Sneak Peek – 5 Crafts From Sewing For Beginners

Maxi Dress

Maxi dresses are perfect for spring and summer and they are so easy to make you will want to make yourself a whole new wardrobe full of them.

Materials

  • Two pieces of fabric approximately 45 inches wide or larger and 60 inches long or whatever length is ankle length on you
  • 1” wide elastic piece 1-2 yards long. Just make sure that it’s long enough to comfortably go around your chest (Non-roll elastic is a great choice but it doesn’t have to be non-roll)
  • Large safety pin

Directions

  1. Iron the pieces of fabric flat. Place them with right sides in facing each other. Pin along two sides.
  2. Sew a ½ to 1-inch seam along the two sides.
  3. Along the bottom two edges pin and sew a ½ inch hem. Use a zigzag stitch if you are using a knit fabric.
  4. Along the top two edges pin and sew a 1 inch casing for the elastic.
  5. Pin the pin in one end of the elastic and use the pin to thread the elastic through both casing at the top of the dress. Sew the ends of the elastic together with a zigzag stitch.
  6. Press all your seams and clip all your threads.
  7. Turn the dress right side out and try it on. The elastic at the top will keep the dress up comfortably. Add two ribbon straps if you want to.

Tab Top Curtains

Making your own curtains is a great way to add some texture and personality to a room. They are great for renters who can’t make permanent changes to a room by painting it. You can add a pop of color easily with beautiful curtains. You can use any fabric to make curtains. Sheer fabrics and cotton fabrics are ideal for curtains but you can use any fabric that you like to make these tab top curtains.

Materials

  • Cut the fabric to the size of your window if you want to create a custom look, otherwise you can use a standard curtain size of 47 inches wide by 73 inches long (Cut 2 pieces of fabric)
  • To make the tabs you can use fabric or wide ribbon. Tabs should be about an inch wide (They should be placed every two inches, so for a standard curtain size you would need 13 tabs per curtain or 26 total. If you are using fabric cut the fabric 1 ½ inches wide to give yourself room to make a seam. You can make long tabs if you prefer but the standard size is 2 inches long. So for standard size curtains, you need to cut 23 tabs that are 2 inches long)

Directions

  1. Press your fabric.
  2. Pin and sew a 1-inch hem at the top and the bottom of your curtains.
  3. If you are using fabric tabs place the tabs right side up and pin and sew a ½ inch seam around the entire tab to prevent fraying. Iron them flat.
  4. Along the top edge of the curtain place a tab so that one edge is on the front of the curtain and one edge is on the back of the curtain, making a loop. Pin. Repeat every 2 inches across on both curtains.
  5. Sew each tab into place. This can also be done by hand.
  6. Press your tabs and the curtains are ready to hang.

Tote Bag

Simple tote bags are easy to make and can be very useful. You can use them for hauling groceries, books, and other items or you can make them as gift bags for birthdays and holidays. You can use any fabrics to make tote bags but they work best if the other fabric is a sturdy fabric like canvas or cotton duck. Quilting cotton also makes a nice bag.

Materials

  • ¾ of a yard of fabric for the exterior of the bag. Cut two pieces of fabric that 15” x 17” and then two pieces that are 4 ½ “wide by26” long (Those will be the handles)
  • ½ of a yard of lining fabric for the interior of the bag (Cut two pieces that are 15” x 17”)

Directions

To make the straps:

  1. Press the fabric.
  2. Fold the strap piece in half, with right sides together
  3. Stitch a ¾ inch seam around 3 edges leaving one edge open.
  4. Press the seams open.
  5. The handles will be wrong side out when you finish, turn it right side out.
  6. Repeat on the other handle piece.
  7. Topstitch on the long sides of the handles.

To make the bag:

  1. Place the lining squares together, right sides facing in.
  2. Pin and sew around 3 edges of the fabric.
  3. Press the seams.
  4. Place the outer fabric squares on top of one another with the right sides facing in. Pin and sew around 3 edges.
  5. Press the seams.
  6. Turn the outer squares so that the right sides are facing out.
  7. Place the lining pouch with the right sides still facing in into the outer bag that now has the right sides facing out.
  8. Pin the ends of the handles to the inside of the bag in between the lining the outer fabric where you want the handles to be.
  9. Top stitch around the top to sew the lining to the bag and the handles to the bag.

Pillowcase Dress

Pillowcase dresses are adorable for young children and can be made for adults too. Pillowcase dresses are fantastic summer dresses and nightgowns. You don’t have to use an actual pillowcase, although you can.

Materials

  • Fabric that you love, or a pillowcase that you love (You need two pieces that are roughly 22” wide by 45 “long or the right width and length for whoever will be wearing it)
  • Two long pieces of ribbon
  • A large safety pin

Directions

  1. Iron the fabric.
  2. Place the two pieces of fabric together with the right sides facing in. Pin.
  3. Sew a 1” seam along each side, stopping about 3 inches from the top.
  4. With the right sides still facing in pin and sew a 1” casing along the top of each piece of material.
  5. Turn the dress right sides out and press.
  6. Put the safety pin in one end of the ribbon and use it to thread the ribbon through the casing on both pieces so that the ribbon forms a circle that is holding the two tops together. Tie the ribbon in a bow or knot and you’re done.

Ear Warmer

When the temperature starts to drop an ear warmer that is worn headband style is a lot more practical for most people than a hat. Kids especially tend to have an easier time keeping an ear warmer on instead of a hat. You can make your fleece ear warmers in any color or pattern that you like and you can make them for your whole family too. They are super stocking stuffers and also great gifts for holiday parties.

Materials

  • 2 strips of thick fleece fabric that are 4”x 23”, or however long you need them to be to fit your head (You want them to have to stretch, just a little to fit right that is what will keep them on your head. If you are making them for a child, measure that child’s head to get the size correct)
  • Sewing with fleece can be tricky because it’s very thick and it’s stretchy (Make sure that you use the walking foot on your sewing machine and a heavy-duty needle. Also sew with a zigzag stitch unless you are doing topstitching to finish the head warmer. Seams should be done in a zigzag stitch so that the seam will stretch with the fabric)

Directions

  1. Lay the two pieces of fabric on top of one another with the right sides together facing in. Pin around the edges.
  2. Using a zigzag stitch sew a ¼ inch seam around 3 of the edges.
  3. Use the open end to turn the ear warmer right side out. Press the seams as flat as you can. Use a zigzag stitch to stitch the end shut.
  4. Go back over the ear warmer and topstitch ½ inch from the outer edge of the ear warmer.
  5. Place the two short ends together and zigzag stitch them together. Backstitch over the seam. Finish off.

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Sewing 2

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