Friday, 23 September 2011

All about the Love

Oh, I have had a slow morning, ever had those days where everything takes ages and before you know it its time to eat again :)
So the new schedule will be up today with all the Christmas inspired workshops leading up to the sparkliest time of the year. Also, we move into a gorgeous new studio space in October so to celebrate this and out 1st year anniversary classes throughout October (bar Make do and Mend) are bring a friend along for free classes. Lots to choose from such as Scottie the cold busting draught excluder and really lovely hot water bottle covers. I'll post pics of whats to come up soon ....oohhh, so much to do, I think I'll put the kettle on!

We are doing these pillows tomorrow and the giant fruity doorstops have a hint of Lavender to them - perfect pressies...

Monday, 5 September 2011

Good bye flip flops, hellllllo boots!

Hello and a very happy September to you all.

The leaves are starting to fall and I saw Christmas cards in my local paperchase the other day - when did that happen? I feel like Summer never really kicked off with blazing heat, however we do live in the UK and it would be crazy if that did actually happen, alas, we still live in hope and the British love of talking about the weather lives on... ra ra ra ra, I'll shoosh now : )

Anyway, another wonderful season is upon us full of colour and coats, gloves and hats. The fashions for this A/W are gorgeous, its all 40s glamour, capes and black lace with a wonderful selection of accessories and the colour pallet of Cluedo. Colonel Mustard, Mrs Peacock, Miss White to name a few of the gorgeous colours that we'll see this Autumn.  We'll be making capes and furry hand muffs in our upcoming Sunday Specialist classes and for our regular Saturday Sewing Session we have fruity door stops, hot water bottle covers and the sausage dog draught excluder to name but a few.

One thing we did in our session the other day was an old fashioned coin purse with a kiss lock clasp. 

Below are the details of how to go about making one for yourself or someone you love. This one has a slight twist and I extended the pattern to make a glasses cases but the principle is exactly the same. I have used a 3” curved frame but change the pattern depending on your clasp size and shape. This size clasp is perfect for all types of glasses.

What you need:

-          Curved kiss lock frame
-          50cm x 20cm (20” x 8”) of the following …
…your choice of top fabric
            …lining – either matching or a contrasting fabric
…iron-on medium/heavy weight interlining
-          UHU or another strong fabric glue

Lets go…

  • Place your frame on a blank piece of paper and draw around the outside of the frame (green pen)
  • Fold the paper in half

  • Mark 2.5cm (1 inch) along from each edge 
  • Mark 1cm (1/2 inch) up from the top of the curve
  • Draw a line (dashed pencil line - free hand is fine)

Now its time to extend the pattern to the size that you want.
  • For a glasses case measure from the very top of the pattern, down the crease to 21cm (8 1/2 inches)
  • Put a little line - this is your length mark (you can make it as long or as short as you like)
The bottom width of the case should be 14cm (5 1/2 inches) so...
  • Measure 7cm (2 3/4 inches) each side of the crease (from your length mark).
  • Pencil in the points and join up
  • With a straight line link the end of the dashed pencil curve to the bottom of the case
  • Cut out

Once its all cut out now you have to make the hinge markings. This will enable the purse to open.

  • Line the frame up with the initial marking (green line) and rotate it around until the edge of the hinge hits the side of the pattern
  • From that point, measure 1.2cm (1/2 inch) down and mark - shown below with a blue line
  • Repeat with the other side.

Once you pattern is all marked and cut out its time to cut out the fabrics.

Using the same pattern cut out:
  • 2 x Top fabric
  • 2 x Lining Fabric
  • 2 x Interfacing
*Remember: notch (snip) the hinge markings on all of the pieces

Once you have cut all your pieces out, you'll need to iron on your interfacing to the lining.
  • Set your iron to a medium heat
  • Place your lining fabric, wrong side up (the WRONG side, in lay terms, is generally the side that you don't want to be seen, the RIGHT side is the one you want to be seen, ie. the patterned side. If you can't tell the difference on either side, don't worry, it won't matter.)
  • One side of the interfacing will feel rough, this is the little glue pockets, place this rough side onto the wrong side of your lining and iron on. Repeat. The pink is my lining fabric. (The lining looks a wee bit longer on mine thats only because I was running out of interfacing : ) ) Your lining and your interfacing should now work as one piece of fabric.

 There is 1cm (1/2 inch) SA (Seam Allowance) already on the pattern. With the RIGHT sides of your top fabric together...
  • Pin in place
  • Stitch together 1cm in from the hinge notches you made on the curve, leaving the curve at the top open.

Once your top fabric is sewed from notch to notch...
  • Take your lining fabric and place the RIGHT sides together (your interfacing should be on the outside)
  • Pin the two pieces together
  • At the bottom of the case you must leave an opening so mark a 6cm (2 1/2 inch) gap
  • Sew in the same manner as above, starting at the notches and finishing at the opening,
  • Repeat up the other side.

Once this is all done and you have both bags sewn up, its time to put a flat bottom onto your case. It looks really good and will give your bag shape. This is a great little trick for lots of bags.
  • Taking the corner of your top fabric bag, open out so that your bottom seam is lined up with your side seam. It should look like a triangle with little ears
  • Mark 1.5cm (1/2 inch) and a bit down from the tip of the triangle and mark with a pin or chalk/pen
  • Making sure that it is lying flat and sew a straight line along that marking
  • Cut off the excess

Repeat with the other corner and the corners of the lining too.

Once this is done turn your top fabric the right way round and admire your handy work...

Next, slip your top fabric bag into the lining bag so both right sides are together and the bottoms meet.

Once the exterior bag is safely tucked into the lining it is now time to sew up the curved edges.
  • Pin in place at first (right side to right side)
  • With your 1cm SA you want to sew around the curve, notch to notch, meeting up with your side seams

  Its a bit fiddley but you'll get there. Start and stop if necessary to get a neat curve : )
Repeat on other side

Once you have sewn them up, its time to get rid of some of the excess fabric so that you have a neat curve when the case is pulled through to the right side.
To do this, cut out little triangles, being careful not to snip your lovely stitching.

Now pull the exterior bag through the gap in the lining and turn it in on itself so that the lining will be inside the glasses case - exactly where you want it!

Finger press the curve making sure you haven't any lumps and bumps and that everything looks great. Before you iron, you'll need to sew up the bottom of the lining bag.
  • Pull the lining through again and stitch the gap up
  • Use a matching thread to make it really neat or a hand sewn slip stitch for super neatness

Push the lining back in and press with a medium heat iron so that the curve is really crisp and tidy as we are going to add glue right on the edge!

Time to put on the clasp.
  • Open up the clasp and apply glue to the inside channel of one of the sides
  • Then glue one side of the curve of the case

Its a bit messy but I have always loved getting glue all over the place, however, the glue will come happily off the frame but not the fabric so be a bit careful.

Wait a moment for the glue to become a bit tacky and then insert your purse into the frame...
  • Start by inserting both the sides of the purse into the frame at the hinge end and working pretty quickly push the top of the purse in too
  • A small pair of scissors or a head of a pin are a great help in pushing the fabric into the frame
  • Check the back and the front all the time making sure it is secure and in place
  • Leave to dry for 10 mins and then start with the other side

When its dry and the excess glue has been wiped away, double check its all looking lovely, make sure the clasp opens and closes and its looking great.
Then pour a lovely glass of wine or put the kettle on, find your sunnies or reading glasses and pop them in their new home.
Sit back and admire your new creation.

Nice one! X

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Thunder and lightening in June...

We are well into June with July in sight and British weather is, well, British. With the hottest day of the year yesterday it is now raining cats and dogs, but I for one love the erratic weather, its just English eccentrics!

So, with the weather going barking I have been making stuff to put on to my website as I think it is important to have visual images to go with what we are making, and with festival season well and truly upon up I have a little festi themed skirt to show you. Here at Saturday Sewing Session we are very influenced by fashion and what is happening from the catwalk to the highstreet so keep peeking at our website for up to date workshops.
The nitty gritty - really easy and seriously cute skirt perfect for the beach or sitting in the park with a cider in your hand listening to your favourite band. I teamed it with the colour of the Summer tank top, straw hat and chunky beads...

- Choose some gorgeous fabric, I went with a bright spotty Liberty print
- Measure around your hips/waist, double it  and cut the fabric to that length.
- You choose the length of the skirt, I went for 45cms/ 18" (its rather short if on the waist!) that left me enough for SA at the top and a tiny hem
- Cut your desired length, stitch 2 pieces together if you need to, I french seamed for a tidy inside. Iron.
- Tidy the top of the skirt with a simple hem technique, approx 2.5cms/ 1"
- Hem the bottom of the skirt to desired length
- Give it a lovely iron.
- Wind thin elastic around your bobbin (I always wind 2 so I have one at hand)
-Thread your machine with your top thread colour
- I used the edge of the foot to get the straight lines but chalk on the lines in necessary, bit more than a cm or a half inch.
- With the right side of the fabric facing you, gently keep hold of the front and back of the fabric and sew. It will instantly bunch up so keep a firm grip but let the machine do its thing.
- Do as many rows as you like, I did 9.
- Put the side edges of the fabric together and french seam close

= Lovely easy summer skirt, also same technique will make a really sweet maxi dress at the top with little straps.

Good luck and here are some piccys....

Da daaaaa - we'll be making this again soon on a Sunday so come and join us if you want to learn the basics.

Friday, 1 April 2011

So much to do - so little time

Just  quicky, trying to get the summer shedual together but mind keeps on racing with the excitiment of summer around the, well, less of a corner, more a rather large bend - but there is a whiff in the air at least. This is super busy season for me but its full of excitment and more than a little stress but its A ok, we'll get there, we can get anywhere with a tea or pimms in hand xxx

Monday, 28 March 2011

Now really - where has the time gone...

Hello there peeps and a very happy Spring to you. It is so wonderful, the blossoms are out, the daffs are smiling a away and is it just me or doesn't the air smell different? Is that just me then ... :)
Alot has happened and Saturday Sewing Session is going great. However, I am getting more and more exciting on where this venture can go and the possibilities. The people, generally girls, who come to our classes are realluy lovely. It makes the Saturdays so fun and friends have been made over sewing, tea and cake. As someone who works by myself in my studio all week (I am a wedding dress designer and maker/milliner) getting out on a Saturday and being amongst like minded people is just a lovely thing to do, I am really enjoying myself. The challenge though is to come upwith more ideas and more sessions. Good news is that I am moving to a fabulous new studio at the end of the summer and so I can start doing evening classes, and longer courses. Also, as I am from a a fashion background the classes will start to take on a  more fashion side, looking at whats happening that season and gaining inspiration from the catwalk to our own home made studios - watch this space. I am really looking forward to the Autumn classes. We will be doing some dress making classes this summer so keep having a peek.

What else, well... I have had a big birthday recently, I turned 30.  Sad to leave my 20s but looking forward to this new decade and there seems to be a real buzz in the air, not only for hand made, but for small business and opportunity in general. Also. the amont of wonderful fabric shops about in town and online are pretty fab.
Saturday Sewing Sesion has had a bit of coverage lately, I am  a contributor at Sew Hip magazine, which I love. If you haven't heard of it yet - get it. There are some wonderful ideas in the magazine and a huge variety as there is in Sew Magazine, another top notch one and Cloth . They take away the stigma of quintisential 'craft/stitching' magazines and have really gorgeous ideas for a  new younger perspective - big fan, and they sit happily alongside Vogue and Harpers for me - perfect lazy Sunday :)

Below - just a few things we have been doing xxx

For all your smalls

For a grandaughter

Oooh Frilly


For all the important stuff

... Yum

Private party

No need for a cold brew

Cool Brittania - just in time for the Royal Wedding