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Do It Yourself Like a Designer

Do It Yourself Like a Designer

Do It Yourself

Here’s an opportunity to do it yourself, make all those little extras that give your home a real designer look. And you may well be looking for something to make to use up all your leftover fabrics!

Do It Yourself: Oven Gloves and Mitts

Not only are these practical items that every home should have but, if the fabric they are made from matches the fabric of your curtains, they will make it look as though you have spent a fortune coordinating the interior of your home.

Both oven gloves and mitts are very easy to make, and you can do it yourself with pleasure. Oven gloves are made by cutting out the shape of your hand from layers of fabric, lining, and wadding (batting), then sewing them together. Oven mitts are made in one strip with pockets at each end for your hands. Several layers of fabric, lining and; very easy wadding (batting) are needed to protect your hands.

Do It Yourself: Making Oven Gloves

  1. To make the pattern for your oven gloves, simply lay your hand flat on a piece of paper and draw roughly around it, allowing a few centimeters (1 in) extra along all the edges. Smooth off the outline until you are happy with the shape. Cut out this shape twice from the outer fabric, twice from the lining fabric and twice from thick wadding (batting). Even if you are using a quilted fabric, it is a good idea to add an extra layer of wadding (batting) for protection.
  2. Lay each half of the glove out flat, forming a sandwich of lining, wadding (batting) and fabric and remembering to make a pair. Tack (baste) the pieces together around their outer edges and then bind the opening edge of each section with bias binding. Now place the two halves together, with the lining sides facing, and bind the outer shaped edge. If you wish, extend the binding at the opening edge and fold it back on itself to make a hanging loop.

Do It Yourself: Making Oven Mitt

  1. Yes, you can do it yourself, as well. Cut a strip of fabric about 18cm (1xA in) wide and 80cm (32in) long for the main section, and two pieces each measuring 18cm (7 Ain) square for the end pieces. Cut all four corners of the main section to form curves, and curve two corners of each end piece to match. Cut all these pieces again from the lining fabric, and then cut the two end pieces again from thick wadding (batting).
  2. Lay the main piece out flat, with its wrong side uppermost, lay the wadding (batting) end pieces onto the ends of this and then cover with the lining section. Tack (baste) everything together around the outer edges, forming a sandwich of lining, wadding (batting) and fabric at the ends. Sandwich together the fabric and lining end pieces and, using bias binding, bind the straight edges of the end pieces. Lay the main sections out flat, with the lining upper­most. Lay the end pieces onto the ends of the main section, with lining facing lining, and tack (baste) all the edges together. Bind the entire outer edge.

Do It Yourself: Adding an Appllqued Design

Whatever you are making, an applique motif can make all the difference during your “do it yourself” works. The way in which this motif is applied will depend on its size, shape and the fabrics being used.

The easiest way to appliqué a motif is to stitch it on by machine, having first applied a bonding web. This bonding web is basically a web of adhesive that can be applied with an iron – like an interfacing. The web will have a paper backing onto which can be drawn the outline of the design. This can be ironed in place to the wrong side of the appliqué motif fabric The shape is then cut out, the paper removed and this motif then ironed in place in its final position.

Start by choosing your appliqué motif – it can be something traced from a book or one you design yourself. Once you are happy with the design, trace it onto the paper side of the bonding web – remember to reverse the design as you are working on what will eventually be the wrong side of the fabric. Cut out the shape roughly from the bonding web, allowing a small margin around the edges, and apply it to the wrong side of the fabric chosen for the motif. Now cut out the actual motif shape. If you choose to appliqué a motif taken from a printed fabric, there is no need to draw the outline onto the backing paper – simply apply a piece of the bonding web directly behind the motif and cut it out following the fabric design.

Remove the paper backing from the bonding web, place the fabric motif onto the right side of the main fabric in the position you want it, with the right side of both fabrics uppermost, and iron it on.

If you do not want to use a bonding web, apply lightweight iron-on interfacing to the wrong side of the motif fabric. Cut out the shape and tack (baste) this in place onto the main fabric.

Do it yourself

Do It Yourself: Covering lampshades

Covering a lampshade in a fabric to match those already in the room is a good way to link everything together. This will have a special place in your works “Do it your self“. Be careful though – do not use a light bulb brighter than 40 watts inside any fabric lampshade and do not leave the light bulb switched on for long periods of time as, unless the shade is treated, it is highly flammable!

  1. To attach the appliqué, set up your sewing machine to work a narrow, short zigzag stitch. Working from the right side, stitch around the design so that the stitching covers the raw edge of the motif. Take care to pivot the stitching at any corners and ensure that the raw edge is secured by the stitching along all the curves – any sections left unstitched may start to come free and fray when the item is laundered or in use.
  2. If the motif is a very simple shape, it can be attached with a line of straight stitching. Carefully cut out the motif, leaving a narrow turning around the outer edge. Then fold and tack (baste) this turning in place to the wrong side of the motif. Position the motif onto the fabric it is to be appliqued to and pin in place. Then stitch it with a line of straight stitching worked just next to the outer pressed edge.

Do It Yourself: Making A Fabric Lampshades

  1. Cover your lampshade frame with cotton tape or bias binding. Although you can use a plain cotton tape, you will find it much easier to get a smooth effect using a bias binding. You can either buy your frame or you can take the cover off one you already have. Wind the tape tightly around all the metal struts of the frame so that no metal is left showing on the parts where the fabric will be attached, and secure the ends with a few stitches.
  2. Lay a piece of fabric against the frame, with its wrong side towards the frame and with the straight grain of the fabric running diagonally across the front of the lampshade. Working slowly and carefully, – stretch the fabric to fit the frame, pinning it in place to the tape covering the struts until the frame is covered. If the frame is quite large, use a second piece of fabric for the back, positioning the seams where these two pieces will join along a metal strut.

Tip: For more information on the “Do It Yourself” works, which we have discussed here in general terms, click on the “tags” below.

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Category: All, Decoration, Do It Yourself