Sunday, September 24, 2017
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Bias Dress Sewing Tips

Vogue 9168




For this lightweight fabric a narrow hem is best. First, run a line of stitching along hem at 1/2” from raw edge and press up hem just beyond stitching.



Next, stitch along folded hem, right beside first row of stitching. Using appliqué scissors, trim close to second row of stitching.



 The final step is to roll up the hem one more time along trimmed edge, and stitch. This edge can be flipped up as you're sewing along on the machine. An edge stitching foot helps with this type of hem. This hem is used on the inside edge of the front neck facing, skirt hem and sleeve hem.




Bias Skirt Side Seams

Thread trace side seam allowances at 1”. Do this after cutting out pattern pieces while they are still lying on the table. Baste 1” seam allowances to test fit.


To sew French seams, first pin side seams wrong sides together, matching thread tracing. We have used 1" seam allowances on the side seams, making the bias easier to handle. Using a different colour of basting thread, baste along thread tracing, basting in 7” to 8” sections at a time leaving long thread tails. This allows the seam to stretch. Stitch at 5/8” from raw edge, stretching seam from in front and behind while machine sewing. This will build stretch into the




 Remove basting that is holding the two layers together, but making sure to leave thread tracing intact. Trim raw edge to 1/4” from stitching. Press seam open over seam roll. Now fold seam back on itself, so the skirts are right sides together and press along seam. Once again, match thread tracing and baste, basting 7” to 8” sections at a time. Remove thread tracing, but keep basting in. Stitch along this basting line, stretching seam again. Remove basting and press flat. Press seam toward back.



A stiff non-fusible interfacing works best for this belt. Use spray glue (505), to hold interfacing to wrong side of one belt piece. Pin both sides of belt together, right sides together. Stitch leaving a 2” opening, trim to 1/8” away from stitching. Clip corners on an angle. Press seams open. Turn to right side and press. Edge stitch around belt.



 Make belt carrier and pin in place, leaving some room so belt can fit through carrier. Hand stitch belt carrier ends together. Tack carrier to belt just in from the edges to hold it in place.



 Make eyelets in belt. To make these eyelets, the Bernina eyelet attachment was used. Alternatively, metal eyelets can be used. Wrap belt around belt buckle.



 Hand stitch layers together close to belt buckle. This step can be tricky, just try to get in as close as possible and keep the stitches neat. Slipstitch both layers of belt together along edges where the belt was flipped back around belt buckle.




Slip Side Seams

Thread trace seam allowances on slip front and back, 1” on side seams. Baste side seams, right sides together, matching thread basting. Baste in 7” to 8” sections at a time, leaving long thread tails. Remove thread tracing, keeping basting in. Stitch along basting, stretching from in front and behind while stitching on sewing machine. Pink raw edges. Press seam open.




General Sewing Tips

When in doubt, baste it. We go through an amazing amount of cotton basting thread at the studio. Basting a seam, a pleat, or a hem before sewing it on a machine makes it much easier to control. When sewing along basting, sew a hair to the inside of basting to avoid stitching over basting thread, it will then be easy to remove afterwards. When basting bias seams, baste in 7” to 8” sections, leaving long thread tails (see technique in photo of slip above). This allows the seam to stretch while being sewn. Stretching the seam builds stretch into the stitches, that way the seams will hang smoothly when worn.

Kathryn Brenne Original V9074 Bag Pattern

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Exciting BIG news!  My very first pattern for Vogue was released October 1.  V9074 is a set of two bag patterns.  View A is a large tote, suitable for a weekend bag, made from crocodile embosed leather.  View B is a smaller tote made from 3mm polyester felt.  Both patterns are designed to be made from non ravelling fabric.  Leather, suede, vinyl and felt are all suitable materials.  Until October 31 is having a sale on all leathers.  The crocodile embossed lambskin is beautiful!  I helped Linda choose the skins for her website.  Both bags are lined and include a back and cell phone pocket.  The exterior zippered pocket is perfect for car keys.  Sueded pigskin makes a luxurious leather lining.  Alternatively a lightweight outerwear taffeta lining is tightly woven and can be used as a bag lining.  I like to use a light, bright color for my linings.  Looking for anything in a black lined bag is difficult.

I love making bags and enjoy the problem solving aspect of sewing.  The nice things about bags is they are a quick, easy project that doesn't have to fit!  As a designer I often turn to uncoventional supplies to get the results I want.  For the handles of these bags I used plumber's tubing purchased from Home Depot.  To smooth the leather handle cover I used a plastic kitchen cutting mat.  An inexpensive flexible plastic kitchen cutting mat can be purchased at the Dollar Store.  It is easy to cut with scissors and can be used as a bag bottom to give a bag structure and support.

Watch for several more garment and accessory patterns to be released under my label in 2015.

A Year of Shawls

 You see many of my garments on the pages of magazines.  In my spare time I love to knit.  Each year I attend Vogue Knitting Live in NYC where I take workshops to try and improve my knitting.  A few years ago I met a woman at VKLive who knit shawls.  At the time I thought, 'How boring' but after a year of making nothing but shawls I can see the attraction!  It has been a very busy year for me and the nice thing about making shawls, is once the pattern is established you just keep on going.  There is no seaming when you are finished.

So, here are the shawls I made in 2013.  I did make one hat from leftover yarn to match one of the shawls.

Items shown from left to right are:

Winged Shawl designed by Vivian Hoxbro, knit from Harrisville 100% wool yarn.  I calculated this project had over 130,000 stitches on size 3mm needles!  The technique for this project was shadow knitting.

Guernsey Wrap designed by Jared Flood, knit from Soft Donegal 100% wool yarn.  I took a workshop on how to knit faster and chose this project to practice the tecnhique as each row had both knit and purl stitches in the patterning.

Second Row of photos:

Fiona Lace Shawl designed by Fiona Ellis for Sweaterkits.  This is knit from 100% silk hand painted yarn.  The two halves of the shawl are knit separately and then grafted together.

Rainbow Tam designed by Vivian Hoxbro, knit from leftover yarn from the Winged Shawl.

Dolce Lace Shawl designed by Candace Eisner Strick, knit from Zauberball sock yarn.

Third Row of photos:

Lace Shawl designed by Candace Eisner Strick published in Vogue Knitting Fall 2011, knit from Candace's own lace weight yarn held two strands together.

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