I often spend countless hours perusing websites (Pinterest mostly), flipping through magazines (like this one), combing thrift store aisles and simply people watching to find inspiration for my next sewing projects. It’s an exhausting pursuit, albeit super fun.
As we approach the dog days of summer, it becomes more challenging to search for a great quick-and-easy dress pattern, place mat set or handmade gift idea. The heat just makes sewingseem so difficult, amirite?
In anticipation of this, we’ve created a free digital lookbook, full of inspiration to get your creative juices flowing. We carefully selected projects that will take you through the rest of summer in style.
Inside the lookbook are great photos of ten summer-inspired projects, from skirts to pillows to bags and fun gifts. (Has anyone else been invited to several baby showers this summer? Just me? Applique bibs are the ticket!) And the best part is that we’ve included specialty tools that will help you sew better, faster and have more fun.
This hexagon paper-pieced project showcases Superior Bottom Line thread, which is perfect for piecing. You’ll notice a difference as the thread passes effortlessly through the fabric layers. It’s available in 55 colors, so you’re sure to find what you need to match fabrics in your stash.
A great handbag is a must for summer and purchased wooden handles give it professional polish. If you’re new to quilting, don’t let the hexagon piecing scare you–it’s an easy technique when you’re armed with the right tools. Your hexagons and diamonds will go together perfectly if you mark exactly where to start and stop stitching with the Prep-Tool™ by Guidelines4Quilting™. You can also set the Seam Guide at a precise scant ¼” to perfectly piece everything together. Mistake-proof and slip-proof your cutting with the Guidelines Ruler™ and slip-proof your templates and everything else with their amazing Grip Strips™. Watch this video to learn how to use them!
Who doesn’t love a simple knit skirt in the summer? Knit is a great fabric choice, especially if you’re traveling and need to throw something in the suitcase that won’t wrinkle. If you have a serger, sewing knits is super simple. But for many of us who only own a standard sewing machine, we need all the tips we can get! Try installing a walking foot onto your machine. It helps feed the fabric layers through the machine at the same rate so there’s less pulling, bunching and slippage. The Janome Memory Craft 9400QCP machine comes with an AcuFeed Flex Dual Feed Holder with AD Foot, which is less bulky than traditional walking, or even-feed, sewing machine feet and more sophisticated. Did I mention it COMES WITH the machine? You don’t have to purchase it separately! The machine also comes with several other useful feet, including a rolled hem foot, which is also super useful for this project!
The thought of making swimwear seems really daunting, but it’s a great way to ensure a perfect fit as well as showcase great fabrics that don’t look like anyone’s suit on the beach. These boys’ trunks are impressive–no one will believe you made them yourself. The addition of fusible interfacings from Therm O Web provide structure and stabilization for sewing.
Another super helpful product from Therm O Web is spray adhesive They carry temporary and permanent spray adhesives for a number of projects. I particularly love using temporary spray adhesive for applique projects as well as garments. (Try using it to secure knit fabric seams in lieu of pins!) This table runner is made much easier by spraying a bit of adhesive on each layer before quilting them together. There’s no slippage…and did I mention NO PINS needed? Hurrah!
This is just a small sampling of inspiration you’ll find in our summer lookbook. Check it out for yourself! And if you like what you see, all the instructions and needed pattern pieces are available in a handy miniMag as one download. Grab it, check your stash for bright summery fabrics and make something new tonight!
Let us know how you like the lookbook by commenting below. We love to hear your thoughts!