Wednesday, August 7, 2013

What I've Learned About Sewing

I am not the best seamstress in the world but there are a few things I have learned that have helped me to make my sewing projects look better (or at the very least keep me from loosing my mind when something doesn't turn out right).

1. The IRON is your BEST FRIEND!

It makes things so much easier when you can iron down a hem before you sew it or iron out a piece of fabric before you cut out your pattern. It may seem like a wast of time but it really helps.

2. Take the time to thoroughly PLAN OUT YOUR PROJECT.

I know from experience this will save you a lot of headaches later. I can't remember how many times I have messed up on a project and then had to spend a ton of time ripping out seams because I didn't plan out how I was going to sew my garment together before I did it. If you are working from a pattern read it before you start doing anything. If you are making something without a pattern, sit down and write out what you are going to do, what pieces will be sewn together first, second, third and so on.

3. You can always START OVER.

If you mess up on a project don't sweat it! Everyone makes mistakes; just remember that you can always start your project over. Unless you are working with fabric they just don't make anymore....then oops.

4. Wait until your kids are asleep.

It is a lot easier to finish a project if you don't have to worry about your little one running off with your fabric or sticking their fingers in your sewing machine while you are trying to work.

5. Practice on fabric you don't care about

Don't use expensive fabric your first time around. It really stinks when you mess up and waste 50 bucks.

6. Experiment

Take some time and experiment with your sewing machine, it takes some time to get to know your sewing machine so try different stitches, mess with the tension and learn how to fix it.


There are many times when one of my projects just isn't turning out like I wanted it to. So I just step back and leave my project alone for a little while...take deep breaths and try not to throw my sewing machine out the window. Then reassess the project and try to fix the problem.

8. Learn to get along 

If you are new to sewing and you're anything like me you're going to be using your seam ripper a lot. Learn to get along with it, you are going to be spending a lot of time together so you might as well just be friends. Just don't leave it out or your kids may tear your couch apart.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Recovering Fabric Baskets

I found these bins at the thrift shop for two bucks each but one of them was ripped and the fabric was not washable. Can someone please tell my why they would use fabric you can't wash?! The people who made these things must not have kids.

The bins have a metal frame and Velcro so you can take the fabric cover off to spot clean.

Here is one of the bigger holes

They Velcro onto the metal frame so they can be taken off
and cleaned

Alice was my big helper
The First thing I did was take out all of the Velcro
so I could reuse it in the new basket

My kids love to help with projects

Then I took the whole thing apart with the seem ripper, it took me a really long time and the fabric kept ripping apart. At the very bottom of the bin there was a piece of cardboard sandwiched in between two pieces of fabric, I used the seam ripper to take open up one end and pulled out the card board so I could use it in the new basket covering.

Keep the Cardboard

Cut out one of each piece

For the bottom piece make sure you cut out an
extra strip o fabric about 2 inches wide
Since I want to be able to wash this I am making an opening at the bottom of the bin so that I can slip the cardboard out and just throw the rest into the washer.
 I surged one edge of the bottom fabric and then the strip then I put them good sides together and placed the cardboard on top and measured how big the opening needed to be.
Then I surged from the corner to the orange dot, about 1/2 an
inch on each side of the fabric.
This is what it looks like up close
Next sew both of the bottom pieces bad sides together
then slide the cardboard in to make sure it fits

Next I sewed on each of the sides to the bottom piece then surged
each of the sides together and around the top.

Sew the Velcro back on, slip it onto the metal frame
and your

The new basket was tested and approved by Alice!
Thanks For reading