So, I was gifted some fabulous fabric, enough for a fabulous fashion corset. Never made one, thus I am looking for suggestions for good patterns, excellent kits, books and other resources. I am a reasonably skilled intermediate sewist, with a good machine, near some excellent local shops. I fully intend to practice on less-loved fabric first. I'm not looking for period accuracy or significant waist reduction, but I am looking to make something more corsetlike than a lightly-boned princess bodice. More steampunk outerwear than Victoria Secret underwear. Most likely I'll pick an underbust as it's intended as an over-my-clothes fashion thing. [more inside]
A friend of mine gave me a couple of pairs of new "Gap 1969 Long & Lean" boot-cut jeans that she got altered before she decided they didn't really fit. She's an inch or two or more than two shorter than I am. I'm wondering if I could get them re-altered into a straight-leg (or maybe slightly tapered?) cut that I can roll up a little, but I don't know anything about sewing. [more inside]
There is a quote I'd like to cross-stitch for my aunt for Christmas. I have lots of experience with doing cross-stitch from patterns, but zero artistic ability when it comes to creating something from scratch that looks the way I want it to. Is there an easy way for me to generate a pattern? Like, something where I can choose a font and maybe some little accent details and put it together and it gives me a pattern? Mine is a Linux/Android household, but I could probably borrow something from a friend if there's a great Windows/Mac/iOS application. [more inside]
Best beginner-level small or handheld sewing machines under $75? [more inside]
I am tasked with stocking up a Maker Space gallery that will be part of a museum. I'm very much a crafter and maker myself, but am looking for the Makers of MetaFilter to tell me your favorite tools, especially ones for small hands (we will be catering to kids and families, as young as 3 years old). We will be doing simple woodworking projects (already looking at Japanese Pull Saws), sewing, circuitry, paper art, lots of tinkering (including activities with recycled materials and new materials). We are focusing on "real" tools (no plastic Fisher Price kids stuff, please), and I expect to buy a couple different versions of some items (hammers for smaller people, hammers for bigger jobs). The tools will get lots of use, so I'm happy to spend a bit more if it means I don't have to constantly replace broken items. I am especially looking for specific recommendations for specific tools, reviews, or resources ("these sewing scissors are amazing for the price" or "don't buy this brand of clamp" or "this site sells very good quality paper punches"). Thanks in advance!
I'm looking for book recommendations for thorough, engaging, and rigorous histories of Savile Row tailoring and/or books that talk about the history and philosophy of fine men's tailoring and dress. I'm not averse to books with technical information, as well as historical and cultural information. Thank you!
My kid wants to be a zombie weasel for Halloween. Help me make it awesome! [more inside]
For anyone with sewing experience, can you recommend sources for modern clothing patterns and fabrics? For style, think Anthropologie, but the less frippy pieces - simple, easy, drapey. For fabric, I'd like soft, high-quality cottons in a good range of colors. (I never see that kind of thing at fabric stores, so I'm guessing I'll have to order online.) [more inside]
I'd like to buy a used (or possibly new) reliable, easy to use mechanical (versus computerized) sewing machine available in Britain or the EU for very basic uses, mostly hemming, repairs, and making simple things like pillow covers, curtains, table clothes, etc., and I'd love some recommendations. I'll probably be looking mostly on eBay UK and Amazon UK. [more inside]
I am making a small felt sleeve for an antique pocket knife, to protect it from car-keys and loose change. Easy enough. I'd like to add a clip to it so it can discretely ride at the top of my front pants pocket or shirt pocket for quick access, like some eyeglasses cases have. Insanely difficult. Are such clips sold anywhere for crafters, or am I stuck cutting, bending and polishing my own from sheet metal? How do I even go about attaching such a thing to a felt sheath?
I'm new at sewing. As in, "I took classes and learned how to make a tote bag and a zipper box bag" new to sewing. I looked through the "learn to sew!" books at the bookstore, but the projects were all for things like coasters and baby clothes, which I'm not interested in. I want to make dresses, eventually. Can I make tiny clothing in order to practice making clothing in less time, and with less fabric? Is that a thing? [more inside]
I'm a novice to sewing and I'm also a novice to being an aunt. Suggestions for online fabric stores with durable/washable/adorable fabric? [more inside]
Please recommend a pattern for a simple shift dress. [more inside]
I Want It Now Filter - footstamp mix: I want to get this caftan and swan around in it all summer, I do not want to pay AUS 500 for it. Does anybody know where I can get a dupe for it, or some similar fabric?
Spurred by the events in Bangladesh, a growing dissatisfaction with clothing quality, as well as an oddly shaped body that doesn't conform well to rack sizing, I've decided to commit to making more of my own clothing. I know how to operate my sewing machine. I know how to read a pattern. I frankenstein and repurpose clothes on the regular. I need some advanced basics to take it to the next level. [more inside]
Sewists/sewers/seamstresses of askme, I need your help. I bought a beautiful 1930s lace wedding dress yesterday, but need to have the back altered because though the dress fits at the waist, the zipper won't close in the bust. Other non-sewer advice welcome in the style department. [more inside]
I am looking to upgrade from my very basic, ten-year-old Elna 2110 sewing machine to something that I'll still be enjoying twenty or more years from now. I know what basic features I want, but I don't know how to translate that into a sewing machine search. There are just SO MANY sewing machines available that I'm unsure how to narrow it down. How do I articulate what I'm looking for in sewing machine-buying terms? [more inside]
So I finally want to get a name / logo / site for my little side business(es). I do (German-English) translation, localisation and copywriting on the one hand, and I sew colourful accessories on the other. Unfortunately I can't even get past the "what do I call this thing?" hurdle. Can I even have just one name? [more inside]
Tell me everything you know about sewing patterning software, especially the kind for dummies... [more inside]
I saw this dress on Pinterest and fell in love. I don't want to buy it--I'm trying to get away from buying new clothes entirely. I have extremely basic sewing skills (curtains, sunglasses cases, skirts) and I'm tempted to try to make this dress on my own. [more inside]
My friends were interested in my recently acquired sewing machine and brought up the idea of a craft/sewing party. I have no idea how that would work. Help? [more inside]
What pro or semi-pro sewing machine would be best for a home sewer opening an Etsy store that sells denim, canvas, and Cordura (1000 denier) luggage and other bags? Ability to sew lighter fabrics as well would be a plus, as would overlock capability (a separate overlock machine would also work). This is for a class project and hypothetical, so price is no object.
I have an Elna Supermatic (Beige, Type 722010) that worked great last time I used it (two years ago...) and now runs incredibly sluggishly. Or doesn't run. I tried oiling it with 3 in 1 and waiting, but that didn't help. I'm not entirely sure it is worth fixing, though this is an early, all steel-parts, Swiss-made machine so it is theoretically a keeper. [more inside]
During the Missoni for Target craze a few years ago, I managed to score the most coveted item--a quilted fleece throw. I only got one. There are three inhabitants of our house fighting over it, including the cat, who is usually the one who gets to use it. Help me find or make something similar. [more inside]
I'm looking for fabrics and sewing notions in Berlin. Large selection of fabrics, especially home decor would be great. Google is not helping me.
I want to learn about the cultural significance of clothing, as well as how clothes are made, but I want my process to be fun. What do you think are the best popular Hollywood-style movies, in which the characters discuss what clothes mean to them? What about movies in which the characters are involved with the sewing or designing of clothing? Do garments play a major part in the plot of any movies? Any suggestions for movies that have helped you to think about clothes would be most appreciated.
I know nothing about costuming or sewing, and I don't have a lot of space to do it. Help me get set up and learning how to put together basic clothing/costumes in my apartment! [more inside]
New Sewing Machine Question! I got a new sewing machine for Christmas, a Janome Magnolia 7318, and I love it. My only snag so far is how to sew thick fabrics. I want to sew thick fleeces for stuff for my dogs and the layers are too thick to fit under the stock foot. Is there a different shank I can buy (not sure if that is the right word) that is higher? I tried to google it but no luck.
So I finished the apron! What should I sew next to really improve my fledgling skills? [more inside]
How can I find a seamstress to do some moderately difficult work, specifically re-covering foam cushions with provided fabric, and is this the best way to go about doing the job? [more inside]
How do I say "sewer" in Spanish? Not the pipe that waste water goes into, but a person who sews on a sewing machine? [more inside]
Sewing-filter: Top 5 tips for a beginner working on my first real project from a pattern? Bonus question: can I do this? Pep talks welcome. [more inside]
What's the most cost-efficient way to hem and dart my shirts? What kind of sewing machine fits my urge to adjust clothing? [more inside]
Where should I look for information on becoming a bespoke tailor (through books/self-education, training, and/or apprenticeship) in the United States? [more inside]
Have sewing machine. Have kids that need Halloween costumes. Have no knowledge of how to use said sewing machine. Help! [more inside]
How can I tell in advance if a knitted fabric will run when I cut it? [more inside]
I would like to buy a good book on how to sew. I don't mean a beginner's instructional book, since I can already sew quite well, but a comprehensive reference book that covers everything from the basics to advanced tailoring and couture techniques. I want a sewing book that is the equivalent of Vogue Knitting, which is revered among knitters as the knitter's Bible. I've come across Vogue Sewing, and Power Sewing by Sandra Betzina. Would you recommend either one of these as the best choice, or do you know of another book you think is better?
I'd like to upgrade from hand-stitching, and buy my first sewing machine. I'm only interested in sewing bags (mostly messenger bags), and I'll be using Cordura and natural canvas. What sewing machine will do the job? I don't want to fork out a lot for an industrial machine, because that's just too much of a commitment for something I only dabble in. And I don't have enough space for those antique Singer cabinets.
Is there a community web site for sewers that is comparable to what Ravelry is for knitters? This means, in case you're not familiar with Ravelry, that I can use it to document my sewing projects, look at other people's sewing projects, search for patterns (or pattern reviews), and share information with other sewers in the forums.
I just moved back to the Bay Area and am trying to get my DIY on again. Please recommend resources and spaces for ceramics, knitting, and sewing lessons/classes/circles in the East Bay or SF. [more inside]
Hand Embroidery Filter: How do you keep something taut enough (ie handkerchief, tablecloth) to embroider around the edge of it? [more inside]
Master Seamstresses and Tailors: I have the dress. I have the applique. Help me sew them to make them one! [more inside]
Alrighty. We were about to move into a new house, and found AFTER I'd moved several plastic tubs of sewing stuff (LOTS OF CLOTH) into the house that it was terribly infested with fleas. Do I just need to throw it out, or is there something I can do? [more inside]
I want to use bamboo fabric to sew a custom martial arts gi. Help me find fabric and plan this out. [more inside]
AskMe sewers! That's as in ("sewing," not as in sewage). I found a piece of fabric I'd like to make a simple tube-style dress out of, sewing in a back seam to join the fabric and then sewing in elastic above the bust. I have two kinds of elastic on hand. Should I use the flat 3/4 inch specifically "non-roll" kind, which seems kind of wide and bulky, or the flat 3/8" braided one? [more inside]
I just finished sewing a kimono-style bathrobe out of 100% woven cotton fabric. When it came out of the dryer, the belt, bottom hem, and front band were wrinkled enough that I had to iron them. Ironing a bathrobe is not what I signed up for! Short of taking the robe apart to put interfacing in to prevent wrinkles, is there anything I can do? In case it matters, I have a HE front-loading washer and the matching dryer; the robe was washed in warm water and dried on normal heat, then removed immediately. The fabric was washed once before being cut, and I was scrupulous about laying the pieces out on the grain.
What kind of sewing machine should I get my beloved for her birthday? [more inside]
Help me work out how to alter this dress pattern for a big bust. A friend walked me through doing one with a bust dart, but I want to avoid frustration with this and hopefully get it right myself. [more inside]
Mefi Sewers! I am a beginning sewer and just found a fabulous vintage patterned length of fabric (two yards x 58 inches) at a thrift shop for two bucks. I want to make a very simple a-line shift dress that is made from two cuts of fabric, front and back, that sew together on the sides of the body. A zipper in the back is ok. I cannot seem to find a pattern, vintage or otherwise, that fulfills these criteria. [more inside]
I used an overlocker (serger) for the first time yesterday, and I was impressed. I'd like to get one when I am in a position to have a proper sewing space (hopefully in the next year), but can I survive without one for dressmaking well enough? And what should I be looking for in a first machine? [more inside]