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Fabric from Austin Creative Reuse
I learned about ACR on Instagram, following a user with the name kmakesthings. She posted how she’d donated some fabric there, and of course, I visited as soon as I could! Fabric is often just $1 per yard and you can find SO many types of fabric. I have purchased cottons, knits, denims, chambrays, crepes, rayons, and so much more. I have also purchased notions & tools such as bias tape, rings & sliders, buttons, a 45m Fiskars rotary cutter, bobbins, rotary blade replacements, and more. It has been so economical for me to get some of the things I need as well as some beautiful fabric! While Hobby Lobby & Joann’s have their place, the price point is a bit much for me currently (I love to budget!) and it makes it easier for me financially as a beginning garment sewist.
Bias Tape Maker Set
In one of my books I purchased recently, these were recommended. I’d seen information on them on several blogs (such as Make It, Love it) along with instructions, but seeing that I had never used bias tape, I didn’t see the need for it at the time. Now, as I am making various garments, I am seeing the need for it! Sometimes it is difficult to find that perfect color, so why not make your own? It is easy and fast and saves you so much money in the long run. And per the previous post, I am all about saving some money!
32 Piece Presser Foot Set
I saw this on another blog (So, Sew Easy) and I must admit – I wasn’t buying the hype at 1st. It seemed too good to be true, especially since one foot can start around $10 and go up from there. I posed a question about it in a Facebook sewing community that I am part of and several ladies attested to these! I was surprised. The only downside is that many of the sets have the feet names in Chinese from what I understand. Mine hasn’t arrived yet (should arrive today! YAY!), but I will be sure to share my findings when my set comes. Also, if you order them and need a legend, there’s a YouTube video for that: Which Foot Does What? Some of the feet included: 6mm round rolled hem foot, edge stitch foot, gathering foot, adjustable bias binder foot, and so many more! Now, it is important to know that the feet are for a low shank machine. If you are not sure what this means, check out this link: Will This Presser Foot Fit My Sewing Machine?
The Magic Pattern Book (Amy Barickman)
I found this book at Half Price Books while looking for something else. This book, in one word, is amazing. There is an overview of methods, tools, and notions. Seam finishing, pattern marking transferring, and so much more are included in the beginning. I think it is pretty thorough especially for a beginner as you prepare to create from the patterns included (or whatever patterns you may own!). It’s also a great wardrobe starter including patterns for skirts, dresses, coats, tanks, jackets, sweaters, and other pieces. It comes with a CD that you use to print off the patterns and the URL for pattern printing is also in the book. My only drawback is having to print out each of these patterns. Some of the patterns I viewed on the CD have 92 pages. NINETY. TWO. That is a lot of ink and a lot of paper! I do wish the patterns were delivered in another way. I likely will be taking my time working through the patterns in this book specifically because of that reason.
Clotilde’s Sew Smart (Clotilde Lampe)
Another Half Price Books find! She details how to make your home sewing look more professional. Needle type selection, hem & seam finishes, and more. There are SO many invaluable tips & tricks in this book! I recommend it for any beginning sewist / seamstress. It will become your go-to as I can definitely see it becoming mine.
Dressmaking Step by Step (Alison Smith)
I bought this one from Half Price Books the same day that I bought The Magic Pattern Book. Patterns are included in this one as well, but they are traceable and must be blown up. Another additional cost on top of things like notions & fabric, so like the MPB, my usage of the patterns will be a slow process. However, the book is very thorough, also discussing how to mark patterns, darts, stitching, etc.
All in all, I am extremely pleased with my latest purchases and am looking forward to seeing how they help me grow in my sewing. Hopefully this list is helpful for you! Have you had any experience with any of these items? I’d love to hear about it!
(Click images to enlarge)
Misses’ easy to sew tunics with length variations and tie belt. This versatile mock wrap tunic pairs well with leggings for an easy on-trend look. Make it with a long sleeve, short sleeve or sleeveless with a front flounce.
I cut a 12, but actually feel like I could have gone down to a 10 to make it a tad bit more well fitting in the top.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Were the instructions easy to follow?
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I didn’t dislike anything major. I liked that it was very clear with instructions and there were no guessing games involved. Personally, I wish the cut were a little higher in the bust area, but it is nothing that a tank or cami cannot solve. Also, the darts did not seem necessary with this particular pattern. I also really love the hem. That is what drew me to this pattern from the start!
I used a poly interlock from Walmart. The exact description: Shason Textile Poly Interlock Floral Print.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes, I plan to make it again! This one is view A. I plan to make B and C, and a C with short sleeves. Not a fan of flounce, so not doing D.
This was a very easy, quick sew. It took me the course of a few days due to other obligations, but I love it! Cannot wait to make it again. Great wardrobe builder!
When it comes to patterns and sizing and fitting, it can be tricky. An important thing, I have learned, is pattern ease. Gertie, creator of the most wonderful retro patterns (!), has a great article written several years ago on just that – understanding pattern ease.
This helps me a lot as it assists me in knowing how a garment will really fit once it is completed. With so much to learn with pattern making, this article was great to come across!