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So Tweet Fabrics - The Blog!

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Tips for Sewing with Minky

Best Tips for Sewing With Minky

 I have made too many baby blankets with minky to count and have wanted on more than one occasion to rip all of my hair out, scream every bad word I know, and throw my sewing machine as far I could see.  I have sworn again and again to never sew with minky, but after a little research and lots of trial and error I have made friends with it and it has even become one of my favorite fabrics.  Who doesn't love the soft cuddliness of dimple dot minky or the plush luxury of rose swirl minky.  I have compiled this list of tips and tricks to help you have a great minky sewing experience.

1.      Pre-wash any other fabric that will be sewn with the minky, since minky is polyester and does not shrink.
2.      Dritz Washaway Wonder Tape or other washable basting spray helps prevent the minky from stretching, sliding, and puckering.  It is my best friend and has kept me from throwing my sewing machine through the window on more then one occasion.
3.      A walking foot is a must!  It helps evenly feed all the layers.  Mine is nearly permanently on my machine and I often forget when I have accidentally switched out feet what a huge difference it makes.
4.      Use a long stitch length (mine is usually at 4). 
5.      Use a good quality needle; size 90/14 Schmetz works well for me.
6.      When sewing minky with another layer of fabric, put the minky on the bottom to allow the feed dogs of the machine to help guide the fabric and prevent extra stretching.
7.      Remember that minky has a nap (direction of the fabric pile) and to position it the way you would like it lay.  
8.      I prefer to cut my non-stretch (like cotton) material to the correct size and leave a little extra minky around the edge or seam allowance and cut off the excess after I sew the seam.  I follow edge of my non-stretch material for my seam guide to allow for any fussiness the minky might have.
9.      DO NOT Iron or microwave minky - it will cause it to melt.
10.      If you are not using any basting tape or spray, then pin every 1”.  Even pinning every 1 to 2 inches can cause the minky to become very fussy and difficult to work with.
11.      I like to use a half-inch seam with minky since it is very heavy (especially when wet) and tends to pull on narrower seams, sometimes even causing the seams of the other fabric to be pulled out.

12. Minky fabrics wash and dry very well but some textured minky will lose its textured look by being dried.
Rose Swirl Minky
13.  If working with a long pile minky, like Rose Swirl Minky, you can always shave down the area in the seam allowance to make it easier to sew.
14,  Minky stretches horizontally across the grain, but has much less stretch vertically with the grain.  I often use this to my advantage and sew my seam with the grain first.

Good Luck with all your Minky endeavors!

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Friday, January 25, 2013


So Tweet Fabrics


Its FREE FABRIC FRIDAY again over at So Tweet Fabrics on facebook.  To enter leave a comment on the blog.  For more entries "LIKE" us on facebook and comment on the giveaway post.  Earn extra entries by sharing the post with your friends!  Thanks for joining us and GOOD LUCK!

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Sweetcakes Valentines Day T-Shirts

I made these adorable T-Shirts for my 2 little girls with this years cutest Valentines Day fabric called Sweetcakes from Riley Blake Designs.  This cute line of fabric has colorful hearts, cakes, flowers, and stripes.  These T-Shirts were super easy to make and used just 1 charm pack of fabric.  I made two different styles, and have included the heart template for both of these here.

You will need:
1 Charm Pack
1 T-Shirt
Steam-a-Seam or other fusible for applique
Rotary Cutter
Cutting Mat

For the first one I created a patchwork pattern by using 6 5" squares that I cut into 2 1/2" squares with my rotary cutter. 

I then patch-worked together my squares so the finished square is 8" x 8" and uses 16 2 1/2" squares.  Either iron or finger press down all the seam.  Then clip all the seam allowance as close to the stitching as you can so the seams will interfere less with the Steam-a-Seam.

Heart template layered on top of  Steam-a -seam over patchwork square.
Cut a piece of Steam-a-Seam the approximate size of your patchwork piece.  Following the directions peel one side of the fusible and place onto the back of the patchwork square  I made sure to pre-launder the white T-Shirts to help my steam-a-seam stick better. Using my large heart template, I scotch taped it to the front of the waxy side of my steam-a-seam. 

  Then cut it out and Ta Da, you have a patchwork heart.  Then simply iron on to your t-shirt.

To stitch the applique I like to use copy paper on the underneath side of the t-shirt as a stabilizer.  Its easy to get and inexpensive.  I set my machine to wide zigzag stitch with a short stitch length and just follow the outline of the heart.  I am absolutely not an expert when it comes to applique, in fact it usually seems to cause me the most grief of all my sewing endeavors, but I love how cute all the projects come out (don't look too closely, you might notice some mistakes, lol)

For the smaller hearts, I used my smaller heart template 
  and 3 charm squares.

Ava took a perfect picture.

McKenna is not quite sure about modeling yet.


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Friday, January 11, 2013

The first FREE FABRIC FRIDAY is here!!!

This weeks giveaway is 1 yard of Riley Blake Designs Small Rainbow Chevron.  To enter leave a comment below.  

For extra entries head over to the facebook link below and "LIKE" this weeks FREE FABRIC FRIDAY giveaway post!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Check out Girls World by Jennifer Paganelli

 New Fab Sewing Book For Little Girls Clothes: 

Girls World by Jennifer Paganelli

I just brought home my copy of Jennifer Paganelli's Girl's World: Twenty-One Sewing Projects to Make for Little Girls.  If you don't know about Jennifer Paganelli, you should!  She is the amazing designer for Sis Boom Fabrics  which is known for its beautiful vibrant colors.  

This book is packed full of fun and frilly projects to make for girls in size 2 -12.  As in browsed through this beautifully presented book I found myself ogling over almost every pattern.   My must make immediately items include the STUNNING Josie Dress (Above) and the adorable ruffle apron (right).  Other great projects I know I will have to make are the  Georgia Tulle Ballet skirt, a flower filled tutu and the Agnes Tunic Dress.  Actually I'm pretty sure that I won't be happy until I have sewn every pattern in this book, so stay tuned as I share the awesomeness that this wonderful book has tucked inside!

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