- Pulled threads
- Gathering with a zig zag
- Gathering with a dual purpose gathering foot
- Gathering with differential feed on a serger
It's Sew Easy Episode 812
This was a period of time featuring everything from peasant style prairie dresses to swirling prints and tie dyed Tanks and T-shirts! Ruffles adorned tops and dresses and Ponchos topped off t-shirts and bell-bottom jeans. Perhaps it's time to re-interpret or re-create some of these fashion looks with an updated spin on some popular sixties styles. But first, you may need some guidance for sewing nice neat gathers and for hemming edges on a practical poncho. This week Londa Rohlfing shares her sewing expertise for stitching professional looking ruffles. Next, Coleen Swettman sews a hippie-inspired poncho that goes everywhere today. In episode 812 you'll learn tips you can use for a variety of future projects.
Call it what you want . . . gathers, ruffles, shirring, tiny tucks, or puckered pleats. They all accomplish the same result, a larger strip of fabric is stuffed into the space of a smaller secondary piece. There are many different methods. You may very well have your own tried and true tips and techniques for sewing gathers. I like to experiment with different methods and then use the one that produces the best result with the least of amount of stitch removal, also known as ripping with a seam ripper :-). It’s always a good idea to make samples when testing different techniques. Compare the different looks, and then select the one that works best with your chosen fabric and feels comfortable for your personal sewing level of expertise. Londa demonstrates several different ways to gather in this episode, including the following:
I do love using accessory feet so I think the gathering foot is a great tool for exceptionally even gathers on lighter weight fabrics. This dual-purpose foot is also designed to gather and attach all in one step. However, this secondary technique takes a bit more practice. For more information on the Brother version of the gathering foot CLICK HERE. You'll find an easy pajama bag project with additional information on using this specialty foot for gathering.
Just one more tip from my sewing room to yours . . . Before sewing my gathered strip to the un-gathered edge I like to set the gathers by pinning them to the ironing board and steaming in the fullness. Just make sure to let the steam iron hover over the gathers so they are set but not flattened.
Now on to the Poncho segment. In this episode you’ll learn how to make your own patternless adult size poncho with flannel, along with a child size from a fleece baby blanket.
This would be a fun project to make for a Mother-Daughter or Grandmother- Granddaughter look. You could consider making this from Polar type fleece and then dress up the child’s version with appliqué or trim. Watch this segment and see how to use the Serpentine stitch for hemming the edges on this rectangular piece, and you'll also get an idea for an alternative neckline. Don't forget to join the It’s Sew Easy website so you can login and download the Free instructions.
You’ll hear Coleen say that "Ponchos are on the go again!" Yes, they certainly are, but for many the word poncho conjures up an image of a stiff blanket with tangled fringe and unflattering stripes! These days I prefer to put ponchos in the category of fashionable wrap garments. Consider making one from a novelty sweater knit fabric. Or, how about a quality 100 weight fleece from Mill Direct Textiles? Yet another option would be a knit such as Sophia Knit. A washable wool blend would be ideal as well. Change up the look by adding an opening down the entire center front. This makes the garment more cape-like. In my opinion this dresses up the look of this garment style.
Here are a couple pattern variations I currently have in my letsgosew project basket. I promise you’ll see my finished versions this fall as I’m in the process of using embroidery designs from Wrapped in Embroidery to accent a few new wraps for my fall wardrobe. These will also serve as “how to” and “what if” samples that expand on the projects from the book. You'll find several styles that could be considered a "cousin" of the poncho style in the book. All of these book projects are cut by measurements so no commercial pattern is necessary. Stayed tuned for future ideas and more ways to customize your own wrapped wardrobe additions.
Ready to watch the show? CLICK HERE and Enjoy!
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