Thursday, January 31, 2013

Cute Handbags

I have been using scrap pieces in my overflowing fabric scrap box to make these handbags.
I've had this pattern for awhile but I  never got around to using it. 
 Now I can't stop making them.   I've made my own adjustments to the sewing instructions/procedures that I felt would be worth sharing.

Interfacing:  Fold the 5 x 7 interfacing piece in half and the fold again so all the corner edges are together.  Clip a rectangular notch in all four layers at once.  This simple step will eliminate having interfacing in the seam and fold over area where it's not needed.
  Trim piece:  The pattern details having a 1/4 inch wide trim piece.  I made the trim
piece 1/2 wide..
  Instead of cutting 2 - 1 x 5 pieces I cut 1 piece of fabric 2 x 10.   Fold it in half lengthwise (wrong sides together) press to create a crease line. Then open it out and fold the raw edges on both sides in to meet the crease line.   Trim 1/4 inch along the raw edge of one of the folded in sides and angle cut the short ends (as shown in the picture below).   Refold the trim piece in half and cut the trim piece in half to get the 2 - 5 inch long trim pieces needed.   You will want to angle cut the newly cut ends.
Button:  I machine sewed the button onto the front while it was still a flat piece.   I marked the center of the front panel with disappearing ink and placed my the top of the button was slightly below the bottom of the trim piece and machined sewed the button in place.  The button placement was based on 1/2 wide trim, if you use 1/4 trim you will need to adjust accordingly.
Want a reversible handbag?   Sew a  button onto the front of the lining piece while it is still a
flat piece. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

More spring dresses "same pattern - different fabric"

 Some more Garden Tea Dresses made from a great pattern by 123 Mulberry Street.  I have added some accessories.  Purses made from a pattern by Sew Urban.  Both dress and purse patterns can be purchased from  I also added a matching headband to the ensemble.  This link will take you to the online tutorial showing you how to make it.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Getting ready for Spring!


These dresses were created using the Garden Tea Dress pattern designed by 123 Mulberry Street patterns and listed for sale at    The downloadable PDF pattern cost only $3.99.   The instructions are clear,  easy to follow and there's lots of pictures making it a great visual tool as well.    Since I've made this dress multiple times I made some minor adjustments to the pattern and construction of the garment.   I made a slight adjustment in the size of the bodice.  Really a personal preference issue.   I increased the size of the front and back bodice pieces along the front center line and the back cut lines by 1/8 inch.  The top fit tighter than I wanted so the slight increase gave me a less snug fit.   As for construction....after making several dresses sewing the Velcro at the end after the dress was made I decided to attach the Velcro to the skirt sections BEFORE gathering it.  It allowed for better (straighter) and more exact  placement of the Velcro.  Gathering:   I marked the center of the skirt.   I machine basted to the center mark, decreased my stitch length to 0 and made 2-3 locking stitches....then increased my stitch length back to 6 and machine basted to the end of the piece.  When I gathered the skirt I pull one side at a time.   As I pulled on the string and adjusted the gathers it would stop at the center locking stitches.  Once I finished with one side I then pulled the other side which also stopped at my center mark.