30 September 2014

Gritzner Durlach Sewing Machine

I've had this machine lying around at my house for a number of months now, but was a bit slow to do some research on it. It is a Gritzner, made in Durlach, Germany, which I'm sure in it's prime was a beautiful machine.

24 September 2014

Tutorial: Inserting Strap Retainers in a Dress

Whilst making bridesmaid dresses recently, one of the girls during her toile fitting voiced some concern about the sleeves, and whether they might fall off her shoulder, or have her bra strap showing. To ease her concern, I suggesting putting strap retainers in the dresses.

The sleeves on these dresses are more or less a pleated rectangle sewn into a strapless dress, giving the look of a short cap sleeve, or a very wide strap, whichever way you choose to look at it.

Never having actually had anyone take me up on the offer of using them before, I googled strap retainers to see if I could use the shared wisdom of the internet to help me with the best way to put them in. Alas, I came up empty, so had to use my own brain to devise the best method.

18 September 2014

Tutorial: Gathers

I recently came to the end of a couple of crazy months sewing dresses for other people. Sadly for my spring wardrobe (and winter for that matter), that meant there wasn't much time to do any sewing for myself! Amongst the eight outfits that I had on the go at once, were five identical bridesmaid dresses.

I don't know about you, but gathering is not my favourite sewing technique in the world. As I started writing this, I came across this tutorial on gathering with an overlocker, something I've never tried myself, so if you want to try that method, head on over and check it out. I'm planning on giving it a go in the not too distant future myself.

Here's how I did the gathers on all of my bridesmaid dresses. It's just your traditional sew two parallel lines and pull them up, but I thought I'd try something a little different when pinning the gathers down, and found that not only does I produce more even gathers, but it doesn't take as long.