PREVIEW: How to Finish Fabric Edges – s02e09

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Learn designer tricks for hems and finishing fabric edges. Barb Owen shows you how to beautifully finish fabrics with a tiny zig-zag, a teeny shirttail hem, shell edging and more. These hems and edge finishes are perfect for garments, doll clothes, and a lot more, too.

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When I was ready to enter fifth grade, my parents decided that I should attend a school called The Laboratory School. Doesn’t that sound delightful?! When you read the term laboratory, you might think of experiments, lots of testing and recorded results. Indeed, that’s exactly what the Lab School was all about - lots and lots of educational experiments.

Many of the experiments were extremely beneficial. At that time, very few schools incorporated foreign language classes for young children. The Lab School made sure that students in early grades studied and spoke Spanish. We were also privileged to experience art in the high school art room which was filled with curious colors, supplies, and smells.

Another perk Lab School students received for their willingness to be tested and experimented upon, was Home Economics for girls and Industrial Arts for boys. The year I transferred to my new school was the magic year to begin Home Ec. As we walked single file down the long hallway to our special classes, I was giddy with anticipation!

The room and our teacher did not disappoint! I could have easily done without the stoves, ovens, refrigerators, and other kitchen stuff and gone straight to the sewing room filled with beautiful old black Singer sewing machines. In that room I stitched a pillow, an apron and other simple projects of which I was incredibly proud.

Each year my class was allowed into the Home Ec room for several weeks where I eagerly learned new skills. I loved to sew and my mother encouraged me to continue sewing at home. She bought fabric and patterns for me so that I could try new projects after our few weeks of Home Ec classes were finished.

I sewed many of my own clothes and gifts. I even talked my mother into letting me take a wool tailoring class before I was old enough to drive a car. I wanted to learn tailoring skills so that I could make a winter coat. Mom never said, “No, I think you’re too young to do that.” The result? I made 2 winter coats for myself and a jacket for my dad! Not bad for a kid!

After attending college, getting married and starting a family, I yearned to get back into sewing but my sewing machine was broken. When I was able to shop for a new machine, I found a store that sold fabrics I’d never heard of. There were dozens of bolts of beautiful fabrics imported from Switzerland, Italy, and England. Of course the prices reflected their beauty! Nevertheless, I was smitten with these lovelies and I simply had to learn to sew with them!

I made my share of mistakes as I honed my sewing skills. I learned that treating these beautiful fabrics with techniques my Home Ec teacher taught me caused amateurish results. With practice I learned how to achieve the designer look I wanted to showcase such yummy fabrics.

In this class I'll share my solutions for easily creating beautiful hems and edge finishes that are perfect for cottons as well as many fine fabrics. Be sure to download your class notes and I’ll meet you in class.


P.S. Please leave a comment below.


Barb Owen

About the Author

Barb Owen

Barb is the founder of How to Get Creative, author of "Normal Doesn't Live Here Anymore", a specialist at playing in the art studio and has an unhealthy addiction to smiles. ;-)

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