Well, it’s Christmas Day and guess what I’m doing? (Besides writing this blog post!) Yep. Sewing last minute Christmas gifts. My excuse for the lateness is that this year my family will be getting together and exchanging gifts tomorrow (Boxing Day) only because this year is the “other grandparents” year for the little people (all under 8 years old)
Mind you, the gifts I’m working on are also pretty simple. Something that you too could make in a pinch. Good for guys and gals. The ubiquitous scarf!
You can make the scarf from a long and narrow piece of fabric (I have made some of these and like the length of 2m with the width of the scarf being half the width of the fabric. So if the fabric was 150cm (60″) wide then you can get 2 scarves at 2m x 75cm) Or, you can use a square piece of fabric which I prefer for more versatility. You can use any kind of fabric that is not too heavy such as light weight wool, silk chiffon or even quilting cotton.
What you need:
- A square piece of fabric be it 115cm square or 150cm square. I find the 150cm square a bit big and unwieldy for most neck tying applications but this size is good for shawls or beach coverups.
- A sewing machine or serger with a rolled hem stitch. Or if you prefer the hand sewing technique, a fine needle and thread to hand roll the hem. Personally, I am forever grateful for the Industrialized Revolution!
- Matching thread.
- A large eyed needle to work in the thread tails from the machine sewn edges.
I used my serger. For some reason, the 2 thread rolled hem option wasn’t working so I used the 3 thread option. If I was using the 2 thread option, I would probably use woolly nylon thread since this thread gives more coverage. I used regular sewing thread in my serger mainly because I had a ready availability of colours. It does give a heavier hem finish but I don’t mind it.
Here are a couple suggestions from my experience.
- When using the serger, sew a bit before introducing the fabric. (about 10cm worth) This gives you a thread tail to help you guide some of the lighter weight fabrics (such as chiffon) through the machine. Do the same when you reach the end of the seam.
- Make sure you hold the tail or you will have the same mess I had!
- Turn down the speed of your machine. When at full speed, I found my serger bounced around making it difficult to control everything.
- After you have sewn all the edges, you will have thread tails on each of the corners. You need to tighten up the threads before sewing them into the hem. To do this, you hold the fabric by the thread tail in one hand. With your other hand, lightly pinch the thread tail and run your fingernail along the tail. This will tighten up the looser looper thread. Here are before and after tightening images.
- You have the option of clipping the thread tails even with the fabric edge and using fray check to finish the threads but I find that product leaves a hard residue. Or you can thread the tail back through the stitches.
If you have the time and desire to do this by hand, here is a handy refresher video.
And if you want some different ideas on how to tie your scarf, here are 2 videos as a resource.
Happy sewing and Merry Christmas! The store will be having a silk print sale in the new year so keep your eye open for the sale code to use in the web store.