Category Archives: Sewing equipment & machinery

New Pattern and Tools Available From my Etsy Shop

After much talking about it, my Pull-on Loose Fitting Shift Dress sewing pattern is now available to buy from MIY Workshop and online from my Etsy shop.  It was a very popular purchase at the Knitting and Stitching show this weekend at Alexandra Palace!shift patternThe pattern is suitable for beginners; there are no fastenings or openings to deal with and there are lots of ways to make it your own style – it can be made with or without the collar, optional side seam pockets and the pleat can be put in the front and/or back or completely left out.  There’s also an optional tie belt.  It works in woven and knitted fabrics and I’m planning on making a few that mix different fabrics for the skirt and for the bodice……..

It’s a quick pattern to make, here are a few made by students this summer at my Summer Frock Making one day workshops:

shift-studentsMy neon green perspex tools are also now available at MIY Workshop and online from my Etsy shop:


The perspex is called “live edge” and you can see why!  There’s no way you’re going to loose either of these tools in your sewing stuff.  Even when they’re just sat on the table with not much light around, they somehow seem to glow…..


You can buy the little sewing tool and seam gauge in cm’s and inches and the bigger sewing and pattern cutting ruler in cm’s only.

And well I hate to say it but……Christmas is just around the corner…….one for your own list or for your crafty friends?!

Neat Seams – Your Secret Weapon

Do you struggle with getting neatly finished seam allowances??  Try this….


The overcasting foot is also sometimes called an “overlock foot”.  They don’t often come as standard with a new machine (although they do with new Janomes and some Berninas), but you can buy them as an extra attachment for your machine and they’re well worth it.  Once you’ve used one and seen the results you’ll never want to be without it.

They’re a great alternative if you don’t have an overlocker, giving an almost as neat finish.  You can also use them with your machine’s other recommended  ”overcasting” or edge neatening stitches as well as just the standard zigzag stitch.

If you’re going to invest in one, be sure you buy the correct one for your make and model of machine, an incorrect one can lead to broken needles, tangled threads and tears!  If you can’t buy or order one from your local friendly sewing machine shop, have a look online – do a search using overcasting foot (or overlocking foot) + the make and model of your sewing machine and you should come up with some results, they’re usually between £10 – £15.


Your Handy Presser Foot Pressure Regulator!


Which Sewing Machine to Buy?


A question I’m asked a lot and one that I wrote a blog post about a few years ago.  I don’t think I’ve ever shared it though, so here it is over on my other website:

Love your Sewing Machine and get familiar with it!



A little whistlestop tour of some of the main features of most sewing machines and some tips on what some of them actually do!

Get familiar with your machine and get the best out of it…..


Competition – win one of my little wooden sewing tools!

tools-april13-fangateimageI’m running a competition over on Facebook which closes on Monday 6th May at 7pm.

If you’d like to win one of my little wooden sewing tools there are 3 up for grabs.  All you have to do is leave your name and email address, here’s the link to enter:

Good luck!

MIY Workshop tools are here!

Some of you are aware that for a while I’ve been developing some specialist tools for MIY Workshop.  At last they’re ready!

Here they are:

First up the MIY Workshop little sewing tool.  Made of cherry veneer wood with engraved markings you can use this handy little gadget to quickly and accurately mark 1cm / 1.5cm / 2.5cm  and 5cm seam and hem lines, mark the bias at 45˚, use the point to poke out nice pointy corners in your sewing and with the aid of 2 pencils use the drill holes to draw 2cm/4cm/6cm and 8cm diameter circles.

Next up:

The MIY Workshop pattern cutting and sewing ruler.  Made of smokey brown see through perspex with engraved markings this ruler is useful when sewing and pattern cutting.  The rulers running horizontally and vertically allow you to quickly add seam and hem allowances to your patterns up to 6cm, the horizontal ruler edge measures 30cm.  The ruler also has a 90˚ right angled corner and opposite a 45˚ edge.  There’s also a curved edge to help draw in smooth curves at sleeve heads and armholes.  And of course it has a handy hole for hanging it up out of the way in your workspace.

Both these tools are available to buy now at MIY Workshop and at my MIY Collection Etsy shop:

Introductory prices:

MIY Workshop Little Sewing Tool – £8

MIY Workshop Pattern Cutting & Sewing Ruler – £16

Buy both as a set for £20.