What pattern size am I?

One question I’m asked almost every day is ‘What pattern size am I?’

Probably the most difficult aspect of dressmaking is how to find the correct pattern size. . Sewing patterns aren’t sized in the same way as ready-to-wear clothes. So you can’t just buy your usual off-the-peg dress size.

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Haberdashery – what a wonderful world

Haberdashery means all the tools, equipment and other bits you need to complete your sewing project besides fabric and a sewing machine. Choosing the right haberdashery is every bit as important as fabric to the successful outcome of your sewing project. So I’m delighted to introduce a guest blogger who’s a specialist in this field.

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Sewing Machine Tension

Sewing machine tension

Probably the most common sewing problem is getting correct sewing machine tension. By thread tension, we mean the amount of thread that can pass through the machine to create the stitch. The more thread in the stitch, then the looser the stitch.  The less thread, then the tighter the stitch. Read more

Overlocker tension

How to get perfect Overlocker tension

How to get the correct overlocker tension is the most common issue when using these machines. An overlocker is a fantastic machine and can be extremely useful.  But they can also be beastly. Read on to find out how to use them and get the most from an overlocker.  Read more

Husqvarna Viking Emerald 118 Sewing Machine – Review

Best Sewing Machine?

Husqvarna Emerald 118 Sewing Machine Review

I had to find the best sewing machine for my teaching studio. I needed something that was easy-to-use,  versatile, robust, and great value.  My local specialist dealer Andrew Pemberton recommended the Husqvarna Viking Emerald 118.  Prior to that, I was aware of Husqvarna as a high-quality brand but I hadn’t used one before.  So I was happy to go along to test it against some of its closest rivals in the same price bracket. Read more

Pattern Ease – Why is my sewing pattern bigger than my measurements?

What is ‘Pattern Ease’ and why do I need it?

Pattern Ease is the allowance made over and above the body measurements when making a pattern. It enables natural body movement. If patterns were exactly the same size as your body measurement, the garment would literally be skin tight. Pattern ease is added to the body circumference measurements, but not to any vertical measurements.  Although your shop-bought clothes may say ‘to fit bust 36″‘, if you measure them, you’ll find that they are considerable bigger. Read more

Travelling Books Project

Travelling Books Project

I’ve often mentioned the Embroiderers Guild ‘Travelling Books’ project on my Facebook page. There’s about 24 members of our Guild branch involved and we started last October by all being given an A5 sketchbook. The idea is that we each choose a theme for our book, and do a small piece of embroidery inspired by that theme.

I’ts been a great opportunity for me to work in some my favourite creative textiles techniques.
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