How to sew a dart

by SaraD on July 30, 2011

dart marked on in red on a white muslin

Mark the center line in your darts and you'll save time during construction.

When I first started sewing, pattern companies still printed one size for each pattern. If you were a size 12, you bought a size 12. Now all the sizes are printed on the same pattern. As a result, the pattern markings had to be simplified to distinguish the different sizes. One of the things that disappeared was the center line on darts. I didn’t realize how important this was until recently.

I’ve purchased the Wild Ginger’s Pattern Master Boutique pattern drafting software and am in the process of making the fitting garments so I can fine tune my default settings. In doing so, I made a happy discovery: all the darts are printed with the center line. At first, I thought nothing of it—it was just one more line to mark on the fabric. But when it came to sewing up the darts… Boy! What a difference it made! All I had to do was fold the dart along the center line and voila! the legs of the darts matched up perfectly. No more poking a pin through to try to line up those pesky legs. I was amazed at what timer saver this was.

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Sewing Shops in Colorado – a Trip to Elfriede’s

July 20, 2011
Elfriede and her staff in front of a wall of fabric.

I’m back from vacation and had a wonderful time in Colorado. While we were in Boulder, we stopped at Elfriede’s Fine Fabrics. What a wonderful fabric store! Stuffed full of the most luscious cottons, wools, silks and linens. I bought a gorgeous thistle colored linen for a summer outfit and my 11 year old daughter […]

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How to sew a skirt–pressing templates

June 30, 2011
Pressing template used for pressing waistband facing.

Rayon makes a wonderfully drapey skirt, but how do you keep it from “drifting” when you press a fold or hem? I discovered a relatively simple way to keep the fabric in place by making a pressing template out of oak tag. It makes it so much easier to press a nice, straight crease.

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Wardrobe Planning – Body Shape

June 22, 2011
geometrical shapes representing body types: triangle, hourglass, rectangle, inverted triangle

Have you ever wished you had a tall, slender figure? Did you know you can create the illusion of such a figure with the clothes you wear? We often feel self-conscious about our “figure flaws.” But with a little creativity and wardrobe magic, we can focus our attention on our assets. And that’s what everyone […]

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Wardrobe Planning–Style

June 17, 2011

Does your wardrobe have a particular style? Do you tend toward more classic clothes? Or more casual? Dramatic? Romantic? Maybe it’s a mixture, or something totally unique. How do you figure out what your style is?

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Wardrobe Planning – Activity

June 10, 2011
Letter blocks spelling out "Work Rest Play"

One of the things to look at in planning a wardrobe is what am I actually going to DO in these clothes? What are my activities during the day? During the week? What do I spend most of my time doing? What do I do occasionally? What kind of clothes work best for these different […]

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Sewing Ideas for Wardrobe Planning–Garments

June 3, 2011
Style sketches of a jacket, top and skirt

All the wardrobe planning books I’ve read focus on business attire. But I work at home. So how do I put together a wardrobe for the way I really live? What are the essential elements of a wardrobe that works? I decided to start with the garments themselves. When you think about it, there are […]

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Sewing Ideas for Wardrobe Planning – Fabrics

May 27, 2011
Fabric swatches in blues and greens.

So how do you put together a wardrobe that works? When I first started sewing, I’d buy a print for a blouse and a solid to go with it for pants or a skirt. Pretty basic. Usually I just bought enough of each fabric for one garment. After awhile I had a bunch of one-off […]

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Sewing as Social Action

May 18, 2011
Sewing a button by hand

As I browse through the sewing news I’m struck by the impact sewing is having on society. Every day there’s an article about a group that is sewing for someone in need. Or an organization that is teaching women in third world countries to sew as a means to lift themselves out of poverty. Or […]

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Great Sewing Shops in Portland

May 13, 2011
Green buckle with print fabric

Yesterday I met some new friends at the BurdaStyle Day Meetup in Portland, OR. We had a great chat over coffee/lunch and then headed down the street to visit some really cool sewing shops. I finally found a belt buckle to go with the fabric I have for a skirt and blouse. It was a […]

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