Lolita Patterns

Sewing Indie Update

–Yesterday I had the opportunity to post a tutorial created by Amity of Lolita Patterns! Scroll down to view–I am going to have to try out her innovative shirring method for future summer dresses when I have some time. It is an understatement to say I am overwhelmed my upcoming graduation. My first garment made it through the grading process so moving forward!

–That aside, the next exciting Sewing Indie Month event: Rhonda from Rhonda’s Creative Life used our Paper Bag Pant pattern for a “pattern hack” posted on her blog.

She chose to add this awesome zipper detail (pattern originally called for patch pockets)

But my favorite “hacked” element is the cuff detail (rather than a regular cuff or the elastic option) she added a band of fabric and a drawstring. This is great with the linen-look fabric she used (and the shoes!)

Rhonda gives info as to how she added these details on her blog.

(the last 2 pictures used are from Rhonda’s Creative Life)

Here is info regarding the Pattern Hacking Contest on Rhonda’s blog as part of Sewing Indie Month (there are 3 other contests to enter on other blogs as well). Participants have until June 4th to get entries in so you still have time–and the prizes are kind of amazing!

–Ok, last but not least: the upcoming blog events for Sewing Indie Month (more tutorials! more interviews!) can be found on the official calendar here! All the Sewn Square One events are completed 😦 but of course the month still holds 2 more weeks of amazing events on the other blogs!

Sewing Indie Month continues with a Tutorial from Lolita Patterns!

I’m so excited to be posting this tutorial created by Amity of Lolita Patterns as part of Sewing Indie Month! Amity has a knack for clear, concise, and useful tutorials! The tutorial below teaches a great technique for adding shirring details to a woven garment! The possibilities are endless!

 

Shirring with Elastic Thread Using a Chainstitch On Your Serger

Hi all! My name is Amity Gleason and I am the owner of Lolita Patterns. I’m so excited to be sharing a tutorial over here at Sewn Square One! I learned about this company through Sewing Indie month and am so glad I got the chance to be partnered with them. I’ve been really into shirring with elastic thread lately and when I shared this with Elizabeth and how I was using a method different than the traditional elastic thread in the bobbin technique, we thought it would be a great tutorial to share for Sewing Indie Month. This method of shirring uses the chainstitch on your coverstitch machine. Some sergers do have chainstitch capability even though they do not do coverstitch. So as long as you can chainstitch, you can use this method! The first thing is to mark your fabric. With this method, you have to mark the fabric on the right side. This is no problem for me as I always use Frixion pens which disappear with the heat of the iron and come out in the wash. Choose your method of marking carefully. I chose to do a line of shirring every 3/8”. This is also my seam allowance. So I started s ¾” from the top (3/8” + 3/8”). Then each additional line is 3/8” from the last until I reach the bottom where I also left ¾”.

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Next thread your machine for a chainstitch using the elastic thread in the chain looper and a regular thread in the needle. I used a contrasting thread in the needle so you could see the difference. I usually use a matching thread but I kind of like the look of the stitching on the outside so I may use contrasting thread in the future. It may be a little difficult to thread the elastic thread through the looper since it is so springy. To help with this, I used a long loop of regular thread, threaded the looper, then tied the elastic thread through the end of the loop and pulled it through.

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Once the machine is threaded, it is time to test, test, and test some more on some scraps! You have to get the tension just right. My machine is a Babylock Evolve (the older version of their Evolution) and has automatic tensions, however, with elastic thread, it was way too much. So I had to skip some of the threading paths so there would be less tension on the thread so it would feed evenly. Another problem you run into with elastic thread is that as it starts unwinding, it jumps and springs off and starts to pool at the bottom. (The pictures show an example with regular thread as my elastic thread spool is too gigantic to use well as an example)

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To help avoid this, you can use the nets that came with your serger, or cut an old pair of pantyhose and wrap it around the thread. This way the thread still feeds out the top but does not spring off and pool at the bottom.

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After you have the tensions exactly right, you are ready to begin stitching. One important thing I realized was to make sure you have enough elastic thread pulled when you are finished with a line of stitching and that it has no tension on it, otherwise is snaps back and unthreads itself from the looper…and then you get to go all the way through the threading again!

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Stitch exactly on the lines which can start to get a little tricky the more lines of shirring you have so just do your best. One thing to note about chainstitching: It unravels extremely easily so make sure you tie off each line of stitching. When you attach it to other pieces, that seam will also help secure the stitching from unraveling.

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When you finish your lines of stitching, the back of your piece will look something like this. (I only had two lines when I took this picture, you would keep going until your piece is finished)

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Next you want to make sure to get rid of your marks from the front. If using a Frixion pen, use a hot, dry iron. (I find steam does not work as well for removing the pen marks)

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Then turn your piece over and turn the steam on high and hover the iron above the piece and steam well. The steam helps the elastic thread shrink up and shirr.

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This method of shirring has worked wonderfully for me since I’m not a huge fan of hand winding bobbins. The more lines of stitching, the more your piece will shirr. This technique is a fantastic way of making woven fabrics work somewhat like a knit. It makes woven garments much more forgiving. Something I will definitely need in the coming months.

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I love using this on cuffs, neckbands, bottom waistbands, etc. It’s a cute stretchy addition that looks like a fantastic ready to wear detail. There is also a way to do elastic thread shirring on a regular sewing machine by winding bobbins with elastic thread. The best tip for using this method is to get a second bobbin case since you will have to loosen the tension so much. You don’t want to mess up the tension on your main bobbin case! I hope this helped show you a new way of using a fun and useful technique. I love using my serger/coverstitch as much as possible so I am always using it to do things most people use their sewing machines for. I hope to show you more unique ways or using your serger coming up in future tutorials.

Thanks again to Sewn Square One for partnering with me for Sewing Indie Month!

 

Thank you Amity!

Check out more tutorials and all things Lolita Patterns here:

Lolita Patterns

www.lolitapatterns.com

twitter: @lolitapatterns

instagram: LolitaPatterns

facebook: www.facebook.com/LolitaPatterns

pinterest: http://pinterest.com/lolitapatterns/

 

Sewing Indie Month

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It’s happening! Mari of Seamster Patterns contacted me a few months ago regarding a rad idea: Getting indie pattern designers together for a month of tutorials, interviews, sewalongs, contests, and giveaways! I immediately accepted the invitation to participate, no-brainer! There are 21 participants so every weekday during the month of May there is going to be new stuff happening!

There is a lot of information here so let’s dive right in! The participants are listed below. Here is a link to a calendar, outlining who is doing what (or just stay tuned–I’ll let you know!) I was fortunate enough to be teamed up with Dixie DIY, Waffle Patterns, Lolita Patterns, and Sew Caroline!

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Regarding Sewalongs, Contests, and Prizes

There are 4 sewalong categories hosted by separate bloggers–all with amazing prizes!

Below are the categories and contest rules:

sewing indie month sewalong rules

Here are the prizes for each individual sewalong contest. I’m already jealous!

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Hosted by Sown Brooklyn:

The winner of an Indie Love Affair category will win these great prizes:

1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

2013 Threads Archive DVD from Threads Magazine

2013 Threads Archive DVD from Threads Magazine

1 class of your choice from Pattern Review

1 class of your choice from Pattern Review

Sassy Librarian Blouse Craftsy class by Sewing Indie Month designer Christine Haynes

Sassy Librarian Blouse Craftsy class by Sewing Indie Month designer Christine Haynes

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Stepalica Patterns; PDF Nettie Dress & Bodysuit by Closet Case Files; PDF Twisty Top Pattern by Soma Patterns; paper pattern of your choice from Tilly and the Buttons

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Stepalica Patterns; PDF Nettie Dress & Bodysuit by Closet Case Files; PDF Twisty Top Pattern by Soma Patterns; paper pattern of your choice from Tilly and the Buttons


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Hosted by: Lilacs & Lace

The winner of the Dressed to the Nines sewalong category will win the following fabulous prizes:

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1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

1 year subscription to Threads Magazine

1 year subscription to Threads Magazine

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$25 gift certificate from The Smuggler’s Daughter

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Sewing Vintage: The Flirty Day Dress Craftsy class by Sewing Indie Month designer Sew Chic

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Lolita, Pauline Alice; paper pattern of your choice from By Hand London, Christine Haynes

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Lolita, Pauline Alice; paper pattern of your choice from By Hand London, Christine Haynes


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Hosted by: Cashmerette

The winner of the Everyday Casual sewalong category will win these cool prizes:

1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

Sew Smarter, Better and Faster book from Threads Magazine

Sew Smarter, Better and Faster book from Threads Magazine

$30 gift certificate from Girl Charlee

$30 gift certificate from Girl Charlee

$25 gift certificate from The Smuggler's Daughter

$25 gift certificate from The Smuggler’s Daughter

Comox Trunks Supplies Kit from Sewing Indie Month designer Thread Theory

Comox Trunks Supplies Kit from Sewing Indie Month designer Thread Theory

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Maria Denmark, Sew Caroline; PDF Duathlon Shorts by Fehr Trade; paper pattern of your choice from Sewn Square One

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Maria Denmark, Sew Caroline; PDF Duathlon Shorts by Fehr Trade; paper pattern of your choice from Sewn Square One


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Hosted by: Rhonda’s Creative Life

The winner of the Pattern Hacking sewalong category will receive the following prizes to help them on their next creative journey:

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1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

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1 class of your choice from Craftsy

Minerva-Gift-Certificate

£20 gift certificate to Minerva Crafts

Kate and Rose Embroidery Pattern Pack

Hot Iron Transfer Embroidery Pack from Sewing Indie Month designer Kate & Rose

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Seamster Sewing Patterns, Sinbad & Sailor; PDF Movie in the Park Shorts by Dixie DIY; PDF or a paper pattern from Skinny Bitch Curvy Chick

Sewing Indie Month designer prize pack: PDF pattern of your choice from Seamster Sewing Patterns, Sinbad & Sailor; PDF Movie in the Park Shorts by Dixie DIY; PDF or a paper pattern from Skinny Bitch Curvy Chick


Bonus Winner!

A Bonus Winner randomly drawn from all the sewalong participants will win the following prizes:

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1 year subscription to Sew News Magazine

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$75 gift certificate from Britex Fabrics

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1 year Friends of PR membership from Pattern Review

Love at First Stitch signed book by Sewing Indie Month designer Tilly and the Buttons

Love at First Stitch signed book by Sewing Indie Month designer Tilly and the Buttons

To check out all of participants blogs, links are as follows:

Phew. What an event! Until tomorrow!