Mar 13, 2018

The Sheath Dress & Removing the Waist/Hip Darts

How simple it is to convert your Sure-Fit Designs dress blueprint from a woven sheath dress to sewing with a knit fabric for a similar style of dress.  If you want a simple sew and go dress, this would be it.

First, you need to take your skirt and bodice patterns, line them up together following the directions on page 32 of your Dress Kit Instruction book. If you'd like to see a short video showing you this process, please click on this link as the video may not show up in your email client.

Then, you'll subtract some of the waist/hip fitting darts at the side seam waist point.  But...each waist fitting dart is 1.5" wide.  In my estimation, that's a little too much to come of in one fell swoop on the side seam.  Even though you'll be sewing with a stretchy knit fabric, I suggest you start by initially removing half this amount or 3/4" from the side seam waist point.
And depending on how stretchy your knit fabric is, you may want to 'size down' all the circumference dots to remove some of the built-in wearing ease that is provided when sewing with your woven fabrics.  See page 6 of the Dress Kit Instruction book for the guidelines: 'Sewing with Knit/Stretchy Fabric'.

The back of the dress has the darts removed in a similar manner.  And if you've sized the front of the pattern down for sewing with your specific knit fabric, make sure you do this to the back as well.

 And if you have a back shoulder dart, you may or may not want to sew it in place...again, it depends on how stretchy the fabric is and how curved your shoulder blades and back is.  But if you choose to remove the dart, you can do so by taking off the dart equivalent right at the intersection of the shoulder line and armscye.
Now for a visual presentation of this entire process, make sure to watch this short video - it's the latest to be added to the Sure-Fit Designs YouTube channel as well as to the SFD Learning Center. 

And...when you've got this 'sew and go' dress completed, make sure to send a photo or post your creation in our SFDChallenge2018.  Get your free SFD Challenge Planner by joining now at this link.

Happy Designing & Sewing!

Mar 6, 2018

Get Ready for the Long Tailed Big Shirt

Have you been wanting to add the Sure-Fit Designs Shirt Kit to your sewing patterns?  Now is the time to pick up the Shirt Kit while it's on SALE.

You'll want the Shirt Kit in preparation for the Long Tailed Big Shirt Sew Along which is coming next month.

Save 10% on the individual Shirt Kit - simply use Discount Code SHIRT10. 5% on the already discounted Shirt Kit Combos - use Discount Code SHIRT5.

The already discounted combo choices are:The Mini Shirt Kit Combo
The bare minimum - the Mini Shirt Kit Combo contains:
*The Shirt Kit
*Introductory How-To DVD
*The Designing Stylus
Normally $77.95...
Now $74.05 - (with discount code Shirt5)

The Regular Shirt Kit Combo
The next level - the Regular Shirt Kit Combo contains:
*The Shirt Kit
*Introductory How-To DVD
*The Designing Stylus
*1x10yd Tracing Vellum
*Sew Sensational Shirts - Shirt designing book
Normally $110.95...
Now $105.40 - (with discount code Shirt5)

The Maxi Shirt Kit Combo 
The ultimate - the Maxi Shirt Kit Combo contains:
*The Shirt Kit
*Introductory How-To DVD
*The Designing Stylus
*1x10yd Tracing Vellum
*Sew Sensational Shirts - Shirt designing book
*Shirt Fitting Course DVD - in-depth Shirt pattern drawing, sewing & fitting.
Normally $154.90...
Now $147.15 - (with discount code Shirt5

This offer is good through Friday March 9, 2018.

Happy Fitting and Sewing!
Glenda the Good Stitch

Feb 27, 2018

Joining Waist Elastic without Bulk

This is a very simply tip to eliminate unnecessary bulk when sewing pull on pants with elastic in the waistband. Just follow these easy steps.

1. Cut a piece of muslin or stable cotton/poly blend fabric the width of your elastic by 3 inches. ie: If using 2" (5cm) wide elastic, cut stabilizing fabric 2" X 3". (5 x 8 cm).

2. Measure and cut your elastic to go around your waist. But make sure that is is cut exactly the measurement you need and test it to ensure that it will pull up comfortably over your hips yet not be too loose at the waist.

3. Make sure the elastic is cut with evenly squared edges.

4. Butt the edges of the elastic together. With the stabilizing fabric underneath, pin the elastic to the fabric, keeping ends of elastic as close together as possible.
5. Zig zag or straight stitch fabric to elastic keeping the edges of the elastic butted together in the middle of the fabric rectangle. Sew in a square shape and then reinforce by sewing an "X" in the middle of the square.

6. Trim off excess muslin about 1/4" from stitching.
The results are sturdy, lay flat and reduce bulk.

Here is also a very short instructional video showing you this simple process.

Blogger isn't letting me give you the video directly on this page, so here's a link to the video - takes less than 5 minutes to watch. Enjoy!

I'm sure some of you already use this technique, but for some of you, this may be new. It's great - give it a try!

Happy Sewing!
Glenda the Good Stitch

Feb 20, 2018

Darts and Side Seams: - Perfecting the Dart

I may have talked about this topic before - perfecting the dart extension point and the effect on the side seam.  But even if I have, it's well worth talking about again.  And now there are photos to help explain the situation and what happens.

Depending on two factors, 1) the width of the dart (A, B, C etc), and 2) the angle of the dart - it's position on the side seam in relation to your apex position, both can affect the amount of dart extension that is required for it to properly sew in straight with the side seam cut edge.

If the dart extension isn't long enough, it means that when the dart is folded in the correct finished location, the seam allowance edges won't meet when stitching the side seams.

Here's what it looks like if it's not 'perfected'.  The above photo shows the 'inside' of the bodice pattern.  The photo below shows the 'right' side of the pattern.

Even though I demo and teach how to 'perfect' the dart during the Fit & Sew Retreats, I've seen ladies skip this step (easy to forget when there's so much happening in this workshop) and then pull on the edge of the dart until it does meet the side seam when sewing front to back bodice.  Then, when the bodice is on your body, it will create a pull (drag) line from that lower dart leg toward the side and center of the bodice.  (Sorry I don't have a photo of the drag line...I accidentally deleted it when clearing the images from the camera).

But the next photo shows you how the drag line has disappeared when the seam is opened up and the dart extension point is released.

If this happens to you, it's easy to confuse this drag line as a 'fit' issue and not the 'pattern' issue that it is.  When the dart is 'perfected' properly, the drag line goes away.

The Adjust-A-Bust template is a great tool for getting the correct width of dart, but it's impossible on this template to provide all the possible scenarios for the dart's extension point.  It's always best to perfect the dart when drawing your bodice blueprint.

Here's a short video tutorial on 'Perfecting the Dart'.  If the video doesn't display in your viewing device, please see this page - and look for video 'D.7.4  Tutorial: How to 'Perfect' (true) the dart'

You'll also find written directions for Perfecting the Dart on page 8 of the Dress Kit Instruction Book - 6th Edition.

Glenda...the Good Stitch!

Feb 13, 2018

Let Us Inspire You - Sew More with our Sewing and Design Challenge - Join Us!

2018 is the year of the Sewing and Design Challenge by Sure-Fit Designs!

We are SEW excited to announce the Sure-Fit Designs Sewing & Design Challenge 2018.  Our intention in offering this challenge is to inspire you to do more sewing and designing with your Sure-Fit Designs fitting and sewing kits.

Frequently, after you have sewn your test body blueprint, you think 'What now...Where do I go from here?'  This Sewing & Design Challenge will stimulate you to take the next step - sewing fashion garments with your SFD patterns.  Resources and ideas will be offered with a step by step planning platform.  No matter your skill level, we invite you to Join the Challenge!

How this Challenge Works...
The Sure-Fit Designs Sewing & Design Challenge 2018 is a year-long event to encourage designing and construction of garments using your Sure-Fit Designs (SFD) system of fitting, designing and sewing.  Your personal 'body blueprint' is your ticket to designing any style of clothing knowing that it will fit you.
Regardless of your sewing experience or experience with Sure-Fit Designs, we want to challenge you to set realistic sewing project goals now and work toward achieving those goals throughout 2018.

Get the Free Challenge Planner...

Use the Planner to:
  • set goals
  • plan your sewing projects
  • track your progress on each project throughout the year

WIN Prizes...

For those of you who join the Challenge, as an added incentive, Sure-Fit Designs will have random drawings for various prizes thoughout 2018.  To qualify for prizes, you will need to submit photos of your finished garments.  Winners will be announced via the SFD Newsletter, the SFD Blog, Facebook, Instagram &/or Pinterest.

Rules of Participation...
In order to be eligible for a monthly prize, you must follow a few simple rules.  Entries that do not meet these criteria will be disqualified from judging for prizes.
  1. Design and sew a garment using the SFD fitting and sewing system.  You can use any of the 5 SFD designing kits (i.e. Dress Kit, Shirt Kit, Pants Kit, Men's Pants Instructional Package, or the Children's Kit).
  2. Take a photo of the garment on the intended wearer (not on a mannequin, dress form or hanger, etc.).
  3. Post your finished garment photo to Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest.  Include the following information in the post description:  Hashtag #sfdchallenge2018; SFD design kit(s) used; Date the Photo was Posted; Optionally, you can include a description of important design details and/or your design process.
  4. If you prefer not to post your project photo to social media, you can email the photo along with the information above to:
  5. If you win a prize, you must agree to allow Sure-Fit Designs to use your project photo in promotional materials, including but not limited to the SFD web sites, social media, print materials etc.
  6. IMPORTANT: Post up to 2 photos per project only; if possible please create a single photo collage of the various views you want to show for your garment.
I sincerely hope that all of you reading this blog post participate in this fun and creative challenge.  I would also ask that you share this Design and Sewing Challenge with all your sewing friends and all the social media sewing groups that you belong to.

Get organized...have fun...and sew lots!

Sign up, read more details and get your Challenge Planner here

Glenda the Good Stitch