Terrific Tool Thursday: Twist & Select

Today’s Terrific Tool is something that I never even knew I desperately needed. I got a box of cool notions from Dritz and this thing called the Twist & Select was in there. Basically, it looks like a lipstick tube and you twist down the magnet bottom and fill it up with needles.

IMG_3403

Then when you need needles, you twist up and they all pop out like this. You can easily see all the needles and choose the one you want. Then twist them back down and put the cap on.

FullSizeRender

It’s pretty swank!

xo LC

Terrific Tool Thursday: Pins

  

Often Tuesdays and Thursdays sneak up on me and I’m brainstorming for a tip or tool. So, I’ll send out texts to quilty peeps to see if they have any ideas. Tonight I texted my friend Amy and she suggested PINS. I know that you’re probably thinking, “Really?? Pins. Does that really qualify as a TERRIFIC tool?!” Well, if you’ve ever taken a class from me, you know I’m big on using the RIGHT pins.(Amy has been exposed to my thoughts on the subject.) There are no bad pins but there are pins that aren’t good for what you’re doing. No matter what, you want a cute pinnie:)

 

For Quilting: You want a sharp, super fine pin. It should slide into the fabric like butter. Seriously, no effort. You want glass head so the iron cannot melt them. My favorites are these long ones from Clover and these red ones! These are the pins I use the most. If you’ve never tried them, do it! You’ll never look back.

For Bags/Interfaced Fabric: I tend to use Clover Wonderclips more, but if you’re going with pins, opt for a thicker shaft. This will prevent bent pins. Iron safe is a bonus here as well. I like these cute button head pins from Dritz. The flower head pins also go in this category. I know they say “quilting”, but if you try the super fine quilting pins, you’ll notice the difference. 

For Appliqué: I love these from Clover. They’re short and strong. And perfect for appliqué. I also use them to pin ribbons in my stash:)

For Other Pinning Needs: I use these dressmaker pins from Dritz to pin my stash to comic book boards. (Google it, there are a million tutorials.) They’re great for that, but not great for quilting/bag making/appliqué. They’re also great for…dressmaking!

You have to find what works for you! If you’re pins are blunt, toss them. It’s not worth damaging fabric to keep a crappy pin. Happy pinning!

xo LC

Charger Bag TUTORIAL

It’s time for another quick tutorial! Whenever I travel, I feel like I have chargers out the wazoo. Here’s a SUPER quick tutorial to make a little bag to hold all those cords. Today is also Make & Take night at Village Fabric Shop from 5-7. Amy will have everything you need to make this bag for $6. You’ll get to pick your fabrics!

chargerbag

Finished Size: 7 1/2 x 8 1/2″

1. Supplies: You need two fat eighths and 44″ of ribbon that is 1/4-1/2″ wide. I constructed the bag with 40 wt Aurifil. I chose these two fabrics from the Ex Libris line from Alison Glass for Andover Fabric.

IMG_2778.JPG

2. Cutting: Cut the exterior fabric to measure 8 1/2 x 16″ Cut the lining to be 8 1/2 x 20″. The grey floral I chose for the exterior is directional, but I decided I liked how it looked sideways. If you are concerned about directional fabric, you need the 16″ to be the vertical measurement of your bag.

IMG_2781.JPG

3. Forming the Bag: Place the pieces right sides together and stitch a 1/4″ seam along both 8 1/2″ ends. Note: The lining piece will not lay flat as it is 4″ longer.

IMG_2780.JPG

Lay the piece on your pressing board with the seams lining up as shown. The lining fabric will be right sides together and the exterior fabric will also be right sides together. Pin the seams in place.

IMG_2795.JPG

Measure 2″ from the seam towards the lining and place a pin on both edges.

IMG_2796.JPG

It should look like this.

IMG_2797.JPG

Sew a 1/2″ seam from the second pin (not at the seam) down the open edge of the lining. Backstitch at the beginning. Repeat for the other edge.

IMG_2798.JPG

Stitch a 1/2″ seam along the edge of the exterior fabric starting at the seam. Backstitch at the beginning.

IMG_2800.JPG

Turn the piece right side out through one of the 2″ openings.

IMG_2802.JPG

4. Finishing the Bag: Lay the bag out as shown and press the exterior side as well as the 2″ openings. Don’t press the remaining lining.

IMG_2803.JPG

Stuff the lining into the exterior. Pin the sides so that the end of the openings align as shown. The seam allowance should be neatly tucked inside and laying flat. Take care that the lining is folded straight along the top. Press.

IMG_2806.JPG

Topstitch along the edge of the exterior all the way around the top of the bag right near the seam. I used my #10 foot and moved my needle three spots to the left.

IMG_2808.JPG

Pull the threads to the lining and knot.

IMG_2830

5. Adding the Ribbon: Cut the ribbon into two pieces that are approximately 22″. Attach a safety pin to end of one ribbon and feed it through both channels creating a U so that the ends are back together. Make sure there are no twists in your ribbon.

IMG_2813.JPG

Thread the second piece through both channels so that the ends meet on the other side of your bag. Make sure the ribbons do not cross one another. It should look like this.

IMG_2817.JPG

Knot the ends and add Fray Check to prevent raveling.

IMG_2819.JPG

You’ve got a charger bag!

IMG_2824.JPG

This could easily be sized to fit whatever you need!

xo LC

Terrific Tool Thursday: Fray Check

IMG_1845.JPG

It’s time for another terrific tool! Fray Check (from Dritz) is a must for every sewing room. It’s a product that you put on ribbons, fabrics and threads to prevent fraying. It dries clear so there’s no ugly spot (although I do test it on unique ribbons before I go to town). This image was taken right after application so you could see how much I used.

IMG_2819.JPG

Here’s a picture of the same ribbon. On the right is the dry fray check and on the left is the piece that I didn’t fray check. I opened and closed the drawstring bag five times and this is how much it frayed. I’ll be trimming it and applying fray check later:)

IMG_2833.JPG

You can also use it for making perfect buttonholes!

xo LC

 

Scissor Case TUTORIAL

It’s time for another fast and fun tutorial! If you’re local, head over to Village Fabric Shop for Make & Take day from 1-7 today (July 9). Amy will let you choose your fabric and she has all the supplies on hand.

ScissorCase

1. Supplies: You need two 10″ squares* of fabric, one for the outside and one for the lining. You’ll also need a 10″ square of batting”, a pinking blade for your rotary cutter and a 5″ piece of double fold elastic.

* Measure your scissors and add 4″ for different size scissors. My scissors measure 6″ in length so I used 10″ squares.

IMG_2126.JPG

2. Cutting the Pieces: Press the squares so they sort of stick together with right sides facing out and the batting in the middle.

IMG_2127.JPG

Cut through the middle diagonally with the pinking rotary blade. You’ll have an extra triangle to make a second case if you like.

IMG_2128.JPG

Fold over in half and pin along the long edge with outside fabric to the outside.

IMG_2129.JPG

3. Marking & Elastic: Using a removable marking pen, mark a line 1 1/2″ from the point on the pinked edge and 3/8″ down from the other point on the long edge. If your scissors are extremely narrow or wide, you can adjust the 1 1/2″ measurement. 1 1/2″ worked well for most of my scissors.

IMG_2131.JPG

Fold the elastic in half and add it between the pieces of the point. Place the elastic about 1/8-1/4″ from the line you marked. If you’re using decorative elastic, place right sides together.

IMG_2132.JPG

Pin in place.

IMG_2133.JPG

4. Stitching: I used 40wt Aurifil with a walking foot and a Jeans needle.

IMG_2134.JPG

Leave a long tail and stitch along the marked line.

IMG_2135.JPG

Knot off the long tails on the two ends and trim.

IMG_2136.JPG

5. Trimming & Finishing; Pull the elastic out of the way and pin parallel to the stitching.

IMG_2137.JPG

Trim 1/4″ from the marked edge with the pinking rotary.

IMG_2138.JPG

Open up.

IMG_2139.JPG

Finger press open the seam and press so the seam is running up the middle of the back.

IMG_2140.JPG

Press.

IMG_2141.JPG

Place in your scissors!

IMG_2142.JPG

Pull over the elastic and freely toss your scissors in a bag without fear of damage!

IMG_2143.JPG

xo LC