violette feild threads skirt and topI usually have plans. Big Plans. I’m one of those planning type people. The annoying types who know exactly what their weekend will be on the prior Tuesday. That’s totally me. A planner. Sometimes I’ll see a photo on a blog for a sewing project or idea and it will totally speak to me. That was this picture. I saw this first on a blog for the orignal fabric designer Sarah Jane Studios. I loved everything about it from the darling top details to the ribbon embellished sailboat skirt. The top and skirt are patterns on Violette Field Threads. I bought all the exact same fabric and both patterns. Here’s my version.

O+S Jump Rope Dress view B OandS Jump Rope Pattern

Yeah, totally different dress. I know. These big sewing plans I have, don’t seem to happen. Something comes up. Something needs my time and attention. I get myself committed to other projects and then it goes to plan B which is ‘what do I have that could work and it already half finished’. This is another Oliver + Dress, the Jump Rope Dress in view B. I was recently looking on etsy and saw some vintage inspired clothing and I decided I wanted this dress in a retro print. This is a Moda print. This became M’s Easter dress this year. M loves pockets now so it was perfect for her to stash some of my lipgloss in. The hardest part of this dress was doing the button placket and collar. Best part was while I was working on it I pricked my finger with my pins and bled all over the collar. Perfect for the white fabric I chose.

I actually have the skirt for the original idea cut out. Not sure when I’ll get to it, since other plans for other projects have already been made. Maybe I’ll make it and put it on my etsy shop for sale.

-Britt

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A little under two years ago I took my first sewing classes. One of the best tips I ever got was ‘use a glue stick’. Really? Really. Let me explain. Sometimes when ironing small edges down or bulk, it can help to have some extra help in addition to your pins. If you start doing this and you’re like me, you’ll almost skip the pinning and just measure the sides you need to iron down and with your glue stick and heat, they’ll stay down. Best part, it’s washable and it doesn’t gunk up your needle. Cool, huh?

glue stick

20130328-215346.jpgSee that purple stripe of glue there? (Yes, I know my ironing board cover could get replaced. Just ignore the water stains. It works just fine!) So along the edge that you need to turn down apply a small strip of glue stick and tuck your edge in. Be sure and use your seam gauge to make sure you are folding it down the correct amount according to the projects you are working on.

glued side This is the outside shell of a basket I made. The inside white part you see in the photo is heavy sew-in interfacing. I thought with the bulk it would be annoying to try and pin down because sometimes heavy interfacing is hard to put pins through. I added a little strip of glue and folded my edge down 1/2″ according to the tutorial. Add some heat from your iron and presto! It stays in place and has a nice clean fold.

I use this trick all the time. I used to dread 1/4″ seam folds because they were so small to pin. Now I add glue and it’s a non issue. Just remember, it washes out when you throw it in the washing machine.

These baskets turned out really great. I am actually running a sewing group for my neighborhood church and I thought these would be a good project that everyone could customize to their taste. This tutorial is from Sew4Home and it’s a good one. The instructions were not hard to follow and there is only straight stitching involved. The only hard part of this project is working with the bulky pieces. I found that my tension needed to be turned up to a 7-8 instead of a 4 where most projects are usually sewn. I highly recommend this tutorial to anyone with beginner sewing skills who has courage to try sewing with some bulk.

finished baskets frontfinished baskets top

I did cheat a little on the ric rac basting part. The tutorial tells you to change your bobbin thread to match your lining thread. I just basted the ric rac in and then pulled that basting thread out once I sewed the lining and outer shell together. I thought it would be too hard to match your stitches on the front with the basting stitches on the inside. So that’s one extra step but I think the stitching looks nicer when adding this extra step. It’s really a trade for time. Change your bobbin thread or just baste and pull those stitches out later?

binder clips Lastly, when I work with bulk it can help to use binder clips instead of regular straight pins. Sometimes those pins don’t want to go through those layers without snags or your pin bending. Here when I put the liner inside my shell to line up my top edge you have 8 layers of fabric, batting and interfacing all coming together. My pins do not like me very much when trying to force them in those layers. So I just use binder clips making sure that I didn’t sew over the ric rac. This is another time saver for me since I don’t have to work with the pins on this project. And this project is atypical because I’m a big fan of pinning because it just helps your projects look and sew better.

For the Sew4Home tutorial go here: http://www.sew4home.com/projects/storage-solutions/you-asked-4-it-structured-fabric-baskets

LAST IDEA – Someone in my neighborhood who is coming to our little sewing group said she was making these as Easter baskets. I thought ” GREAT IDEA”.

Happy Easter!

Britt

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