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Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Twisted knot knit headband tutorial

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Knit or jersey fabric headbands are so comfy to wear and very easy to sew. In the upcoming Holidays season, they are wonderful for gift giving!!!
As this project requires just a small fabric rectangle, it is also a great way to use your fabric scraps or to up-cycle some old t-shirt.
But, be aware, making these can be addictive, so it may also lead to some fabric shopping!

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There are many types and weights of knit fabrics, but what's important to know for cutting them is the way they stretch, as you need the headband that is stretchy and that can be placed on the head. The best knit or jersey fabric option for these headbands are the 4 way stretch knit fabrics, that means that they are stretchy lengthwise and widthwise. If the knit you are using is 2 way stretch (means it stretches only across the grain - selvage to selvage, be sure that you are using that stretchy direction for the longer measurement.  If your fabric is 4-way stretch (fabric stretches both ways-with and across the grain), you don't need to worry about cutting direction.
I must say that with all my knit fabrics designed for AGF, it's really a pleasure to make these, as AGF knits are 4 way stretch, are OEKO certified and have a wonderful composition of 95% Cotton and 5% Spandex, meaning that they have great performance and are so soft and comfy. 

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These headbands are very popular, especially in the last couple of years, they are usually called twist headbands, crossover headbands, yoga headbands, turban headbands, boho headbands... to name a few common ones.


There are many free tutorials for this type of headband on different craft blogs and you tube channels, but I thought to gather here some of my conclusions, examples and tips.

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Needed supplies:

- rectangle of jersey knit fabric - approx. 20" x 8" (the best is 4 way stretch)
- scissors or rotary cutter
- sewing machine (serger is optional, but preferred)
- stretch (ballpoint) needle
- thread and pins

There are several things that can determine the length measurement for these headbands: head circumference or age (if making it for kids) and knit fabric type or performance (some are very stretchable and elastic, while some are less). Regarding the width measurement for these headbands - it's totally up to you and your style and preferences.

I have tested several types and measurements, making some for my family and friends-always using my AGF knit fabrics and here's what I came with:

Adults and teenagers : 20-21" for the longer rectangle size and 7-8" for the shorter size.
Teens : 19-20" for the longer rectangle size and 7-8" for the shorter size.
Gradeschoolers (5-12 yrs old) 18-19" for the longer rectangle size and 6-8" for the shorter size.
Preschools (3-5 yrs old) 17-18" for the longer rectangle size and 6-7" for the shorter size.
Toddlers (1-3 yrs old): 16-17" for the longer rectangle size and 6-7" for the shorter size.
Babies15-16" for the longer rectangle size and 5-6" for the shorter size.

So, let's get started!!!


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1. Now that you have determined the size and have cut your rectangle, you need to make the tube. 
Just fold the rectangle in half, longer sides together, right fabric side inside.

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2. Sew seam (seam allowance is up to you) with either a serger, or regular sewing machine, using some stretchy stitch options, like overage stitch or narrow zig zag (here's what works best on mine):



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3. Turn the tube inside out and lay it down.
Now you can choose if you prefer your seam to be on the side or centered inside the headband. I tried both versions and although the centered one may look nicer, I prefer the side one, just because that way it makes it easier to twist the headband and find the best look of the final knot, without trouble to turn the seam right side inside. It may sound weird, but you may try and will realize this little issue;) 


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4. Fold it in half, lengthwise and join the shorter sides together. 
Now you will create the knot by making a little sandwich with these shorter sides-by folding one side on another.

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Place the left edge of the upper layer on the center of the bottom layer and fold the remaining piece on the back. You can watch this little video that will help understanding better.

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This is what it will basically look like:












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5. Sew across this juncture, gathering all 4 layers together. You can do it with simple, straight stitch.
Just cut the fabric excess, to avoid the bulk and secure the threads on both ends.

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You are done- just open the headband and adjust the knot the way you like it.
You may eventually close and securely tuck in the sewn ends by hand sewing a few stitches on the top of the knot.

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Hope you enjoyed it!!!

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Happy sewing,
Katarina



Sunday, 3 November 2019

Earthen collection


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Happy November!!!
Not sure where and how the last few months flew away, so fast, but it's almost time to sew with my upcoming fabric collection - Earthen.
So, before posting a few makes and tutorials, I wanted to share a few pics and thoughts about this new one.
Nature has always been the best and the most beautiful source of inspiration for my work, and I felt like it deserves the collection that celebrates at least a tiniest bit of it's beauty.
Earth, our home planet, is a world unlike any other. The third planet from the sun, Earth is the only place in the known universe confirmed to host life. Earth is endowed with beauty beyond compare. Its exquisiteness can be seen through its seasons, natural wonders, majestic waterfalls, mysterious lost cities, amazing creatures, stunning textures and most precious signs of life. Inspired with life and nature, with what surrounds us and what inspires us, daily, this collection is an ode to life on our beautiful planet, painted in earthy tones, enriched with impressing textures.






This collection comes in variety of 16 SKUs printed on premium quilting cotton, 3 prints on knit fabrics and 2 on rayon.


These are only the strike offs, as I didn't get the actual yardage yet, but may give an initial idea of the collection.


It's always fun to pick some pure elements and other AGF blenders to match the prints, and I can't be happier with some new, perfect matching tones!!!

Can't wait to show you the quilt I am working on ;)
xx
Katarina



Monday, 29 July 2019

Maxi tiered rayon dress


Another free pattern day! Today, I am bringing this beautiful and easy sewing dress created with my Poppy Memories print in Rayon from my Floralish fabric collection.


This rayon dress pattern is great for hot summer days, perfect as a beach cover up and is very attractive, but also easy sewing pattern! It's actually one size fits all, as you can manage it's fit with ties and make it yours ;)

As with all Art gallery fabrics their gorgeous rayons are very soft and have an amazing drape, they are 54-56"wide, which will provide this amazing flowy effect!
So, let's get started!!!

Needed supplies:

3 - 3 1/2 yds of cotton voile or rayon fabric or other quilting cotton 
(I used a bit more than three yards of my poppy memories print in rayon)
*If you have 3 yds of fabric, you can make the tier to be shorter, like 8" instead of 10"
sewing machine(serger is optional, but preferred)
(if you don't have the serger just use a straight stitch and than do a zigzag stitch on the edges to keep the edges from fraying) 
scissors and/or rotary cutter
threadneedle (size 9 sharp needle is the best choice for rayon sewing)
iron and pins or clips
- bias binding tool (25 mm)- optional, but very helpful and highly recommended 


WOF-width of the fabric (this rayon is 54-56" wide)



*The armpit parts (both front and back pieces can be slightly adjusted to fit better your body- they could be cut from 6"-8" inches from the sides toward the center of the fabric, as shown above, according to how you are prefer the dress to fit your body).

1. Cut and prepare all the pieces, as shown above:

- 1x front piece-cut from the 44" x WOF
- 1x back piece-cut from the 36" x WOF
- 3x tier strips- 10" WOF each
- 2x ties strips- 1" x WOF each
(the ties for this project and this type of fabric can be cut normally-no need to cut them on bias)

front:

back:



2. Place the front and back pieces together, right sides inside, pin (or clip) and sew both sides of the dress closed. You can top stitch the side seams, if preferred, which will stabilize seams.
*I serged the armpit seams before sewing the side seams, because of fraying, but this is optional and can be done after. 


3. Gather the neckline: front and back side.

There are many techniques for gathering-ruffling fabric. You can use whatever method you prefer: with the ruffler foot, with the gathering foot, with the sewing machine using 2 basting stitches and pulling the fabric or with your serger. I usually gather cotton fabrics using my serger. When the fabrics are light weight as voile and rayon, you don't even need the ruffler foot - just put the differential and needle feed to be as high as possible (avoiding breaking the thread-if too high) . For the rayon, as it is light weight fabric, it's also very easy to use the sewing machine. Just adjust the tension of the top thread to almost maximum, and slightly loose the tension on the bobbin thread. Don't forget to adjust all the tensions to normal once you are done with ruffling!:)


4. Pin and sew the armpit seams closed, as preferred.


5. Make the ties with both 1" strips. 
To make them, you can either use the bias binding tool (like I did) and than press it lengthwise or without this useful tool, you can fold the strip in half lengthwise and iron it, then open and press both sides toward the center crease, press center crease close again.



5. Also, at this point, you can sew the tier strips together. Place 2 strips right sides together and sew shorter sides together just on one side, than add the 3rd strip sewing shorter sides together. 


6. Gather (ruffle) accordingly just one of the longer edges of the tier to obtain the same width of the main dress piece (approx. 108"). Finish the other edge with serger or zig zag seam and top stitch it.


7. Pin (or clip) and sew the tier to the bottom edge of the dress. Top stitch the bottom seam.


8. You have 2 ties: one is for the front and one for the back of the dress.
To finish the necklines (both-front and back) with the ties-first pin (or clip) the center of the tie to the center of the neckline.

To be sure that everything that is gathered, and a bit bulky will be safely placed inside the tie and centered nicely to the tie, you can eventually pin and stitch the gathered neckline to the
bottom part of the opened tie (that seam will be visible only on the wrong side of the dress-inside), just as picture beside is showing.
Gathering "density" will determine how the necklines will be: more open or more closed and it's suggested that you decide that by measuring yourself (from armpit to armpit + allowing how many inches more you would prefer it to be open)


10. Leave the back gathered neckline to be a bit longer than the one on the front, as it will allow more exposed back. Of course, if you don't like the back to be exposed, finish the back neckline like the front one-gather it with same "density".
My front neckline is 13" and 23" on the back.


11. Sew the ties in place, Starting from one end of the tie, going to it's opposite end, making sure that each tie is centered nicely on the dress-front and back.


12. Make the knots on the ties ends and trim them.


It's finished - just tie the dress the way you prefer and you are ready to rock!!!


xx
Katarina