Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Maxi Skirt PDF Sewing Pattern with Pockets and Center Front Slit NEW RELEASE


Orleans Avenue Maxi Skirt PDF Sewing Pattern for Women with Pockets and Center Front Slit
NEW RELEASE!



The NEW, MUST-HAVE Maxi Skirt is here and you will definitely want more than one for your closet! I took the basic maxi skirt and added some oomph to it with large pockets and a center slit! You can find it HERE in the pattern shop.
*Keep reading to see customer photos and fabric inspiration!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

DIY Shibori How to Dye Fabric Tutorial

*This post may contain affiliate links. 


DIY Shibori How to Dye Fabric with 
Indigo Tie Dye Kit



A few weeks ago I started seeing shibori tie dyed fabric all over pinterest and was blown away by the bright, blue indigo color and knew I had to learn more about it. I was lucky enough to take a class from Andrea Eastin of Fair Fit where she showed me how to use powder based dyes on fabric, using these shibori folding techniques. Then I used what she taught me to dye with indigo! 

Indigo is one of the oldest dyes used to dye fabric and of course blue jeans. Indigo dye comes from a plant and the blue dye is made from the leaves of the plant. Dyeing with indigo is different than dyeing with other dyes because in its natural form it is insoluble with water - so it must go through a process to be reduced which turns it into a liquid form and actually removes oxygen from it! Shibori is a technique of creating designs in dyed fabric by using various form of folding and securing the fabric. Where there is resistance to the fabric, the dye will not seep through, leaving the original fabric color. Where the dye is absorbed turns the color of the dye you are using.

Let's get started! It is so much fun!!

What you need: 

100% cotton fabric 
**Recommended fabrics are: Kona Cotton here or this Boundless solid cotton
clothes pins or chip clips
rubber bands 
twine
gloves
stirring stick (old paint stirrer)
2 wooden square boards
2" diameter PVC pipe if you want to pole wrap (shown below)
2.5 gallon bucket or bin
drop cloth
clothes line for hanging

**The Indigo Tie Dye Kit comes with rubber bands, gloves, 2 wooden boards, soda ash and reduction agent

DIY Shibori Tutorial -Fabric Dye with Indigo

1. Gather materials

2. I cut my yard of 100% cotton fabric (or other natural fiber fabric such as linen or silk) into 4 fat quarters by cutting up the middle and then cutting that in half. 
You get 4 pieces that are 18 inches x 22 inches.


3. It is very important for you to fold your fabric accordion style. Lay your fabric out, fold bottom up.


4. Flip fabric over and fold up the previous section again.
 5. Flip fabric over again to repeat this process until you have one single strip.

6. Now we are going to make a square shape. Once again, fold up the bottom, flip over and fold up that piece and repeat until you have one square. 

 7. You want your square about the same size as the wooden boards in your Shibori Die Dye Kit.
 8. Use rubber bands, clothespins or clips to bind your fabric together tightly. Where you have the rubber bands and clips will resist the dye, leaving the fabric white.
 9. For your next piece of fabric fold it accordion style again. 
 10. Secure your piece of fabric using rubber bands equally distributed along the fabric strip. I also added some clips. The rubber bands will stripe your fabric beautifully!
 11. For the next fat quarter you will accordion style fold it and then fold it into a triangular shape.

 12. Flip it over and continue to accordion style fold the triangle.

 13. Secure with rubber bands.
 14. If you want to try shibori pole wrapping, use a 2" diameter PVC pipe. Roll your fabric around the pipe and secure the bottom 4 or 5 inches with twine tightly.


15. Push the fabric towards the bottom of the pole, squishing the twine closer to the ones below it. 

16. Continue wrapping and pushing your fabric down along the pole. 


17. For the last fat quarter of fabric I used a gathering method using my sewing machine. I baste stitched equal columns then pulled on the bottom, bobbin strings to equally gather the fabric.

18. I had an extra fat quarter and made another triangle, but used fewer rubber bands to see the difference.

19. Fill up your bucket with 4 gallons warm water.

20. Empty the indigo dye into the bucket and stir.


 21. Empty the soda ash and then reduction agent packets into the water while stirring.

22. Cover the vat with a lid and let it sit for 30 minutes. When you remove the lid it will look like this below. The layer that floats on top of the water is called "flower" or "bloom". If you push the bloom to the side, underneath the water will look clear yellow or yellowish green. It will not be blue. Now it is time to dye your fabric!

23. Thoroughly wet your pieces. Squeeze out air and water.


24. Push the flower or bloom to the side (or scoop it out into another container while you dye your fabric) and submerge one piece into the bucket. You can leave it in for one to several minutes, but do not let it fall to the bottom of the bucket. When you are ready to take it out, squeeze out the dye slowly and remove it. Place it into an empty bucket or on a plastic cloth to drip. **The fabric will look yellowish green when it comes out. As oxygen in the air comes into contact with your fabric, it will begin to turn blue. Leave it alone for 20 minutes while it oxidizes. 




25. If you want a darker blue, redye your fabric by placing it back into the bucket for one to several minutes, squeeze out and let oxidize for 20 minutes. 

26. If your fabric is dark enough, rinse out the dye until water runs clear. 


27. Unwrap and untie the pieces of fabric to reveal your indigo tie dye!

Place the bloom back onto the top of the indigo dye bucket of water, stir the bucket in a circular motion, then reverse the stir, making sure the bloom is centered.
Place the lid on top so air does not get into the bucket.
Let it sit for 60 minutes before using it again.
The vat will keep for several days and several dyes. I kept mine for 4 days and dyed plenty of fabric!

Here are some things I made:


*above left is triangular shape
*above right is fabric set on a square



*above left is pole wrapping technique
*above right is triangular shape


 *above right is the long strip with rubber bands evenly spaced throughout.
*above is when I baste stitched and gathered the fabric 



Are you going to give it a try? Doesn't it remind you of tie dyeing t-shirts when you were little? 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

How to Turn a Dress into a Skirt / DIY Dress to New Skirt

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 How to Turn a Dress into a Skirt + Crop Top
Yesterday I was cleaning out my closet and came across a knit dress that I loved wearing the past 2 years, but had not worn in a while and was going to donate it or give it to a friend. But as the bag grew fuller, I realized there was so much fabric in there that I could play with first! So I took that dress and made it into a skirt and a crop top...

Monday, January 9, 2017

Sewing Project Weekly Planner Free Printable

Free Sewing Project Weekly Planner - Free Printable

This week I asked our facebook sewing group members how many sewing patterns they owned and which was their favorite. Some ladies had a few patterns while others had 20 to 40 of our patterns which made me so happy! I love knowing that people are using our patterns to create and that they love them enough to come back for more when we have new releases! 
But, a few of them said they have many patterns that they had not sewn yet and it sounded like they needed some help staying focused and organizing their projects this year so I thought I could share with you all what I have done to try to become more efficient on a daily basis!
 When you write out your goals and your daily to-do's on paper, not just typed into our phone calendar, we are more likely to do them! I have kept a daily notebook filled with things to do for the past few years and I love checking things off when I'm done! For my business/work calendar I have been drawing out this calendar for the past few months on my white board in the sewing room and it has become something I cannot live without as a planning tool! 
I thought you all could use it, too, and hopefully we can all get more done each day this year!
Enjoy!