Archive of ‘Sewing’ category

The Fabric Snob Fabrics Review / Haul

The Fabric Snob is a small business that stocks gorgeous printed knit fabric alongside other types of fabrics (flannels, windpro, quilting cotton.)  I’ve been meaning to post about this for some time now. I purchased a few yards of fabric from The Fabric Snob and wanted to share my experience with them since I haven’t found much on the net about them. If you’re wondering where to buy pretty fabric, this is the place to buy it! Disclaimer: post has affiliate links. I purchased the fabric with my own funds.

If you’re new to the fabric snob, use this link below for 15% off your purchase of fabric goodness:

Click for 15% Off Your First Purchase

My Fabric Mail Arrives

fabric mail yay

The Fabric Snob is based in Canada, and the fabric got here in good time. Shipping was very reasonable, she charges a flat $9.99 per order. Fabric orders can get heavy and expensive very quickly.

What I Got:

woolly mammoth fabric cotton knit french terry

The crown jewel, my woolly mammoth fabric!

My favorite would have to be the woolly mammoth fabric. I accidentally ordered this in french terry rather than cotton lycra but it ended up being a good mistake. French terry is softer and thicker than regular cotton lycra. It has a really nice stretch to it, pretty much as stretchy as regular cotton lycra. The back has a slightly looped texture; it’s slightly spongy but not anywhere near sweatshirt fleece territory. This was my first time encountering French terry in real life! I imagine this would be an excellent cotton knit fabric for babies. I think I’m going to make a pair of leggings to wear in the fall, because doesn’t everyone need woolly mammoth leggings?

raccoon knit fabric cotton lycra

Up next is the raccoon knit fabric, in a cotton lycra blend. The print is nice and crisp, especially considering the smaller print scale.

navy blue floral stripe knit fabric cotton lycra pink roses

And then this meter of floral stripe fabric (cotton lycra knit blend.) The pink roses and pastel flowers are set off well by the deep navy blue stripes in the background. I hope they’ll be stocking this pink watercolor rose stripe fabric again so I can buy another length to make a dress.

What happened after washing the fabrics? Very minimal fading, if any. I took tiny swatches to compare and the only one that looked any different was the dark navy blue and floral stripes (barely perceptible to me.)

I’m missing probably the most important part of the review: what happened to the fabric? What did I sew? Well… it’s currently in my fabric hoard because I can’t decide for sure on what to make with it. When I’m finally able to decide what to make I’ll add an update and a link to my post.

Lula-Who? Learn How to Sew Leggings and Fill Your Wardrobe!

After learning about the whole Lularoe holes in leggings fiasco, I wanted to dedicate a post on the art of legging-making. Do you want a drawer filled with leggings that fit you perfectly? Learn how to sew leggings and save a little money while enjoying your higher-quality leggings.

The anatomy of a pair of leggings:

  • Stretch knit fabric: Knit fabric is made of several fibers “knitted” together with loops. Because of the loops, the fabric is able to stretch. The fibers also contain stretchy material such as Lycra or Spandex, which lets them stretch out and bounce back to their original size.”What are Lularoe leggings made of?”, you may ask. They are made of a knit composed of polyester and spandex fibers. Their fabric is very soft because they use a process to “brush” it, sometimes it is referred to as “brushed poly or polyester.” Sometimes the brushing / softening process can weaken the fibers and cause the fabric to be prone to more holes.
  • Seams/Sewing: The seams are either sewn with a serger or a regular machine. If you use a regular machine, you need to use a narrow zig-zag. Straight seams break when stretched. The zig-zagged seams are able to stretch (like an accordion)  without breaking.
    When you sew knit fabric it’s best to use a ball-point sewing machine needle. Regular sewing machine needles are sharp and punch through the fabric and tear fibers. Ball point needles push the fibers out of the way without ripping or tearing. The little rips and tears a regular needle makes can cause the fabric to start to unravel and make the seam weak.

    Ball-Point Needles

Where to Find Legging Fabric or Fabric for Leggings

These are the types of fabric you want to be searching for: cotton spandex knit, cotton lycra knit, or a polyester spandex knit. Your fabric needs to have 4-way stretch. 4-way stretch means that the fabric can stretch from side to side and up and down.

Legging Sewing Patterns

The ultimate legging sewing pattern is also free! Patterns for Pirates released a free sewing pattern a few years ago: their “Peg Leg Leggings.” Their directions will teach you how to sew leggings that you will love.

To get the free leggings pattern, head over to their website, link: Patterns for Pirates.

When you’ve signed up for an account, visit the Facebook group: Facebook Group.

Once you’ve joined, you can find the code for the free leggings pattern in the comments on their pinned post: Pinned Post. You might have to scroll up and click on “view more comments” to find the code, it’s in the picture, Picture with Codes.

You can now download the peg legs leggings pattern for free from their website. There’s also a code for their free pencil skirt pattern, which looks similar to a Lularoe Cassie skirt but with way more options for different lengths.

Leggings Fabric

Wondering where to find fabric for leggings? I’ve rounded up a few good fabric sources below.

how to sew leggings

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The Spoonflower Pro Program

Spoonflower introduced something new recently called the Spoonflower Pro Program, where you can pay a yearly subscription fee and receive free shipping worldwide.

spoonflower pro program

I immediately pounced upon this opportunity for free shipping. The program currently costs $142, which averages out to about $12.42 per month. So to make it worthwhile your shipping costs per month need to be above $12.42.

Shipping (within the USA) is $3.00 – $4.00 if you order a single yard of fabric. If you’re ordering small amounts of fabric the program might not make sense. However, if you’re frequently ordering small amounts of fabric shipping will add up quickly. The savings start after you order your fifth (individual) yard in a month.

It’s nice to have free shipping all the time so you don’t need to worry about trying to group all your orders together to save on shipping. You’re able to order what you need immediately rather than waiting to make a bulk order to save on shipping. The guaranteed 1 week turnaround means quicker turnaround for your customers and also being able to keep the prices of your products down while the costs for your other materials always seems to be rising.

Sewing With Transparent Thread Without Going Insane

I’ve had a lot of quality time working with transparent thread so I thought I’d give a few tips on how to sew with transparent thread and troubleshooting issues you may come across.

What exactly is this strange invisible thread? Transparent thread is made out of clear nylon or polyester and is classified as a “monofilament” thread. That means that it is one thread, a very thin solid skinny piece of plastic. “Regular” thread is made out of a bunch of small twisted threads. Regular thread has a lot more stretch because of this. Clear thread has little to no stretch.

Things I’ve Figured Out:

  • Keep close track of your thread ends when beginning a seam. Rouge threads can cause a big tangled mess.
  • When using transparent thread on apparel the ends of your seam can poke and be uncomfortable. You can avoid this by pulling the bobbin thread up and making a tiny knot on the outside of the garment or hiding the knot in your seam allowance.
  • Winding the bobbin can be frustrating. Before you start winding hand-wind the end a few more times than you usually would to make sure it doesn’t come undone. When your nylon thread comes undone while bobbin winding it can make a big mess. Watch the bobbin carefully and make sure the thread is getting wound on the bobbin and not everywhere else.
  • Experiment with the tension on a scrap piece of fabric. Make sure there isn’t any bunching.
  • Don’t use clear thread on seams that will be stretching a lot (like an elastic waistband).

Where You Can Find Transparent Thread:

  • Walmart. Sometimes. Clear thread at Walmart tends to be the first to go out of stock.
  • Your local fabric or sewing store.
  • I’m a fan of YLI’s invisible thread:

sewing with transparent thread
YLI Corporation Wonder Invisible Thread Size .004 1,500 Yds: Clear