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Saturday, June 29, 2013

Come Sew With Me. BHD Paper Bag Tutorial and Pattern.

So as promised, here is Baby Hobbes Design tutorial for a size 2/3 Paper Bag Skirt, part of the Come Sew With Me project

Copyright@2013 by Merav Ruthman/Baby Hobbes Design. All rights reserved. No part of this ebook/pattern tutorial can be reproduced in any other form or by any electronic or mechanical means without permission from the author. This pattern may be used by to produce items for resale provided credit in the description is given to Baby Hobbes Design.

Let's sew together

So, here is what you need to SEW A PAPER BAG SKIRT:
  • IRON
Unless otherwise noted, seam allowance is 5/8 of an inch

Not hard, right? Oh, and your sewing machine.

Ok, so let's begin.

Step 1: Load up your machine
First, pick your fabrics. I chose to make a festive skirt for Chicago Pride Weekend coming up. Don't forget to choose coordinating threads.
Next, use your bobbin winder, and attach bobbin when complete.  Thread your needle and head over to your fabrics.

Step 2: Prepare Fabrics
I made a skirt for Hobbes who is in between a size 2/3 on the bottom. 

If you are going to follow along with a size 2/3 skirt, cut:
Cut 1 SW (Salvage Width) by 16 inches Length
***SW, from edge to edge of the fabric, usually marked by manufacture and name of pattern.44-46 inches across
Fold  in half with right side of fabric folded in. Cut in half so that you are left with two rectangles of 22 (or 23) inches wide x 16 inches long

If you are making a smaller or larger size, decide how long you want the complete FINISHED skirt to be from Belly Bottom to above knee. 
Take that number and add 4 inches. 

Here is how I found my measurements for a size 2/3 skirt:
I knew I wanted 12 inches from Belly Button to above knee. 
I added 3 inches for the paper bag waist, 1 inch hem.
That's a total of 16 inches.

I cut 16" inches of fabric in the length by the entire width from Salvage to Salvage (The Salvage is where you find all the info about the fabric-usually runs 44 inches across. I don't need so much fullness as she is a size 2/3, but if you are making a larger size, consider adding 3-4 inches extra per size. 
A size 5 skirt width would be 12 inch more than Hobbes skirt. So it would be 56 inches wide. Since most apparel fabrics SW runs no more than 44-46, you'll just need a bigger piece of fabric so you can cut two panels of width of 28 inches long. So find your skirt length size x 28 inches wide CUT TWO TIMES for size 5.

Makes sense?

So now you should have two rectangles. Make sure they are facing each other, with the right sides of the fabric together and iron:

Pin together and you are ready to sew.

Step 3: Assemble and pin the fabric together.
With your right sides together, pin along both of the length side of the skirt. Pin leaving 3/4 of an inch space between tip of pin and edge of fabric.

with the fabric aligned at 5/8 seam allowance (Space between machine needle and edge of fabric) sew/seam a straight line starting at the top all the way to the bottom. DON'T forget to back stitch the beginning and ends of the seam so your stitches don't come apart.

Step 6: Finish your edges.
If you like to have a more professional look, you may move over to our overlock machine and serge your edges. Otherwise, skip step 6 and just cut off the extra seam allowance from your fabric edge using fray scissors or pinky sheers.

Step 7: hemming the bottom of your skirt
With the skirt inside out, and using a ruler, measure 1/2 inch from bottom of skirt. Fold 1/2 inch and iron. repeat again by measuring 1/2 inch from the folded bottom and folding/ironing. This is give you a once inch folded hem.
* If you serged your hem, you may only need to fold once for a larger 1 inch hem.

Step 8: pinning your hem
Using fabric pins, pin your hem to stay in place after ironing it in place. I chose to place the pins in this direction for easier removal upon sewing.
****Remove pin prior to stitch.

Step 9: Measuring the top Hem
As you did in step 7, fold top hem 3 inches (using a ruler) and iron to stay in place.

Step 10: Mark your stitch

using your pins, mark the two stitch lines. These stitched lines will create a case for your elastic. I chose a 1/2 an inch elastic band, 18 inches long for the waist.

The first pin closes to the raw edge should be place no more than 1/4 to 1/2 inch above the raw edge. If you are using 1/2 inch elastic, the next row of stitches should be placed no less than  5/8- 3/4 of an inch from 1st stitch line. Mark with Pins line so:

Step 11: Sewing top hem
VERY IMPORTANT that you leave a 1 inch space (UNSTITCHED) on the 1st line of stitches so you can feed elastic through. After elastic is pulled through, you will stitch it closed. Also, when making cloths for Hobbes I keep this 1 inch unstitched so I can have easy access to changing the elastic size. In this skirt, however, you will be cutting the elastic to 18 inch and using all of it without remnants.

Stitch the 1st line like so:

Leave 1 inch unstitched.
Sew the second the second line:
See above picture, space created for elastic between the two parallel rows of stitches.

Step 12:
Iron Skirt

Step 13: Elastic.
Find the space left without a seam.

Using a safety pin, feed elastic through casting. Remember to hand on the other edge of the elastic - so you don't accidentally feed it through and have to start again.

Step 14: Sew elastic at edge
With the two sides facing each other, sew the edges of the elastic 1/2 of an inch for the edge.

Step 15: Sew the 1 inch opening

Step 16: ALL DONE!!! Congrats, you now made your first skirt.

Monday, June 24, 2013

So, you think you can sew???

I think you CAN!!!

I always wanted to learn, and my mother tells me I have it in my genes. My Great-grandmother sewed (hmmm, skipped a few generations) and my mother recall how she would travel to Paris and bring back beautiful fabrics and make my mom's childhood cloths.
My mother sewed out of necessity. Growing up in Israel in the 80's, fabric was cheap and cloths weren't. She didn't sew much (dislike?, mom?) but the few things she did make for me I cherished a lot.  I still to this day have a piece of fabric from my favorite shirt/pant outfit my mom made my sister and I when we were kids.
I wonder if I argued with her about patterns and colors as my little 3 year old argues with me. "Yes, I like pink, but not on a white background, not stripes, no flowers", and so on and so on. I gave up and just started taking her to the Fabric store with me and I let her choose. So far this month we made outfits that where Rapunzel and Aurora colors and bought fabrics with Cinderella, Strawberry shortcake and Ariel. Hmm, you see where this is going.
I actually don't mind, I love knowing that she'll wear it and I have freedom of pattern. Since Hobbes only likes to wear dresses, I have been making the SIG nature Delaney Open Back Dress pattern that forces her to wear shorts underneath. Success!

Anyway, back to sewing.So three years ago, just as Hobbes popped out I decided it was time to start sewing for her. And I started of without any patterns, just the idea that 2 rectangular cut of fabric, elastic and patience will somehow result in a skirt. AND IT DID.

So lets get together here next week and sew a Paper Bag Skirt together. Patters and tutorial coming up!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Making your first skirt

So I am very excited to post on my blog; I found my calling (well, at least for now) to sew. Sew for you, your kids, your friends, just sew. I get excited at fabric stores. I find insperation with every turn of an aisle and I can't wait to sew all the time. However, I find that I am sometimes alone with this hobby/job??? and I want you to join me and sew with me. Wouldn't hurt my pocket though if you get lazy and just buy from me.
So with that said, I am on mission to TEACH YOU HOW TO SEW.

In the next few days I will be adding step by step posts on how to make a 30 Minute Skirt (or less if you don't serge your seams). My made up Baby Hobbes Design Paper Bag Skirt for your little darling.

I LOVE this skirt; and partly because Hobbes likes this skirt (also made a pant/short version of this). My little 3 year old HATES anything tight Buddha belly and her cute little outie. She is always pulling skirts down and looks lopsided and too long in the front. I came up with this design because I wanted equal coverage but with out the 'pain'. In the BHD Paper Bag Skirt, you will find the waistband about an 1.5-2 inches lower than the top of the skirt. Say goodbye to lopsided-ness!

And stay tuned!!!