch

Preferred ease for loosely fit clothes

Bust

body measurements to determine the total garment circumference needed to reproduce the fit.

X

____ inch pinch 4 ____ total

1 0

X

Bust

Hip

___ inch pinch

X

____ inch pi nch 4 ____ total

X

Hip

___ i nch pinch 4 ____ total

X2

____ total _ Preferred ease for n onfitted sleeves:

____ inch pinch _

X2

____ total every day can reduce your pattern

B O DY D I M E N S I O N S

Measure each garment's length and width, plus ease

Head circumference** Chest circu mference

Use the chart at right to record your ease

Waist circumference

preferences, as learned in "Test ease with a pinch," above. You can use the chart on

Hip circu mference

p. 56 to record garment dimensions. You'll

o

4

clothes

____ inch pi_ nch

disasters significan tly.

X

total

Preferred ease for fitted s l eeves:

garment separately and make style and

4

____ total

____ inch pi nch 4 ____ total

Preferred ease for

so you can record measurements for each

X

Preferred ease for n ontitted clothes

Bust

but you might want to photocopy this chart

4

____ total

____ inch pinch 4 ____ total

to your bust, hip, or bicep

find space to record a few style variations,

X

Preferred ease for sem ifitted clothes

result by 4 to get the total depth by

Hip

____ inch pinch 4 ____ total

Bicep Wrist Other

** For judging neck openi ngs o n pul lover garments


I

1 r-------------------------------------------------,

fabric notes for each one as well. Start by

M EAS U R E M E N TS F R O M M Y FAVO R I TE C LOT H E S

o

Garment Deta ils-Vertical Measure vertically from neckli ne/shoulder-point level or waist leve l ;

selecting a few garments that you feel com­ fortable wearing, in styles that are similar to the kinds of patterns you like to make; I've measured all my most-worn j ack­

A. N eckl i n e depth, round neck

ets, pants, skirts, tops, and dresses.

A. N eckl ine depth, V-neck

Make notes about the weight and

A. Neckl ine depth, other

drape of the fabrics in each mea­

vertically from top of cap

B. Shou lder-point drop

sured garment, since the lighter

to u n derarm level.

C. Armhole depth, fitted tops

measure sleeve heig hts

the fabric the more ease it can take.

C. Armhole depth, nonfitted tops

very enlightening to also choose a few poor-

C. Armhole depth, overgarment

fitting garments to measure, so your mea­

D. Length from waist to f u l l h i p

surement ranges will include definite dan-

E. Sleeve cap height, fitted set-in sleeve

ger zones too.

E. Sleeve cap height, nonfitted set-in sleeve

Lay each garment flat to measure

___

Garment Deta ils-Horizontal

to compare to patterns. Measure horizontal ly from center front; measure chest width at narrowest level.

'

vertically and horizontally, as shown on p. 57. If you have a grid-

You need only half-widths

r\

And if you're feeling energetic, it can be

'

. V \/

ded cutting surface that you can

F.

lay out your garments on, align the

Neckl i n e width

garment center with a gridline, and do

G. Shou lder-point width

the same thing when measuring patterns.

H. Chest width, fitted set- i n armhole

This will make the comparisons between

H . Chest width, nonfitted set-in armhole

your clothes and your patterns faster and

I. I. J.

U n derarm width, fitted top U n derarm width, nonfitted top

J. Bust width, fitted top

more intuitive, especially as you measure

o

more of them.

1

also like to draw a quick

outline of each garment

1

measure in my

notes, and I indicate on these sketches where I measured the garment, to simplify

Bust width, nonfitted top

making comparisons.

K. Waist width, fitted top K. Waist width, fitted skirt/pants L. H i p width, fitted top

Compare each new pattern to your clothing cha rt

L. Hip width, nonfitted top

Lay out each new pattern on your worksurface and measure it hori­

L. H i p width, fitted skirt/pants

zontally and vertically in the ar­

L. Hip width, nonfitted skirt/pants

eas that correspond to the chart,

M. Sleeve width, fitted

comparing the two. This will help

M. Sleeve width, nonfitted

you quickly determine whether the pattern's fit, ease, and style are going to suit you, or if you'll need to make some

Overal l Garment Lengths Measure vertically from neckl ine/shou lder-point level or waist level; measure sleeve heights vertically from top of cap to underarm level.

changes, or whether you should choose an­ other pattern. Be sure to compare the fabric

N. Bodi ce/cropped top

you're using with the fabric of the garment

N. H i p- length top

you measured. Fabrics with lots of drape

N. Tu n ic-style top

can handle much more ease than stiffer

N . Dress

fabrics, so, j ust as with garment styles,

N . Short skirt

you'll get the best results if you're compar­

N. Long skirt N. Pants N, Ot her

..

o

ing similar fabrics. To ensure that your new garment has the fit and comfort characteristics of your fa­ vorite clothes, you can make basic pattern

/ ,,


j1

C l o t h i n g m e as u re m e n t s a re a l l v e rt i c a l o r h o r i z o n t a l

O N L I N E EXTRA

You can print the clothes measurement charts from www .threadsmagazine.com.

Measure your patterns in the same places as similar clothes from your wardrobe, using only horizontal and vertical measurements as keyed by letter to the chart on p. 5 6.

c

• •

S l eeve measurements

• •

H

0

• Horizontal measurements

• •

N

K

L

alterations using your

that feel and fit similarly to your existing

a quick eye for fitting matches and mis­ matches. But you'll also find the informa­

measurement chart

wardrobe, and when the patterns have eas­

as a reference gUide:

ily identified points of reference similar to

tion on your chart invaluable when you

identify the

same

those on your clothing. Patterns with un­

decide to draft your own patterns, either by

points on the pattern

usual pieces and silhouettes, and complex

hand or on the computer. Typically, draft­ ing is based on body measurements, but

and the garment chart,

seams and details will not be as easy to com­

mark them on the

pare, but once assembled, will often present

having a finished-garment measurement at

pattern to match the

the same issues of fit, determined by the

hand as well will provide a quick way to

chart, and then redraw

same overall measurements as simpler pat­

check the finished draft without making a

the pattern lines to reflect

terns. You'll just have to carefully measure

sample. Knowing how you like things to fit

the new positions. Don't

across multiple pattern pieces to make the

is an ideal starting point for creating and

comparisons.

tweaking any kind of pattern.

You r fit preferences w i l l help with

Susan Lazear designs pattern-design software,

pattern design too

and writes in La Costa, Cal if. Contact her at

find them.

Simply by checking all future patterns

www.cochenille.com.

Clearly, this approach works best

against your chart, you'll soon develop

forget that the seamlines are

not marked on most commer­ cial patterns-be sure to mea­ sure in from the cutting lines to

when your goal is to make new clothes

\

57


F i n i s h S h e ..... with a

Fl ou ri s Cl everly positi o n ed t r i m s ad d s u p port cam o uflag e to s h e e r seams and edges b y Rae C u m b i e

which I con

a m a dedicated fan of sheer garments-I

a hem and conceal raw edges, seam allow足

love to wear them and sew them, and

ances, and sewing imperfections, and at the

not, a sheer fabric sets

I absolutely adore embellishing them.

same time, turn a virtually invisible garment

camouflage, and the emb

Unfortunately, sheer fabrics have a repu足

into a unique showstopper.

and garment shape follow d osely behind.

e tone for seam ishment choice

Decisions about positioning are the last

tation for being tricky to sew, and many sewers shy away [rom decorating light,

P l a n n i n g is key to successfu l design

steps I take before I mark and sew. That

airy fabrics. That's a shame, because sheer

In preparation for embellishment, you'll

said, if you happen upon a fabulous, h ave足

garments actually benefit from adornment,

want to give thought to fabric options, em足

to-buy embellishment, by all means start

especially along or near their seams and

bellishment choices, garment shape, and

bUilding your design around it. You are the

edges. Lightweight beads, ribbons, feathers,

the positioning of the adornments; I 've

deSigner, after all, so plan your garment in

and other trims can add necessary weight to

listed these considerations in the order in

a way that works best for you.

58

TH R E A D S


Study a sheer's body a n d d ra pe

appliques can be cut smaller), bead and se­

B efore you select a specific type of sheer

quin clusters, tassels, silk flower petals, rib­

fabric, be sure to think through the kinds

bons, and bias tubing. Or make your own

of embellishment it can support (see more

embellishments from scraps of fabric-you

details at right). Also think about color and

can fashion flowers or ruffles, cut geometric

print options. Solid-color sheers are a great

patterns, or rip a few casual shapes for a chic,

backdrop for all sorts of trim effects, and

tattered effect. I frequently peruse craft and

present a fine opportunity to show off elabo­

art stores, as well as fabric and trim stores, for

rate embellishment such as passementerie.

embellishments, and as you can see on the

Floral, stripe, plaid, and geometric sheers

garments and samples in this article, I don't

sew up into striking garments, but I prefer

limit myself to one type in a garment. I love to

them paired with Simpler embellishments.

combine various trims in unusual ways.

I don't enhance already-embellished sheers

I rarely wash embellished garments, so I

because adding more decoration to them

make sure I choose trims that can withstand

produces a messy, cluttered look.

dry-cleaning chemicals and heat (for exam­

A variety of embellish men

characteristics are compatible.

....

, .

..

ple, glass instead of plastiC beads). Wear can Embellishments shou l d be stri king,

be tough on an embellished sheer garment,

yet practica l

so purchase extra trim, beads, etc., for future

Select lightweight embellishments that

replacements.

be anchored behind another

complement your chosen sheer. The embel­ lishments should be small enough that they

Sim ple is the best choice for

don't interfere with the fabric's drape, but

garment shape

large enough to hide the stitches and knots

As a general rule, embellishments work best

that will secure them to the fabric. Consider

on sheer garments with simple design lines.

purchased trims such as lace appliques (large

If the seams and edges are too complex, the

.."' ., . �.

'"


Loo k fo r visua l harmony wh e n you design Let your fabric and garment design l i n es suggest the embellishment plan. H e re , a sma rt, simple jacket (Burda 8 6 1 9 ) p rovides plenty of o p portu n ities.

S h o u l d e r a re a

A smattering of beads draws the eye up toward the face.

La p e l

A continuous line of appliques, flowerets created from the printed sheer, and beads high­ light the pleasing lapel shape. Scattered beads anchor the lapel layers together.

Wa ist a n d c u ff s e a m s

The seam that joins the solid and printed sheers is masked by a line of appliques.


M a r k g u i d e l i n e s f o r t h e e m b e l l i s h m e nt Plan your embellishment design on your paper pattern, then transfer guidelines for the design to the sheer piece. If you plan to add embellishments along a seam, you don't need to mark guidelines because the seam will act as a guide.

Where do the seam and hem allowances go?

On the right side if completely covered by the trim Use a simple seam; the trim will prevent the edges from fraying. Transfer the marks to the fabric. Tape

Map your design on

the pattern to a table,

the pattern first. In pencil,

then pin the sheer

draw the placement of the

piece on top, right side

embell ishments on your flat

up. Transfer key dots

Pinked seam With wrong sides together, sew the seam, trim the allowances to

%

inch

(use pinking shears), then press the allowances to one side.

pattern piece, making sure the li nes don't

a nd l i nes (you don't need to transfer

Pinked hem

wander i nto the seam or hem a l l owa nces.

the entire design) to the sheer with a

Pink the edge to prevent raveling,

Adjust as necessary until you're pleased with

disappearing ma rker, safety pins, tailor

the final effect, then da rken the l i nes with a

tacks, or for a meandering desig n ,

permanent pen.

loose hand-basting.

embellishment can become overpowering. If

locations for embellishment (see p. 60 for

you decide on a pattern with complex seams

some examples), but there are no hard-and­

then press the hem allowance to the right side of the garment.

On the wrong side if partially covered by the trim To prevent fraying, use a seam technique that finishes the edges.

and edges, I suggest simplifying it as much

fast placement rules-just move the embel­

as possible. For example, eliminate facings,

lishments around until you are pleased with

French seam

and if darts aren't absolutely necessary to

the effect. If you combine two sheer fabrics

With wrong sides together, sew

the garment's shape, ignore them.

in one garment, as I did in the j acket, I rec­

%

ommend bridging the transition with embel­

trim the allowances to

benefit from a lining. Because I prefer the

lishments along the joining seams. I also love

the layers right sides together,

light, airy feeling of a single-layer sheer, I

to position a bit of sparkle at the neckline or

usually don't add a lining unless it gives

shoulder to draw attention to the face. You

Also decide whether your design will

my embellishments needed support or I'm

don't need to cover every edge and seam (in

concerned about hiding my stitches.

fact, it's better not

to). Be sure to leave stress

areas, such as under the arms, at side seams, Play with trim positions

and along the back hem, unadorned.

Once you've chosen your sheer fabric, your

inch from the edge, press, then

1fe

inch. Fold

enclosing the seam allowances. Stitch

%

inch from the fold, then

press the allowances to one side.

Triple-stitched seam With right sides together, sew

%

inch from the edge. Fold along

the stitching, then stitch close to the

M a rk and then sew

fold through all the layers; trim the

shape, you're ready to cut out your pattern

With design decisions made, draw place­

loose allowances. Fold again and

pieces and play with the position of the em­

ment guidelines on your pattern pieces

embellishments, and finalized the garment

stitch along the fold through all the layers. Press.

bellishments. Decide which areas require

and then transfer them to your fabric as

support (usually where interfacing or facings

described above. Sheers present marking

are added in standard construction), which

challenges because they're slippery, and

would benefit from a little extra weight

some marks can damage fine, soft fabrics,

Stitch

(hems, collars, and draped areas), and which

so it's a good idea to test marking methods

trim the loose allowance. Fold up

seams and edges you wish to conceal.

on a fabric scrap.

Shoulders, yokes, necklines, sleeve hems

After your design is marked on all the sheer

or cuffs, plackets, and collars are all likely

pieces, determine the best time to embellish.

Baby hem

l/S1/2 1fe %

Fold up

to

inch at the hemline.

inch from the fold, then

inch, and stitch along the

fold. Press.

d e c e m b e r 2 0 04/j a n u ary 2 0 0 5

61


Because it's easier to apply embellishments to a flat surface, I like to construct and fin­ ish only as much of the garment as needed to apply the embellishment. For example, if the embellishment crosses over a shoulder seam, I sew just that seam, add the embellish­

A p p ly ri b b o n a n d tu b i ng by m a ch i n e Ribbon and bias tubing are easy to apply by machine. Use a fine, sharp needle and a short stitch length; match your top thread to the ribbon

ment, and then I move on and do the same

or tubing color and your bobbin thread to the sheer fabric. B ias tubing

thing in another area. For different ways to

curves and loops nicely; ribbon isn't as flexible, so it's best a pplied along a

deal with seam and hem allowances, see

straight line or edge.

p. 61. You can apply your embellishment by hand (see p. 63) or, if you're using ribbon and bias tubing, by machine as explained at

Use ribbon to conceal a straight edge.

right. I truly enjoy the patience and neat sew­

Butt ribbon up against an edge seam l i ne (or

ing required to add embellishment

foldline) o n the garment's wrong sidej pin it

to a sheer;

I think you'll agree the final result-a beauti­

i n p lace. Pul l i n g the ribbon taut to prevent

ful garment that rivals, or surpasses, those

puckers or wrinkles, sew very close to the

found on designer racks-more than pays off

edge of the ribbon at the seam l ine.

the efforts.

Trim the seam a l lowance at least

Rae Cumbie is a Baltimore custom clothier who

Va

specializes in bridal and special-occasion gar­

fold and press the ribbon to the right

ments and accessories.

side of the garment, pin it i n place,

Inch n arrower than the ribbon, then

and sew close along the other edge of the ribbon.

F i n ish i n g ti ps Anch o r with a nother

Add a straight ribbon accent. To

add ribbon somewhere other than

e m bel l ish ment

exactly on a garment edge, p i n it

For added dimension

to the right side of the sheer a l ong

and strength, a nd

the marked guideline. Pul l i n g the

to cover any visible

ribbon taut to prevent puckers or

stitches on the

wri nkles, sew very close to one

embellishment, attach

edge of the ribbon, then along

sequins, beads, a

the other edge.

ribbon bow, or a small piece of trim. Use bias tubing for curved design lines.

Do n 't forget the wrong side of you r ga rment

Don't press tubing flat until It Is sewn on­ misformed creases are hard to remove. Place the seam of the tubing along the marked l i n e;

I f the wrong side of

p i n it in place. Sew along the seam, slightly

your fabric will be

easing the tubing onto the fabric

visible, for instance

(pulling the tubing taut will stretch

along the front edge

it out of shape).

of a j acket, add a tiny bead or sequin to hide your stitches.

Then roll the tubing so It's centered over the stitchi n g and the seam Is completely concealed j press I n place with the t i p o f your Iron.

62

TH R E A D S


A p p ly a n y e m be l l i s h m e n t b y h a n d You can apply any type of embellishment by hand; doing so will give you the best control over the fabric and stitches. Hide your stitches inside the embellishment whenever possible.

Dressed to im press Unusual

.

seaming, gathered straps, and a n u neven h e m are

Position each embellishment. Baste the

seam (or hem) a llowances flat to the garment, then pin or baste the embellishments over the m arked guideli nes.

Anchor often and hide your stitches. Thread a small, sharp

needle with a single length of thread; make a fine knot at the end. Take a tiny stitch from the right side of the fabric, hiding the knot between the embellishment and fabric.

Sew along the edge of one embellishment, tack the center, and stitch through any beads for added security.

Finish off each embellishment with a fine, secure knot. Take

a small stitch from the right side of the sheer. Stitch again i n the same location, leaving a small loop. Pass the needle through the loop and pull it tight.

highlighted with bias tubing and composed bits of braid applique. (Vogue 2745)


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d e c e m b e r 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

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M a c h I n e E m broi d ery â&#x20AC;˘

D e s i g n w i t h co l o r

'e;;z­r::

-G>r:: "0r::co .r::G>::J

by B obbi Bullard

A l itt l e c o l o r t h e ory a n d s o m e e x p e r i m e n t a l p l a y w i l l t a ke y o u r e m b r o i d e ry t o n e w l e v e l s o f a rt i stry

O

ne of the most important elements of graphic design is color. In machine embroidery, where fabric and thread colors must work together, selecting and combining colors is central to the success of a project. And yet, many of

us are hesitant to use threads for anything beyond creating shading in a motif or matching a fabric for tone-on-tone designs. Embroidery threads offer a medium for exploring color unlike any other. If you lack confidence in working with color, or need a refresher on how

to get started using color creatively, read on. I'll share

basic color theory, and suggest design exercises that will help freshen your eye for color, loosen up your palette, and give you control over the color relation­ ships, so that your embroidery is beautifully integrated into your projects. Bring it back to basics

Elaborate, multicolored embroidery is gorgeous, there's no doubt about it. If you're going to play with color alternatives, though, I recommend starting

The ch a ra cteristi cs of color It's useful to know some descriptive terminology

Lighter versions of a hue are called tints,

when you're talking about color; the right

darker versions, shades.

vocabulary will help you articulate, and eventually

Finally, the temperature of a color

create, the color effects you're looking for (or

tells us whether the color leans more toward

trying to avoid). If you're not familiar with the

the blue or the yellow range. Ta ke a look at a

standard color wheel, check out the sources in

thread color card and you'll see that, although

"Books on color" on p. 68 for more information,

red is always basically a warm color, there are

along with ideas for working with color.

clearly warmer and cooler versions of red as

Perhaps the most fundamental characteristic of a color is

its hue- is it blue, red, purple,

yellow-orange, or brown? Hues range from the primary colors through all sorts of subtle blends between them.

The intensity, or vibrancy, of a color

describes the color's brightness or dullness; consider the difference, for example, between the muted orange of terra-cotta, and the brilliant orange of a traffic cone.

The value, or tone, of a color indicates

where the hue falls on the light-to-dark scale.

well. Remember that cooler colors appear to recede behind warmer hues.


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READER SERVICE NO. 1 66

by Gwen Bentley

Can a tool help unlock the most creative regions ofyour imagination? Extend the amount of time you can spend on a project? Make your time spent sewing more pleasant and more comfortable? OTT-LlTE® TrueColorT• lighting offers a line of natural lighting products specifically designed for artists, crafters, and sewing and quilting enthusiasts to match colors accurately and see details clearly with reduced glare and

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d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

67


M a c h i n e E m b ro i d er y with a single-color motif that you can stitch multiple times to

Books on color

(co n t i n ued)

Change color for effect

create an overall, many-colored

Color Magic for Quilters,

Neighboring hues (three

design. This approach places

by A n n Seely and J oyc e Stewart, Rodale Press,

versions of Violet) add

1999.

hfe to an almost

Color on Paper and Fabric,

scheme.

the emphasis on the color in­ teractions, rather than on the motif itself. Begin with a white, black, or other neutral background fab­ ric, so that the main variable in your experiment will be your thread; your first goal is to

monochromatic color

by Ruth Issett, Hand Book Press,

1999.

Color Works: The Crafter's Guide to Color, by Deb

Menz, Interweave Press ; 2004.

create color groups that work

purplish blues, green offers a lively

within themselves. After you've

Exploring Color, by N ita

become confident working on

1998.

neutrals, you'll be ready to work

Among fou r cool,

Leland, Northlight Books,

accent.

with colored backgrounds. You'll discover quite soon just

"The characteristics of color,"

how big a role the background

on p. 66, and prepare to put

plays in enhancing or detracting

together smashing color combi­

from your thread choices.

nations.

For your trial pieces, decide

There are many ways to create

on a placement pattern using

successful color harmonies by

BaSIC primary colors pop

several repetitions of the same

juxtaposing different hues, but

enthUSiastically aRa nst

motif. Your single-color motif

it's useful to assess whether the

a black backg rou n d

can be arranged in regular or

hues coordinate well in value,

offset rows, or scattered more

intensity, and temperature. One

randomly. Use the same place-

way to begin is to create a rule

ment pattern for all of your ini­

for each o f your color sets, in

Shades a n d tints

tial experiments.

which all threads share two or

of a slr.gle h u e

three of the four color charac­

create

Use color theory to

teristics. For example, use all

dimensional

create a rule

middle-value , bright, or clear

effect.

Once you've developed a basic

hues; or choose several values

design arrangement you're ready

of the same green; or pick four

to sharpen your color skills.

pale, quiet, different colors that

You've already got the perfect

are slightly grayish. With this

tool at your fingertips-your em­

approach, you're almost guaran­

broidery thread collection. Think

teed a balanced set of colors.

three­

of those spools as a painter's pal­ ette, and use them to explore all

Use your a rtistic eye to

C ontrasts and

sorts of combinations. Even if

brea k the rule

complements: green

your thread stash is somewhat

When you feel comfortable cre­

b r i dges the gap between

limited, it very likely reflects your

ating a well-matched group of

Violet a n d yellow.

personal color preferences, and

colors, substitute or add a wild­

will provide the building blocks

card spool that breaks the rule

(EmbrOidery moM: Bullard

for groupings you'll love. Get

in some way. Throw a hot fuch­

Designs, Crystal Treasures,

out your spools, read through

sia in with your grayish pastels,

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68

TH R E A D S


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M a c h i n e E m b ro i d ery

(conti n u ed)

o r black among the bright pri­

For example, if you add purple

are close together on the color

maries, and see what happens.

paint to its complement, yellow,

wheel, along with one strong

Because you're working with

you'll end up with a duller yel­

complementary hue; or bold

discrete areas of more-or-less

low; if you place purple thread

contrasts-orange, purple, and

solid color, rather than paints

next to yellow thread, the yellow

green-tempered by a couple of

that blend together, color in­

will look more intense. When

neutrals.

teractions are easy to test-and

you're playing with thread col­

Now that you understand the

you're likely to notice that the

or, simply work with the spools

rules, you can work with or

rules for mixing paint colors

themselves to form appealing

without them-and trust your

don't necessarily ap­

color groups. The final stitch­

eye to tell you when you've

ply when you're

out will verify how the color

created exactly the right com­

combining

relationships work.

bination. I think you'll find it's

thread colors .

From here on, anything goes,

colors as it is to use them in

A mix of soft

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mine if your color group is suc­

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Tools of th e Tra de

�--------------------------------------------

S EW I N G , Q U I LTI N G , A N D E M B E L LI S H I N G P R O D U CTS N OW O N T H E M A R K E T

G o od picks for a sewing library

Baby Lock introd u ces the Ellegante Baby Lock's new Ellegante machine (

www .babylock.com; 800-

422-2052) sports scores of new and improved features, including

by Winifred

the ability to source embroidery motifs from a memory card, your

Ald r ich. Blackwell

computer, or through an external floppy disk or flash drive. It has

Publishing Ltd,

an extra-large embroidery area; you can stitch borders flawlessly

9600 Garsington

with the built-in continuous hoop feature, and any design from the

Rd . , Oxford OX4

built-in library can become a continuous design. Big pluses include

2DQ, UK; www

the option of sewing without removing the embroidery arm, a

. blackwellpublish

thread wiper that pulls thread tails out of the sewing path, and a

ing.com; fourth

resume function, which enables you to turn off the machine with

edition, 2004;

your embroidery in process and then start sewing exactly where

$39.99; hardcover;

you left off when you turn it on again. The Ellegante is essentially

208 pp.

the same top-of-the-line combination sewing/embroidery machine as Brother's lnnov-is 4000D, reviewed in Threads No. 1 1 5 (October/

Written for beginning pattern drafters, this

November 2004), and is offered at the same MSRP of

volume explains the steps for drafting five

$7,999.

Unique to the Ellegante for a limited time as a special introduc­

basic fitting patterns, known as blocks or

tory offer is the inclusion of the optional external floppy disk and

slopers, and then shows how to convert

flash drives at no cost ($ 148 MSRP). In addition, the hundreds of

them into dozens of garment styles. The

built-in embroidery motifs include 32 exclusive deSigns from Nancy

black and white illustrations are faSCinating

Zeiman's studio (Disney designs are unique to Brother).

to study because they show at a glance how

Is there a reason to choose one of these machines over the other,

a pattern evolves from a block to become

aside from your embroidery motif preferences? Dealer support may

many different styles (from a basic straight

be key to your enj oyment of this complex equipment, so look for a

skirt, for example, to an asymmetrically

nearby vendor with whom you have good rapport.

flounced and flared skirt). One note: to use the drafts, you will need metric rulers. More Fabric Savvy: A Quick Resou rce G u i d e to Selecting a nd Sewing Fabric by Sandra Betzina. The Taunton Press,

63 S. Main St. , Newtown, CT 06470; www . taunton. com; 2004; $24.95; hardcover with a concealed wire binding; 234

pp.

This revised and updated edition of Sandra's Fabric Savvy (The Taunton Press,

1999) fea­

tures more fabrics, new tips, and new cloth­ ing photos. Using an encyclopedia format, Sandra analyzes 100 of the most popular fabrics, provides fabric facts, sewing tips, and suggestions for how to mark, cut, and interface. She offers advice on thread, nee­ dles, stitch length, appropriate presser feet,

72

TH R E A D S


Dye Painting

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december 2 0 04/j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

75


Q uic k to M a ke C l eve r f i ve - ste p b a g

by D e b b i e Val e n t i n e

E a sy, a n d p e rfect to m a ke i n m u lt i p l e s beautiful bag elevates the value of

to suit the purpose of the bag: A soft velvet makes a rich travel

its contents, and bags to carry or

bag for jewelry, and a waterproof fabric is a wise choice for a

store precious and essential items

cosmetics bag.

are always a hit. I designed these bags to be fast to assemble, elegant to use, and easy to

M a ke it big or make it sma l l

personalize as gifts for any special occasion.

I often cut the fabric i n 10- by 1 2-inch rectangles to make a medium-size bag, but you can adjust the size as you wish.

Find fabu lous fabric combi nations

I start with a trio of superb coordinat­ ing fabrics: one for the bag, one for the

However, for a much larger bag, insert a stiff panel between the layers in the bottom so it doesn't collapse from the weight of its contents.

I

explain all of the steps below.

ruffle, and one for the lining. For the

My bags are so easy, and they're fun to sew. And they offer

exterior, I select from tapestry, brocade,

a perfect opportunity to use remnants, upholstery samples, or

soft leather, or any beautiful fabric du­

stitched tests of new embroidery designs. Once you've made one

rable enough to support the intended contents. I prefer a light­

of these bags you'll see how easy it is to assemble several of them

weight stripe or plaid fabric for the ruffle, and often cut it on the

in one sitting.

bias because the graphic effect is pleasing. And, for the lining, I usually choose a coordinating fabric that will harmoniously com­

Debbie Valentine wri tes and explores the world oj sewing Jrom her home in

plete the combination. Then again, sometimes I choose my lining

Santa Rosa, Calif.

S t e p - by - s t e p t o a b a g of a n y s i z e To get s tarted set out your three fabrics and a zipper. You slider removed. (You'll reattach the slider in step 5.)

can

either use zipper by the yard or a packaged zipper with the bottom stop

and

Step

1.

Cut your fabric

1111.11111111''' '11111111111111111111 111 'I" .

Cut the bag and lining each

Step

2. Prepare a nd attach the ruffles

Fold each ruffle in half lengthwise with the right side inside and,

1 0 inches wide by 12 inches

using a 3lB-inch seam allowance, sew each short end closed; turn

long to make a medium-sized

right-side out; press. Then gather the unfinished edges. With the

cosmetics bag, or any size

raw edges aligned and right sides together, position a ruffle on each

you like. If your bag fabric has

top edge of the bag fabric, placing the ends 1/2 inch from the side

a directional pattern, piece it

edges. Use a 1/2-inch seam allowance to sew each ruffle to the bag

together at the dashed line

as shown.

pattern will be upright on both

face down.

3.

Step Attach the zipper

sides when the bag is finished.

Q) "C

Cut the zipper to fit the top

iii

edge of the bag fabric; re­ move the slider and bottom

Cut two ruffle strips, making their length twice that of the

stop if necessary and sepa­

top edge of the bag (20 inch­

rate the two halves. Position

es), and their width one-fourth

each zipper half face down

the length of the top edge of

over the ruffle, aligning the

the bag (2 1/2 inches).

F;��¥���(;;,��::;r

Position zipper

before cutting it to size, so the

Top

tape edge with the raw edge

of the ruffle,

and sew through

all the layers using a 112-inch seam allowance.

76

TH R E A D S

Top


Go crazy using up those too-speclal-to­ throw-away bits of fabric or trim-combining

fabrics is part of the fun and makes for spectacular results.

�' - ---------------

Step 4. Attach the lining With the right sides together and the raw edges aligned, position the lining over the

ws

-- - -

Step 5. Shape the bag To hold the lining and bag fabric together, sew

%

from each raw edge. Put

112-inch seam allowance, sew through all

the slider on the zipper,

the layers across each top edge. Turn the

make sure the zipper

piece right sides out; make sure the stitch­

closes, and leave it

ing on the ruffle doesn't show.

closed so the bag forms

a

�/ / l-

inch

bag fabric. Using slightly more than a

,

l

� y...........::..

tube. Turn the

-----

tube lining-side out. Measuring from the zipper, mark

O pti o n a l for l a rge bags C u t a rigid reinforcement panel with dimensions 2 inches shorter than the top edge of the bag by one­ fourth the bag side length. Insert the panel between the bag and the lining as indicated and topstitch around the panel to secure.

the unfinished edges into quarters as shown. Form a box pleat by folding the two side marks inward to meet under the zipper. Baste through all the layers to hold the pleats. Repeat on the remaining open side. Finish the raw edges with a fabric or ribbon binding, and turn the bag right-side out.

december 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

77


I n d ex, T H R EA D S N o . 1 1 1 1 1 6

All

entries are reJerenced with the issue number, then the page numberes).

A Ahles, Carol LaOin: on thread essentials,

Byham, Sue Marra: Closures by, 116:90

by hand, 1 16:58-63 facings as, 1 16:32-36

c

on sheers, 1 16:58-63 on velvet, 116:48-53

on packing tips, 1 1 1 : 16 on storing gowns, 1 13:23

Allen, Susan B . : remembering, 1 15 : 8 Applique: on lace, 114:46-51 Armholes: how to fit gaping, 1 16:28-30

Circles: easy sewing tip for, 1 16: 16

Embroidery, machine: See also Machine digitized designs, review of, 1 12:80

on measuring a pattern to assess fit,

114:18

Back cover,

See

In Detail

Bags: to make in five steps, 1 16:76-77 Bands: serged, for necks, cuffs, and

Colors: and strip-piecing, 1 1 2:47-51 threads, in machine embroidery, 1 16:66-70

Basics (department): "Creating ruffles," 1 16:22- 26

"Machine topstitch for a flat, strong,

Cording: piping tips, 1 14: 16 Couture sewing techniques: insertions, 1 13:48-51

decorative finish," 112:20- 24 "Stay tape adds strength and stability to seams," 1 13:24-28

Cowls: adding drape with, 1 12:52-56

"Step-by-step to perfect machine­

Cumbie, Rae: on aligning layered skirt hems, 112: 16

made buttonholes," 114:20-24

Crushing velvet: how to do yourself, 1 1 1 :46-49

on creating ruffles, 1 16:22-26

"The right way to sew buttons," 1 1 5:26-30

on embellishing sheer garments, 116:58-63

Bernina: Artista 200E, review of, 112:36-43 BelZina, Sandra: on making jeans that fit,

Cutting mat: fixing warped, 1 1 3 : 14 - 16

Bias pants: three smart approaches for, 116:44-47 Bindings, knit: sources for matching to boiled wool, 1 1 5 : 16-20

Fabric dyeing: discharge dyeing with bleach, 1 1 5 :42-46 Fabrications: "A Versatile Wrap-Front Top,"

Daylight Company: tabletop lamp, review of, 1 13 : 78 Delicious Details (department):

&

Coat," 1 15:66-69 "Variations on a Classic Shirt Dress," 1 13 : 5 2 - 5 5 Fabrics: boiled wool, sources for, 1 1 5 : 16-20

preshrinking, 1 1 5 : 1 2 - 14 recording bolt-end information, 1 1 1 : 12 striped, 1 14:36-40 velvets, 1 1 1 :46-49, 113:20, 1 16:48-53

Fanning, Robbie: on making pull-on knit pants, 1 14:41-45

Density: of machine-embroidered deSigns, 1 1 2 : 70 - 74

Fears, Susan: on machine-embroidery

DeSign board: folding, 1 1 3 : 14

Fiber Etch: with a stencil, 1 1 5:42-46

Design Challenges:

Fitting:

density, 1 12 : 7 0 - 74

Design Challenge Vlll, 1 13 : 7 2 - 76

measuring clothes for, 1 16:54-57

Fabric Shopping Spree, 1 1 2:76-77

patterns without seam allowances,

The Striped Fabric Challenge, 1 1 5 :74-80 DeSigner knock-offs: creating, 1 13 : 6 1 - 6 5 Digitizing: t o mimic hand embrOidery, 1 1 3: 6 6 - 70 Drawstrings: casings for, 1 1 2:60-63 Dresses: a classic shirt, one pattern/three looks, 1 1 3 : 5 2 - 5 5

1 13:39-41 skirts with duct-tape form, 1 1 5 :47 -50 using pattern measurements, 1 12:44-46 Fitting (department): "Add a dart at the bust or shoulder to make a gaping vest armhole fit," 1 16:28-30 "Fitting pants to wide hips and thin legs requires a dart adjustment,

Duct tape: form for skirt fitting, 1 15:47 -50

not just a circumference change,"

Dyes, silk: review of, 1 13:80

1 15 : 34-36 "Inadequate support from above

E

can cause blouse hems to sag," 114:26-28 "Incorrect crotch length makes

Ease: measuring for fitting, 1 16:54-57 Elastics: for waistbands, speCialty, lingerie, 1 15 : 5 1 - 5 6 stitched-down, for waists and wrists, 1 12:60-63 Embellishments: See also Lace applying ribbon and tubing by machine, 1 16:58-63

1 1 3 :48 - 5 1 Hangers: making wide ones, 1 12 : 14 Hems: aligning for layered skirts, 1 1 2 : 16 bias, sewing by machine, 1 1 1 : 18 1 14:26-28 finishes for godets, 1 1 1 :64-68 marks for folding, 1 1 5 : 14 Hemstitching, machine, 1 15:57 -59 Hill, Lori: on velvets, 113:20 Howard, Pamela: on machine-top stitched finishes, 1 12:20-24 Howland, Karen: See also Fitting (depart­ ment) on reasons to remove seam allow­ ances from patterns, 1 13:39-41 Husqvarna Viking: Designer 1, review of, 1 12:36-43 Hutchison, Louise LoPinto: Closures by, 1 15:98

sheer, embellishing, 116:58-63

"Quilted accents," 1 1 1 : 7 0 - 72

Challenge, 1 1 1 :80-84

H

cover-stitched, 1 12:60-63

FaCings: on outside of garment, 1 16:32-36

Inspired by Threads-A Fashion

review of, 1 13 : 78

little Vest," 1 14:32-35 "Stylish DeSign Ideas for a Classic

"Flounces," 1 12:66-68 "Sleeves," 1 14:68-70

1 13:56- 60 Gwen Gibson DeSigns: silk screen kits,

correcting a sagging blouse hem,

metallic, sewing with, 1 1 1 : 16- 18

marking for, 1 1 5 : 14

Grading: using multisize patterns,

1 12:30-33 "Expand the Potential of a Smart

knits on the bias, 114: 16- 18

how to repOSition, 1 16:28-30

TH R E A D S

Fabric: strip-piecing, 1 1 2 :47 - 5 1

Darts: alternatives to, for shaping, 1 15:38-41

collar, 114:64-67

Grademaster: review of, 1 1 2:80

1 15:47 - 50 Hand sewing: couture insertions,

callan velveteen, 1 13:20

Bloebaum, Fred: on reshaping a shawl

Metric Pattern Cutting, 116:72 Mo,·e Fabric Savvy, 1 1 6 : 7 2 - 74 Piecing Quilting by Machine, 114:80 Simply Felt, 1 16 : 74 The Zapp Method oj Couture Sewing, 1 1 6 : 74 Border prints: working with, 1 16 : 18-20 Botsford, Shirley: on draping necklines on commercial patterns, 1 1 2 : 5 2 - 56 Boutis Proven�al: techniques for sewing, 1 1 1 :52-56 Brenne, Kathryn: on grading using multisize patterns, 1 13:56-60 Brocade: Chinese, silk-faced, 113:34-38 Brother: Innov-is 40000, review of, 1 1 5:88, (price erratum 1 16:8) Pacesetter ULT2003D, review of, 1 1 2:36-43 Bullard, Bobbi: on color in machine embroidery, 1 16:66-70 Busque, Pamela: on elastics, 1 15:51 - 56 on serger finishes for sportswear, 1 12:60-63 on sewing bias hems by machine, 1 1 1 : 18 Bustline: small, filling, 113:30-32 Buttonholes: aligning, 1 15:26-30 machine-made, 1 14:20- 24 sizing, 114:20 (calculation erratum, 1 15 : 10) Buttons: attaching sew-through and shank, 1 15:26-30

F

Chinese brocade, 1 13:34-38

for filling small bustline, 1 13:30-32

slash and spread for, 1 13:22 Gowns: proper storage, 1 13:23

Haas,jean: on duct tape skirt pattern,

o

Bleach: for discharge dyeing, 1 1 5 :42-46

Book reviews: Islander Sewing Systems I, 114:80

review of, 1 12:80

border prints, working with, 116: 18-20

1 1 1 :32-36 Bias hems: by machine, 1 1 1 : 18

stamp and embroidery motifs,

Collars: shawl, reshaping, 1 14:64-67 Colorhue: review of silk dyes, 1 13:80

removable, 1 12: 12

dery, 1 14 : 7 2 - 76

looks, 1 1 5:66-69 stenciled velveteen, 115: 100

hems, 112:60-63

"Five ways to transfer motifs to fabric," 1 1 1 :20-24

Ericson, Lois: on stamping and machine embroi­

a classic style, one pattern/three

Professional, reviews of, 1 1 1:86

78

1 12:44-46 on taking a man's measurements,

1 1 5 :38-41

Ellegante, review of, 1 16:72 Quilter's Choice and Quilter's Choice

for skirts, 1 1 1 :64-68

on lace, 1 14:46-51

on stylish alternatives to darts, Closures: hidden-button, 1 1 2 : 34-35 Coats:

Godets:

Emodi, Barbara: on matching stripes, 1 14:36-40

on pattern sizing for children, 1 12 : 18

Baby Lock: Ellageo 3, review of, 1 12:36-43

1 1 1 :50-51

Embroidery (department)

Claus, Heather: See also Delicious Details

B

on bagged linings, 1 15:60-65 on one-step lining and underlining,

transfer motifs for, 1 1 1 :20-24

Callahan, Barbara: on machine hem­ stitching, 1 15 : 5 7 - 59 Carswell, Diana L.:

1 14:57 -63

G Gifford, Shannon:

inseams ride up," 1 1 1 : 26-30 "To alter for a diminutive bust, you must change more than darts," 1 13:30-32 "To pull pants over wide hips, you may need a second zipper," 1 12:26-28 Flowers: making with fabric, 1 1 1 :62-63 Furs, Lynn: Closures by, 114:90

I/J / K In Detail: 18th- and 19th-century baby bonnets, 1 1 1 : 100 crushed velvet opera coat, 112:92 dramatic U-turn shawl collar, 1 14:92 hand-embroidered handkerchief, 113:92 sheer blouse, 1 16:92 stenciled velveteen coat, 115: 100 Insertions: couture technique, 1 13:48- 51 Interfacings: making skin-tone, 1 1 1 : 12 Isaak, Elaine Jackets:

C.

Closures by, 1 12:90

bagged linings for, 1 15:60-65 tailored, using stay tape for, 1 1 3:24-28 Janome: Memory Craft 300E, 9500, reviews of, 1 1 1 :88 Memory Craft 10001, reviews of, 1 1 1 :88, 1 1 2:36-43 Jarden, Richards: on digitizing, 113:66- 70 Jeans: altering patterns for, 1 1 1 :32-36 Jonson, Christine: on crushing velvet, I l l : 46 -49 on sewing velvet, 116:48- 53 Knits: making pull-on pants, 1 14:41-45 Kurland, Rachel: on making fabric floribundas, 1 1 1 :62-63 on sewing velvet, 1 16:48-53


l

Muslin-fitting: video, review of, 1 15:88

Rand, Sheri: on Irish lace by machine,

N

Reliable Steamer: review of pressing

1 14:46-51

Labels: machine-embroidered ribbon, 1 1 5 70-72 Lace: Irish Carrickmacross by machine, 114:46-51 Lamps: review of, 1 13:78, 1 1 5 :86 Lassonde, Barbara Mills: by,

Closures

1 1 1 :98

Laundering: velvet, 116:48- 53 Lazear, Susan: on comparing clothing

Necklines: draping on, 1 1 2: 5 2 - 56

art, review of, 114:78

Needle Organizer: review of, 1 1 1 :86

for machine-embroidered labels,

Neukam,Judith: on combination sewing! embroidery machines, 1 12:36-43 Notions, miniature: review of, 1 14:78

on corded piping, 114:16 on turning facings to outside,

PACC (ProfeSSional Association of

on yokes without topstitching, 1 1 1 :37 -39 LFN Textiles: ribbons, review of, 1 14:78 Lighting: backpacker's headlamps for, 1 16 : 16 Lingerie elastics, 1 15 : 5 1 - 56 Lining techniques: bagging, 1 15:60-65 key turning points, 1 15:60-65 one-step line and underline,

Roehr, Mary: on measuring and marking tools, 1 1 1 :40-45

on tips for sewing special-occasion garments, 1 1 1 :57 - 6 1 Striped Challenge, 1 1 5:74-80 Packing: for wrinkle-free shipping, 1 16 : 18 tips for, 1 1 1 : 16 Page, Allison: on hidden-button plackets, 1 1 2:34-35

Ties: as alternative to darts, 1 1 5 :38-41

s

Tilton, Marcy: on sewing bias pants, 1 16:44-47 Tools:

114:52-56 Sashiko: and strip-piecing, 1 12:47 - 5 1

1 1 1 :40-45 Tops: bagged linings for, 1 1 5 :60-65 wrap-front, one pattern/three looks,

Scissors: tips for keeping them handy,

112:30-33

1 1 3 : 16

Pants: adding elasticized back and hidden

Scrivano, Sandy: in DeSign Challenge

VIU, 1 1 3 : 72-76

fitting wide hips and narrow legs,

on slashing and spreading godets, 1 13:22

1 15:34-36 making perfect pattern for, 1 14:52-56 making pull-on knit, 114:41-45 on the bias, 116:44-47 pull-on, waistband tip, 1 1 5 : 12 Pants pressing board: review of, 1 1 5:86 Pattern-grading rulers: review of, 1 12:80 Patterns:

M

for measuring and marking,

on making a perfect slacks pattern,

review of, 1 12:80 Long, Connie:

1 1 1 : 16 - 18

for finishing details, 1 1 1 :40-45

Sagers, Peggy: in Design Challenge VIU, 1 1 3: 7 2 - 76

on skirt godets, 1 1 1 :64-68

on se\ving buttons, 1 1 5:26- 30 on sewing ,vith metallic fabrics,

sizes, 114:57 -63 tension, 1 1 3 : 18

1 16:22-26

bagged linings for, 1 1 5 :60-65

114:20-24

116:66-70 fibers, 114:57 -63 manufacturer sources, 1 14:57 -63

Lois Ericson DeSigns Stamp Collection:

on knits on the bias, 114: 16- 18 on machine-made buttonholes,

Threads: colors, in machine embroidery,

1 1 1:88

zipper for wide hips, 112:26-28

1 1 1 :5 0 - 5 1

Thread stem: creating, 1 1 5:30

Rods, hanging: review of, 114:80

Rumes: creating strip, header, double,

Custom Clothiers)

116:32-36

1 1 5 :70-72

Tassels: making in three steps, 1 1 1 : 14 Thread selection, 114:57 -63

Rotary cutter: OLFA's CMP-3, review of,

p

measurements to patterns, 1 16:54- 57 Lee, Linda:

Tapes, stay, 1 13:24-28

Ribbons:

Needles: storage tips, 1 14 : 1 2

T Tailor's loops, 1 12 : 18

system, 1 13:80

Seam allowances: reasons to remove from patterns, 1 13:39-41

Tornow, Karen: on boiled wool and knit binding sources, 1 1 5 : 16-20 on negative printing techniques, 1 1 5:42-46 Tucks: as alternative to darts, 1 1 5:38-41 Turning points: for lined garments, 1 1 5:60-65 Turtlenecks: draping with knits,

reinforcing clipped, 1 1 5 : 16

1 12:52-56

Seams: false nat-felled, 1 1 1 :5 0 - 5 1 for Boutis Proven,al, 1 1 1 :5 2 - 5 6

UfV

"Fabrications," interpretations of a

pressing steps for, 1 12: 1 6

classic coat, 1 1 5: 6 6 - 69 "Fabrications," interpretations of a classic shirt dress, 1 1 3: 5 2 - 5 5

starting and ending with fabric Se,ving classes: online, 116:20

"Design with color," 116:66- 70 "Embroider custom labels on

"Fabrications," interpretations of a

Shawl collar: reshaping, 114:64-67

on making clever five-step bags,

Sheer garments: embellishing, 1 16:58-63

ribbon," 1 1 5 : 70-72 "Hand embroidery by machine,"

"Fabrications," interpretations of a

1 16:76-77 on working with border prints,

113:66-70 "Make complex, composite 'kaleido­

finding discontinued, 1 13:20-22

Shoulder pads: reusing for hangers,

fitting adjustments for jeans, 1 1 1:32-36

Shriber, Nancy: on color and strip-

Machine Embroidery (department):

scopic' designs," 1 1 1 :74-78 "Stamp it, stitch it: Embellishment techniques join forces," 1 14 : 7 2 - 76 "Understand density to avoid stiff or

vest, 1 14:32-35 wrap-front top, 1 1 2:30 -33

grading using multisize, 1 13:56-60 making a duct tape hip sloper, 1 15 : 47-50

wimpy stitchouts," 1 1 2:70-74 Machines, se\ving!embroidery combina­

making perfect slacks, 1 14:52-56

tion: overview, 1 1 2:36-43 Mann, Paddye:

reasons to remove seam allowances from, 1 1 3:39-41

on adding stay tape to seams, 1 1 3 : 24-28

measuring to assess fit, 1 12:44-46

reference system for, I l l : 14 reviews of, 1 1 3:42-47, 116:37-43

on protecting welt pockets, 1 15:20

sizing for children, 1 12 : 18

on tailor's loops, 1 12 : 18

tools for adjusting and drafting,

Marciel, Ana:

Closures

by, 1 13:90

Marking: tools for, 1 1 1 :40-45 Marks: for darts and hem folding, 1 1 5 : 14 Mazur, Anna: on creating a designer knock-off, 113:61-65 on pressing seams, 1 12 : 16 on reinforcing clipped seam allow­ ances, 1 15 : 16

1 1 1 :40-45 Pfaff: Creative 2144, review of, 1 12:36-43 Piping, corded, 1 14: 16 Placket, hidden-button, 1 1 2:34-35 Pleats: as alternative to darts, 1 1 5:38-41 Pockets: welt, sewn for protection, 115:20 Prakash, Deepika: on discontinued patterns, 1 13:20-22 on online sewing classes, 116:20

scraps, 1 1 6 : 14

UltraThimble: review of, 1 12:80 Valentine, Debbie:

Shirring: as alternative to darts, 1 1 5:38-41

1 16: 18-20 on adding embellishments to waist­

1 14 : 14

Vests:

1 12:36-43 Skimin, Barbara: on kaleidoscopic machine embroi­ dery designs, 1 1 1 : 74-78 on machine-embroidered labels, 1 15:70-72 Skirts: bagged linings for, 1 15:60-65 duct tape pattern for, 1 1 5 :47 -50

Sleeve details, 1 14:68-70 Special-occasion clothes: se,ving tips for, 1 1 1 : 57 -61 Specialty elastics, 1 15 : 5 1 - 56

Pressing board, pants: review of, 1 1 5 :86 Pressing system: review of, 113:80

Steamer: LauraStar's Steamax, review

of patterns, 1 1 2:44-46 taking a man's, 114:18 taking a toddler's, 1 1 3 : 16 taking, for jeans, 1 1 1 :32-36 tools for taking, 1 1 1 :40-45 Measuring System: review of, 1 13:78 Mohr, April: on packing garments for wrinkle-free shipping, 1 1 6 : 18

on couture insertions, 113:48-51

OfR

Quick to Make (department): "Clever five-step bag," 1 16:76-77

Quilting machines: reviews of, 1 1 1 :86

Waistbands: using belt loops t o enlarge, 112:12 Waistlines: adding embellishments to, 112:57 -59 Wassing-Shepherd, Saskia: on sewing

Spool Swing: review of, 1 1 1 :86 Sportswear: serger finishes for, 112:60-63

of clothes, for fitting, 116:54- 57

w Waistband elastics: overview, 1 15 : 5 1 - 56

Stamping: combined with machine

Printing: discharge dyeing, 1 15:42-46

Video: muslin-fitting, review of, 1 1 5 :88

tip for, 1 1 5 : 1 2

Preshrinking fabric, 1 1 5 : 1 2 - 14

Ptak, Pamela: in Design Challenge VIII, 1 13:72-76

bagged linings for, 1 1 5:60-65 one pattern/three looks, 114:32-35

Slacks: making a perfect pattern, 114:52-56

Pressing: velvet, 1 16:48-53

Measurements:

crushing of, 1 1 1 :46-49 sewing with, 116:48-53

Singer: Quantum XL-5000, review of,

on summer patterns, 1 13:42-47

McCartney, Stella: sheer blouse, 1 16:92

lines, 1 12:57 -59 on Chinese brocade, 1 13:34-38 Velvets, 1 1 3:20

piecing fabric, 1 1 2:47 - 5 1 Silk: Chinese brocade, 1 13:34-3 8 Silk screen kits: review of, 113:78

on transferring motifs to fabric, 1 1 1 :20-24 on winter patterns, 1 16:37 -43

Veblen, Sarah:

velvet, 1 16:48-53 Wool, boiled: sources for, 1 1 5 : 16-20

embroidery, 114:72-76 of, 1 1 1:88 Stenciling: design with Fiber Etch, 1 15:42-46

adding details with, 1 1 2:52-56

discharge dyeing, 1 15:42-46 Stitches: decorative, setting to zero width, 1 1 1 : 14 Strip-piecing: and color, 1 1 2 :47 - 5 1 Stripes: matching and designing \vith, 1 14:36-40 Surface design,

See

y Yokes: making ,vithout topstitching, 1 1 1 :37 -39 Yolande, Marie: on sewing with Boutis Proven,al, 1 1 1 :5 2 - 56 Your Personal Fit-Measuring System:

Stamping, StenCiling

review of, 1 13 : 78

d e c e m b e r 2 0 0 4 /j a n u a r y 2 0 0 5

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MANAGEMENT, (Required by 39 USc. 3685) 1. Publication title: Threads. 2. Publicalion no.: 0882-7370. 3. Filing I U 2 S il ���s a�n��� � �: � �n �� ��b" � �� �e� ' $�� 9� r � 7. Complete mailing address of known office of publication: 63 5. Main Street. Box 5506, Newtown, Fairfield County, CT 06470-5506. 8. Com­

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WN

STATEMENT OF O

ERSHIP, AND QRCULATION

� �����d ;

� ��

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plete mailing address of headqu<lners of publisher: 63 S. Main Street. Box 5506, Newtown, CT 06470-5506. 9. Full names and complete mail­ ing addresses of Publisher and Editor: Publisher: Elizabeth Agren, same as 8.: Editor: Carol Spier, same as 8. Owner: The Taumon Press, Inc., 63 S. Main Street, Box 5506, Newtown, CT 06470-5506; Stockholders owning or holding % or more of the total amount of stock Taunton Inc., 63 S. Main Street, Box 5506, Newtown, CT 06470-5506. Known bondholders, mortgagees, and other security holders: None. N/A. 13. Publication name: Issue date for circulallon data below: AugUSt/September 2004. 1 5 . Extent and nature of CIrculation

10.

I

ll. 12.

Threads. 14.

;�b,:��� 10

AClUal no. copies of ue

Average no. copies each issue during preceding months

12

nearest filing dale

b.

a. TOlal no. copies

232.554 215,405 Paid and/or requested CIrculation 1. Paid/requested outside county mail subscriptions stated on Form 3541 96,593 92,773 2. Paid in-<:oumy subscriptions stated on Form 3541 3. Sales through dealers and carriers, street vendors, 41,246 and counter sales 42,916 4. Other classes mailed through the USPS c. Total paid and/or 134,019 requested circulation 139.509 Free distribution by mail 1. Outside-county as stated on Form 3541 7,912 4,031 2. In-county as stated on Form 3541 3. Other classes mailed e S t u outside the mall 2,878 2,928 Total free distribution 10,790 6,959 g. Tota\ distribution 146.468 144,809 h. Copies not distributed 70,596 86,086 Total 232,554 21 5,405 Percent paid and/or requested circulation 92.5% 95.2% 16. This Statement of Ownership will be pnnted the December 20041 January 2005 issue of this publication 17. I certify that all information furnished on this form true and com· plete. I understand thai anyone who furnishes false or misleading information on this form or who omIts material or information reo

d.

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quested on the form may be subject to criminal sanctions (including : : P ple � i a a e ) a : l l .

C l a ssifie d

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87


Advertiser Index/Web Directory

For more information from advertisers, use reader service card inside back cover. For quick access to their websites, go to the Index to Advertisers at www.threadsmagazine.com

Advertiser

Reader Service No.

Web Address

Page #

Advertiser

Reader Service No.

I

Web Address

I

Page #

A¡I Accessories

89

www.a-1 accessories,com

1'. 86

Darr, Incorporated

95

A-I Fabric, Incorporated

1 05

www.a1 fabric.com

1'. 86

Dawn Anderson Designs

119

A Fabric Oasis

91

www.afabricoasis.com

1'. 81

Daylight Company

11

www.daylightcompany.com

I' l l

Able Labels of Sarasota

36

www.ablelabels.com

p ll

Delta Sewing Furniture

87

www.deltasewing.com

I' 86

Academy of Fashion Design

1 27

www.aofdesign.com

1'. 86

Design to Fit Patterns, Inc.

www.designtofit.com

1'. 64 p. 80

Academy of Fine Sewing

&:

Design

www.darrsewnotions.com www.dawnandersondesigns.com

1 63

www.babylock.com

1 22

www.discountfabricsusa.com

p. 87

www.distinctivefabric.com

p. 67

www.diyslipcovers.com

p. 83

1'. 84

Discount Fabrics USA

Acme Country Fabrics

www.acmecountryfabrics.com

1'. 85

Distinctive Fabric

Alpha lmpressions

www.alphaimpressions.com

I' 15

Do It Yourself Slipcovers -Dolly Mc Fadden

14

www.pdxfashionincubator.

1 56

www.earthguild.com

---

American Sewing Center

61

www.american-sewing.com

p. 31

Apple Annie Fabrics

78

www.appleanniefabrics.com

1'. 82

Arrowmont School

1 86

www.arrowmont.org

I' 67

Earth Guild

Art of the Midwest

113

Edward R. Hamilton,

Atlas Levy

1' 85

Designer's Gallery

www.finesewing.com

54

1'. 82

1 21

org/board.htm

p. 86 I' 84

www.artofthemidwest.com

I' 82

www.atlaslevy.com

I' 85

4

www.erhbooks.com/fsm

I' 67

p. 85

The Electric Quilt Company

26

www.electricquilt.com

p 64

Aurora Silk

1 55

www.aurorasilk.com

Bookseller

Baby Lock

1 69

www.babylock.com

1'. 2 1

Embroider This!

1 67

www.embroiderthis.com

p. 70

Baby Lock

1 70

www.babylock.com

1' 23

Embroidery Arts

1 45

www.embroideryarts.com

p. 23

Baer Fabrics

33

www.baerfabrics.com

I' 86

Embroidery Library

7

www.emblibrary.com

p. 1 9

-rwww.theembroiderystudio.com

Barb Originals

1 03

www.barboriginals.com

1'. 81

The Embroidery Studio

1 84

Barudan America, Inc.

16

www.barudan.com

I' 9

Eucalan, lnc.

1 33

www.eucalan.com

1'. 9

Batiks Etcetera

10

www.batiks.com

p 86

Eva Dress

38

www.evadress.com

1'. 85

Baum Textile Mills, Inc.

48

www.baumtextile.com

1'. 15

50

www.5ts.com

1'. 2 1

Beacon Fabric

55

www.beaconfabric.com

I'

5 1's Embroidery Supply Fabric by Design

www.fabricbydesign.com

p. 85

I' 82

Fabric Dot Com

www.fabricdotcom.com

p. 84 p. 80

&:

Notions

86

1'. 83

The Bee Lee Company

1

Bernina

1 00

www.berninausa.com

p. 12-13

Fabric.Com

6

www.fabric.com

Biscayne Fabrics, Etc.

69

www.biscaynefabricsetc.com

p 86

FabricDirect.com

1 81

www.fabricdirect.com

p. 83

Brother

67

www.brother.com

p. 2-3

Fabulous Fit Dress Forms

www.fabulousfit.com

p. 31

1 90

www.budobear.com

1'. 81

Fare Tahiti Fabrics

I---

Budo Bear

J---.--

j---

-

1 92

www.faretahiti.com

-Ip. 70

Burda World of Fashion

53

www.glpnews.com/crafts.html

p 85

Fine Fabric Stores

1 49

www.finefabricstores.com

p 64

The Button Drawer

99

www.buttondrawer.com

p. 82

Fire Mountain Gems

1 89

www.firemountaingems.com

I' 7

Buttons, Etc. of the NW

66

www.buttons-etc.com

p 81

Fishman's Fabrics, Inc.

1 91

www.cadenaamerica.com

I' l l

Candlelight Valley Fabrics

45

www.candlelightvalleyfabrics.com

p. 87

Fitsewwell.com

12

www.fitsewwell.com

I' 82

Christinejonson Patterns

1 02

www.cjpatterns.com

I' 87

Fitting Tips

1 72

www.fittingtips.com

p 84

Claire Schaeffer

56

I' 83

Folkwear

70

Coats

Clark

1 53

www.coatsandclark.com

p. 27

French Connections

Clark

1 54

www.coatsandclark.com

1'. 29

Gayfeather Fabrics

Cochenille Design Studio

1 46

www.cochenille.com

1'. 70

The Colonial Needle Co.

1 30

www.colonialneedle.com

1'. 1 0

Contemporary Cloth

34

www.contemporarycloth.com

p. 85

The Cotton Boll

1 79

www.thecottonboll.com

COllon Plus

112

www.folkwear.com

I' 81

www.french-nc.com

p. 82

43

www.gayfeatherfabrics.com

p. 86

General Label Mfg.

1 07

www.generallabel.com

1'. 81

Grannd Garb Companies

1 31

www.grannd.com

I' 83

Great Copy Patterns

1 65

www.greatcopy.com

p 81

1'. 83

The Green Pepper

2

www.thegreenpepper.com

p. 64

www.organiccottonplus.com

1'. 86

Haberman Fabrics

94

www.habermanfabrics.com

I' 85

The Couture Sewing School

www.susankhalje.com

1'. 10

Havel's, Inc.

58

www.havels.com

p 84

The Craft Connection

www.craftconn.com

1'. 69

Hobby Ware

8

www.hobbyware.com

I' 74

www.colleenlynch.ca

1'. 82

Home Sewing Association

1 82

www.sewing.org

p 7

www.createforless.com

I' 82

Homespun Wide Fabrics

www.homespunfabrics.com

p. 84

www.csnf.com

I' 87

Coats

&:&:

Crazy Quilt Earrings Create for Less Creative Sew

1 01

f-

-

&:

Needlework Festival

47

-

Creekside Embroidery Designs Criswell Embroidery

www.creeksidedesigns.com

&:

Design Cy Rudnick's Fine Fabrics

88

TH R E A D S

117

I' 81

Hugo's Amazing Tape

116

www.getcreativeshow.com/

Husqvarna/Viking

28

www.husqvarnaviking.com

1'. 9./

Islander Sewing Systems

1 94

www.islandersewing.com

p. 21

jacquard Products

1 48

www.jacquardproducts.com

p. 23

www.jen nys-sewing-studio.com

1'. 1 1

www.johanna-design-studio.com

1'. 85

amazingtape.htm

www.k-Iace.com

p. 1 5

jenny's Sewing Studio

www.sewing.org/cyrudnicks/

1'. 82

Johanna Design Studio

111

1'. 86


Advertiser Index/Web Directory

For more information from advertisers, use reader service card inside back cover. For quick access to their websites, go to the Index to Advertisers at www.threadsmagazine.com

Advertiser

Reader Service

Web Address

p 86

Robens Manufacturing

1 88

www.robertsmfg.com

32

www.juki.com

p. 71

Robison-Anton Textile Co.

92

www.robison-anton.com

just Slips

1 85

www. ustslips.com

p 7

Royalwood, Ltd.

1 68

www.royalwoodltd.com

p. 82

Kandi Corp

1 76

www.l路orna.com

p. 81

Sadia's Designs

1 23

www.sadiasews.com

p. 86

Advertiser

Reader Service

Web Address

judith M Design

60

www. udithm.com

juki Union Special

No.

Page

j j

No.

Sage's Loft Embroidery

www.marshallee.com/

Karen's Krealions

#

I

Page p 84 p. 31

& 68

www.sageloft.com

p. 85

Keepsake QUilting Supplies

20

www.keepsakequilting.com

p. 69

Sailrite Kits

65

www.sailrite.com

p. 69

La Fred

63

www.lafred.com

p. 84

Sawyer Brook Fabrics

1 35

www.sawyerbrook.com/backroom

p. 73

44

www.leelooms.com

p. 82

Sew Easy Embroidery Retreat

1 83

www.rayssewingcenter.com

p 15

Sew Thankful

71

www.sewthankful.com

p. 85

www.sewvacdirect.com

p. 64

1 20

www.sewexpo.com

p. 25

p. 83

karen'skreations.htm

Leesburg Looms

&

Supply

Lodi Down

&

Lorraine Torrence Designs

Madeira Embroidery

p. 82

Sewing

www.loeshinsedesign.com

p. l 1

Sewing Events.com

1 77

www.sewingevents.com

p. 69

97

www.lorrainetorrence.com

p 83

Sewing Machine Outlet

24

www.sewingmachineoutlet.com

p 84

1 24

www.lumenlight.com

p 82

Sewing Pallerns.com

9

www.sewingpatterns.com

p. 70

www.thesewingplace.com

p. 85

www.sewingworkshop.com

p. 69

www.sewinginusa.com

p. lO

www.lodidownandfeather.com

143

Loes Hinse Design

Lumenlighl.com

Sew Vac Direct

23

Feather

&

The Sewing Workshop

77

www.makemefabrics.com

p. 81

Sewingin USA.com

59

1 41

www.maldenmillsstore.com

p. 83

SewkeysE Retreat

1 04

www.manhattanfabrics.com

p. 84

Sewn Up Productions

Quilting Thread

1 59

f--

-

-

www.wardrobesupplies.com

Supply

Martha Pullen Co.

1 42 1 44

Mary's Productions Mekong River Textiles Michael's Fabrics

I

,

p. 81

yf

74

www.sewnupb il.com

p. 83

29

www.pcmexpo.com

p. 2 1

www.sieversschool.com

p. 85

www.silkconnection.com

p. 67

Sew-QUilt EmbrOidery

Manhattan Wardrobe

Manta-Ray, Inc.

Stitchery Expo

p. 65

Make Me! Fabrics Malden Mills

&

The Sewing Place

1 09

Manhattan Fabrics

Fabric Arts

p. 82

www.lindastewartcouturedesigns.com

82

Linda Stewan Couture

p. 86

www.lesfabriques.com

25

Les Fabriques

--

www.sew-brite.com

p. 81 p. 7

Festival Sievers School of Fiber Ans

p 73

The Silk Connection

1 47

www.marymulari.com

p. 82

Silver Reed Knitting Machine

1 74

www.silverreed.com

p. 81

www.mekongrivertextiles.com

p. 81

Singer

13

www.singerco.com

p. 1 7

www.michaelsfabrics.com

p SI

Solo Slide Fasteners

46

www.e路sewing.com

p. 83

www.marthapullen.com

--

Mill End Store

1 37

www.millendstore.com

p. 84

Sl. Theresa Textile Trove

37

www.sttheresatextile.com

p. 85

Monterey Mills

1 87

www.montereymills.com

p. 31

Sterling Name Tape Company

1 78

www.sterlingnametape.com

p. 87

Mulberrywood

1 64

www.mulberrywood.com

p SI

Stitchitize Embroidery

www.stitchitize.com

p. 25

Mutual Fabrics

1 32

p. 83

Stretch

90

www.stretchandsewmn.com

p 86

My Twin Dress Forms

1 61

www.mytwindressforms.com

p. 84

Sue's Sparklers

1 60

www.suessparklers.com

p. 85

My-Fabrics

1 40

www.my-fabrics.com

p. 86

Super Silk

1 73

www.supersilk.com

p 84

MyNotions.com

1 38

www.mynotions.com

p 85

Taunton Books

www.taunton.com/betzina

p. 80 p. 82

&

Sew Fabrics

Name Maker, Inc.

35

www.namemaker.com

p 69

Tex USA, Inc.

1 06

www.fleece4sale.com

Nancy's Notions, Ltd.

1 62

www.nancysnotions.com

p. 25

Textile Studio Patterns

171

www.textilestudiofabrics.com

p. 83

Oriental Silk Company

114

www.orientalsilk.com

p. 15

Thai Silks

1 75

www.thaisilks.com

p 74

Originals by Becki

73

www.originalsbybecki.com

p. 83

ThreadAn

1 80

www.threadart.com

p. 85

www.ott路lite.com

p. 67

ThreadPro

1 29

www.threadpro.com

p. 82

Ott-Lite Technology

-

Ouobre DeSign

1 51

www.ottobredesign.com

p. 23

Tosca Company

18

www.toscacompany.com

p 84

Pattern String Codes

88

www.pattern.stringcodes.com

p. 84

TrimFabric.com

1 52

www.trimfabric.com

p. 86

Pattern Studio

1 39

www.patternstudio.com

p. 83

Ultra Style DeSigns

57

www.ultrastyledesigns.com

p. 86

Petite Plus Pauerns

39

www.petitepluspatterns.com

p. 84

Universal Presser Foot Lifter

118

www.presserfootlifter.com

p. 84

Pfaff

27

www.pfaffusa.com

p. 75

Utica Th read

1 66

www.uticathread.com

p. 67

The Pressing Star

30

www.dianesdesigns.biz

p. 73

Vestis Books

41

www.vestisbooks.com

p. 69

p. 70

Wild Ginger Software, Inc.

110

www.wildginger.com/sale

p. 73

p 83

The Wooly Thread

www.woolythread.com

p. 81

www.raincitypublishing.com

p 25

You Can Make It, Inc.

www.youcanmakeit.com

p S3

www.therainshed.com

p. l O

Your Personal Fit

www.yourpersonalfit.com/threads.htm

p. 87

64

www.reliablecorporation.com

p 70

Zipper Source

1 08

www.zippersQurce.com

p. 85

Rit Dye

22

www.ritdye.com

p. 73

Zundt Design

15

www.zundtdesign.com

p 9

Road to California

1 93

www.road2ca.com

p. 31

Ptak Couture The Quilted Dragon Rain City Publishing The Rainshed Reliable Corporation

#

1 36 96 79 1 28

www.ptakcouture.com www.quilted路dragon.com

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1 58

I

december 2 0 04/j a n u a ry 2 0 0 5

89


Cl osures With str i n g s attached by

Sue

Marra Byham

love the scene in A.A.

be solved by a nice drawstring

Milne's Win nie the Pooh

bag of one size or another? And

where Eeyore is captivated

what better way could there be to

by his birthday present, a pot,

sample a new fabric or trim, try

and something to put in it.

a new color scheme, play with a

Happily, he puts it in and takes

new stitch or technique, or show

it out and puts it in and takes it

off an odd length of vintage rib­

out. I know just how he felt, but

bon or a treasured scrap, than by

it's not clay pots that delight me,

making a drawstring bag?

it's drawstring bags.

If you should see someone

There can be no definitive an­

reaching into a wallet-sized

swer to the question, "How did

pouch for coins to buy a maga­

the first pouch come about?"

zine, please, stop and say hello­

Some would say it must have

it's me. Or you might catch me

been something a hunter threw

reaching into a tiny drawstring

together to hold arrowheads. I

bag attached to a chain around

believe the pouch was a broad

my neck and pulling out lip balm

leaf that was fastened with vine

on a snowy, blowy afternoon. Or

and held baby teeth or corn. We

find me on a bench in the spring

know the first needleworkers

with my embroidery and all my

made bags to be worn around

supplies in a drawstring bag

the neck or waist, to carry tal­

hanging from my waist.

ismans, amulets, and other per­ sonal treasures. From the tiny embroidered purses that sometimes accompa­

If you followed me home you would find bags everywhere­ from my bed to my desk to my drawstring knapsack.

nied payments in gold to the big

There is just something about

sacks filled with grain, our re­

the various forms and functions

elry bits have found new roles as

add beads to aid in closing the

corded history is full of all man­

of the simple, ancient design that

trim on my fanciest bags.

bag, but that's all.

ner, size, and type of drawstring

I find irresistible. And if there's

And if you see what I'm work­

So next time you're asked "pa­

bags. Even today, with so many

anything I like more than using

ing on, you'll know my mood.

per or plastic?" why not answer,

choices available, pretty bags in

one, it's making one, whether it's

One day I transformed a hand­

"muslin" or "canvas" or "denim,"

luxurious fabrics often serve as

something utilitarian in cheese­

woven dish towel into a bread

and open a drawstring bag full

gift wrap for jewelry or charms.

cloth and twine or an elegant

bag in only five minutes-with a

of drawstring bags to get the job

Many homes have clothespin

handbag of crazy-quilt velvet

single drawstring.

done with something that's both

bags hanging on wash lines and

and satin.

vegetable bags in refrigerator crispers. But if those are the only sort

I've tried other sorts of bags-in

The bags that hold my scarves

3-D shapes, and with pockets,

or handkerchiefs may also me­

zippers, and clever hardware. But

morialize a favorite dress. My

I always come back to the shape

beautiful and useful? If I see you, I'll be sure to stop and say hello.

at your house, I think you're

soap bags recall the lacy flannel

of the loaf bag, the mending

missing out on a good thing.

nightgowns that once marked

bag, and the coin pouch of old.

and needleworker from Pennsylva­

What storage difficulty, includ­

every Christmas. Likewise, my

There's something so endearing

nia, who keeps her business cards

ing the sorting of items, couldn't

widowed earrings and other jew-

in drawstring simplicity. I might

in a vintage drawstring bag.

90

T H R EA D S

Sue Marra Byham is an avid writer


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IN DETAIL Contemporary fashion takes on a vintage, even antique, look in this surplice blouse from British de足 signer Stella McCartney's spring/ summer

2003

collection, made

of ivory silk chiffon woven with a drawn-thread effect.

As lightweight

and sheer as the blouse's fabric is, it's nonetheless nearly impos足 sible to see the stitches that join the lace sleeve and trim to the gar足 ment. Concealing seams and edges in fragile fabrics like this chiffon can be a challenge, but embellish足 ment makes them a design feature, as explained on p.

I Photos: Sloan Howard

58.

Threads magazine 116 january 2005  
Threads magazine 116 january 2005  
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