Thursday, July 24, 2014

How to Monogram a Casserole Carrier

These casserole carriers are so cute but how do you embroider the handle, if you only have single needle machine and the handle on the carrier doesn't open up? Most of these carriers have a single handle that is stitched to the zipper seam. I am going to show you how easy it is to embroider the handle even if you have a single needle machine. 
You can find carriers like this one at Carolina Pottery, Ross, Tuesday Mornings or Home Goods. To find them online go to Sew For Less, All About Blanks (These carriers are easier to embroider on b/c the handles detach.) and the Coral Coast (She sells the blanks too). I found this one on sell because the white was marked up. (Which a mixture of peroxide and dawn took care of.) Originally marked $12.99, it was a red ticket item so we got it for 1/2 off, $6.50.
Step 1: Open up the zipper seam that has one side of the handle inclosed in, it is topstitched and there is binding holding all of the layers of fabric together so open it carefully. 
Step 2: Embroider the handle. When embroidering the handle in this direction you will have to rotate the design so that it reads on the casserole case correctly.
Step 3: Sew the carrier layers of fabric together and then stitch the binding back over the zipper and the insulated fabric layers. 
Step 4: Topstitch over the handle.
Now it is ready to use!! My $6.50 carrier looks like a $35 one!! If you are able to find a carrier that has the velcro handles that open up, buy that. However, if you can't find a carrier with handles that open, now you know how to embroider it!! 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Mac Embroidery Software!!!

If you are looking for embroidery software that will resize, adjust and combine designs together. Look no further! Embrillance Essentials does all of that and more. For the first time, I was able to use my Mac to create embroidery designs for my Brother PE-770 embroidery machine. The PC I was using in the past was so old that I was afraid it might not even turn on at all. Embroidery was the only reason I kept the old PC. Now I am confident that my Embrillance Essential software will work on my much faster Mac machine. Maybe I can get rid of the old PC machine for good. If you are a PC user you can download the PC version.
I use Dropbox to organize all of my embroidery files. This is a great and easy way to save all of your embroidery files. Not to mention all the time you will save searching for files. You can also access them anywhere.
When you open a design file in Embrillance you can view it first and then open it in the program. I love how Embrillance tells you the stitch count for each design. The stitch count is how many embroidery shops price their services. Now you can too, by seeing how much thread you will actually use.
After creating the embroidery file I transfer it to my machine via flash drive. I love the baste stitch feature in Embrillance because once you press the little button the entire design is baste stitched around. Personally, I don't like to hoop the fabric because you can get hoop burn. 
This is a great example of how you need a program like Embrillance. This cute font is Kaylee sold with 26 upper case and lower case letters at the Monogram Font Store. If you want to create a word or name you have to put the letters all together. Embrillance lets you merge the stitch files together to create words or names. After placing all of the letters together, I was able to remove under stitching. (Excess stitches that overlapped.) You can re-size embroidery down to half and up to 250%! I can't say enough about this product. I hope you give it a try. There are video tutorials if you want to see it in action and you can demo it on your computer before you buy.
Best wishes and tons of Stitches!

Friday, July 18, 2014

New Job!

Sorry, I didn't post anything all week but my husband and I received new teaching jobs at the same school. We are so excited to start another adventure together. I will still post here about sewing, embroidery and crafts but I just wanted our readers to know we got a little sidetracked this week and for a good reason new jobs! During the day, I am a music teacher. I love teaching children and showing them how to express themselves through music. At night, I am a seamstress. Teaching all ages and skill levels about sewing.
As if getting a new music teacher job isn't enough! You can find the Tailgate Teammate Tote available through Simplicity patterns!!! The Simplicity numbers are 1338 and S0634 on display. I love the cover. In the paper pattern you will receive the Tailgate Teammate Tote in 3 different sizes as well as a backpack and coin purse with key fob.
Go Tailgate Teammate Tote! It made it on the cover of the accessory section!!
Thank you for reading Sew Spoiled!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

What is interfacing?

If your bag was a person, interfacing would be it's bone structure. Interfacing helps your bag stand up so it is not a puddle on the floor if you put it down. There are many different kinds of interfacing and it can be challenging to know what interfacing is best to use for each project. One rule of thumb is if the project is small use a thinner or light weight interfacing, like Pellon 808 or 809. If you bag is larger you will need a thicker interfacing, like Pellon fusible fleece. Another helpful tip is to read the project instructions carefully. Most projects will instruct you with the best interfacing suggestion. However, depending on where you live different interfacings are available in different places. Amy Butler created this wonderful International Interfacing chart to help find the right interfacing no matter where you live. Last but not least. If your interfacing needs heat to fuse together with your main fabric, make sure you iron it on according to the instructions. Here is the iron technique I use, do not use steam, place the iron on the highest temperature setting, layer the interfacing right side up (glossy side up) and place the main fabric on top right side up. Press the iron on top of the main fabric and hold still for 15 seconds, then repeat. Do not move the iron in circular motions, the glue will not have time to heat up and fuse to the fabric.
Here is a great video tutorial on all of the interfacings you can use.

These are the interfacings I use most.
Pellon 809, 808 (Project example; Ladybug Shoulder Bag)
Peltex (Project example; iPad Folding Case)
Fusible Fleece (Project example; Ladybug Diaper Bag)
Test out some interfacings today!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Bag Anatomy 101

Simple tote is made up of these pieces...
Exterior Fabric (sometimes called outer shell, focus fabric or main fabric)
Interior Fabric (sometimes called lining)
Pockets (slip, gathered or zipper)
Closure magnet clasp (is my favorite), button or ribbon
(Later zippers)
Skills to know or learn along the way:
Straight stitch, topstitching, making handles, slip pockets, bag flipping.
This is the easiest bag to make is here, Sew Spoiled: Market Bag Tutorial with Cloud 9 Fabric. It has no lining, interior pockets or closure to worry about. You will make handles and a simple bag shape.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

What fabrics make great bags?

Sew Spoiled Wave Shoulder Bag
It is always hard to find the perfect fabric for a project. It can especially be hard for bag makers because we want a fabric that looks great but can be worn with everyday clothes. Lately, more of my wardrobe has been more colorful, with prints and designs that do not work with a flowery fabric bag. 
When looking around the web or Pinterest you might notice that most models of online shops are wearing solid color, leather handbags with their latest spring collections. So what should you do? 
Tailgate Teammate Tote
My suggestion is to find prints that are not as busy or work with fabric like canvas, linen or duck cloth. If you use a neutral color fabric you can add the colorful prints as the bags accents, lining or accessories (like fabric flowers, buttons, etc.). It is possible to also sew leather but if you are new to sewing I would start with cotton fabric first. 
Ladybug Shoulder Bag
So here are my suggestions...
  • Start with a cotton fabric.
  • Find a fabric that is the color you wear most.
  • Look for fabric that is inexpensive so you can make mistakes and still feel good about your purchase.
  • Have Fun!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Month of July; Making Bags!

The month of July I will be sharing tips and tricks to making a successful bag. Have you made dresses and clothes and want to make accessories to match or do you love to make bags but you want to learn more about them? 
This month we will cover....
Don't miss these great posts and tutorials on how easy it is to create your perfect bag!