Oven mitts have always seemed cumbersome and awkward to me, so I designed a this pinch potholder instead. Simply slip your fingers in one pocket and your thumb into the other and it makes pulling things from the oven easy.
Etsy has a bustling supplies category full of interesting stuff. After fabric I'm always on the lookout for great buttons and love to browse the selection of vintage, new and unique handmade buttons available.
Above are three handmade buttons I'd personally love to add to my stash. They can be found here:
Sewing through thick layers of fabric can be a real challenge. When making bags often the trickiest parts to sew are straps and the side seams where you can end up with a lot of bulk.
Here are some tips for dealing with thick fabric/multiple layers:
1. Get rid of as much bulk as possible. For side seams I trim away as much as possible of any additional lining layers (in my patterns this is the "invisible lining"). You want to trim close to the stitching but still leave the stitches intact:
Then pressing--either with your iron or finger pressing--the side seams open flat will help immensely. 2. Use the hand wheel to sew across any thick areas. After breaking multiple needles attempting to sew through thick fabric I've gotten in the habit of sewing all my side seams and any areas with multiple layers of fabric using the hand wheel. So any time I'm attaching a flap or strap or sewing the Curvy Clutch wristlet strap I'm using the hand wheel.
3. Use a larger needle size. I switch up to a size 16 (100) needle once I get to the step of attaching the lining to the bag.
4. Purchase a special tool like a Jean-a-ma-jig or Hump Jumper. These are inexpensive tools that look pretty useful. I just bought a Jean-a-ma-jig but haven't used it yet.
Carve your stamps is one of my favorite flickr groups. After stumbling across the group a few years ago I immediately got busy carving a couple of my own stamps and of course then I wanted to use the stamps on fabric. But I didn't have the right ink, so the project was shelved.
But two years later here is my first fabric printing experiment.
Of the three stamps I carved this reindeer stamp was my most ambitious. It is quite small--3.5"(w) x 3.75"(h).
Here is an attempt at repeating the image:
I'm not sure yet whether this is a great image for a fabric repeat. But when I have a little more time I plan to keep experimenting with block printing fabric, so check back!