Posts under ‘Tailoring’

Tips on taping together Dress Shop App PDF patterns

I have been using Dress Shop a lot lately and I have discovered a few things that make the taping-together process a lot quicker for me. Use the thinnest (and cheapest) printer paper possible. Thinner paper makes it easier to see the registration marks when one sheet is on top of another. I use Office […]

Singer Fashion Mate’s pedal fix!

Do you ever wonder what’s the average age of sewing machines of all serious sewists out there? Maybe when you’re trying to justify that Husqvarna Super Automated sewing machine, the one with the built-in kitchen sink and waste disposal? My Singer Fashion Mate Model 248 is almost 40 years old. It weights like it’s 40 […]

A better mouse trap: an improvement on how to cut a continuous bias strips!

How often do you hear of a better mouse trap? Probably about as often hearing of a better wheel. That’s not square. Or does not rotate around a single axis. However, I guarantee you that you will get your money’s worth with this new and improved method of cutting bias strips! I am so confident […]

Austin Carnaval costume

You may have seen from an earlier post on making the mohawk headpiece for my Austin Carnaval costume. I found this braided metallic mesh tubing at Jo-Ann Fabrics: …and decided to add fringes to the back of the mohawk: Beyond that, it was on to making the rest of my “Road Warrior in White” costume: […]

Clever way to correlate fabric to pattern

As you may know, I started using Dress Shop to generate patterns. Dress Shop generates a PDF file which is printed out on a normal printer on 8.5″ x 11″ paper. I would then tape the pages together to form the pattern. One artifact of printing patterns this way is that they are too sturdy […]

Austin Carnaval costume: “mohawk”

I made an all-white “road warrior” costume for the 2017 Austin Carnaval Brasileiro. I’ve been “incubating” the idea for several years, and this year I finally “pulled the trigger” on it. Since the costume is for the Carnaval, it needed to be super sexy! That means short skirt, bared midriff, spike heels, etc. However, one […]

A pressing matter

Pressing and steaming differentiate great garments from home-made looking ones probably more than anything else. Mismatched plaids and stripes, uneven hem, and wrinkly sleeve caps also say “home made” instead of “tailored”, but not to the same degree, as it takes a bit of scrutiny to see those things. Unpressed seams, however, says “done at […]

Pin sizes

I have written before about sewing over pins. There is always a “religious war” over whether or not to leave pins in place and sew over them or to remove them as one sews. I think at least some of those who are in the “remove pins” camp use pins that are sturdier but as […]

“Chatelaine”

A chatelaine is “a set of short chains attached to a woman’s belt, used for carrying keys or other items.” (It also means “a woman in charge of a large house”, presumably because she’d be carrying a large cluster of keys etc.) I saw “Dior And I” at the Austin Gay and Lesbian Film Festival […]

Details, details, details

Often, it’s the the small details that separate a “home made” garment from the “Wow, you made that?!” garment. I would like to share a few details from my recent use of Dress Shop and from making a shirtdress recently. Dress Shop generates the pattern pieces for the collar such that the undercollar is slightly […]

Shirtdress in black, white, red tartan

As part of my process of refining my Dress Shop measurements set, I made another garment, this time, a shirtdress. The pattern used was “Dresses/Unfitted/Shirtdress” and is one of the Dress Shop Quick Start patterns, which is of course also included in the higher-end versions, Dress Shop Deluxe and Dress Shop Pro. I chose a […]

“Dress Shop” motorcycle jacket

I am continuing to explore using Dress Shop Pro to make my own patterns. My initial attempts at a few pairs of shorts were moderately successful. For best result, I should really have spent the time and effort to make a sloper and adjust my measurements set in Dress Shop. If you’re like me though, […]

Sewing machine presser foot as helping hand

A “helping hand” is not new in sewing, nor in many crafts, for that matter. For example, there exist antiques of the “bird’s beak” clamp. Similar devices exist in jewelry making, watchmaking and other tiny-scale crafts, such as fishing lure tying. I’m reasonably dextrous so I can manage manual tasks well. There are times though, […]

Pinning zippers?

When pinning zippers, do you pin parallel to the zipper tape, or at right angle to the zipper tape? Maybe it depends on your pinning habit. I always pin perpendicular to the stitching line and sew over the pins. (Cue rancorous sew-over-pins religious war here! 😆 ) I do that for several reasons. When several […]

Use shoe boxes to organize sewing notions

We all have different methods of storing our sewing stuff. Recently, a member of my local chapter of American Sewing Guild gave a presentation on how she organizes her sewing stuff. One approach that she and I share is storing items in boxes stacked on shelves. Her boxes are all uniform, labeled with their general […]

V-shaped hem slits

I’ve been asked to clarify/explain how I did the V-shaped slits in my Dress Shop shorts: The slit is basically a “lined” diamond shaped cut-out in the garment fabric. When folded in half along one of its axes, the diamond turns into a V shape. By locating the points of the diamond on the hem […]

Sewing and turning a spaghetti strap

There are a multitude of methods to make a spaghetti strap. One method calls for using needle and thread. I used to do this, but have never been happy with it because the thread has to be inserted near the end of the tube and the fabric tends to fray and the thread’s knot would […]

Where to position the needle when using invisible zipper foot?

Recently, I answered a question on patternreview.com about needle position when using an invisible zipper foot. I figure I would share my answer here as well. When using a zipper foot, the needle stays in the middle. You position one of the foot’s two grooves over the zipper teeth depending on which side of the […]

Another pair of shorts from Dress Shop pattern

Since I was so hapy with the fit of the first pair of shorts that I made using a pattern generated by Dress Shop, I made another pair from the same patterns. I used some white eyelets cotton left over from making a dress (also from a Dress Shop pattern, more on that soon), plus […]

First pair of shorts from Dress Shop pattern

I recently started using Dress Shop, a Windows application that generates custom-fit sewing patterns. The application comes in three flavors: Quick Start, Deluxe, and Pro. They are variants of the same application. One can try the application for free by downloading the application, installing it, and check out its functionalities. The only thing one won’t […]