Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Rosie's Monday Night Tidbits

Things I like in my sewing room:
Sticky Notes

When I’m working on a project that requires adjustments to my sewing machine, stitch length, stitch type, feed dogs, etc. I make a note of what I’ve done on a sticky back notepad. That way if I’m interrupted and have to turn my machine off (or if I’ll be using it over the course of days) I can stick the notes to my machine and I’ll have all the settings I need to continue. No more trying to remember what I did the last time!

Index Cards

If you have something that you do frequently but not every day, jot the steps down on an index card. Punch a hole in the corner of the card. Slide it unto a binder (book) ring and hang it near your work area. That way the next time you go to do it you have the steps to follow.
Happy Stitching! Rose ♥

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rosie's Monday Night Tidbits

I have always had pinking shears in my supplies but I never used them much until now.
I started using them recently to pink around some round shapes. Now I discovered they are better then cutting the corners of new fabric before washing. It helps to keep the fabric from fraying so much. I pink the whole cut edge before washing. Now if I could only find my pinking rotary blade! Better yet if we could get fabric stores to use the pinking blade!
And yes I prewash my fabrics because they contain chemicals that could be harmful to your body.
I also have been using my pinking shears to eliminate bulk in my seams. This has been great for a crazy patch quilt I am working on.
Tips I learned this month

I was having trouble with my pinking shears not cutting good and they were very stiff so I did some searching on the internet. Here’s what I found from two different sources:
When not in use oil the cutting edges with regular sewing machine oil do not use cooking oil. After a few cuts on waste material there will be no harm done to the fabric. To prevent rust regularly wipe the blades with an oily cloth, preferably of natural fiber. A spot of oil placed on the screw will help to keep an even tension of the scissor. Irreparable damage at the pivot can occur if not oiled.
Remove the scissor from the original plastic packaging and replace with either a leather cover or one made from natural fiber such as calico. This will prevent any condensation forming from the plastic. Gently wipe off the blades with a soft fabric scrap after each use to prevent lint and tiny particles from building up on the blades and clogging the screw-assembly pivot area. Scissors can be washed with soap and water if they're thoroughly dried and oiled.
A drop of oil makes a big difference. Several times a year place a drop of sewing machine oil at the screw assembly between the blades. This reduces friction so cutting feels smoother. After oiling, wipe off the blades and make a few cuts on scrap fabric to remove any excess oil.
Keep scissors in a safe, cool and dry place. In high humidity areas, regularly wipe the blades with a light coating of oil to prevent rust or corrosion.
Happy Stitching! Rose ♥

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Rosie's Monday Night Tidbits

Things I like to keep in my sewing area:

Parchment Paper
Use when working with fusible material , place fusing between parchment paper to protect your iron and ironing board. The fusing won’t stick to the paper and you can clean the paper with a dry green scrubbie and use it again.
Use parchment paper to protect delicate material when pressing. Place paper over the delicate area and then press.

Things I can’t live without: Binding and Hem Clips
I recently used these while finishing the binding on a quilt. No more pin pokes and scratches, no more thread getting caught on the pins. It made stitching down the binding a pleasure and a breeze! And yes they look similar to the ones used as hairclips which would work just as well.

Something else I’ve fallen in love with: White Marking Pen by Clover
At first I didn’t like this pen, then I discovered if you wait a few minutes after marking the line shows up just fine. It doesn’t rub off as you are working either. But the best thing about this pen is the marking is removed with heat from an iron. So when you are done just touch a hot iron to it and it’s gone. Just be sure you are done with the mark before using an iron on it. Also if you need to make a change to your marking just erase it with the iron. And of course be sure the item you are working on can take heat and always test on a scrap first.
How cool is that!

Happy Stitching! Rose ♥

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Rosie's Monday Night Tidbits

Candy for your sewing needlesOkay so I've been meaning to start this for some time now. Why I chose Monday nights I'm not sure but it seems like I always forgot it was Monday night when Monday night rolled around. I'd wake up Tuesday morning and remember what I had planned to do the night before. And it is still Monday night here in Hawaii! So here goes the first one!

I've decided to add a post to my blog to hold my sewing, crafting hints, tips, and tricks. Welcome to the first of many (hopefully!). Please plan to check back weekly to get the latest.

A little known trick has to do with emery powder used to sharpen needles. You know the little strawberry thing attach to the tomato pincushion. Yes it's full of emery powder and it's use is to sharpen your needles. Nowadays people are coming up with all sorts of cute ways to get your needles sharpened. To get the emery powder (or sand) to work it's beNeedles in the candyst magic just squeeze it between your fingers and push your needle through several times. This creates enough friction or pressure to really do the job. Kinda like how you use an emery board to file your nails. And did you know that you can sharpen your sewing machine needles too? Just don't push it in past the start of the shank or you will make a large hole in the fabric and some powder may come out. Sand works much the same way as emery powder. A coarse sand will actually help remove corrosion/rust that you get in a humid place like Hawaii. I use a mixture of emery powder and sand in my needle candies. Yes candy for your needles,Squeeze the candy and push the needle back and forth to sharpen they'll love you for it and sew much better! Check them out in my Etsy shop.
Tune in next week for amother one of Rosie's Monday Night Tidbits!

P.S. I have a cute little owl coming to my shop soon whose ears have a secret! I'm going to post a picture of them on my facebook page soon so look for me there and become a fan of Big Island Rose Designs!