Thursday, September 15, 2016

How To Starch Fabric

Hey y'all! I'm back and this week I'm going to be showing you all how I starch my fabrics. I'm sure there are plenty of different ways you can starch your fabrics, but I'm going to show you how I starch mine. The way I think about it is that it works for me and if it aint broken don't' fix it! lol!
   Make sure you check out my video where I'm showing you exactly what I do. I'm going to try to walk you through it in pictures as well, but the video shows you exactly what I do.

First I'm going to go over the different types of starch that I have came across, my video goes a little more in depth about them so I'm just going to give you a quick run through of them.

The first type of starch is Niagra, it can be found at almost any store for really cheap. I have used Niagra and it's not that bad, but now I just use the spray bottle it came in.

The 2nd type of starch is Mary Ellen's Best Press, this is the type that I use every day. I normally buy the refill bottles (the large bottle in the picture above) and pour it in the Niagra bottle and use it that way. If you just want to try it out you can get the smaller bottle (it's the orange in the picture) to see if you like it. I love the scents it comes in and I love the way it makes my fabrics feel.

The last type of starch (or starch alternative) that I'm going to talk about it Flatter by Soak. I really really love this product, the smells are absolutely amazing! My only problem with this type of starch is the price point. It is a lot more expensive then the other 2 I've talked about. And me being the penny pincher I am I can't afford to use it. I use a lot of starch and the size this type comes in would probably only last me for maybe 2 projects. It is an amazing product though.

Now, I'll go over how and why I starch my fabrics.

The reason I like to starch my fabrics before I even cut them is I feel that starched fabrics are easier to work with, the starch makes them feel almost paper like. I feel like I can cut the fabric more accurately and also piece more accurately when my fabrics are starched.

the first step is to lay out your fabric on your pressing surface. Pictured is a fat quarter but you can use this process with any cut you have.

Now spray your fabric lightly but thoroughly with starch.

Flip your fabric over to the opposite side from which you just sprayed.

Using a hot iron (I prefer to not use steam but if you prefer steam that is fine too!) press until the fabric is dry to touch. Be careful not to distort your fabric.

Once you have completed pressing your fabrics go ahead and spray again with starch. You will be spraying the side that you just pressed.

Flip over the fabric again and press until dry. The reason I spray one side and press from the opposite side is that the starch adheres to the fibers better this way. You will press this side until it is completely dry, again being careful not to distort your fabric.

Now you can repeat until you get the desired stiffness. I normally only do the process once, meaning the starch is sprayed on the front and back of the fabric. You will notice a big difference in the drape of your fabric once you have starched it. You don't need to worry, the starch will wash out.

When I'm working on a quilt block once I complete the block I will starch it as well as any completed quilt top too.

I hope you found this helpful and that you checked out my video! I would love if you would subscribe to my YouTube channel as well as follow me on my social media!!!

I will talk to y'all soon!!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Basic Quilting and Sewing Supplies

      Hey everyone! I know I've been MIA for a long time now, but right now it's time to change that! Over the past few weeks I've been working on filming and editing a few different videos for my YouTube channel. Which also means I've been taking a lot of pictures for my blog too! With my videos I'm mainly focusing on beginner quilters. The reason for that is when I was learning how to sew I would try to find the answer to my questions on blogs, youtube, google everywhere! There was a lot of things I couldn't find online so I just had to guess the answer and learn through trial and error. I remember a lot of the things I would try to find online and I know if I had the question someone else will too. Not all of my videos are going to be focused on the beginner I've got some tutorials coming as well, the tutorials are for everyone, I'm going to break them down and make them as easy as I can that way a beginner can make the project too. My goal is to upload a new video at least once a week with a corresponding blog post, I may throw some random blog posts in during the week too, so make sure you subscribe to my blog and YouTube channel so you don't miss any of my videos or blog posts! I would greatly appreciate it!

    Now, my first video in over a year is what you need to get started sewing or quilting. Just your basic supplies and some optional things that I use. In the video I left out a few things, it's hard to remember everything sometimes! But I made sure to get pictures of everything for this blog post.
So, this is what anyone that wants to start sewing will need to have in order to do so.

To watch my new video just click here!

First thing you will need is a sewing machine! This is a picture of my Juki TL 2010Q. If you are just starting to sew I would not recommend getting this machine, you will just need a basic sewing machine, it doesn't have to be fancy or expensive either. My first machine was a Brother that I got at walmart on Black Friday for around $25.

You will need some thread, I use Gutermann mainly, I love Aurifil as well it's just harder for me to get in my area. I use white for most everything I sew, you can use whatever color you prefer, I just find white to be the easiest because it goes with everything!

You will need needles, using a fresh needle with every project is a good idea. (I will admit I'm terrible when it comes to changing out my needles though!) You will also need a pair of thread scissors, they are a lot easier to use to snip a thread than a large pair of fabric scissors. And you will need a seam ripper! As much as any quilter hates using them we all have to have them, everyone makes mistakes, my seam ripper was my very best friend when I was learning how to sew.

Every sewing machine comes with a bag of different items for your sewing machine. The picture below is what I received with my Juki. It includes different presser feet, oil, screwdriver (for changing presser feet and needles), and a seam ripper. Depending on the machine you have the items in your bag will probably be a bit different. Every machine I own has came with at least a few presser feet, screwdriver, and seam ripper.

You will need pins and some sort of pincushion. In the picture below I have 3 different examples of pincushions. The purple square is a magnetic pin holder, the larger pincushion is one that I made, and the smaller one is an amazing cushion that my friend Kari made for me. You can never have too many pincushions (I PROMISE!)

You will need a lint brush, this is used to help clean your machine and get all the lint out (you will probably get one of these with your sewing machine.) You will need extra bobbins that fit your machine so you don't have to stop and wind a bobbin every time one runs out, it saves a lot of time.
You will need some extra needles and pins as well.

This item is optional but I absolutely LOVE using them. They are called Wonder Clips by Clover. They are used as a replacement for pins. When you are first getting started I recommend using regular pins though.

Next you will need a basic iron. It doesn't have to be fancy it just needs to get hot! Some people prefer using steam while pressing, some don't...I'll leave that up to you.

You will need an ironing board or pressing board (I know mine is filthy, I need to recover it.) If you want to learn how to make your own pressing board I have a video on how to make one right here. It's really easy to do.

I use a lot of starch when I'm sewing, of course it is optional but I strongly recommend using it. I'll have a video coming soon on how I starch my fabrics. I use Mary Ellen's Best Press but there is a lot of different types of starch out there.

This is my mini trash can or thread catcher. You don't have to have one of these I just find it very useful to have it in my sewing area to throw my threads and trimming in, instead of having to go to the trash can every time I cut something.

You will need a rotary cutter,  a self healing rotary cutting mat, and some fresh blades for your rotary cutter. These are very very sharp so make sure you keep it out of reach of little hands and keep yours locked when not in use. In the picture are examples of different sizes of rotary cutters, I recommend starting with a 45mm, I use that size the majority of the time.

You will also need a pair of fabric scissors. Make sure not to use your fabric scissors on anything except fabric so they will stay really sharp!

Along with your rotary cutter and mat you will need an Acrylic Ruler. There are many different rulers to choose from and they come in all different shapes and sizes. I mainly use my 3" by 18" ruler.

This picture is another example of acrylic rulers.

Depending on what kind of project you are working on you will need a fabric safe marking tool. Pictured below is a Frixxon pen which is what I use but there are a lot of different types of marking tools you can get. Chalk is a common marking tool as well. I like the Frixxon pens because they are easy to see on most every fabric and the ink disappears with heat.

The last item I am mentioning is a washable glue stick. This is something most people already have in their house and if not it's super cheap to buy. This is an optional item, some people don't like using glue on their fabric, I find it very helpful when sewing zippers and with paper piecing.

So that's it! Your list of things you need to get started sewing along with a few optional items that I like. I hope you find this helpful. If you have any questions don't hesitate to leave me a comment, I will get back to you ASAP.

I would love it if you would subscribe to my blog as well as my YouTube channel, share my video with your friends and on social media!

You can also follow me on social media, I included a link to all my social media below to make it easy for you to find me!
Just click on any of the social media names and it will take you straight to my feed(s), I would love for you to "follow" me or subscribe to me on any or all of my social media!

Again, I hope you found this video and blog post helpful. If you have any ideas for future posts or videos I would love to hear them!

Thank you so much for stopping by! I'll talk to you again very soon!!!!!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

I'm back

Wow, it's been a really long time, huh? 18 months to be exact. So where have I been and why did I just fall off the face of the earth? This post is to answer those questions. First, I would like to thank all of the people who sent me emails and messages checking on me and supporting me. It really meant a lot. This past year and a half has been the hardest time of my life. My life literally fell apart.
        So, what happened? Without getting into all the details of everything I'm going to try to explain as much as I can. I went from "happily married" to a single mom, lost my 2 step-children, my husband, my house, everything in a very short time period. I lost my spark. I didn't want to do anything anymore. I quit sewing all together.

        I've since moved and have tried to start my life over. It's not easy by any means. I keep telling myself that I got this, that I can do this. It's really hard to believe it, but no one can change the way things are going except for me. Which is one of the reasons I'm writing this post. I'm going to get back to my old self, I'm going to realize my dreams, and I'm going to do it with the support of this wonderful community I use to be part of. I know I still have many friends from the sewing/quilting community and their support has meant so much to me. Which is why I know I will have their support. It may take me some time to get back on track but I will get there.

     I'm planning on getting my YouTube channel back up and running, I have tons of ideas for it. What's the saying? "Aint nothing to it but to do it"? I keep telling myself that. So, I'm going to get my head back on and get stuff done. I miss sewing, I miss sharing my projects, I miss it all. One quote that has really stuck with me this year is by Mary Fons from her lecture at Quilt Con in 2013.

"When life falls apart it makes perfect sense to take a piece of fabric, tear it apart, and sew it back together again"

      That quote is so true. I've been sewing here and there, making little things, working on one quilt (which I'm almost done with). But I'm getting there, I'm getting back to me. I just need your support and friendship. When I feel like I'm all alone (which anymore is quite often) I find myself pulling up Instagram or the list of blogs that I follow and I see so much inspiration. I know I can do this.

     I know this post wasn't very interesting and doesn't have a lot of pictures but I'm going to get on a schedule, and the next post I write will have some of the things I've made over the past few months. I'm also working on a few video ideas that are going to be fairly simple to make. So please forgive me for this post, I will make up for it. I just had to let you all know where I've been and what has happened.

    Again, I thank each and every one of you for your support, your emails, your messages. It's part of what has kept me going. I hope you all are happy to see me back, I know I'm happy to be back. Any comments are more than welcome!

I love you all!!!!!

~See you soon!!!~

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Easy Fleece Blanket Video Tutorial

I know I have been on a very long hiatus but I'm back! I've been going through some.... well the best way to put it is, LIFE! But I'm hoping I've got things back on the right track and I can get back to my happy place (which we all know is with my sewing machine!)
This post is just a short one to let you know I'M STILL HERE!!! And also to let you know I've got a new tutorial posted on YouTube!  YAY!

I made this super simple fleece blanket for my boss. She's been going through a really rough time these past 3 months (and still needs lot of prayers sent her way!) so I wanted to make her something special. I knew I needed it to be a quick project, so I went to my Fleece Blanket! I decided to film it as I went, and including the filming process from start to finish on the entire blanket I spent around 2 hours on the entire blanket! (the editing is a-whole-nother story!!!! I'm still clueless about what I'm doing in that department!)

      I have to tell on myself too. I was a terrible blogger for this project! I was in such a hurry to give this to her I didn't even take ONE SINGLE PICTURE of this blanket....thankfully my boss came to the rescue! So thank you for the pictures again, Dawn!!!!
      As I'm sure you can tell, she is a HUGE Tennessee Vols fan, so I picked 2 different TN Vols fleece fabric for her blanket! The fun thing about this blanket is you can customize it to whatever you want! You can have any 2 pieces of fleece you want! It would be super easy to do a large patchwork version of this blanket, you'd just have to take a few extra steps.

        Anyways, I have a lot of things planned for my YouTube channel! I've got some really easy DIY quick gift ideas that I'll be filming as well as some other stuff too! So make sure you click the link above and subscribe to my channel so you don't miss out on any of them!

(I'm hoping you can just click right on that play button and it should play the video or at least take you to the video, if it doesn't work PLEASE let me know!!!)

    So, don't forget to go check out the tutorial and give it a thumbs up if you like it, subscribe to my channel, and check out all my social media links!!!

  I want to say thank you to all of you who have supported me in this journey and honestly if it wasn't for you guys being in my corner, I think I would've given up by now! Really, truly, THANK YOU for being here!!!! XOXOXOXOXO

~Hope y'all are having a GREAT day!!~

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Finished Quilt Top

    Wow, I can't believe it's been almost a month since I've blogged! I've been super busy lately with work and summer.....the 3 little ones are in a Pee Wee league for the summer and that takes up a lot of time as well. But enough with the excuses! I've also been sewing away!!!
     I've got quite a few things I'm working on...I'm really excited to show you this finished quilt top though! I had the design stuck in my head ever since I got my Patchwork Threads t-shirt! LOL!

     First I have to share a little bit about the photo location. We are actually on vacation right now in Sevierville, TN  (AKA Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg)! It is so gorgeous down here in the Smokey Mountains. Yes, I know I live in the Smokeys but the views down here are just breathtaking.

     See what I mean?
    But I know you guys wanna see some pretty stuff, well, pretty sewing related things at least, right?

     As you can see, the wind was not very cooperative, but I still love these pics and just had to share them with you!

        I have the best quilt holder upper ever! :)

   I really love the way this top has turned out and am soooo excited to get it quilted and bound! I used 3.5" squares. I didn't want a flat background so I chose to use a variety of low volume and text prints for the background. I really could not be happier with the way this turned out. I can definitely see myself making a few more of these. They come together super quick!

    The heart is made out of some of my very favorite fabrics. I love the contrast between low volume and really bright fabrics!

  Ignore all the wrinkles in it please, it was packed up with the rest of my sewing gear I brought on vacation with me.

    I have a few different ideas of how I want to quilt it, but haven't settled on one. What do you all think would look good? I wanna get away from my usual stipple design and try my hand at something a bit more interesting, I'm just not sure what.

  If Donnie had not been holding the corner at this point the entire quilt would have flown away! So, I decided I had enough pics for the day! (plus my memory card was full)

   Let me know what you think of this quilt! I'll have a new video tutorial up in the next few days (the internet here is really spotty so I'm not sure if it will upload or not, but I am going to try)! I'm also testing a pattern for someone and am so inlove with the way its turning out! I can't wait to share it with you guys!!!!

   I promise I'll be back before the month is gone! LOL!

    I'm linking up with Amanda Jean this Friday for Finish It Friday!

~Hope y'all are having a GREAT day!!~

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Scrap Sewing and New Tutorial

Hello there! I don't know about you guys, but do you ever get the itch to just sew? I mean without rhyme or reason or pattern? I needed a big stress reliever and for me sewing is my stress relief! I started out with a nice big pile of pretty fabric scraps....

       I had no plans except to sew some scraps together. No particular size in mind...I just wanted to see if I could sit down at the machine and come up with something pretty.  

         This is what I came up with after a little bit. I really liked where it was going. Do u wanna see the finished project? You know you do!

           Here is the finished top. I asked on Instagram whether I should make it a mini or a pillow. Pillow was the majority so that's what I went with.

         I love the way it turned out! There is nothing better than a quick, fun, and easy project! At least for me anyways!
        I used my favorite method for this pillow which is an Envelop Closure and pssstttt.....I even made a video tutorial on how I do it! Soooo.....If you wanna learn how finish the majority of my pillows you can go watch my video tutorial right here! I know that my videos are a little long right now and that's mainly because I want to be able to know that I didn't leave any steps out and that you can understand exactly how I do it. I've got a few ideas on how to make them a bit shorter but for now, they are a little long. I hope you will still go watch it and let me know what you think!

         You should be able to click on the video right above this sentence to watch it too!

       I chose to do a black and white stripe binding because, well let's be honest, it's one of my favorite ways to bind anything!
      I really hope you will go check out my video and would absolutely LOVE it if you would subscribe to my channel so you don't miss out on any future tutorials and videos I've got planned. Just a hint but I'll be doing a product review next!

Oh yeah! If I forgot to tell you in my last post I now have a Facebook page! You can find that right here!

I'll be linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Friday this week!

~Hope y'all are having a GREAT day!!~

Friday, May 16, 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival : ROYGBIV entry

        It's that time of year again! Yep, you know what I'm talking about.... the WONDERFUL Blogger's Quilt Festival!!!!!

      If this is your first time visiting my little spec on the internet, WELCOME! I'm so glad you decided to stop by! My name is Kelie and I have been sewing/quilting for around 2 1/2 years now. I'm addicted to everything about creating a wonderful quilt or anything quilt/sewing related! If you wanna know a little bit more about me you can find out here or if you'd like to see any of my other creations you can see those here. (or just click the "About Me" tab and the "Finished Quts" tab...which I'm working on getting completely updated)
      But you are here to see what I quilt I decided to enter into the Festival, huh?

             Let me tell you the story behind it! A friend of mine (Karie) and I decided since we both loved rainbows so much plus each other's work why not do a little swap between ourselves? I don't know if any of you have ever done a swap before but let me tell you, I'm my most creative when I'm making something for someone else. I want to make something that I love sooo much that I would be thrilled if I received it. So, I always push my boundaries. This is what I created for that swap.
           It's very simple patchwork but I have never seen another one like it before! I absolutely hated giving this one away (I already have plans to make one for myself)!!!!


        It's made up of around 686 1.5" blocks! I didn't want a stark white background, so I went with Low Volume prints. It was really fun to see this come together, block by block.

             It took me forever trying to figure out how to quilt it! In the end I decided to go with an all over loopy design, kind of reminded me of the wind blowing (don't burst my bubble!!!)

              These blocks are so little, my wonderful (but small) label even covered 2 of them! But just like I knew she would Karie absolutely LOVES it! (I'm gonna ask her if I can use one of her pics of it hanging on her "mini wall" it looks awesome there!

                   I backed it in one of my favorites, Britten Numbers!
      I hope you guys love this quilt as much as I do! I can't wait to make another one! (Maybe I'll even take you guys along for the ride on my YouTube Channel..... stay tuned for that!


            Anywho, I would ABSOLUTELY love you forever if you loved my entry enough to nominate it! It's going into the ROYGBIV category!

Quilt Stats
-Size approx 14"x28"
-Designed, Pieced, and Quilted by Kelie Copas (me)

Thank you guys soo sooo much for stopping by! Don't forget to go check out all of the other amazing quilts entered into the Blogger's Quilt Festival (and vote for mine!)

P.S. I finally created a Facebook Fan Page that you can find here and I would love it if you would "like" it so you can keep up to date with anything going on!

I'll also be linking this finished beauty up with Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Friday!

~Hope y'all are having a GREAT day!!!~