Accessibility in clothing is something most of us don't think about until we have to deal with it directly. There are so many different scenarios that can make it difficult to put on a pair of pants or shirt. We might think of disabled individuals in wheelchairs needing assistance in dressing. How about someone who is home or bedbound? Or someone who is failing in their capacities due to a stroke or dementia? A caregiver usually assists with dressing and personal needs and it can be a tough situation. This blog post will hopefully help someone out there who is looking for a way to alter a pair of pajama pants. Although I do not have each step here on my website, I do have a video tutorial you can watch down below.
I purchased a pair of fleece pajama bottoms from a local big box retailer and altered it to have tab tops with snaps at the waist.
The inside waist has another tab that is secured with velcro. This will add extra support.
The side seams fully open with velcro. This will make it easier to accommodate dressing someone who might not be able to lift their legs or move in the usual way. This pair of pants did have pockets and a drawstring that fully function after the alterations.
All of these adjustments were done with straight seams and a few added materials.
I added a long strip of fabric that was interfaced and folded to the side seam after it was taken apart. This is where one side of the velcro was attached.
I created the tabs with fabric that was interfaced for added stability. You can see here I sewed and turned them right side out.
90/14 needles were used because the fleece and interfaced material were thick in areas.
This picture shows the second side of velcro ready to be sewn.
Along With The Snap Tab and the Velcro at the waistband, you could add one extra piece of security. If you look closely, there is a hook and eye sewn at the join. This won't interfere with the closures you add and just in case one of them comes loose, the hook and eye will hold tight. Now that I have shown you a few pictures of the process, are you curious to see how the alteration was done? Just click the play button on the video. It will take you through one entire side of pants and several of the steps could be used on other types of clothing. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Spring cleaning and Earth Day have inspired my newest In The Hoop Scrubbie embroidery design. If you have read many of my other blog posts, you will find that I love to repurpose things and I do have a problem throwing items away. Many packaging materials are treasures waiting to be re-purposed. I am hoping this project will inspire you to look around your home to get those creative recycling juices flowing.
I love to make oatmeal with fresh ginger. If you haven't tried adding this to your morning cereal, give it a try. When you purchase ginger and many other produce items, they will often come packaged in mesh bags like the picture above. This mesh material is usually sturdy and tightly woven. I can't throw it in the garbage because I know it can be useful for scrubbing. In fact, if you will look at purchased scrubbing sponges, they might have similar if not the same materials on them.
This photo is a little embarrassing because it shows just how long I shamelessly use dish towels. Yes this was pulled from my kitchen drawer but it can become a fresh new In The Hoop Scrubbie. I also will move these into my rag bag for washing cars. So just a tip, any leftover towels that you don't turn into scrubbies are perfect for those outdoor jobs as well.
This project uses three layers of towel so you can find outer areas to cut that have smaller or no holes. The inner layer of towel can have larger holes because you won't see it. The mesh bag is trimmed open and cut into squares. See just how much usable fabric you can get when you look for it? The towel is already broken in and soft so it will be absorbent and ready for duty. The mesh will give an extra layer of cleaning power without being too abrasive.
One extra recycling step will be to cut all of the leftover bits of towel and mesh into small pieces to stuff the scrubbie before it is closed up. This gives extra bulk and thickness. I see clean tires and rims in my future or maybe a fresh barbeque grill?.
When sewing the final seam with a needle and thread I will advise you to use a strong polyester thread. The mesh is a tough material and cotton thread may cut easily when you pull the thread tightly underneath it. Altogether you can finish these quickly in assembly line fashion. This would be a good project to do with kids. They can help with cutting the squares of towel and mesh and learn about recycling along the way.
It's not colorful and bright like brand new plastic wrapped scrubbies but it will do the same if not better job. Throw these in your washing machine to sanitize after use. Are you inspired to recycle something today? Watch my instruction video below to see how quickly you can make your own scrubbie. Start gathering your FREE materials from your home and grocery shopping. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Easter and Springtime are here. Aren't you happy about that? Just a few weeks ago I was looking at brown trees and now everything is blooming in my yard. The days are longer too and that makes me really happy. My latest design Chenille Chick is a bright and soft project that is perfect for this time of year. I think you could use it for baby shower gifts too. Maybe on quilts for little ones or pillows to decorate their bedrooms. So many options with this one because you customize it with the fabric colors.
Can you believe that this picture is the before? Chenille with your embroidery machine is easy to do but you do have to have a design that is digitized for specifically for chenille. Layers of fabric are stacked in your hoop and small channels are created. I have layered two different fabric colors. One is plain and the other has a pattern. Then you carefully cut in between them without going all the way down to the base fabric or stabilizer.
Your most important tools will be your scissors. I prefer to use small sharp curved ones. When you are cutting, the curve will help get around your hoop edges and under each layer of fabric. You really can't rush when cutting and each layer needs to be done one at a time so you don't make any mistakes. If you don't have patience with handwork, Machine Embroidery Chenille might not be your favorite thing to do.
Another tool you will need is a small metal brush or Chenille Brush. I like to use this one from Harbor Freight. They are a little sharp so be careful when using them. Your fabric can get damaged if you are too aggressive. I like to think of Chenille as a process. The first time you rough up the fabric edges, you will probably see long threads. These need to be cut away. Then you use the brush again and if more threads need to be cut, so on and so forth. You can also wash and dry the design with some large towels. All of this helps fluff that cut fabric.
The Chenille Chick Embroidery Design that I have sewn was turned into a pillow above. Notice how the layered pattern fabric peeks through and matches the ribbon color. You can put the ribbon bow on the top of the head like mine or at the neck for a bow tie. One more cute Idea would be to turn it into a stuffie toy. Cut out the design along the edge and leave a seam allowance. Add a back fabric and fiberfill for a plush lovey. Have I got you inspired yet? Watch the video below to see how the chenille is created. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Sewing needles are one of those tools that should be changed according to your project type or materials. My newest In The Hoop Needle Minder design will help you remember what kind of needle you have taken out of your machine for later use. I like to change my needles at the beginning of a new project and sometimes I am creating something with multiple fabric types. I might be doing embroidery first on a cotton fabric and then construction next on a denim. So the first needle could be taken out and placed in the Needle Minder while a new denim needle is being used. If you stay away from your crafting for a while and come back, you can quickly see what type and size needle you have placed in the Needle Minder.
The finished project is easily installed on your sewing machine using elastic and snaps. You only need to measure the distance around the open area and it can stay on the side of your machine or on the front depending on your preference.
The elastic lays flat and should not impede your sewing. It is easily removed and reinstalled though.
This would be a perfect stocking stuffer or gift for the sewing enthusiast in your life. They embroider quickly and require small pieces of fabric. Perfect for using up those remnants.
If you haven't used snaps before. this In The Hoop Needle Minder would be an excellent project to get some practice. In fact, I believe this would be an easy beginner embroidery design to learn sewing with fabrics, elastic, snaps, fiber fill and closing seams with a needle and thread.
There is always an occasion to add to your sewing studio tools. This In The Hoop Needle Minder should become a favorite once you use it. Your stitching friends will want one also so start working on those birthday and Mother's Day gifts. I have an instruction video you can watch below that shows how this project comes together. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
I love to do applique with my embroidery machine. If you have tried to use your cutting machine to cut out your fabric applique shapes and were not successful, I hope some of these tips might help. I am using my brand new Plain Applique Rabbit Embroidery Design just being released today to show the steps. Click the link to visit my store. I also have a video that you can watch below that will show this process if you would like to see it in action. Just press the play button.
I am updating an old T Shirt that is very soft and loved. I have lightweight interfacing and cotton fabric for the body of the rabbit.
I also have fusible web, my hoop with cutaway stabilizer and minky fabric for the bunny tail. The fusible web is found in the sewing section of your store. One brand name you may have heard of is Wonder Under. It is actually a glue web with a paper backing. This will help your fabric stay pressed to whatever substrate you are doing the applique on. The cutaway stabilizer is being used because my T Shirt is stretchy.
The fabric is cut to size here along with the interfacing. I am using a lightweight brand so the applique retains a softer "Hand" or feel. The interfacing is pressed to the back of the fabric according to the manufacturer instructions then I always press from the front as well. Once you have done this, your fabric will be sturdier and less prone to stretching or skewing. The adhesive web is pressed to the back side of the fabric after interfacing. This will create a bond to the T Shirt once pressed. Leave the paper on the fusible web.
When opening the embroidery design in your software, you will need to make a note of the dimensions of the placement line. This is usually the first step in the design that tells you where to lay your fabric. Write that down for later. If you don't have embroidery software, you may need to do download a free viewing software so you can open the file. There are several companies that offer trial versions or smaller free versions that will allow that. Hatch by Wilcom has a 30 day free trial.
If you don't have a cutting machine, you can still use SVG Cut files. Your internet browser is usually the default on most computers that will open them. Once opened, you can print on a plain piece of copy paper. Cut out the file with a pair of scissors and use it as a pattern for your fabric.
You will load your cut file into the software for your cutting machine. I use the Free version from Silhouette. My version does not open SVG files, but I convert them to a DXF file with Corel, then import them. CHECK those dimensions of the cut file in your cutting software and compare them to the measurements from your embroidery software. I find that mine are not always the same, so I have to adjust the size. The placement line dimensions in the embroidery design is where you want to cut. It is usually the first step in the project and is followed by additional steps. Some designs will have an option to use scissors to cut your fabric and then tack it down. The tack down is commonly a type of zig zag that will capture the edges of your fabric.
This step might seem odd, but you will flip or MIRROR your cut file in your cutting software. Notice the left picture is the embroidery file and the right picture is the cut file that has been flipped. You do this because of the next step which is placing the fabric on your cutting mat.
Remember we have interfaced and pressed our fusible web to the back of the fabric. We have also kept the paper on the fusible web. My mat has been well used and lost some of its stickiness. I like this for cutting fabric so that when I pull it away from the mat, the fabric comes off easily. I place my FABRIC RIGHT SIDE DOWN on the mat with the PAPER FACING UP. Then I use masking tape along the fabric edges on the mat. This keeps the fabric in place and helps keep the cutting blade from lifting the edges as it moves across the mat. Our cut file will be mirrored and "Backwards" and the right side of the fabric will now have the correct image for our embroidery. The stabilized fabric will stretch less. The paper from the fusible web adds a layer of protection that inhibits the blade from dragging across the fabric. These are to me the most important steps in preparing your fabric so your cutting machine can do the best job possible.
I am using a fabric blade in my cutting machine and I usually choose the recommended cut settings. So in my software I chose light cotton fabric. My force is 7 and speed is 5. I used three passes. You will want to try a test cut the first time just to make sure. There are a lot of variables that can affect your cut. Your fabric may be thicker than mine and your blade sharper or dull. So take a little extra time to check before you have problems and waste fabric, interfacing and fusible web.
After your fabric is cut, remove it from your mat. The paper can be peeled away from the fusible web. Depending on the cut file design, you may see small threads that have not been cut cleanly. Usually these show up in sharp corners or angles. Some fabrics have tighter weaves or the fabric count is denser and the blade doesn't quite slice through completely. Just carefully trim them with a small pair of scissors.
If you have prepared your fabric to be as stable as possible, you should have a successful applique ready to embroider. One extra tip that I did not use with my sample project is starch. There are several brands available that can be applied to your fabric. They will add a crispness that feels like paper once dried. If you have tried all of the other tips without desired results, try heavily starching your fabric.
After the embroidery is finished and the stabilizer has been cut away, I like to press the fusible web. This is done with the garment inside out and pressing from the back side. It will create a bond keeping the applique fabric from pulling away through wear and laundering.
This Plain Applique Rabbit Embroidery Design stitches quickly and I love how it updated one of my favorite T shirts. Here are some other inspirational projects it could be used for.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
I am always looking for ways to streamline my embroidery and tools are the quickest way I have found. Templates are my favorite tool and I use them a lot. I have Exophoria which means my eyes don't always track together and will wander if I am tired or stressed. I do have bifocal glasses made especially for close work but there are days that I need a little extra help. Templates that double check measurements or squaring placement really make my crafting life easier.
I have several embroidery machines and my single needle has all sorts of laser and camera tools. My Multi Needle did not come with a laser so I have a more difficult time judging the placement of the embroidery foot. On most projects, if I can get relatively close I am in good shape. For more precise projects like one I am working on above, I need exact location. I am embroidering 42 different designs for a quilt on a single piece of fabric. I have 1/2 inch around each design to allow for cutting out the completed blocks once sewn. This is for economy of fabric use. You can see I created a small foam tool that I can slip underneath the embroidery foot. As long as I have my fabric square in the hoop and placement marks, I can line up the foam.
When layering the foam, I made sure I kept the thickness beneath the embroidery foot when it was extended. I can jog the hoop around and carefully hold the foam in place. You can see the cross mark very well from the front of the machine. Even at this angle, I can tell I will be right in the middle of the needle placement to start stitching.
Here is a closeup. To make the template, I used craft foam and hot glue. I drew the lines with a permanent marker on each square and lined them up. My hot glue gun is low temp and I was able to secure each one in the centers then add glue along the edges so they were secure.
It's not fancy, but it does work. If it gets dirty or damaged, I can make another one very easily. I have a short video showing it in action below. Remember to be careful using any tool with your embroidery machine. Make sure the depth sits underneath your foot before you use it the first time, protect your fingers while using and remove before you begin stitching. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work!
Lagniappe Peddler believes that the process of working with our hands can be one of the best forms of healing the hurts in our lives and welcomes all who visit this safe little corner of the world.
What is a Lagniappe Peddler?
ˌlanˈyap,ˈlanˌyap - something given as a bonus or extra gift
This website uses marketing and tracking technologies. Opting out of this will opt you out of all cookies, except for those needed to run the website. Note that some products may not work as well without tracking cookies.Opt Out of Cookies