Member Since: 06/30/2009
Was fortunate to work for a leather cleaners where we replaced sliders continually and one seamstress could even put the box ends back on some with superglue! IF a zipper has no teeth missing you can often replace the slider to make it work correctly. A separating zipper for a jacket requires that you remove the top stop and take off old slider and put new one on. Test before putting the top stop back on. A pant zipper will require taking apart at the bottom to put a new slider on so it is sometimes easier to replace entire zipper as indicated here.
I do alterations and NEVER toss a zipper as can often reuse parts, sometimes just one side of a jacket zipper or shorten it for use in a different garment. Keep on hand top stops and bottom stops (Wawak.com or other suppliers have them) or reuse them from zippers you have kept. Consequently, I order occasionally supply of zippers in longer lengths to just keep on hand, shortening as needed with new top stops. A needle nosed plier and, best of all, a tool called an end nipper should be part of your zipper repair tool stash. You may find some of the tool assortments at Harbor Freight or in the jewelry component section at a craft store.
Experiment with this with old zippers to get the feel for what works and what does not.
I would opt for a beige or yellow linen or linen/blend to make the camisole top and pants and skirt. On the camisole I would do some delicate hand embroidery of flowers and leaves. (yes, I still like it done by hand once in a while!) to highlight the waistline area from front to center back. I would use those same colors from the embroidery threads to embellish the underside of the skirt and pants hem and maybe the inside of the jacket edge. Love the subtlety of trims!
I also save every issue and have found some early ones at yard sales but my collection is incomplete! I often use the index to go back and research techniques. My favorite article was describing using iron-on tape to finish a garment edge-inspiring to use an Ellen Tracey double-sided velour in my stash! I have been able to help a friend with her pants fitting problems. Am always looking for sewing tips that are new or forgotten from the past! Always read the magazine from cover to cover--NEVER do that with any others!
Threads IS the best magazine for sewing information and inspiration available today.
How often do you make something and ultimately decide it looks too 'home-made'! I do complete it and then donate it to a reseller. Somewhere someone will like it better than I
and will have a new, custom made garment.
Recently I took apart four shantung formal skirts. They were purchased about 8 years ago at an outlet store and sat in the closet waiting to be worn or remodeled. I unassembled them, added a lining fabric in a print that connects the varied colors, and added another color of shantung from the local Field's Fabrics. I am in the process of making a jacket using all of the colors. No hurry because if the fabric sat thing long, it can wait for completion a little longer!
When we moved to our new home, we needed a rec room and a place for me to sew. when I was lucky enough to be a stay-at-home mom, I spent my savings to finish the basement--MY way! It was a process finished over four years but I have a 12 x 12 laundry room where the ironing board is always up, a 20 x 22 sewing area with a 4 x 16 counter top that passes thru to the rec room side.I keep a collection of old irons here to use as weights for fabric cutting. It is lit by a metal, chain hung 'factory light'. My table is an old government surplus 4 x 8 foot that holds my machine. My serger rests on a garage-sale purchase of a dining credenza top that I put casters on...rests beside the sewing machine table. This table has a very wide, centered drawer that is on ball bearings and glides open so easily to hold utensils separated by plastic trays. I have a metal utility cabinet, also government surplus, which holds zippers, thread spools, other notions. When a fabric store went out of business when I was doing the basement, I bought shelving...now on each side of the sewing machine table...to hold fabric, books, scraps, and all the Threads magazines I have saved over the years. Lighting is important so I use 2 2x 4 recessed fluorescents as well as a chain hung 4' fixture over the sewing machine table. I have had several magnifier lights and found the plastic models gave out after a few years. I invested in a Luxo table magnifier which utilizes a circuline fluorescent bulb and I recommend this to anyone who sews as it is efficient and durable.
I have some deep sliding drawers attached to shelving on one side to hold patterns. I bought dishpans at a dollar store to hold other misc notions, projects in process. Some salvaged slot board made great uprights for shelving, utilizing masonite to slide in. It was good for toy storage for our child but I confiscated it for storage for books, quilt fabrics, jewelry fixings, and to hold a cast-off stereo unit. I recovered some foam board pieces and they serve as bulletin boards above the sewing machine table. Since I designed the area myself (and built it!) I could be selfish and included a closet that is about ten feet long. It holds completed garments, more fabric, shelvest recessed into one end, and my collection of ALF!
I am fortunate to have an older laptop computer near at hand so I can easily do sewing research.
The flooring throughout the basement is a commercial grade, low level loop nylon with no padding. It collects threads but is easily vacuumed. It holds pins so the rule is that no one is ever in this room without shoes!
Our home was built 25 years ago and is on ground that is high and dry. The basement exterior has foam core board to insulate and the inside is insulated as well as drywalled. In summer it is cool and in winter warm as well as the quietest area of the house.
In college, Dr.Bornemeier, at EMU, introduced us to Davidow suits.Probably a brand from the 50's and 60's which featured this technique. These suits were sold in the fine fashion areas of department stores. Also, in the 70's, one of the pattern companies featured "Make it Tonight" garments using polyester double knits and used very similar techniques.
I am absolutely thrilled to see this article, will print it and try it very soon! Thank you for detailing this technique
Beautiful bag! I love the single strap design and the outher pocket! Good work!
I also recently began making handbags.
To Linda: I always found it helpful to examine closely items that were already made. You can learn a lot by examining how ready-to-wear garments were put together. Same with purses.
A few weeks ago I bought a bag at the Salvation Army store to take apart. I wanted that design as it had the center divider pocket in the lining. I ended up taking the bag apart and making a pattern from it on non-woven patterning fabric.
I still kept the original bag as that shows me how it was put together.
I still work with woven fabrics but have a lot of experience with leather. I have a pair of suede slacks I never wore and am considering turning them into a purse.
I have made most of the bags in Butterick 4409 pattern. Lots of small pieces and some bags easier to make if you purchase ready made handles and other notions needed. Also, iron on interfacings work so well.
My first project was hand sewing on crinoline fabric to make dresses for seven inch character dolls. I had received the kit as a Christmas gift. I still have those patterns somewhere!
First real garment, after so much begging, was a pattern and fabric for a cotton dress and jacket. Mom was so skeptical that I would finish a full garment! I remember that the seam widths were less than 5/8" as one of the seams raveled out when I wore it. The notched collar on the jacket was poorly turned. At this age, just could not trust the term 'clip in'!
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