Oliver + S

What have you learned this year?

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)
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    Anonymous @

    I was putting the elastic in a casing this afternoon. I happily clipped the corners on the leading edge of the elastic to help it through the casing. I was happy because for many years, I’ve struggled with this and recently learned this little trick from a fellow O+S sewist. Just a little thing, but it’s the little things that really make a difference! What favorite new sewing techniques for tidbits have you learned this year?

    claireabel @claireabel

    What a great question!

    I have learned so much this year – I only sewed my first garment last December so it’s been a very educational year.

    My ‘favourite’ thing I’ve learnt is how to make a placket. Every time I do I think I’m very clever :-P. Other things I have learnt that really improve my sewing, and my enjoyment of sewing, are French seams and sewing in pleats. Ahh, such satisfaction.

    I’ve also learnt a lot about different fabrics, and just love sewing with new stuff (my latest endeavour – sewing with double gauze… heaven).

    Every time I sew I try to learn something new, or do something different. Another reason why I love O+S.

    EDITED TO ADD: I also learnt that if I love a fabric, to buy lots of it before it’s no longer available. Anyone know where I can get more of this? http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_BBfJaaPoUZo/TJwR3RRIAuI/AAAAAAAABAQ/tDBS_FAQVGk/s1600/Jump+rope+view+B1.jpg

    Aviatrix51 @Aviatrix51

    Try Etsy for that fabric. I think I saw a japanese print like that there.

    janimal @janimal

    I’ve been sewing since I was a little girl, but THIS year is when I really got into it. I haven’t followed a pattern since I was in high school! I did my first invisible zipper – that was huge. Also have an embroidery machine, so that’s been fun.

    I also have learned SO MUCH about fabric. Before I would just grab whatever looked pretty for the little project I had. Now I have a mini-addiction to japanese textiles, and am crazy about linen and voile. I can tell the difference with fabric quality when I sew and it makes ALL the difference. Sewing with fine materials just is SO much more fun!

    I also learned this year that not every pattern is created equal! If I hadn’t come across Oliver and S first, I wouldn’t have had the confidence to try other patterns. I would have gotten a commercial pattern and probably would have given up at the confusing parts. So THANKS Liesl! You really are teaching us to sew!

    icicle @icicle

    Those itty bitty narrow hems used to irk me — I’d get out my ruler and grit my teeth to get them done — but now I use a line of basting stitches to keep track of my fold line instead! Bye bye ruler 🙂

    Loralee @Loralee

    Since being introduced to O+S patterns this past summer, I’ve learned that I love garment construction. It’s like a jigsaw puzzle with all the pieces coming together perfectly!

    Liesl Gibson

    This is a fun topic. I learned something recently that we’re including in the spring patterns. It has to do with finishing the seam allowances when the facing for a garment is on the outside of the garment instead of the inside. I love the result and can’t wait to show you!

    I’m so glad that Oliver + S is helping you learn to sew. Thanks for that positive feedback, and I hope 2011 will bring lots of great new learning and sewing your way.

    Rebecca W @craftalittle

    I learned how to do French seams! And that repeating a pattern soon after I make it once, really helps me to improve my skills- it seems to solidify things in my mind a little better. And the basting line to do hems- that was a great thing to learn!

    I know that there were a few other things that I learned in the Jump Rope and Ice cream dress sew alongs, but I just can’t think of them right now!

    I also learned that there is a really fun and supportive community of people online in these forums. And that I really enjoy seeing what they create and sharing photos of my things with them. 🙂

    Nicole @motherof5

    I agree with Rebecca, I have made some great ”friends” on-line, many I consider friends without the ” ” .

    Without this forum I would have been out of pocket on some material, but I was encouraged to contact the store and they were happy to honor their sale! Thanks !

    My sewing skills have honed beautifully by following exemplary instructions, the invisible zip tutorial second to none!

    Noodles @Noodles

    Claireabel – saw some similiar fabric here: http://kimonohouse.com.au/?page=index not the same, but similar feel I think

    Noodles @Noodles

    Oh and of course.. on topic… I have learnt how much easier it is to sew a beautiful garment when you are reading from a great pattern. Even my husband is a fan and wants to know when you will be producing mens clothing patterns!

    Justine J @justmejay

    Wow – what have I learnt this year? – just about everything! I made my first garment by myself (a skirt for me!) about 15 months ago! My first O+S pattern was the Ice Cream dress for the Ice Cream Social in July. Despite having a very crafty mum and being surrounded by sewing growing up, it was never my thing – I studied woodwork and tech drawing at school instead of textiles!

    I have always had a bit of a thing for fabric though (btw – I have certainly leant that I have a serious fabric addiction this year!) and it was this that prompted me to start sewing

    This year, I have learnt:

    french seams



    putting in sleeves, collars & zips

    plackets (& how I love making them!)

    not to be afraid of buttonholes

    not to be afraid of knits

    and a myriad of other things that I cannot think of right now!

    I’m certainly not afraid of attempting ANY pattern either any more!

    I’ve also learnt about flickr and online forums, which I had never looked at before, and like Nicole I am thrilled to have so mny new friends who love to sew!

    Sarvi @Sarvi

    This year I really went from zero to … well, not sixty, but maybe thirty-five. Probably the key thing is what justmejay mention — losing fear. I no longer feel nervous about tackling a project even if it’s way above my skill level, because sewing is now less a mystery that baffles me, and more a puzzle that can be figured out with the help of the terrific folks around here. I definitely find I turn to my O+S patterns for guidance on technique, even when I’m making something totally unrelated (like a tie for my sister-in-law’s dog, of all the silly things). Getting over the hurdle of being intimidated also got me interested in other creative things as well. My goals for next year are:

    learning to work with knits

    trying out applique/reverse applique

    more embroidery

    learning to crochet

    learning to add zippers

    making clothes for adults


    NOT BUYING ANY MORE FABRIC until my stash is down to a manageable level

    Anonymous @

    Sarvi, I feel the same way about having confidence in my sewing. I used to really feel nervous when I started any kind of garment, but now I know that it will come out wonderfully if I just follow the O&S instructions. I think my favorite thing I’ve learned from Liesl is to sew basting stitches as a fold line. I do that all the time now. Love it.

    runciblespoon @runciblespoon

    This has been the year of rediscovering sewing for me. I had spent too many years just making curtains and fancy-dress costumes, then, when I was pregnant with my daughter, I started sewing clothes and now I can’t stop! I love the instant-gratification appeal of making tiny clothes. And the O&S patterns have been a joy, it’s hard to use anything else now… So, I’ve learned a lot this year – the highlights have been:

    using a zipper foot for perfect topstitching (that was from an icecream dress sew-a-long);

    being inspired by clever fabric / colour combinations on the flickr group;

    making french seams (where have they been all my life?);

    using clear elastic for gathering – as in the bubble dress hem, so satisfying.

    Plans for next year – invisible zip, button holes (haven’t made any since discovering press-on snaps, but now I have a lot of lovely buttons wanting to be used) and, like Sarvi, wondering if it’s overlocker time?

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