Colette
  • How to sew mitered corners

    When hemming two edges that meet, the multiple folds along each edge pile up on top of each other and create an excess of fabric at the corner. Mitered corners reduce the bulk, allow the edges to meet evenly, and look oh-so-satisfyingly neat and tidy. Here are two different methods for making mitered corners. Topstitched …

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  • Weekend Reading: Goodbye Worn, Wonder Woman, and the Bechdel test

    It’s been an exciting week. As you read this, we’re likely packing up the last of our studio in preparation for the big move on Monday! Even more exciting, we have a new team member this week! Meg has joined us as our new inventory and office manager, so the next time you buy a …

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  • How to sew a baby hem

    A baby hem is essentially a very small rolled hem done on the machine without a rolled hem foot. It’s a pretty and delicate hemming option that is perfect for lightweight and sheer fabrics. (A baby hem isn’t really suitable for thicker fabrics, as they would be too bulky to create the small folds.) How-to …

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  • How to sew a faced or shaped hem

    Using a facing for a hem is a fun way to customize an edge. Add scallops, zigzags, or whatever else you can dream up! Before we can sew, we’ll need to draft a pattern piece for our facing. On your skirt piece (or whichever piece has your hem), draw the finished hem edge at the …

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  • Weekend reading: girl groups, a new sewing book, and saying…

    This post almost didn’t happen today. After coming back from our trip to Panama, I’ve been catching up on work all week and putting long hours into the free hemming ebook (which is clocking in at over 100 pages, be sure to sign up so I can send it to you because it is looking …

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  • How to sew a machine rolled hem

    Today, we’re going to tackle one of the trickier hems you might want to sew – the machine-rolled hem. I struggled with this hem for a long time. I consider it to be a little on the advanced side, because it requires careful handling of the garment while you sew. If you’re new to the …

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  • How to hem Jeans, with Bernina

    Have you ever tried to hem a pair of jeans? If you have, you probably realize that there are a few special considerations, both because of the fabric (denim is thick!) and the look (decorative topstitching). For your next pair of jeans, I’d like to point you to this wonderful tutorial from the folks at …

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  • 4 ways to sew a turned hem

    There’s no doubt that the easiest way to sew a hem is to do a simple turned hem on your sewing machine. With no handstitching required, this hem is fast, easy, and efficient. Because the stitching from a turned hem shows on the outside of your garment, turned hems tend to have a very casual …

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  • Giveaway! The Sewtionary

    I have a sizable collection of sewing books, most of them 50+ years old. Most of them just sit on the shelf and are only pulled out when I want to grab a little inspiration. The books I turn to again and again are the reference books, the ones you can pull out whenever you’re …

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  • 5 ways to hand stitch a hem

    While machine sewing a hem is fast and easy, hand sewing can give you a nearly invisible finish. Below are five different options for hand stitching your hems. Before we begin, let’s go over a few basic techniques that will be the same for all hand stitching. Anchoring and tying off Work with an arm …

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  • 6 ways to finish the edge of your hem

    Finishing the raw edge of your hem not only makes it look cleaner and more professional, it also adds durability and helps give your hem a longer life. Here are six different methods you can use to make your hems strong and tidy. Serged Serge along the raw edge of the hem, aligning the cut …

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  • Giveaway! Sew Ready: Garment Basics with Brett Bara on Craftsy

    I don’t know about you, but I’m a hands-on learner. When I first learned to sew, I did it by actually making things I wanted to wear, however basic. Of course, trial and error isn’t necessarily the most efficient learning method. If I were starting again, I’d still take the hands-on approach, but I’d look …

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  • Everything you need to know about stabilizing hems

    Let’s investigate the mysterious world of hem stabilizers today. Hem stabilizers are one of those things many of us might have heard of, but are never quite sure when to use. Like other forms of stabilizers (namely interfacing), there are a wide variety of choices for different applications. Unlike interfacing, it’s not likely that your …

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  • How to get a level hem

    Have you ever put together a garment – whether it’s a dress, a skirt, pants, or a blouse – only to notice afterwards that the hem seems to be drooping in certain areas? It’s not necessarily the fault of the pattern. There are a few reasons you might experience this, but it’s an easy one …

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  • It’s Sept-hem-ber! All month, we’re talking hems.

    When I first learned to sew, I didn’t give hems much thought. I’d learned to do a simple turned hem on my first dress, and didn’t really look back. Hems are a piece of cake, I thought. That is, until I tried to sew my first circle skirt. The deep curve of the hem – …

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  • Weekend Reading: Pretty makes, pruning, and sewing with leather

    This week has been a little insane, and there isn’t much sign of it letting up soon. We’re planning for our studio move, working on the next pattern, designing another big project for the end of the year (which I cannot wait to share), styling and planning multiple photo shoots, completely revamping our shipping procedures, …

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  • What are your favorite films for inspiration?

    I recently rewatched one of my absolute favorite films in terms of costuming, 3 Coins in the Fountain. This movie is pretty dopey, but it is entirely worth it just to see what the characters are wearing. And I am just so drawn to that technicolor 1950s palette of muted colors. I don’t know about …

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  • 3 ways to find willpower when you shop

    One afternoon a few months ago, I felt like I was having a mini meltdown at the fabric store. This happened to me with alarming frequency. The store I shop at most often is gigantic. It’s stuffed with so many lovely silks, linens, knits, and wools that it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the …

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  • Weekend Reading: Tropes, sports bras, and shine theory

    I have this ritual. Every morning, either at home or first thing at the office, I write 1000 words. There are many benefites to having a creative ritual like this, but one of the primary ones for me is that every day, I feel like I created something. Even if I spend the rest of …

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  • Download a free pattern hack: The mod-ified Laurel

    I made this Laurel last month, inspired by some super-cute mod scooter dresses from the 1960s. I liked it so much, I made a free download of complete instructions so you can get more from your pattern too. I’m a big believer in the LBD (little black dress), but in the summer there’s a variation …

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