Make an easy and accurate template!

December 6th, 2014

I am frequently asked how I make templates for projects.¬† I’ve tried many methods over the years, but the one that works best for me and is absolutely the fastest, easiest and most accurate (in my opinion) is this:

1.  Always protect the original pattern/template piece.  Make a photocopy of your original template piece (make sure it is 100% the original size).

2. Use your favorite adhesive (i.e., I use regular school gluestick or fabric fix spray adhesive) and lightly but thoroughly coat the RIGHT side of the paper template.  Be sure not to over saturate or distort the paper.

3. Place a piece of Quilters Vinyl  or Collins Template Vinyl on top of the paper template (adhesive side to the vinyl).  The Quilters Vinyl should be slightly larger than the template piece(s). Make sure to smooth out any wrinkles.

Quilters Vinyl

Collins Template Vinyl Sheets

  • Collins Template Vinyl is available at SewThankful in a package of six¬† 8.5″ x 11″ Sheets.¬† I ****LOVE**** to use these sheets when I’m making templates that take up the majority of an 8.5″ x 11″ page.

4. Allow adhesive to dry a few moments.¬† Check to make sure you’ve got a good adhesion of paper to vinyl.¬† If needed, add a little more glue or spray around any loose edges and allow to dry.

5. Carefully cut out template piece on the lines using nice, clean, sharp scissors so you have smooth edges.¬† Oh…did I mention?¬† Quilters Vinyl and Collins Vinyl are SO EASY to cut.¬† It’s like buttah baby…uh huh!

VOILA!¬† You have a FABULOUS template ready for tracing.¬† It’s perfectly cut and labeled with all the markings because you are using the actual paper template :-).¬† Template making joy…YES!

My Blue Jean Christmas Tree Ornament 2013 from Sew TracyLee Designs

November 30th, 2014
December 2013 Ornament Sewing Pattern

December 2013 Ornament Sewing Pattern

This PDF file requires a RECENT version of Adobe Acrobat Reader, available for FREE at Adobe.com

I thought I had posted this pattern on our blog last year after I sent it out in our FREE eNews, but apparently not.  :-) Holiday haze, I guess.

These are very quick and cute and make excellent use of small denim pieces!¬† They look great on the tree (or decorating a package) and as always, because they are fabric they don’t BREAK.¬†¬† They look great embroidered, beaded and blinged out! Use your imagination to make truly customized ornaments. AND…if you’ve got colored denim scraps laying around…YES…that works beautifully too!

Here is the link to the PDF pattern/instructions.

Here is the link to the PDF pattern/pieces.

©Tracy L. Chapman & Sew Thankful Inc. December 2013. All rights reserved.

Permission to print and distribute this complimentary pattern at no charge to others, for personal or NON-PROFIT use, for guild and group projects is granted provided all copyright information and references to Sew Thankful are kept in tact one each and every pattern copy printed/distributed.

Permission is also granted to individual crafters making small quantities of finished items to sell at their own individual craft fairs, boutiques, etc.

For any other use, please contact tracy@sewthankful.com to obtain the appropriate permission and/or licensing.

Tracy L. Chapman, Sew TracyLee Designs & Sew Thankful Inc. shall have no liability with respect to loss or damage caused directly or indirectly by the information contained in this project. Each person using this project is responsible for their own risk and results will be determined by many factors including tools and materials used, and individual skill level. No guarantees or warranties are either expressed or implied.

SEW THANKFUL and the SEW THANKFUL logo are a federally registered Trademark/Service Mark of Sew Thankful Inc.

Back to designing…Sew Sharky!

November 3rd, 2014

Sew…this is the prototype for my new downloadable sewing pattern design (coming VERY SOON to SewThankful.com).

Sew Sharky! is a shark hot pad with a pocket mouth for your hand to wear him like a mitt.¬† He will look awesome sitting on your table, waiting for a hot pot of food to rest upon him…or, hanging on the wall of your kitchen.

Sew Sharky is a Sew TracyLee original design!

I’ve got just a couple minor tweaks to make (mostly in the instruction/editing process), but I like him quite a lot. What do you think?

A dear friend from Jr. High School was my inspiration.  She loves sharks.  LOL.  This one will be a great one for any shark/ocean lover in your life.

SewSharky1

Sew BikeChic‚ĄĘ — Sewing a Recycle/Upcycle Bike Tube Coin Purse

May 29th, 2014

Today I spent the day playing with rubber…rubber bicycle tubes that I recycle into usable items.

So I decided to try making a cute little zippered coin purse that is fully lined. I used my I-Zip Wallets sewing pattern as a guide for determining size and basic construction (note: sewing with rubber instructions are not provided in this pattern).

Here is what I came up with:

Recycled Bike Tube Zippered Coin Purse -- fully lined

Recycled Bike Tube Zippered Coin Purse — fully lined

Here’s a peek inside:

Inside the coin purse

Inside the coin purse…see, fully lined! :-)

 

Working with recycled rubber–especially recycled bicycle tubes–presents a number of challenges.¬† One must collect it, clean it (many bicycle tubes are filled with SLIME‚ĄĘ or other sealants), cut & prepare it (it curls, stretches and bulges in places due to the circular shape of the tube) and you need to know how to sew it.

Sewing rubber can be tricky in a number of ways.¬† For example, once the needle goes in, there WILL be a hole (that will be seen if you have to remove stitching).¬† Additionally, the rubber likes to “grip” and stick to many sewing machine beds as well as the presser foot.

I find it extremely worthwhile to make the effort in order to keep the tubes out of landfills.¬† It’s especially rewarding to turn toxic trash into an attractive, functional item that is super durable and FUN to carry. ¬† :-)

If you like the style of this coin purse and would like to make one for yourself out of fabric, you may be interested to learn more about the I-Zip Wallets sewing pattern by clicking here (note: sewing with rubber instructions are not provided in this pattern).

I-Zip Wallets — Sewing Pattern Download from Sew TracyLee Designs

May 11th, 2014
I-Zip Wallets sewing pattern

I-Zip Wallets

 

I’m sew excited about my newest pattern.¬† I spent a lot of time writing and testing and re-writing and testing. :-)

I hope you enjoy making these cute little zip wallets as much as I do.

The pattern includes lots of pictures and step-by-step instructions to make 3 sizes of I-Zip Wallets.

There are options for interior and exterior pockets (a pieced pocket option is provided) as well as an optional removable wrist strap.

Instructions to make the optional braided fabric zipper pull are also included.

 

 

 

Take a closer look at some of my models:

Clutch wallet size I-Zip

Clutch wallet size featuring pieced exterior pocket, removable wrist strap and braided fabric zipper pull.

 

Cell Phone Wallet size I-Zip featuring wrist strap and braided fabric zipper pull.

Coin Purse size I-Zip featuring single fabric exterior pocket and braided zipper pull.