Sportswear: Embellishing a T-Shirt with Coverstitch

Sportswear: Embellishing a T-Shirt with Coverstitch

One of my favorite items to make is a simple t-shirt.  It’s fast and easy when sewn with a serger. Then I use the Brother Coverstitch machine for hemming.  But what about embellishing the tee with coverstitching!  If you have used the Coverstitch before you will notice the back side of the coverstitch has a sporty look, similar to what we see in sportswear.  For this tutorial, I am going to show you how to utilize the 3-thread Coverstitch to create this fashionable look!  Let’s get started:

Materials:

  • Angela Wolf Ruched-T Pattern  (Click 👉🏻 here to order and use coupon code BROTHER20 for a 20% discount)
  • Stretch Fleece Fabric
  • 4 spools of serger thread
  • Tailors chalk

 

DESIGNING THE LOCATION FOR THE STITCHES:

Cut out the pattern. My T-shirt pattern pieces consist of 1 Front, 1 Back, 2 Sleeves, and 1 Collar. There are not princess seams, but I want to add the illusion there are princess seams.  Starting with the front pattern, on the wrong side of the fabric, draw a line from the armscye to the hem.  Use a curved ruler if you need help drawing the curve .

Fold the fabric in half and use your hand to brush the fabric.  This will trace the chalk mark to the other side of the fabric.

Open the fabric back up and you should see a faint line from the first chalk marking.  Use the chalk to trace over this line, making it darker and easier to see. Do the same thing for the BACK pattern piece.  For the collar and sleeve, draw randomly placed chalked lines.

SET UP THE COVERSTITCH MACHINE

Choose the color of thread for the decorative stitch.  Ideally the color should be in the same color family as the right side of the fabric, but enough of a contrast that you can see the stitches.

Decide which stitch looks the best on your fabric:

  • Stitch a swatch of fabric with a wide coverstitch (using the left and right needle)
  • Stitch a sample with the triple coverstitch.

Keep in mind you will be stitching with the wrong side of the fabric facing up.  Check the look of the stitch on both sides.

I prefer the triple coverstitch on my fabric, so I will set up the coverstitch machine with all three needles using 4 spools of thread.  It’s a little faster to stitch from piece to piece, so start stitching on a scrap of fabric and then add another piece of fabric.  This allows me to check my stitch quality and I won’t have to worry about threads falling off at the beginning or end of my garment pieces.  (All of these stitches rows will be sealed in a seam, so no worries on threads unraveling).

For the full tutorial, check out my post on the Brother Stitching Sewcial blog.  I always love to see what your are working on, be sure to share photos of your sporty tops using #angelawolf #brothersews

Cheers,

Brother Expert Sewing Consultant. This blog post may contain affiliate links.

DIY Halloween Embroidered Trick or Treat Bag

Looking for an easy DIY project for Halloween?  Check out this Trick-or-Tread embroidered felt bag. This is a fast and easy project and the kids will love it 🙂 Supplies Inside of bag:  cut 1 cotton fabric 27” by 14” and cut a 9” circle Outside...

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50% OFF CREATIVE SERGING ONLINE CLASS!

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Coupon Details: Get 50% off the full retail price of select Craftsy classes taught by Angela Wolf. Cannot be combined with any other coupons. Expires August 15, 2017.

50% OFF SEW WITH YOUR SERGER!

CLICK HERE

Coupon Details: Coupon Details: Get 50% off the full retail price of select Craftsy classes taught by Angela Wolf. Cannot be combined with any other coupons. Expires August 15, 2017.

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 1: Choosing Fabrics

Fringe Skirt Sewalong Part 1: Choosing Fabrics

The Fringe Skirt Pattern


The Fringe Skirt Pattern: The Angela Wolf Fringe Skirt Pattern is available here in print and digital format. You can also find the pattern at many local retailers.

Garment Fabric: tweed, boucle, join the facebook group of resources on choosing fabrics.

Lining: Any lightweight fabric will work for the lining polyester, acetate, satin, cotton – my favorite is bemberg rayon, silk charmeuse, and china silk.  If you plan on adding a touch of couture by quilting the lining choose a natural fiber fabric for the lining.

Interfacing: A lightweight fusi-knit interfacing is used in the zipper area and in the waistband

Notions: 9″ invisible zipper, hook and eye, universal all purpose thread or silk thread, hand sewing needle, pins, scissors, sewing machine needle size 80/12, awl or something to unravel the fabric to make the tweed, zipper foot,

 

Fabrics & Supplies


The fringe on the skirt is made with three layers of fabric. A tweed or boucle is an ideal fabric for this pattern, simply because it’s easy to unravel the fabric as shown below.

 Pre-Shrink the Fabrics


It’s important to pre-shrink the fabrics before cutting, especially if the fabric is a natural fiber.  Do this by steam pressing.  You can also take the fabric to the dry cleaners and ask them to “steam press” the fabric.  Note: Just dry cleaning will not pre-shrink the fabric, it has to be STEAM PRESSED.  If you plan on washing and drying the finished skirt, then wash and dry the fabric the same way.

Join Angela Wolf’s Private Facebook Group!


We are all sharing fabric sources in the Angela Wolf Facebook Group. Join the fun 🙂

The Sewalong Schedule:

  1. Fabric & Sourcing (February 10.2017)
  2. Fitting & Patternhacking  (February 16.2017)
  3. Cutting & Prep  (February 21.2017)
  4. All About Darts  (February 23.2017)
  5. Quilting the Lining  (February 28 2017)
  6. Invisible Zipper’s  (March 2 2017)
  7. Waistbands  (March 7.2017)
  8. Hemming & Fringe  (March 9 2017)
  9. Show off in the Angela Wolf Facebook Group! 

Learn How to Embellish Fabric with the Serger!

Learn How to Embellish Fabric with the Serger!

4900---Quick-Serger-Projects-8_retouchedI have been experimenting with various ways to create custom fabrics. You might have seen photos on my Facebook page with a few of my favorites by embellishing with:

  • embroidery
  • needle felting
  • scanNcut
  • thread art with the Dream Frame
  • couching

One that you might be surprised about is using the serger with a simple 3-thread overlock stitch and the blind hem foot. This purple bad is a perfect example. We made that bag in my Craftsy Class Sew with your Serger – Quick & Easy Gifts and most recently at the American Sewing Expo. I could see using this fabric as a collar or cuffs, color blocking – what about the flap on my back jean pockets!

Supplies from WAWAK sewing:

E ANGELA WOLF SERGING FABRIC5PREPARE THE FABRIC

1.Cut your fabric larger than you need for the pattern piece, the serged line takes out a minimum ¼” of fabric. Chalk mark lines parallel to the grainline. Choose any width you want, these are 2” apart.

2. Chalk mark lines perpendicular to the previous chalk lines.

angela wolf serged fabric 2

 

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SET UP SERGER

3. Set up the serger for a 3-thread wide overlock stitch. Dis-engage the knife and attach the blind-hem foot (your blind hem foot might look different, check your manual)angela wolf serged fabric 6

E ANGELA WOLF SERGING FABRIC2E ANGELA WOLF SERGING FABRIC4

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.Test your stitch: fold a piece of fabric and (more…)

TIPS ON HOW TO SEW FAUX LEATHER!

TIPS ON HOW TO SEW FAUX LEATHER!

leather fall 2014

Leather is a major trend this season and continues on into the spring, yes leather for spring and summer!  Here are a few tips to get you started:

TIP 1. FABRIC

Check the fabric for flaws, especially in faux leather you might find scratches or cuts that you will need to work around when cutting out the pattern pieces.

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Consider the weight and feel of the fabric for the design.  For example a biker jacket will need a thicker fabric than say a peplum style jacket.  Also, squeeze the fabric in your hand and if it has deep creases or wrinkles, that is how it will look after wearing it (better to know now :))

ANGELA WOLF SEWING LEATHER TIPS2ANGELA WOLF SEWING LEATHER TIPS1TIP 2. NEEDLES

Use a Leather Needle in the sewing machine.  Start with a size 12 or 14 for light to medium weight fabric.

Go up to a 16 or 18 for heavier fabric, but be sure to CHECK your sewing machine as to what is the largest size needle it will accommodate.  One of my older machines will only allow up to a size 14.

For sewing faux leather I prefer using a Jean Needle size 14.    If you are having a problem with skipped stitches try this needle.

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When it comes to hand-stitching, standard needles have a difficult time piercing the fabric.  Instead use a Leather Hand Needle, this needle has a triangular point that pierces the fabric.  Just be careful, the tip is REALLY sharp!

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TIP 3: NO PINS

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Just as difficult as it is to pierce leather / faux leather, once you do pierce the fabric the hole is there forever!  Use clips to hold the fabric instead of pins.  They are lightweight and don’t damage the fabric.

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I got these getta grip sewing clips from my friend Paul Gallo.  I met Paul at Craftsy while we were both shooting classes.  He showed me these clips that he designed and I have been a fan ever since.  Awesome guy!  Have you ever met Paul or taken any of his classes?

paul gallo draping 1

FASHION DRAPING: DRESSMAKING BASICS with PAUL GALLO ON CRAFTSY!

 

paul gallo draping 2

FASHION DRAPING: BIAS DESIGN with PAUL GALLO ONLINE CLASS ON CRAFTSY!

TIP 4: TAPING SEAM ALLOWANCES

ANGELA WOLF HOW TO SEW WITH LEATHER9When sewing garments, pressing the seam allowances open with a Tailor’s Clapper is the best option.  Unfortunately with leather, faux leather, vinyl, and suede, even if you safely press the fabric with an iron shoe, the seam allowance will not stay open.  The best solution for securing seam allowances and hemming is either topstitching or leather tape (a special double-sided tape).

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This is how easy it works:

1. Place a strip of LEATHER TAPE in the seam allowance with the sticky side down.

2. Remove paper backing, revealing the other side of the tape.

3. Fold back the seam allowance or hem allowance.

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ANGELA WOLF HOW TO SEW WITH LEATHER15

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I use the 1/4″ wide tape for seam allowances and 1/2″ wide tape for hems.  I purchase the tape from WAWAK SEWING and the rolls come 60 yards.  Don’t be caught off guard by the quantity because you will use more than you think and the price is incredible!  Well, this should get you started – next in line is quilting and embroidering faux leather.

Cheers,

Angela Wolf

 

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How to Create Unique Fabric by Sewing Scraps!

How to Create Unique Fabric by Sewing Scraps!

angelawolffringeskirt16I love sweaters and shawls, especially since I am always cold in the air-conditioned restaurants (not that we have needed air conditioning in Michigan this summer!).  Thinking of the wardrobe challenge, sweaters are one of the items that I end up buying. Yes I do know how to crochet, yet trim on a jacket is about as far as that usually ends up. A small knitting machine sits in the corner of the studio (on my bucket list to learn how to use 🙂 ).

Angela Wolf Fringe Skirt 2I was recently sewing a fringe skirt and the tweed scraps falling on the floor reminded me of meeting a women wearing a really cute, long, loosely woven (sweater looking) vest. It was at the annual conference for ASDP, so I had to ask the question that only sewer’s are allowed to ask each other “did you make that?”.  She had indeed! I was really intrigued when she mentioned using water-soluble stabilizer and scraps from her last sewing project  – yes, scraps!

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Below is an example of using scraps from my tweed skirt:

Angela Wolf how to sew2

Angela Wolf how to create fabric

Supplies needed:

WAWAK_SEWING

NOTE: WAWAK sewing has offered my readers a discount for July – yeah! 

Purchase a minimum of $30 and receive 10% off your entire order – Use coupon code WAB714 when checking out (expires July 31st) Thank them when you order, they are the best!  :))

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 5

  • Lay out one layer of water-soluble stabilizer (54″ for a scarf)
  • Randomly place yarn, scraps, hairy yarn, etc.
  • Place another layer of water-soluble stabilizer (same length as the first piece)  on top of the yarns
  • Using long pins,  pin through all the layers

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 46

 

  • Starting at one end, stitch down the center of the stabilizer, stitching through all the layers.  Be careful not to sew through any pins, stitch all the way to the end. (Draw a straight line down the center if you need something to follow).
  • From the center, align the edge of the presser foot with the first stitched line.  Stitch a second row, and a third, and 4th, until you get to about 1″ from the edge of the stabilizer.  (If your machine has a Laser Vision Guide, like my Brother Dreamweaver, this would be the perfect application!)

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 41

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 42

  • Continue stitching rows along the entire length of the stabilizer until you have the desired width.
  • Turn the fabric and stitch a row from side to side, across the width of the stabilizer.
  • Continue to stitch row after row until the entire length is filled.

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 44

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 49

The width of the stitched rows depend on how tight you want the weave of the new fabric or lace.  Just be sure to keep it somewhat tight or the yarns will fall away.

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 47

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn 43

The next step is easy!  Rinse the fabric panel in warm water and watch the water-soluble stabilizer disappear or throw the fabric in the wash on a hand-wash cycle, again with warm water.

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn1

Above you can see the stabilizer has disappeared and I am left with a loosely woven fabric.  Notice the stitching lines, this is good to keep in mind when you choose the thread color.

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn3

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Angela Wolf how to create fabric

 

 

Who would have ever guessed

our scraps

could go so far!

 

 

A few more tips:

  • Throw the fabric in the dryer to soften the hand
  • The stabilizer and yarns shrink up after washing and drying,  keep that in mind if you need a specific length.
  • The more yarn and scraps, the thicker the fabric
  • To make an outfit, stitch all the pieces together before washing out the stabilizer

Angela Wolf fabricate lace yarn6

This is a great technique to use for June’s Fabricate Challenge – which I extended the deadline until July 31st.

Have you ever tried this?  If so, please share any tips you might have!

Cheers,

Angela WolfWAWAK_SEWING_Logo_Web

 

 

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/ksproductions/review/100618627/b7d8aec7c9]

 

 

 

 

 

Embellishing – Fabricate with Applique!

Embellishing – Fabricate with Applique!

 

Fab-ri-cate (from dictionary.com unabridged – based on the Random House Dictionary)

  1. To make by art or skill and labor; construct
  2. To make by assembling parts or sections
  3. To devise or invent
  4. To fake; forge

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That definition pretty much leaves the door open for ultimate creativity, wouldn’t you say? One idea includes designing your own fabric or altering a fabric into something totally different, which is what I did with the above jacket.

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The fabric used for the applique trimming is a polyester / satin. A lightweight fabric with fabulous drape, perfect for a blouse or lining (both of which I plan to add to jacket).  That fabric, if left alone, would be a nightmare to create appliques or cut-outs, so I fabricated – sounds like a bad word 🙂 !

heat and bondThe trick – Heat N Bond, now available from my favorite place WAWAK Sewing and comes in 5 yard and 35 yard pieces. At first I wasn’t too sure about this stuff, but basically you iron it to the back of the fabric and it makes it easier for you to cut out an applique – especially if you are using the Brother Scan-n-Cut

 

 

 

This is how easy an applique can be:

Angela Wolf Sewing Scan n Cut Brother1

  • Choose a design – for the sleeve I enlarged a design already in the scan-n-cut memory.
  • Place the bonded fabric onto the cutting mat (the paper backing on the heat –n-bond makes it easy to stick)
  • Press the start button (told you it was easy!)

Angela Wolf Sewing Scan n Cut Brother9

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Peel off the backing and place the appliques on the garment.

Angela Wolf Sewing Scan n Cut Brother10

Once you have the perfect placement, use a press cloth and press the applique in place.  Notice I attach the appliques before sewing the sleeve together.

Angela Wolf Sewing Scan n Cut Brother14

Even though the cut of the scan-n-cut prevents the fabric edges from fraying, I still stitch the applique in place. I choose the blanket stitch and stitched around each applique. That took some time, but it looks great.  Almost looks like leather!

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I followed all those steps for the jacket front and again used a blanket stitch.

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Of course I could cut these appliques by hand, but I really like the fact that all the front pieces are exactly the same! By the way, don’t look too closely at my studio – can you tell I have been working 🙂angela wolf #wardrobechallenge

 

Well, that’s one fun way to fabricate. Have you ever tried appliqueing apparel?

 

Cheers,

Angela Wolf

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