Jun 25, 2013

Storing & Organizing SFD Supplies

It's been brought up in discussion groups more than once...how is the best way to organize, store and keep all of your SFD patterns, leaflets, instruction books and tools handy for easy reference?

I'd like to share with you how one lady is doing this.  Vicki (who has given her permission to post this info) developed her binder system of storage.

She recommends choosing a binder that is at least 2" wide. (Her's currently isn't, so that's why she knows the wider binder would be preferable).

Then, she has removed the spine from all of the kit instruction books, as well as all the designing books, hole-punched them and put them in their new home.

For all the templates and Designer's Companion, Vicki added clear plastic see-through sleeves that had a pocket for quick, easy storage of the items.

All the Fashion Leaflets, instruction books, templates and tools had a home, which made it so easy to see where everything was.

I would recommend adding divider tabs to allow for distinct separation for the Dress, Pants, Shirt, Children's and Men's Pants supplies.

For the large master patterns, she put a hole in the top and hung them on the wall so they could hang straight, but she says you could store them in the envelopes they come in, place them in the back of the binder with one of those big black binder clips to keep them in place.

(One thing I will add, is DO NOT try to press the creases out of the master patterns with an iron.  The heat from the iron will smear the ink as it is heat-sensitive. Simply smoothing the creases by hand is all you need to do then when working with the master patterns, just tape them down to your cutting table work surface.)

What a great idea, Vicki!  Thanks so much for sharing.

And for your finished drawn pattern, I either fold them, then label with the date the pattern was drawn, what my measurements were (particularly if you are loosing/gaining weight), pin a swatch of fabric to the vellum for easy identification, and put them in a plastic baggy.  This way they are easy to identify for future use.  The creases are easy to press out with a DRY, warm iron (no steam please).

Or, you can roll the patterns on an tube, like the empty tracing vellum tube.  I still label and identify each pattern, but now the vellum does not have any creases in it.

Jun 22, 2013

Jan's Jeans

Was Jan ever fast!  When I first announced the new Jeans DVD - barely 2 weeks ago, Jan (from the UK) ordered immediately.  Delivery to the UK must have been extraordinarily fast because just yesterday Jan sent me photos, not only of her test jeans, but also of her finished jeans.  She is one happy camper!

These tie dye jeans are the initial 'test'.

 Jan says that the tie dye jeans were meant to be a cheap test garment - only
£2 a metre (about $3) from the local market so the pockets aren't top stitched and she didn't do a yoke at the back - which is exactly what I suggest you do for the test.

 From the test pair, Jan sewed the striped jeans.  She says 'I did improve the fit on the striped pair and I am so pleased with them.  The pockets were made with a sheet I bought from a local charity shop, again with the intention of using it as a muslin test...but it works!!!'

Here's a close-up of both the back and front pocket detail.

Jan, you have done a wonderful job and so quickly.  You are an inspiration!

And on another note...when Jan first got her 3-Kit Combo, she was inspired by some of the ideas presented in the Sure-Fit Designs instruction books and came up with this lovely blouse.  She'd bought 10 lovely buttons for a basic shirt.  But as the ideas swirled in her mind, she ended up using most of the buttons on the cuffs of the bishop style sleeve and so had to rethink the front and had a go at the hidden placket (from Sew Sensational Shirts).  Jan says it worked extremely well and surprisingly easy considering she is a beginner.  Jan shared her age with me (which I won't post), but adds that you're never too old to start learning a new skill.  She is enjoying this whole process immensely and wishes she'd begun long ago.

It's hard to believe Jan considers herself a beginner.  She's done a great job of this hidden placket.

Thanks so much for sharing your accomplishments Jan! 

Jun 18, 2013

The Bobbsey Twins in Lace

I'm sure many of you know that Joy (from Joyful Expressions) loves using her Sure-Fit Designs patterns and that she's sewn a 'million' tops from the SFD Dress Kit Bodice pattern.

When Joy read my blog 'Sheer Experience Revisited', she commented how much she liked the sheer lace fabric I used.  For those of you who missed this blog, just click here - 'Sheer Experience Revisited'

And, if you don't want to go back and read it...I next to never wear lace or sheer fabrics. But my girl friend had sent me miles of this fabric after she'd finished making a couple of tank tops and I decided it would look great with the new black slinky outfit I was sewing.  Since I had lots left over, and Joy commented that she'd love some, I shared the remainder with her.  Here we are, the Bobsy twins (well...not quite), in our matching Comfy Cardigans from Beyond Bodice Basics.

Joy doesn't like her tops too long, so obviously she designed a much shorter version.

In addition to this photo, Joy loves making videos, so the following 3 videos recount her experiences of drawing up the pattern, dealing with the extremely bouncy, stretchy selvage (PS - I cut mine off too to get the fabric to lay flat - I'd also never seen anything quite like it!), and her final show and tell.   In the third video, she talks about sewing the back neck seam and some of the issues she had.  I think we were going about making that seam happen in two different approaches.  If you have a Beyond Bodice Basics designing book - this is on page 22 - step 7.  The process to do this type of enclosing seam works well, and Joy is right that you have to roll much of the body all up like a sausage, stuff it inside, sew the seam and then pull the stuffing out.  Maybe I should do a video on this step.  It's easier to see it done than it is to write the directions.

Lace Cardigan Video #1
Lace Cardigan Video #2
Lace Cardigan Video #3

Joy, I'm glad you're having so much fun and success using your Sure-Fit Designs patterns.  Thanks for being such an avid supporter!

PS - The Bobbsey twins were actually brother and sister. But oh well, I'm sure not many of you would know that unless I told you.  Aren't they cute?

Jun 11, 2013

Jeans: Behind the Scenes

For those of you who simply wouldn't be without jeans as a part of your wardrobe, you'll no doubt benefit from the latest DVD we've just released.  It's all about designing, fitting and sewing jeans from your Sure-Fit Designs Pants Kit.

The DVD is just under 2 hrs in length and filled with excellent close-ups of drawing your jeans pattern, sewing the test pair of jeans (and why you need to do this), designing all the pockets and yoke.  I just know it will be really easy for you to follow along.
This is such a large file size that it wasn't possible to offer this to you as a downloadable item.  I know it would just bog down your computer and time out before the entire file would download.  (So you do need to order a physical version of this - if you want one).

The DVD is accompanied by a complete Lesson Manual.  The manual, however, is downloadable.  Once you've completed your purchase, you'll receive the download link in a follow-up email.

And, for the next two weeks, we're offering a Pre-Order special where you can save 20%.  This offer expires on June 23, 2013.  To take advantage of this offer just click through to this page SFD Jeans.

The following is a short video of the highlights of the DVD contents - it's only a couple of minutes long.  You'll see some of the information and instruction I cover in this new designing DVD. 

I hope you enjoy sewing your jeans with your Pants Kit.  By the way, I should mention that even though the Pants Kit Instruction book has information on jeans, this new Jeans DVD goes way beyond the details offered in the book.

And just for a good visual comparison, I had my husband take a photo of my backside while wearing my R-T-W jeans and also in my SFD jeans.  I think you can see a considerable improvement.
Obviously these are the R-T-W jeans.

Yes...these are the SFD jeans!

Once again, here's the link for the Pre-Order special - SFD Jeans: Behind the Scenes

Jun 4, 2013

Furry Problem with the Dress Kit??

When drawing up a new bodice pattern from her Dress Kit, Virginia (from Australia) encountered an unexpected problem.  Her new cat 'Storm' simply loved the whole process!

She said, 'He loves your voice on the DVD, the crinkle of the tracing vellum and chasing pencils and rulers across my pattern!  I had to lock him out of the room!'

Virginia just sent this to me and when I first read the subject line, I wondered if some little critter had nested in the package during transit to Australia.  But how could that be possible??  (I've learned over the years that many things happen quite unexpectedly that you'd never dream possible, so my mind was racing).

She asked me if I'd ever com across this problem with our kits before??  And though I haven't, I'm sure many of you might have similar stories to tell.  Actually, as I think about it, I have had customers tell me that 'Snookle Puss' ate the patterns and chewed the Stylus!

If you have similar stories or photos to share please do.

I hope this brings a smile to your day!