Thursday, February 9, 2012

HOW TO gather by hand

HOW TO- attach your thread to your work with a knot

Once your needle is threaded, this is how you attach it to the fabric you want to sew


Being a military family I often think about the future. Where will we be, what will we be doing, how old will Gwen and Maggie be when...
By the time my husband is eligible to retire my girls will already have graduated from High school and will be off to college. And if he enjoys his job and wants to stay in a few extra years they might be married off before we settle down in one place for good.
This thought sparked another one. I won't be there to help them with so many things when they need help. There are so many times I think, "I wish my Mom was here", or "What I'd give to drop everything and go out with my sisters today?"
Hopefully I will have taught my girls many of the life skills they will need, but if not, or if they forget, I wanted to record some of the things I think they should know, so that they can learn or relearn them as they need them.
So I have begun making some How to Videos. Who knows if Blogger will be around 15 years from now or if this technology will be ridiculously out of date, but I'd still like to make the effort for them.

HOW TO choose your needle

Here is an explanation of the difference between a sewing machine needle and a hand sewing needle

And here is some extra information on choosing your what type of Sewing Machine Needle or Hand Sewing Needle you want.

copied from THIS website (I must say that I am a lazy needle changer and I normally don't change my needle unless it is bent or broken. Shame on me.)

The REGULAR SHARP POINT NEEDLE is ideal for all woven fabrics because it helps to produce an even stitch and causes a minimum of fabric puckering. This needle is not recommended for knits, as it has a tendency to "cut" yarns and cause skipped stitches. This needle comes in a wide range of sizes from the finest size 9 to a heavy size 18.

The BALL POINT NEEDLE is specifically designed for knit and elastic fabrics and has a "rounded" point rather than a sharp point. This needle pushes between the fabric yarns rather than "cutting through" the yarns. This needle comes in sizes 9 to 16 and the larger the needle size, the more "rounded" the needle point is.

The WEDGE POINT NEEDLE, which is designed for leather and vinyl, easily pierces these fabrics to make a hole that will close back upon itself. This eliminates unattractive holes in the garment, and also reduces the risk of the stitches tearing the fabric. The wedge point needle comes in sizes 11 to 18. The size 11 needle is designed for soft pliable leathers,while size 18 is designed for heavy or multiple layers of leather or vinyl.

In addition to choosing the right TYPE of needle, it is also important to know the proper needle SIZE for the type of fabric being used. As a general rule you can utilize the following fabric category/needle size information when choosing the needle for your next project.

DELICATE fabrics such as silk, chiffon, voile, fine lace and organdy would need a fine "size 9" needle.

LIGHTWEIGHT fabrics such as synthetic sheers, batiste, taffeta, velvet, stretch fabric, tricot and plastic film would need a "size 11" needle.

MEDIUM WEIGHT fabrics such as gingham, poplin, linen, muslin, chambray, wool crepe, flannel, knits, jersey, wool, chintz, satin, raw silk, wool suiting, stretch fabric and drapery fabrics would need a "size 14" needle.

MEDIUM-HEAVY fabrics such as sail cloth, gabardine, heavy suiting, tweed and heavy drapery fabrics would need a "size 16" needle.

HEAVY fabrics such as denim, overcoatings, ticking, upholstery and canvas fabrics would need a "size 18" needle.

One final needle pointer is always replace dull, bent or nicked needles. If you hit a pin, you should immediately change the needle. A bent needle, even if only "slightly" bent or nicked can cause skipped stitches and can easily cause damage to your fabric by tearing the fabric yarns.

information copied from THIS website

Hand sewing needles are used for different types of projects. Hand stitching is used for some sewing projects, quilting, and crafts such as needlepoint.

how to choose sewing needleMake sure that your needle is small enough to go through the fabric without stretching it or tearing it, and large enough for the eye to accommodate your chosen thread.

how to choose sewing needleUse "sharps" for general-purpose hand stitching. Sharps come in a variety of sizes - the larger the number, the smaller the needle.

how to choose sewing needleThe large size and sharp point of "glover" needles allow you to sew heavy canvas or leather projects.

how to choose sewing needleTapestry needles have blunt points and are used for needlepoint and tapestry projects. The blunt points allow the needle to slip between the canvas mesh without splitting the mesh threads.

how to choose sewing needleUse sharp crewel or embroidery needles instead of tapestry needles when you embroider on a tightly woven, non-mesh fabric.

how to choose sewing needleUse short quilting needles for hand stitching quilts. The shorter needle length allows you to work through the heavy fabric layers more easily than you can with the longer sharps.

how to choose sewing needleSelect a darning needle for mending holes in woven fabrics. These needles are larger in diameter and longer than general-purpose sewing needles which allows you to draw your thread over large gaps in the fabric.

how to choose sewing needleA multi-needle pack offers a variety of needles to choose from when you are unsure of the appropriate needle size for your project.

how to choose sewing needleA thimble or other hand protection will protect your fingers or hands when you hand stitch a sewing project.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Patriots/football cookies

I have to admit that I am not at all interested in football other than if the win or loss has put my husband in a bad mood. But apparently the patriots are getting to be a big deal. Especially around here in patriots country. My husband's boss is having a party tomorrow and I signed up to bring some football cookies. This is what I came up with.
I guess I am getting to be known as the dessert/cookie lady around Sam's office and with the other Navy families we socialize with. I think I like that. Since we move so much it is sort of nice to have a "thing" that makes it easy for people to remember me by.

While making the 2 types of cookies this weekend I realized that though I enjoy the look on people's faces and the comments that they give me with the fancy looking cookies, I'd rather make the simple ones. So my favorite from this batch was the football cookies because they required the least amount of work and look the best.

Oh, and the footballs are supper charged with chocolate. When I was making the frosting I didn't use any food coloring, instead I wanted to color them just with cocoa powder, with that in mind I carelessly put a whole cup of cocoa powder into the batch of frosting. (Darn Costco sized package of cocoa made me loose my perspective.) It took me a wile to get it to be useable. In the end the frosting ended up tasting a lot like fudge. So I think people will like them, but I could probably start with 1/4 of a cup of cocoa next time.

Friday, February 3, 2012

How to make a ruffle

How to Make a ruffle-By Bri
Video length 14:14

HOW TO Gather Fabric

How to Gather fabric-By Bri
Video Length 8:29

You will use this technique A LOT on Women and girl's clothing.
It is often used to make
  • full skirt on a dress
  • a skirt
  • apron.
  • sleeves
  • to add extra fabric to make room in the bust area.


HOW TO tear a straight edge

Here is a how to video made by me about tearing a straight edge instead of cutting it. Video length is 1:14
Another tip I forgot to mention in the video
  • Always begin by tearing your raw edge first (Raw edge is also called a salvage). This is because the person at the cutting counter probably didn't cut a perfect edge along the grain of the fabric, and after washing your fabric it will unravel unevenly along the raw edges. So to make sure that your dimensions are correct, always begin by squaring up the side.