Tutorial – Fagoting by Machine

Papercut Clover Dress - Closeup of fagoting

I made a bunch of test swatches before sewing up the fagoted dress I posted on Friday, so I thought I’d share a tutorial with you… The first step was to sew a line of the stitch I wanted on some stabilized fabric. (I just put paper behind my fabric here – this is just to keep the stitch from bunching up and giving you a wrong measurement.) Get out a ruler and measure how wide you want the gap between your fabrics to be. In this case, I measured between the points of the ‘>’ shapes and got 1/8″. Continue reading

Style Arc Flat-Bottom Flo Review


If you struggle with pants fitting and you have a rather flat behind, this pattern might be for you! Thanks to Jamie, I found out about and ordered this new pattern from Style Arc: the Flat Bottom Flo. You are forced to choose one pattern size when you order. My measurements fell in-between sizes. After asking Style Arc which pattern to order, I ordered the larger size. Continue reading

The December Sewing Challenge!

Thanks Lynne, for a wonderful November challenge. It motivated us to explore stitches on our sewing machines that we’d never tried before! Most of us have sewing machines with so many stitches we’ve never even tested them all. Your November challenge was the perfect opportunity to start expanding our knowledge of our sewing machines amazing capabilities!

Now that we’ve gotten a good start on exploring our future possibilities with our sewing machines, it’s time to honor the past. So our December challenge is VINTAGE! The interpretation of vintage is completely up to each individual. It might be sewing with vintage fabric, using a vintage pattern, using a new pattern that has vintage style, or any other interpretation that makes sense to you.

We’d love for each of you to play along by posting your vintage project photos on our flickr page. The vintage challenge will run through December 19th and the denversews bloggers will post their own results during the week of December 15th. We’re looking forward to seeing all of your wonderful vintage projects!



November Challenge – Papercut Clover Dress with Fagoting

This was a HARD challenge for me because I’ve never had much interest in decorative stitches. My previous machine had maybe 12 different stitches, just the basics really. The newer machine I bought a couple years ago has something like 300 stitches but since I’ve never needed them before, I haven’t touched them. I usually start any kind of challenge by flipping through a potential project list I keep with inspiration photos to see if anything jumps out at me and I stumbled on this photo with a note: “Anything with fagoting”

image1xxlfagoting Continue reading

What I Made for Lynne’s Challenge – Kwik Sew 0188


For our second group challenge Lynne chose our theme: “use a sewing machine stitch you’ve never used before”. I decided to try a quilting stitch. I’ve sewn patchwork quilt tops before, but I’ve always had my patchwork quilted by others – I’ve never done my own quilting.

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Jill’s November Challenge – Built-in Machine Stitches

I have had my machine for 11 years I have NEVER used one machine stitch other that the basic zig zag, straight, stretch and so on. I didn’t really have a project in mind for this challenge so I just stitched out a little sample of what these stitches actually looked like.

Here they are. They are quite thin and the one design, it’s a leaf design which is more dense than the other ones just bunched up under the needle and I got a huge thread ball on the other side.


The fabric also puckers, so I’m thinking I might need a stabilizer of some sort. I’m not sure if I would ever use these, they are so thin. Might look good on a hanky or something.

I think what this has taught me is when buying my next machine I don’t think I’ll be at all swayed by how many built in stitches it has. I think if I really wanted to do this I would move into a embroidery machine. Which I think would be pretty awesome.

What about you, do you use your built in stitches?



November Challenge: Stretch Stitch on the Tonic 2 Tee

My first foray into building my core wardrobe is a long sleeve tee using the SBCC Tonic 2 Tee pattern.

I can only think of two items that I’ve done using a knit and one of those was a complete nightmare. This time I’m going in ready for success powered by sewing blogs.

Melly Sews suggests using the lightning aka wobble aka stretch stitch on knits so the seams can maintain the fabrics stretchable quality. Lladybird uses a walking foot so both layers of your knit feed through evenly. The Tiramisu Circus has a nice post on stabilizers for knits.

First off let’s talk about the pattern. It was free so that’s great. Instructions are super easy, though I modified the neckline procedure. The instructions have you apply the neckline trim while one shoulder seam is still open, then tacking down the trim after the shoulder seam is closed. That seamed sloppier than I want, so I did it the old-fashioned way of inserting the circle of trim into the closed neckline. Even if you follow her instructions your left to guess how much to stretch your trim so it will lay flat instead of gaping. A little guidance there would be nice. I had a little gaping that I had to press the heck out of, but it practically disappeared after washing. I like that the pattern calls for self fabric for the neckline trim.

My first seams, the shoulder seams, incorporated all three of my knit fabric firsts; walking foot, stay tape, and lightning stitch. Other than the fabric getting munched on the first couple stitches almost every time, things were working to plan. When I attached the neckline trim though, I found that the stitch length was so short that it was going to take forever to get this sewn. I did a few tests to try to figure out the problem and didn’t have my aha moment until I was half way through attaching the first sleeve.

My solution? Sulky Solvy original water soluble stabilizer that I bought forever ago thinking I’d make one of those lacy thread scarves. So glad I didn’t cause I stopped thinking those were cool after five minutes.  I started laying down strips of this stuff on top of my fabric and it helped my walking foot get enough grab on the top layer to move things through and give me the stitch length I was expecting. Wrapping a bit of this stuff around the beginning of my seams also helped with the afore-mentioned munching.

So here’s the results.

Tonic 2 Tee

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