Sewing Gifts to get YOU for the Holidays.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Sewing Gifts to get YOU for the Holidays.

I love these "gifts for sewists lists" that are popping up everywhere! I love them because they masquerade as advice for civilians! Ninja, please (we've been watching iZombie, which is wonderful), civilians ain't reading these holiday gift list posts! EVERYONE KNOWS WE SEWISTS ARE THE ONES TAKING COPIUS AND DETAILED NOTES OF SHINY NEW SEWING ITEMS FOR WHEN WE RETURN THOSE NOVELTY SLIPPERS AND BATHROBES!

Let's be real here: this list is what to get YOU for the holidays. Or ME, if you like me.

I'm pretty sure I could be forgiven for decorating Ye Old Rainbow Yarn Bombed Christmas Tree with two dozen of these, and repurposing them immediately as sewing shelf decor, when the mistletoe has wilted.

They say it's a gift for barbers. I say they're missing a whole world of uber obsessed people with good money to spend.

Tape. Dispenser. Caddy. One is a cat, the official mascot of sewists.

Listen, don't get your hand made panties in a bunch, if you're a dog person, that's cool too. I mean, I don't get it, per se, because y'all have to, like, GO OUTSIDE IN RAIN AND SNOW AND SLEET AND PICK UP THE FECAL MATTER OF ANOTHER ORGANISM, but really, that's cool. You do you. While you're doing you (and doo doo), slap something sewing related on your mutt so you can zen out on the half finished party dress that awaits you, once you finish tying up that plastic baggie.

The best inexpensive scissors, if your hands hurt from cutting out that party dress with those shiny metal jobs.

The best expensive for what it is solution to stopping said hands from snagging and pulling the expensive fabric you bought for that party dress.

Of course, you'll want to have the proper decoration for those hands, especially when shooting your fabric haul on youtube and whatnot. (But no really, click that link, the product picture needs a little cleaning up and it's making my eye twitch and I have to know if it makes yours twitch too.)

Maybe you're thinking, HEY MAN, I like to keep my nails tidy with CLIPPERS, and don't categorize me in your DOG AND CAT WORLD, man, I'm a FISH person, fish never lie down on your fabric and they make wonderful sewing desk companions. And I'm all STOP YELLING.  I got you, fishy fishy.

Or maybe you just drink like a fish. And since you're a sewist, the liquid is probably gin. I am equal parts thrilled and utterly dismayed by gin's resurgence, as gin has been my thing since before gin was cool. I have a hard time with things getting cool. Example: Harry Potter books. I loved them, they got cool, I felt oddly tricked, I abandoned Harry Potter. However, gin, being a delicious alcoholic beverage, has escaped this fate. My favorite under-the-radar, inexpensive (comparatively, gin now being cool) choice that beats many craft-hip-gins out there is Broker's. It comes with a little plastic bowler hat on it! I'm not linking to the gin, because I think that makes this a 21 and over joint. Drink responsibly, yo.

Speaking of drinking, here are some vessels that aren't adorned with the prerequisite kitty (or the lesser known dog or fish). Have a skull shot glass for that gin (please sip, don't slug. I'm not as much worried about your health as I am your level of classiness). Caffeine your go-to? Here's a mug that will let everyone know you will level them if they come between you and your sewing juice.

You can't have a sewist's gift list without touting a few of these. Sewing machines that: operate your ceiling fan, decorate your tree, make music, and produce fire.


I'm out.

the amazon links in this post are affiliated, and most of them will make you laugh. some of them will make you realize that there are ridiculous things out there that you never knew you needed, until that crazy girl you follow, who sometimes talks about sewing, got it in her head very late last night, and with the help of some gin, to write a gag post which turned into a list of ridiculous things SHE never knew she needed.  


Vogue 1493 Tips!

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Vogue 1493 Tips!

Hello elves. I know you're out there, churning out handmade holiday gifts to beat the band and fight the consumerism power! Might I suggest, if you're in need of a pattern for someone special on your list, something more than an eye pillow, something with a little bit of WOW factor: Vogue 1493 by Koos

I haven't seen very many of these in the wild, and I think it's because it looks super fussy on the envelope. It's complicated, but it doesn't have to be quite so complicated. Allow me to persuade you. 

1. Let's talk bias binding. Oh hohoho! Sewist, skip aaaaaall of that extra bias binding applique! Yes, it's cool, but if you pick a wild pattern or a textured fabric, you're not going to need that all that extra. (And, even if you use a solid, it still looks super cool, especially if your "solid" has texture.)

2. Are there really 13 pattern pieces? Nope, not if you're following my previous sage advice...then you're only using pieces 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8 & 12. The other six pieces are bias binding & duplicates with markings on them for all of that extra applique that you're merrily skipping. You're welcome.

3. This is a great pattern to make for others, as it's sized in ranges. Size ranges are great for gifting. Especially when the receivers, you know, don't get that we need to measure them every once in awhile. It does have quite a bit of ease-- the envelope puts me at the larger end of M, but I cut XS. I'd say go down at least one size.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Vogue 1493 Tips!

4. Save some fabric! Hey, who's going to see that inside seam on the sleeve? Thaaaaat's right. Save a little fabric, especially if it's super pretty fabric that you only have so much of. Add seam allowance to the foldline of Lower Sleeve 8, and cut a contrasting bias facing for the sleeve hem. Overlock your inner sleeve seam, and you've saved a seriously good amount of fabric. Really need to scrimp? Leave off the side vents, and sew the side seams up as one long seam. MORE SCRIMPING, SCROOGE? Reduce the width of the front facing, as I did here--it's just one long rectangle of fabric, joined at center back.

5. Mark. All. Your. Notches. And. Dots. This pattern loves a good mark, and rewards you for taking the extra 3 minutes to transfer them to your yardage. Definitely mark your seamline at that triangle point on piece 6. You'll do a little dance of joy when you finish that seam perfectly at first go.

oonaballoona | by marcy harriell | Vogue 1493 Tips!

5. Think about how you want to handle those raw edges in advance! Koos calls for each seam to be bound, which is a beautiful thing, but you can also get away with other treatments. Some of my seams are overlocked, as the fabric is spongy and hides thread, some are turned under & stitched, some are bias bound. The pocket is the only section that'll throw a wrench in your timesaving plans if you're opting out of bias binding (ask me how I know), and in that case, you can always sew up the side front seam and leave the pockets out. 

6. OH STOP YELLING I KNOW YOU LOVE POCKETS. Ok, irritable elf, why don't you sew up that side front seam, and throw some patch pockets on the front? Or, you know, you can stay up till 3am drinking egg nog and muttering about why you always do this to yourself, as you bias bind each and every seam. I won't judge. I especially won't judge if that "someone special" you're sewing for is yourself ;)

(You can see the full frontal of this Koos jacket today, over at the Mood Sewing Network. Now I gotta go sew like 800 things. Probably while drinking egg nog. Happy weekend, y'all! Don't' bias bind anything I wouldn't bias bind!)