Personalized Sewn Memories

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I recently had one of my former students contact me about making her some pillows. I usually do not sew for people but this was a special case. Her husband was a partner in my brother’s firm and had passed away about one month after Gerald. She has gathered about 25 shirts from her husbands closet and wanted them sewn into pillows to give as a memory to her grand children and her husband’s mother.  It was an unusual request but I was surprised that Pinterest had a whole section on memory pillows made from shirts.

I looked up many ideas but decided on a few pictures for inspiration. I am going to pipe the pillow edges and use the machine to write her husbands name and birthday in the strips of a rail fence quilt square design. Another great idea is a pillow wrap as pictured here.

If you would like to try a pillow I give a one on one class on how to make the pillow with piping. The piping foot is available for most machines. If you would like to sew the patchwork, I also sell the 1/4″ foot.

Below find some very creative ideas.

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Learn to Fit class

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If you have ever sewn your own clothes you know that fitting is the main issue most sewers have to over come when making a brand new dress or jacket or pair of pants.  I have had many requests to teach pattern making and for the sewer to make their own patterns they need to understand fit.

In 2 -3 hour classes Jenny’s Sewing Studio will teach you to fit patterns. Get that perfect custom fit. You will use McCall 6901 basic fitted pattern. In class fit and sew a gingham basic fit dress to use as a base for future sewing pattern fit and design. You should be able to fit most dresses and shirts with skills learned in class.

In the first lesson bring McCall’s M2718 pattern and your 1/4″ check gingham in a pastel color. I will measure you and help you make all pattern adjustments. Cutting and marking the fabric will be done as time allows. Make sure you wear something form fitting to class so measurements can be taken over the leggings or leotard.

In the 2nd lesson we will sew and fit the pattern to create the perfect fit. A new pattern will be created as a reference for future sewing. This is an intermediate class and not designed for the beginner sewer.

Perfect Pant fit will also be available. Since these are one on one classes you can choose the best time to take the class.  In 2 -3 hour classes Jenny’s Sewing Studio will teach you to fit a pant pattern. Get that perfect custom fit. You will use McCall 6901 basic fitted pattern.

In the first lesson bring McCall’s 6901 pattern and enough muslin and some sewing thread to create a fitting shell. I will measure you and help you make all pattern adjustments. Cutting and marking and sewing the muslin will be done as time allows. Make sure you wear something form fitting to class so measurements can be taken over the leggings or leotard.

You will need to cut out your new pants so we can construct a perfect fitting pair of pants in lesson 2. This is an intermediate class and not designed for the beginner sewer.

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Learn to use your Sewing Machine to it’s fullest

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Have you  recently upgraded or purchased a new sewing machine for the first time? Even if you are an experienced sewer you should take the time to learn what features come with your new machine. Jenny’s Sewing Studio offers a 2 hour class on machine instruction and since these classes are one on one, they can be scheduled most afternoons during the week and weekend.

Most new machines will do zig-zag, blind hem, mending stitches, buttonholes, and some decorative stitches. I personally like electronic machines since stitch selection is automatic. I also recommend a machine that has a front drop in bobbin since it is much easier to operate.

Accessories and sewing machine feet make your sewing machine have additional strengths. Take a look at some pieces Jenny’s Sewing Studio offers. You may consider them for your machine.

The walking foot helps keep layers even and feed together as you see. Consider the walking foot for top stitching and quilting. I always use the walking foot to sew bindings in place.

Seams sew easy is a rather new sewing foot that gives you a gauge for the seam allowance. Place the gauge at 5/8″ for regular sewing or 3/8″ for a top stitch. This foot helps you sew straight and look more professional.

The pearls and piping foot is a real helpful guide. I really like using 1/4″ prepacked piping to make a pillow or finish a lapel. Piping makes the edge turn so much better. Make the piping match or make it contrast. The piping foot keeps you on track when you place the piping in the groove.

A lot of sewers like inserting an invisible zipper. The invisible zipper foot is now a snap on foot. Just press the zipper coil to flatten the curve and use the grooved foot to install the zipper. It is fast and easy.

 

 

 

 

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Enroll Now and Learn to Sew Better in 2017

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If you are planning to learn to sew in 2017, Jenny’s Sewing Studio can help you out. I offer local sewing, quilting, serging and home decor lessons for most sewer needs. Sewing lessons do not have to be shipped and also make a great gift. Learn to use a sewing machine, serger or embroidery machine today!  Classes are “One on One” so you get personal attention.   Click here to see the class choices!

 

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Another Quick Trip Quilt is born at Jenny’s

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shirleyShirley had always thought quilting was too hard for her to do. I would ask her to try a class in quick trip and she would put me off by saying she was not interested. Finally she said yes and she did wonderfully. I am posting a picture of Shirley modeling her quilt for a granddaughter who is yet to be born. Shirley plans to make a stuffed bunny doll to go with the quilt. The quilting and binding are her home work, but I think Shirley is up to the task now.

Sign up now for a sewing or quilting class in the new year. Here is the links to all the classes offered.

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Buying a sewing machine

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7258quilterNeed a new sewing machine? I will try to help you decide which machine is best for you as you look at the 100’s of product available today. Here are some questions to ask yourself.

How much am I going to use the machine and what I am going to require the machine to do?

What is my budget? Buy the most sewing machine you can afford, if you plan to continue sewing in the future.

What is your skill level? If you are reading this article you are on a computer. You have electric. I believe you should always look at electronic machines because the ease of operation. Electronic machines preset the stitch length and width to make the optimum stitch. When you turn on the machine it is ready to sew the stitch you need. You do not need the instruction manual to do the most basic sewing once you learn to thread your machine.

Features you will need to look at include:

Smooth and variable speed control, an electronic controller is best

Built in threader

Variable stitch length and stitch width.

One step buttonholer, many machine will measure the size of a button and sew a buttonhole to match.

A variety of utility and decorative stitches. Include blind hem, mending, and over edge stitches.

Front drop in bobbin.

Easy threading.

Extra high pressure foot lifter

Easy to adjust top tension

multiple needle positions

I like the automatic needle up and needle down button.

I like an extended bed. This extension table maybe an optional accessory.

Do not get hung up on price. You can buy a very nice sewing machine for $269.99 or you can spend $999 on more features. Buy the machine for you needs. Buy a sewing machine that will last you at least 10 years.

DSCN2067If you can, buy from a local dealer who will offer instruction and service for your future needs.

I have been selling and instructing on sewing and sewing machines for my whole life and can tell you the better the tools, the better your sewing will be.

 Jenny

Jenny’s Sewing Studio

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Nadgie continues to sew at Jenny’s Sewing Studio

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nadgieMy student Nadgie just completed another dress in continue sewing. This 8th grader is trying hard to become a fashion Diva, even when I ask her sew with cotton broadcloth to learn the sewing techniques. Fit was the first lesson as this was a fitted dress with darts at the waist. We covered the princess line with stay stitching and clipping, Nadgie put in a back lapped zipper, she set in lined capped  sleeves, used a single faced bias tape facing, plus she used fusible interfacing, and completed a neckline facing. The finial touch was to under stitch the facing and top stitch.  I hope Nadgie will continue to create fashion. Practice makes perfect.

If you are interested in making your sewing better contact me at jenny@jennys-sewing-studio.com

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