Pipeline Projects

Sewing project plans for 2017.

I’ve been extremely quiet these past two weeks due to life taking over and rudely intruding on my budding relationship with sewing. It was only a matter of time before this happened, but I was really enjoying the honeymoon period. Alas, preparing for and attending job interviews plus wedding planning (87 days to go) became a priority. I am pleased to report that I accepted the offer of a full-time job and will be starting at the beginning of May. It appears to be much more agreeable than my most recent job and involves a pay rise. HOORAH! More disposable income to plough into my new passion (I WISH! Have I mentioned that I’m planning a wedding??!!).

As a result of my new job, in 2 weeks time my sewing will be relegated to evenings and weekends (sob)! Until then, I am determined to enjoy uninterrupted sewing and complete AT LEAST 6 projects. I remain ambitious, as always! I am feeling rather apprehensive about the new job and sewing enables me to access my ‘happy place’. The 6 project challenge is as much about using sewing to control my anxiety, as it is about successfully completing each project and improving upon my skills.

Now…what does every enthusiastic sewist need in order to successfully complete a project?? Fabric, fabric and yet more fabric!! What a coincidence that I was visiting my mum over the Easter holidays and happened to accidentally, on purpose stumble into the renowned Birmingham Rag Market!! I giggle to myself as I write this, because I need no excuse to purchase fabric, but having a project in mind and being strategically placed in a specific location does always justify my purchases. I also stocked up on some haberdashery, as the prices were just too good to ignore. Here’s what I bought:

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My precious purchases
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Elastic, thread and needles – sewing staples

I must admit that I had become so excited in the build-up to visiting the Birmingham Rag Market that the actual experience was a bit of a let down. From what I recall from my regular visits when I lived in the Midlands, there were a variety of fabric stalls to choose from with lots of fabric choices, all competitively priced. When I visited last week, I struggled to find stalls that stocked fabric which weren’t solely used for curtains and upholstery. I eventually found a fantastic indoor stall that I would visit again, but the prices were not as reasonable as I would have expected. A lot has changed since I lived in the Midlands and last visited the rag market, so I may just have unknowingly missed some hidden gems.

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This fabric instantly called out to me! It’s 100% cotton and is so striking that I could not resist. I do like fabrics with unique designs, particularly if they are eventually going to become clothes that I will wear. I purchased 1.5 metres of this with the intention of turning it into a sleeveless top or a shirt dress for the summer.

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I was really chuffed with this find. It’s 100% cotton and I loved the fact that it gave more than a subtle nod to sewing. I purchased 2 metres of this fabric and hope to turn it into a skirt.

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This fabric is Poly-Cotton and was chosen by my fiancé. It’s a little too busy and ‘pretty’ for my personal preference – is this a subtle hint about how he wants wife-to-be to start dressing?? I gave the Mr a choice between two and this was his favourite. I honoured his choice and purchased 1 metre, which will end up as a simple summer top.

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Definitely the ‘odd one out’ in my fabric purchases, this Poly-Cotton fabric is reserved for a project that is especially for the fiancé. One of his stag dos will involve canoeing and he is insistent that he must be a pirate for this activity. Hence this material, which will become a bandana. I purchased 1 metre and expect to have sufficient fabric left over to make him another pirate-themed accessory.

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I’m a sucker for colourful zips

I did purchase an awful lot of zips. The black one will be used to fix a pair of my fiancé’s jeans – this will be my first ever sewing mend using a sewing machine and I will of course let you know how I get on. The long, off-white zip is reserved for the skirt I have in mind to make, the long, turquoise zip is for a large makeup bag, whilst the other zips are for the zipper pouches I have started to make and will eventually be selling on my Etsy shop (updates on when this will open to follow).

Overall, I’m very happy with my purchases and cannot wait to get started on my 6 project challenge. My next task is to find some patterns that I like and that compliment my fabric, then it’s sew, sew, sew. Fingers crossed, the success of ‘The Bettine’ wasn’t just beginner’s luck. Either way, I’m about to find out!

The Bettine

A first attempt at a ‘Me Made’ outfit. ‘The Bettine’ by Tilly and the Buttons.

Pattern: The Bettine – Tilly and the Buttons.

Fabric: 2 metres of ‘Dog Print’ Cotton Sateen (Ivory/Black).

Supplier: The Textile Centre.

It’s official: 2 weeks ago I made my first ever dress – The Bettine!! I could not be more thrilled! It took me 2 solid days (9am – 5pm) of sewing to produce the finished article. It was SO much fun and less complicated than I anticipated. My main aim was to make it through the project without losing the will to sew again. For this reason, I took minimal photos, however I will document my next dressmaking endeavour with much more photos, in order to show the progression from fabric to finished article.

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I ensured that I pre-washed and pressed the fabric prior to cutting out the pattern. This meant that I could ascertain how much the fabric might shrink before I made the dress. I used a cotton sateen fabric which was very easy to work with and gave just the right amount of drape for the style of dress. I found the most time consuming aspect of constructing the dress (the pattern cutting) to be the most therapeutic. Carefully placing the pattern pieces onto the fabric in a particular order and cutting out the fabric pieces using my rotary cutter was very relaxing and surprisingly enjoyable.

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The one part I did struggle with was the threading of the elastic waist band into the body of the dress. I started from one hole, got all the way around to the other side of the dress (with great difficulty and effort) only for it to not come out of the designated hole! I rectified the issue by creating another discreet hole and doing some repair work, which was really simple and did not ruin the dress. I prefer my dresses to be above the knees, however the design leaves ample material for a much more modest hemline should you prefer it.

Unfortunately, due to my self-imposed Wedding Diet (3 months to go!!), the dress was too big for me (my hands are strategically placed during the photos in order to hide this fact). In hindsight, I should have re-measured myself beforehand but the dress has now gone to a lovely home. It became an Easter present for my mum and it fits her perfectly. She absolutely loves it and I am so happy to see something that I made being worn and enjoyed by one of my favourite people in the world.

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My thoughts on the pattern were that it was simple, the instructions were clear and there were some elements of challenge for the new sewist should they wish to give them a try i.e. pockets and shoulder tabs. A word of warning: although the pattern states that it is for beginners, there is an element of expectation that the sewist will be able to understand and execute some of the basic sewing skills. I am extremely grateful to myself for being patient and consolidating my skills by starting off with non-garment related sewing projects. This enabled me to get to grips with the basic sewing skills. Had I simply picked up a beginner pattern with no prior knowledge or practice, I would definitely have struggled and the process would have been tiresome and tedious.

Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable time was had and I intend to make another ‘Bettine’ in the coming weeks. This time, in my size so that I can have my very own ‘Bettine’ to wear. For now, I want to try my hand at a different type of garment and have decided that my next project will be a simple, sleeveless top. I have shortlisted a few patterns and will decide which best suits my choice of fabric. ‘The Bettine’ was a rip-roaring success and I highly recommend this pattern to all sewists, from novice through to expert.

Material Girl

It’s all for the love of fabric. The stash continues to grow.

Fabric, fabric fabric….I can’t get enough of it! I am a material girl, through and through!! Recently, I have been working with lots of different types of fabric, mostly because I will be setting up an Etsy shop by the end of April 2017. I have quite a few items lined up to eventually sell, however I have decided to start off with zipper pouches. They are very easy to make and I have decided that I would like mine to come in a variety of colours.

My fabric of choice for the zipper pouches is PVC coated cotton, as I really like the finished look that is achieved. I have also decided to start making garments, my first of which will be a dress. ‘The Bettine’ dress, to be exact, from Tilly and the Button’s pattern collection for beginners. I then have a simple, sleeveless summer top in mind for my second garment project.

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One of my fabric choices for a zipper pouch
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Fabric for ‘The Bettine’ dress (white) and sleeveless top (blue)

With each project, more fabric is required and I have thoroughly enjoyed looking at different fabrics, both online and in store. It’s really quite addictive (and expensive)! I get the distinct feeling that my love for fabric is only just beginning. If it’s wrong, I don’t ever want to be right!

Light Reading: Every Little Helps

A review of several sewing books that help at the start of a sewing journey.

So far in my sewing journey, I have learned basic sewing skills and consolidated them by completing projects of varying difficulty. My next step is to start making garments and my first pattern of choice is ‘The Bettine’ from Tilly and the Buttons. I was so excited to receive the pattern two weeks ago. I couldn’t wait to find the right fabric and get started as soon as possible. I opened the pack, took out the instructions and the pattern, then immediately froze.

The pattern looked so confusing that despite the clearly written instructions, I could not make head nor tail of what I was expected to do. I felt a sense of panic and the fact that I am a complete novice really hit home. I have never attended a dressmaking class and I had no interest in learning these skills when I was younger. My mother is a fine dressmaker and has the ability to create wonderful garments without ever using a pattern. This meant that she would be of minimal assistance if I required further support with understanding the pattern I had purchased. In short, I had no idea where to start and I felt a barrier to sewing evolving.

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My first ever purchased dress pattern

In order to ensure that my fear and inexperience did not get the better of me, I decided that it was time to read, read, read. I would carry out research and teach myself the skills I required to start making simple garments, using a pattern. To do this, I required books to guide and aid my progress in dressmaking. I set about researching the sewing books available for beginners. There are a plethora of books available for the novice sewist, so there is something that suits every personality and learning style.

After a comprehensive search, I ordered 3 books that covered multiple bases in the gaping chasm that is currently my dressmaking knowledge. They are: ‘Learn to Sew with Lauren: From first stitches to perfect projects’ by Lauren Guthrie (finalist in BBC’s Great British Sewing Bee), ‘Sewing Machine Basics: A step-by-step course for the first-time stitchers’ by Jane Bolsover and ‘Sew U: The Built By Wendy guide to making your own wardrobe’ by Wendy Mullin. These 3 books were exactly what I needed and contained information that I thought would be beneficial to my particular sewing journey.

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My sewing library

Each book has their individual strengths and combined, they provide me with comprehensive information on basic dressmaking and sewing skills. I will not be providing a detailed review of all 3 books, simply a general overview, as I believe that the usefulness of a book is determined by the requirements of the reader. I think that overall, for absolute beginners, any of these books could be used in isolation. The first few chapters of all 3 books go over the very basics – basic sewing kit, how to use your sewing machine, types of fabric, their composition and their uses, hand sewing and the stitches that you may need to use (back stitching, basting, etc.).

All 3 books are written in a clear and concise manner, providing adequate detail to ensure that the novice sewist understands how and why different techniques are performed/items are used. ‘Sew U’ concentrates solely on dressmaking projects, which is particularly helpful to me, as this is now my area of interest. The other 2 books have a mixture of garment and home decor projects, e.g. cushion covers. I will now give a brief overview of my thoughts regarding each book.

Sewing Machine Basics

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This book really focuses on how to achieve each project by using your sewing machine effectively. It also includes patterns for you to make the garments included in the book. The step by step instructions are comprehensive and supported with pictures, in order to further aid your progress in each project. There are comprehensive measurement charts provided for the garment projects, which I absolutely love. There is a good variety of projects for the complete novice, to the improving beginner. I really like the detail provided in this book, because I like to know as much as possible about whatever a subject may be.

Learn to Sew with Lauren

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The layout of this book is extremely well organised with projects categorised into the following sections: ‘Beginners easy peasy,’ ‘Improvers next steps,’ and ‘Improvers more tricky.’ The projects in each category reflect the level of difficulty. There are a variety of projects to choose from and each project builds upon the skills previously learned. A lot of thought has been put into this book, which is aesthetically pleasing (the photographs in this book are wonderful) and extremely informative, without giving information overload. Patterns are included for the garment projects.

Sew U

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My favourite chapter

This book is precisely what I need in terms of my dressmaking journey. It provides comprehensive, clear, well-written information and advice on all things dressmaking-related. It even has a section that explains how to express your creative vision if you want a tailor or seamstress to create clothes for you! Patterns are included for you to make the garments illustrated in the book.

My favourite chapter is completely devoted to patterns and it makes sense out of what appears to me to be nonsense. This book immediately puts me at ease when I think about making ‘The Bettine’ dress, because I can use it as a constant companion. In fact, this book makes me extremely excited about starting to make my own clothes and demystifies an aspect of sewing that initially appears to be so daunting and complicated.

General thoughts

I dip in an out of all 3 books, referring to one or the other, depending on the level of detail and explanation I require. There are some projects in these books that I may not attempt, simply because they are of little or no interest to me, e.g. making curtains and making roman blinds. What I like about all 3 books is that they can all be referred back to further down the line in my sewing adventure, when I am no longer a novice. This makes them, in my opinion, a good investment and money well spent.

I definitely recommend having at least one sewing book that you can use as a guide when you first start sewing. It can always be on hand during those moments of panic and they really help to build up your basic, traditional, sewing skills. I bought ‘Learn to Sew with Lauren’ from brand new, but I managed to source the other two second-hand at under £3 for each. Due to this fact, I invested in all 3 books, however one book would have sufficed. I must say that the quality of the second-hand books were brilliant, just like new, but in order to ensure this was the case I did my research prior to purchase.

This is how I spent last week; reading through the chapters of these 3 books, consolidating my theoretical knowledge and understanding of basic sewing techniques. It turns out that it was time well spent, because once I finally returned to the sewing machine, theory met with practical and everything slotted into place. I achieved another ‘EUREKA’ moment and had the best time sewing. Here’s to sewing books: the handy companions that will remain by my side throughout my sewing journey.

Consolidation

A compilation of sewing projects in 2017

This week, my aim was to consolidate all of the basic sewing skills I have very recently acquired in my sewing adventure. This is particularly important, as I want to make my first attempt at sewing a dress next week. In order to adequately consolidate my skills, I set myself the task of making more of the items that I had made during my previous 3 weeks of sewing. I have been helped along by the fact that Mothers’ Day is fast approaching (26th March for us UK folk).

From my previously completed projects, I would be giving my mum and my fiancé’s nanny a few of my previously completed projects. All I had left to make were 2 cushion covers for my mother-in-law (to be). I have also made the decision to start an Etsy shop, in order to sell some of the accessories I have started to make.

I have various items that I would like to eventually start to sell, however zipper pouches are the first items on which I want to concentrate. This meant making more zipper pouches in order to practice improving upon their quality. I particularly like working with the PVC coated cotton but wanted to practise working with this material much more. Keeping my sewing goals at the forefront of my mind, my list of chosen projects was: 2 cushion covers and 5 zipper pouches.

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Zipper pouch collection

With my consolidation plan decided, I anticipated that I would complete an item a day, spanning across the entire week. This did not happen (many are the plans of a person’s heart) but I’ll save the reason why for my next post. What actually happened is that I took a break from the sewing machine for 4 days, then had the bright idea of challenging myself to complete all 7 items over the space of one evening/night.

I currently suffer from insomnia, a side effect from the work-related stress I sustained in my previous job, and thought it best to turn this weakness into a creative strength. I started my first zipper pouch at 17:30 on Friday evening (GMT) and finished my last cushion at 02:00 on Saturday morning (GMT). Every single item was completed within this time. In hindsight, this was a very ambitious task for a newbie sewist, however it was during this time sewing that I had my ‘EUREKA’ moment.

I cannot explain exactly what happened, except to say that everything suddenly clicked. I knew which steps to undertake next without the aid of a video tutorial, having continuously stumbled on this particular skill in previous projects. I finally began to understand why things had to be completed in a particular order or in a particular way. I noticed that my understanding of the fabrics I was using had greatly improved. I was cutting the fabric much better and working more efficiently, which meant that I was working much quicker. It felt amazing! I only used the seam ripper three times, a feat I still cannot quite believe that I achieved.

I encountered a few problems along the way, but they were minor and I was able to change my technique in order to accommodate for these issues, yet achieve the overall effect for the particular item. In the 4 days that I spent away from the sewing machine, I must have given my brain the time to properly process the new skills that I have been learning, therefore enabling me to effectively put them into practice when they were next called upon. Not only am I absolutely thrilled that the very basic sewing skills are no longer incredibly difficult for me to achieve, this situation has taught me a very important lesson: to take my time, because everything happens in good time.

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All in a night’s work
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Cushion close-up

Up until this week, I had been sewing practically every single day, eager to ensure that I rapidly improved upon my skills, pushing myself to learn a new skill with each new project. While this has been beneficial to my learning, in hindsight, there were a few key moments when I really should have taken at least a few days break from the sewing machine to give myself the time and space to fully take in what I had learned so far. Thankfully, this week I realised the need to take a break and ensured that I stayed away from the sewing machine. Instead, I read chapters in my sewing books that provided more in-depth knowledge of the basic sewing skills that I have been practising. I also rested.

Resting is equally as important as being busy and I never appreciated just how involved with sewing I have been, until I stepped away from it. The short break has done me the world of good and led to the creation of 7 items of a far superior quality than I have previously been able to achieve. I am absolutely elated and I cannot wait to see where my sewing will lead me. I now have the much needed confidence boost to continue with sewing and also to believe that I can become an excellent sewist.

I have also received sincere and genuine feedback from the gifts that I have recently made. The feedback has been very positive, particularly regarding the professional look of these items, despite me being at the start of my sewing journey. Today, I am very proud of what I have achieved so far with my sewing and I will continue to enjoy this moment while it lasts.

Sewing: I think I might just have cracked it. From now on it’s onwards and upwards!

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Zipper pouches galore

Zip it!

My first attempt at a zipper pouch.

I finally completed the project I recently set myself: a zipper pouch. I opted to use some PVC coated cotton I recently purchased. It looks and feels as though it is relatively durable, which is exactly what is required from a zipper pouch. In order to make the zipper pouch, I followed a tutorial from ‘MADE Everyday’. This is the third tutorial from this vlogger that I have used, simply because they are really easy to follow and she has a range of projects that I am particularly interested in creating, which are suitable for beginners like myself.

This project enabled me to see that my sewing skills have really improved in a short space of time. I think this is predominantly because I am currently sewing almost every day (I have a lot of time on my hands at the moment). Plus, I make sure that each new project builds on a skill that I have previously learned, as well as teaching me a new skill.

The most challenging part of the project was working with PVC coated cotton. Sewing on the wrong side of the fabric did not pose any problems and I was able to install the zip without any issues. In hindsight, this was because the right side of the fabric was sandwiched between the silky cotton fabric I used for the lining, when I was sewing the wrong side. Had the right side of the PVC coated cotton been exposed to the feed dogs, I would have discovered the impending problem much sooner. Next, it was time to topstitch on the right side of the fabric.

I used the standard presser foot for this and immediately noticed that something was not right. The fabric would slowly go through the feed dogs then grind to an unexpected halt. I unpicked the stitches and started again but the same thing kept happening repeatedly. When I looked at the threads in the fabric I was attempting to sew, I could see that the stitches on the wrong side of the fabric were pulled up really tightly, compared to the stitches on the right side of the fabric, which were as normal. I immediately jumped to the conclusion that the tension needed adjusting. *Note to self – always check on the simplest of potential errors before rushing to fix presumed larger ones.* Thankfully, this thought came to mind before I started playing around with the tension of my sewing machine!

I tried increasing the length of the stitch, to no avail. I re-threaded the sewing machine and re-wound the bobbin but there was still no change. By this time, I was fed up and decided to pack away my project for the rest of the day. Overnight, I kept wracking my brain to try and work out where I was going wrong. The two changes I had made with this project compared to all of my previous projects was to use a different type of needle (I was sure that this was definitely not where the problem lay) and a different type of fabric.

The next morning, I woke up determined to find the solution to my sewing conundrum. I decided to Google “Working with PVC coated cotton,” to find out if anyone else had encountered similar problems to me when working with this particular type of fabric. If I could rule out the fabric as an issue, then the solution would most likely be to readjust the tension of the sewing machine, something that for me needed to be the very last resort. Lo and behold, there were blog posts galore about the difficulties of working with PVC coated cotton.

The most common suggestion was to purchase a Teflon presser foot, which would easily glide over the surface of the material without sticking to it. I went on to order one via ebay, but there would be a significant wait for it to arrive and I wanted to complete the project as soon as possible. The second suggestion was to cover a standard presser foot with scotch tape, in order to get a similar effect to the Teflon presser foot – I tried it but this technique did not consistently work for me.

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Front of zipper pouch

Unsatisfied after another unsuccessful attempt at completing the project and with frustration quickly setting in, I stepped away from the sewing machine and gave myself the rest of the day to mull things over. I set about finding my own solution to the problem. After much thought and careful consideration (to document my thought processes would require another post, so I’ll spare you…this time) the next day, I set about my mission: to successfully complete a zipper pouch!

I thought it might be a good idea to cover the right side of the material in baking paper. YES, BAKING PAPER! I sewed my topstitch to the right side of the garment and through the baking paper. The fabric went over the feed dogs with ease and the stitches on both sides were even. Once I had finished the topstitch, I carefully ripped the baking paper away from the stitches.

This method worked perfectly every single time. The baking paper was strong enough to provide a barrier between the presser foot and the sticky PVC coated cotton, yet fragile enough to enable me to tear it away, leaving the stitches intact. Using this method enabled me to finish not one, but two zipper pouches within a few hours. SEWING TIP ALERT: having issues sewing oilcloth/PVC coated fabrics and you don’t have a Teflon presser foot or scotch tape? Using baking paper works like a dream.

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Inside zipper pouch

Another con of working with PVC coated cotton is the fact that the remaining holes from unpicked stitches can be quite noticeable. I did make sure to press the wrong side of the fabric with a warm iron after unpicking seams, in order to help minimise the holes. However, this fabric can be unforgiving if constant mistakes are made. Of the 2 zipper pouches that I made, I kept one and gifted another to a relative in order to obtain some much needed feedback about the pouch’s usability and durability. My plan is to eventually start selling handmade items on Etsy – zipper pouches being a favourite of mine to make – so the more feedback I can get on my handmade items, the better.

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Back of zipper pouch

I really enjoyed completing this project, particularly independently overcoming the difficulties with using my choice of fabric. I stretched and challenged myself just enough to learn some new skills without getting too disheartened when I reached a stumbling block. Over this next week, I plan to consolidate what I have learnt so far by making more of the same items that I have completed over the past 3 weeks. My next challenge is to sew my first ever garment, so I will need to practice the basics as much as possible beforehand. For now, I will leave you with some photos of my finished zipper pouch. Until next time, happy sewing!

All Tied Up

My first attempt at making a tie.

With the pillowcases safely put to bed, I commenced my next project – a tie. I followed a tutorial from the same vlog where I found the pillowcase tutorial, ‘MADE Everyday’. The tutorial was easy to follow, however this was a bit of a trickier project from the outset because I did not have a pattern for a tie. I had to ask my fiancé for a tie he no longer liked and then proceeded to cut it apart. It was a win-win situation: I got to use the tie as a makeshift template and he got a much nicer, handmade tie as a replacement.

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The ill-fated tie

Using the tie as a template (bearing in mind that I had deconstructed a previously made tie, therefore would need to add point to the fabric, make the shape much neater, allow for seam allowances, etc) I proceeded to cut out the fabric I needed. I then pinned the fabric I had cut to the lining and used it to get an exact copy of the shapes for the front and back of the tie.

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One of the hardest parts (aside from the faff of cutting out the shapes for the tie without the use of a pattern, coupled with my shoddy cutting skills) was pinning together the front and back of the tie and sewing them together, in order to make one long, continuous length of fabric. There was a 1/4″ seam allowance and I had to get the edges together perfectly. Needless to say, unpicked my first try!

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Pinning the front and back of the tie for the lining and outer fabric

I carefully followed the instructions of the tutorial and was very happy with the finished results. Unfortunately, I made the loop on the tie too small, so it could not be used to hold the back of the tie in place. Lucky for me, my fiancé informed me that he does not bother to use the loops anyway (RESULT). I had also placed the loop too far up the tie, which meant that had it been big enough to use, it would have been impossible to do so. Shortly after taking the photograph, I cut the loop off – problem solved!

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Happy with the overall result from the first tie, I made a second tie (it turned into a skinny tie but mainly due to me making a mistake and refusing to unpick the entire length of the tie). Much like during the pillowcase project, my mistakes came thick and fast when I started making the second tie. I tried to complete the project with minimal assistance from the video (will I ever learn?!) and soon my best friend came out once again (the seam unpicker). Sigh….I HAVE learned my lesson since and I will follow tutorials, instructions and guidance relentlessly until they are firmly ingrained in my mind. Only then shall I try to sew from memory. I am blessed with the ability to somehow rectify any mistakes I make, regardless of how catastrophic, and still end up with a project that I can be proud of. I hope that this gift follows me throughout my sewing career. It is one that I am very happy to have.

The second tie turned out great and is a skinny tie to add to my fiancé’s collection. The first tie certainly got his seal of approval, as he proudly wore it to work at the beginning of this week. What a sweetheart! He made me a very happy lady that day. I must say that the other difficulty I had with the tie was turning it right-side out once completed. On the tutorial, the vlogger successfully attaches a safety pin to one end of the tie, turns the fabric on itself and pushes/threads the fabric and safety pin along the entire length of the tie.

I tried that method and failed miserably. I was also concerned about potentially ruining the fabric by using this method, so opted for a long-winded method that was much more time-consuming but worked for me. Horses for courses – I got the job done in the end. I would use this tutorial again to make other ties, which I intend to do very soon as my mum has requested one as a birthday gift for a relative. Another project all tied up. Next on my to do list is a zipper pouch.

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