If at first you don’t succeed… get out the iron and flatten everything in sight before you even think about sewing it!
I think my top tip at the moment for sewing success is to use your iron. Seriously, it is amazing how much of a difference it makes, just adding a little heat and steam to your fabric. It locks your stitches in place, crisps up your seams and just generally makes everything look beautiful and professional.
I’ve been making some more blanket binding this morning, cutting wide strips of the IKEA fabric we bought. I don’t like narrow bias binding. I find it difficult and painful to sew and I’ve found that it frays like anything. Although that may be because I was buying the cheap stuff, or it may have been a problem with how I was sewing it – a bad workman blames his etcetera. Either way, I like my binding wide – like about ten centimetres wide.
I’ve been cutting strips of contrasting fabric, then sewing the strips together to create one really long piece of patchwork. When I get it to a length I’m happy with, I’ll measure it against the blanket. I do this by stretching it around the edge of the blanket, mitering the corners and pinning as I go. After all, that’s how it has to fit the blanket once sewn so it seems the best way to measure for me. Once I know it’s the right length, I’ll sew the final two ends together, making a big loop, and then mitre and pin that bit too. Then I’ll straight stitch the whole thing in place and voila! A finished blanket.
This time, without puffy blanket backing. Fingers crossed?
My camera’s batteries are flat but once it’s recharged I might try and do a tutorial with pictures of how to put together the binding. It’s really easy once you know how and it makes for a really nice framing effect on your blankets and quilts. Plus, I only just figured out for myself how to mitre the corners and it’s nice to pass stuff on.