Free Stuff Friday!

Do you know a budding designer? Or are you one yourself? In this installment of Free Stuff Friday, you could win a Project Runway Fashion Design Figure Drawing Set, courtesy of Fashion Angels and Simplicity. (MSRP: $30)

The kit comes with a wooden mannequin, colored and drawing pencils, sketch pads, an eraser, a tortillon and more. This would be perfect to use to practice drawing croquis to make your own fashions! (Speaking of croquis, check out our first installment of Methods to Master: Fashion Sketching in the Feb/Mar ’11 issue of Sew News. It will be hitting newsstands in January!)

projectrunway Free Stuff Friday!

To win this great prize, simply answer the question:

What sewing advice would you give to the next generation of sewists? Any words of wisdom? Lessons you’ve learned the hard (or easy) way?

We will choose one winner from the responses.

Thanks for participating! Happy sewing!

 Free Stuff Friday!
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58 Responses to Free Stuff Friday!

  1. Nehmah says:

    Measure the customer yourself. NEVER take their word for size. Read the instructions first, at least twice; mark words or phrases you don’t understand and look up an answer. (Google is a good tool) Work where you will have as little interruption as possible. Best of luck to the winner. Cordially, Nehmah

  2. Linda says:

    We all learn from our mistakes, and that is when we can be more creative. Something that you thought was not going to work, can ususally turn out great when you get your creative juices flowing. I’ve learned that the seam ripper can be your best friend and baste, baste, baste.

  3. joanne says:

    Walk through a fabric store and see and touch all those wonderful fabrics and imagine yourself creating something special with them. Buy a good pair of scissors when they’re on sale and only use them for your fabrics and hide them so no one will grab them to cut paper! Buy an easy pattern and take time to read all of it twice. So slow until you get used to it. Measure, pin, baste, then sew(this will save time in the long run and you won’t get frustrated with having to use a seam ripper) HAVE FUN AND BE PROUD TO SAY “I MADE IT”

  4. Susan says:

    I would tell them to remember anything goes! I would not limit them to strict guidelines and rules when getting creative…think outside the box!

  5. R says:

    You’re going to get pricked, cut, and cry…but in the end you’ll be glad you did when you see your hand-created masterpiece!

  6. Lisa G says:

    Don’t be afraid of attempting a design anyone can do what they feel. The only sin we can do to the younger generation is not to teach them sewing as a way to self express. Sewing has evolved tremendously over the years…..make it continue to evolve daily!

  7. SALOME says:

    Remember every project is a part of you

  8. Loraine Isenberger says:

    Learn as much as you can and learn the process of how to do something. Then begin to stretch………and create. Give your self the time, even if it is only 20 minutes a day.

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  10. Liz Baker says:

    Don’t be shy about asking questions. You can’t learn if you don’t ask. I see people come into the store where I work and they don’t know anything or are just starting after years of not sewing and I try to help them by asking questions they haven’t thought of asking. So ASK ASK ASK!!

  11. Valerie Nicholson says:

    Remember to always be proud of what you’ve created. It’s your design and no one else’s. Eleanor Roosevelt once said “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Keep your head up no matter what anyone else thinks!

  12. Amy Bannister says:

    Don’t let anyone make you feel like any less of yourself because you are “self taught”. Getting started yourself with some simple patterns and sewing books from the 50s & 60s can teach you just as much as some fancy class. Simple skills done well, no matter how you learned them, are still the foundation of a well made project.

  13. Vwren says:

    Learn to enjoy the process at least as much as the finished product. That way you won’t mind ripping out and redoing something to make it more closely match your vision. (If you enjoyed it the first time, doing it again [or again!] can be just as much fun as the first time, instead of a demoralizing stress!)

  14. Diana Lindsley says:

    Enjoy your sewing and don’t be afraid of trying something. Some people may tell you a fabric or style is ‘too hard’ but if you feel like you can do it – go for it! It’s only fabric.

  15. Maria Kievit says:

    Don’t sew when tired, or frustrated, as then more things will go wrong. I am with all the other girls, practice, practice, and don’t give up. Tomorrow is another day.

  16. Jeny says:

    My advice, start with something you love, not with something your teacher would love for you to love. Now there are so many trendy books and patterns that say “beginner” that you can feel good about your first completed projects. If you decide it looks ugly, go back over the pattern instructions: did you use the kind of fabrics suggested? Did you match the pieces with the straight grain of the fabric? Learn from every project so that nothing is a total loss.

  17. jance meleo says:

    Buy the best sewing machine you can afford. It will reward you with many years of sewing, and less frustration in the long run. I passed my first sewing machine down to my daughter and it still works like new! My old Necchi is 42 yrs old now!

  18. Sharon Bosser says:

    If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again! Never give up!

  19. Shanna Harris says:

    There are never mistakes…only creative opportunities!

  20. Deb York says:

    Don’t be afraid to try something beyond what you think your capabilities are…that’s how you learn.

  21. Sheila Whitney says:

    Learn the basics. When things do not go the way you want, do not give up. Even advanced seamstresses have things go wrong. Keep sewing and let your creative juices flow.

  22. Diane says:

    Learn about sewing Machines. Time and time again I run into folks who don’t know how to fix or maintain their machines. Another important lesson is knowing what your sewing machine can do for you! Learn about a satin foot,zipper foot, ruffler,buttonholer..machines today come with tons of accessory feet which can make your finished work look so much more finished.
    Pick a machine or machines that are appropriate for what you are sewing. A 79.00 dollar all plastic machine will not fix your awning, but it will do a fine job sewing a hem on a lightweight fabric.

  23. Ammie says:

    My advice is to keep your eyes open and a notebook handy – inspiration is everywhere! Study current and past designs and garments for ideas and them adapt them to make them your own.

  24. Deb Dzendzel says:

    Don’t just dream; create reality. If you have an idea you “think” will work, try it. Don’t worry about what others will think, just create your designs and enjoy the process.

  25. Laura says:

    Learn the basics, then break all the rules! Don’t call them mistakes – they are design opportunities. Always buy your machines from a dealer and take their free classes on your machine. Find a sewing club at your local fabric store or sewing machine dealer. They will become your best friends and greatest support group

  26. Linda says:

    Keep a reasonable schedule. Only take on as much as you can do comfortably. Too many sewers burn themselves out by trying to sew too much for too many people and they lose the joy of sewing. If you feel your passion for fashion slipping away, do something to rekindle it.

  27. Cassandra V says:

    I’m a beginner myself so all I can say is PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE , and DON’T GIVE UP !!!!

  28. Jennifer Lachman says:

    Always Always Always make a muslin!

  29. Loretta M says:

    Learn the rules then break them

  30. Heidi says:

    Start small, sew what you like, and keep on sewing !!

  31. Naomi says:

    Start with an easy pattern … like an elastic waist skirt and make it a few times . Then make some elastic waist pants . You will gain valuable sewing knowledge and confidence.

  32. When you feel like throwing your machine out of the window and pulling a scene from “Office Space” take a deep breath and a recess (chocolate helps) and revisit. A refreshed mind will always give you a renewed perspective.

  33. Becky Couture says:

    Look at the picture!

  34. Naomi Horning says:

    Start with an easy pattern – like an elastic waist skirt and make it a few times and then move onto elastic waist pants . You will learn valuable sewing skills and gain confidence .

  35. treva P. says:

    Start with the simple and go forward. I see people who want to make the most difficult things the first time then get discouraged because they can’t. The basics are important and from there you can go crazy. Sewing can be a hobby, craft, or your job but make it the thing that gets you the most enjoyment. People who sew are never limited by the ideas of others!

  36. Julie T says:

    A seam ripper can be your best friend!

  37. christy says:

    Learning is growing so why not do it Sewing!!!!

  38. christy says:

    Sewing is about creating so if you make a boo boo so what you’re learning as you go and it’ll be your creation and no ones else’s so have fun doing it!

  39. PQ says:

    Get the basics down, even if you begin by sewing a plain 9-block quilt top first. Then the sewing world opens wide!

  40. Dorothy says:

    Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box. Let your imagine go. Who knows you may be the next Vera Wang or Versace.

  41. m says:

    learn to sew by hand!

  42. Sandy says:

    You can do anything! Just don’t forget to press those seams!!

  43. Steph B. says:

    This really goes for all things creative: keep an idea journal. Sketch everything that comes to mind, write out ideas, cut out images you see in catalogs/magazines, anything that gives you that spark that you possibly can use later. Then revisit those entries frequently. You never know when something you’ve “forgotten” about will be the catalyst to a great project.

  44. E. Sharon says:

    Don’t get discouraged when something doesn’t work the first time. Keep trying til you get it….No one can be a perfectionist the first time out, it takes practice, like a piano or violin.

  45. Barb D says:

    Sew what you feel the need to sew. Embellish as you choose. Do not let anyone tell you ” you can’t do that”. Sure you can!! Mostly only sew when you enjoy the actions. Having enjoyment and fun while sewing makes it such a pleasure.

  46. Nancy says:

    Don’t be afraid to be creative and try something new. Some of the best ideas come from mistakes. . .

  47. Learn to sew by hand, not just by machine. It’s an important skill!

  48. LAURA PETERSEN says:

    Learn the basics well; fitting, cutting, stitching….than you will be prepared to make adjustments/changes as needed to fit your personal needs/fashion sense….if you like parts of different garments and think they would make one great one mixed together, you will have the confidence and knowledge to merge them into your own creation.

  49. Denise Bennett says:

    Enjoy every minute of it, lick the needle not the thread to thread a needle, and PRESS PRESS PRESS-makes the difference between hand made and homemade!!

  50. Nancy Lee says:

    Take time to sew… Take time for yourself…