Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Mending: Repair Holes from Torn Out Buttons

Buttons either seem to disappear completely, become VERY loose with that wobbly "hope-it-stays-on-until-I-get-home" bit of thread, of it pulls off leaving a hole where the button used to be attached.

This super fantastic tutorial from Threads magazine explains how to solve that last problem with clear instructions and great photos.

If you need to repair a hole where a button has fallen off of your jacket, blouse, or skirt, just click, go, and sew. And another find for this fix.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Mending: How to Sew on a Button

There's a right way and a lazy-bum way to sew on a button.

This is a brilliant and easy Threadbanger video showing the right way to sew on a button.

And you get cool music in the background. Which makes it a kind of button-sewing-music-video.

And because this is so short and to the point, here's a little extra for you: How to organize those little zip lock bags with the extra button that comes with a new garment.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Tutorial: Hot Water Bottle Cozy

It's back to bed with this hot water bottle cozy made from vintage sheets. I could even tolerate a cold if I could wrap up with this beauty and take a nap.

You can also download the tutorial for printing.

What you need:

paper for pattern

hot water bottle
cotton flannel (enough for 4 layers) or wool blanket or cotton or wool batting (enough for 2 layers)
old sheets or other quilting cotton
single fold bias tape

Fabric amounts depend on the size of your water bottle.

What to do:

1. Trace your hot water bottle onto paper adding 1" for seam allowance.

2. Use the three areas shown for your pattern pieces. One whole piece is the front; the top for the upper back; the bottom for the lower back. make sure you cut so the back pieces overlap.

3. Sew together strips of fabric of similar widths to create a patchwork fabric from which the front will be made.

4. Baste top to two layers flannel or one layer wool blanket or batting.

5. Baste fabric used for upper and lower back pieces to flannel or batting also.

6. Fold 1" wide single fold bias tape over one wider edge of upper back piece and one wider edge of lower back piece. Sew across to finish. These edges will over lap and provide the opening for inserting and removing the hot water bottle.

7. Place the front and back pieces right sides together, making sure the back pieces overlap at least 1/2". Trace the full pattern onto one side and sew on this line all the way around. 

 8. Cut out the cover leaving 1/4" seam selvedge. Clip inner top curves carefully.

9. Turn the cozy right sides out and insert your hot water bottle into the bottom of the cozy. Now fill it with hot water, seal, and slip it into the top of the cozy. 

Oh joy! Time to get warm!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Mending: Bed Sheets

Oh, that thinned out, worn bed sheet area. It's one area. Why does the rest of the sheet look fine?

Here are several tutorials on how to mend your sheets and make then last much longer. Why should you? if you're like me, you like all cotton sheets. Not the new ones that are scratchy and have a very low thread count. Or even the new Egyptian cotton ones that are made with so many chemicals, they don't have that fresh dried-in-the-sunshine smell. Oh, no siree! I mean those old Cannon, USA made sheets that can only be found in thrift stores.

So I do anything I can to extend the life of these thick and delicious babies once they start to thin out. Which by the way, takes me years to do. These old sheets last longer than any new ones I've bought in the last 20 years.

Mending a bed sheet

How to mend a bed sheet

Sheet mending day

Mending a bed sheet hole

My mother used to mend the small holes by simple darning the hole with the sewing machine. By this, I mean she sewed back and forth on the sewing machine in one direction completely covering the small hole, and then she sewed back and forth perpendicular to (across) the first stitching. This covered the hole completely and made a new fabric.