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Chic Weekly an on-line Fashion & Sewing Magazine.


a new article every Monday about Sewing & Fashion

Article 38 - March 14, 2011
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The Beginnings of a Sewing Project

Chic weekly article: The Beginnings of a project.

By Judi Harris


    Well, you’re ready to start your next sewing project and you are eager to finish the time-consuming preparatory work. Finding your pattern pieces, cutting them out, pinning, cutting the fabric, and marking can all seem tedious when you are excited to begin seeing the results of constructing your garment. Sometimes I get so excited about seeing the finished project that I overlook certain steps I know I shouldn’t. Although these early steps aren’t the most exciting, they are some of the most important. Think about it this way: every pattern piece you cut out become the puzzle pieces to creating your vision. If a piece is cut incorrectly--whether done sloppily or not cut on the fold or grain line--your puzzle will not fit. 

So here’s some 35 years plus advise on how to carefully prepare for a project.


1.    Make sure you check the pattern envelope and purchase all of the notions, decorations, interfacing, lining, and other extra things you may need when you purchase your fabric. This will allow you to match your notions to the fabric and will save you a trip to the store.


2.    Check the pattern envelope and make sure you are buying the correct kind of fabric for the project. I know this sounds simple but I can’t tell you how many times I bought a pattern and fabric and then came home to discover that the pattern I bought was for stretch knit only. Back in the 70’s “For Stretch Knit Only” was written in very large letters on pattern envelopes, but today patterns can be found with both cotton and knit garments all in the same envelope (as often in the case of skirt-top separates).


3.    Read ALL of the instructions on your directions before you begin. This will help more than you may realize. Sometimes steps in garment making do not make sense until you are three steps father along. Reading the directions in advance will help you to understand why certain steps are necessary.


4.    I don’t do this all the time but when I do it certainly saves me time in the future: cut out all of the pieces in the pattern envelope and set aside the ones you’re not using. This way the next time you are interested in making another project from the same pattern envelope, all the pieces are already cut out.


5.    Cut out all your notches (on the outside, not in!) and do all of your markings for darts, pleats, dots, etc. Why would you not? This is how you match your pieces together to makes a great fit. Take the time out to do this correctly and accurately.


6.    Some days I will spend my time just pinning and cutting different projects. I am so exhausted from this that I call it a day after that. I put my pieces in a gallon (10”X12”) clear plastic bag with a closure and hang it on a hanger with the pattern envelope. This way everything is prepared and easy to find for when I am ready to begin sewing.


     The more I sew, the more I find little things that I am still learning. That’s why I began this website to share my love and ideas of sewing. Do you have any ideas you want to share with everyone? Let us know.


Happy Stitchin’




Chic Weekly: on-line Fashion & Sewing Magazine
Founder & Publisher: Judi Harris
Editor in Chief: Jessica Lynn Harris
Art & Photo Editor: Andrew DiMaio
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copyright 2010-2011 Love To Sew Studio
Article 38 March 14, 2011




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