Find Laurel on Facebook

Enchanted By Sewing The Podcast

Friday, December 23, 2016

EnchBySew-50: Tote’in for the Festive Season - Holiday Postcard

Click on this link in iTunes   to download the 50'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  produced in December of 2016.

Or listen directly on the web by clicking on

This December I’ve put more time into sewing, than blogging about sewing. So though I’ve actually sewn five items – I’ve only blogged about two of them - so far. I’m hoping I'll find some time to post about what I’ve made, next week, because I really enjoy having a sewing journal.

I love looking back through my blog and remembering – oh that’s right Back in December of 2016 I made
* Queen Cordelia – a printed courderoy princess seamed shirt with ¾ len sleeves, fun buttons and some collar embellishment
* A pair of front-pleated denim trousers
* A  night shirt for my husband,
* A simple flannel baby blanket
* A flat bottomed tote bag

This Month’s Show is a holiday postcard, focusing on the basic technicos/techniques of sewing a flat-bottomed bag that can serve the combined purpose of being both a tote and gift bag.

Five reasons to know how to sew a tote

1 - Save money or just  be Green: I don’t know about where you live, but around here, we get chargd 10 cents for store bags -it’s really worth remembering your tote bag!

2) Be Arty as well as green and clean up your sewing resource inventory : A tote bag is a handy way to use up fabric scraps and remnents. I serves as a  vehicle for trying out favorite or new embellishment techniques like embroidery, craft button designs, beading, quilting or a collage made of scraps of  lace and trims

 3) A tote bag is a basic sewing project . It’s  a good  way to stare learning to sew, or get back into sewing . It doesn’t take very long and you can practice basic seaming and other sewing techniques.

4) Unlike garment sewing - A tote bag does not require fitting!

5) A tote bag makes a great packable and reusable gift. If you have the resources on hand - You could even decide to make one an hour or so before it’s needed!

I blogged about, a tote I made earlier this month for visitng family members as a holiday gift. That posting includes four photos intended to show basic steps of tote bag sewing.

BTW I included a pound and a half box of biscotti from a wonderful local Italian deli – Diandras in San Mateo at Crystal Springs shopping center . If they ate , or shared, all the cookies during the conference they came for, they could use the tote to carry home their dirty laundry. Back home They can use it for grocery shopping or They can pass it on to somebody else as a gift bag. The bag itself was small and light weight , so it wasn’t going to make trouble when it came to taking their bags back on the airplane.

Technicos/Techniques: How to sew a flat-bottomed tote

Photo Collage and brief summary of basic steps for sewing the tote

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

EnchBySew-49: Fall Color Sewing

~ ~ ~

Click on this link in iTunes   to download the 49'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  produced in November of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

~ ~ ~ This Month’s Show ~ ~ ~

Pensamientos Primeros/First Thoughts: Impact of Color on My Sewing Choices

Technicos/Techniques: Patterning and Sewing Color

Pensamientos Finales/Final Thoughts:Searching for Color in San Diego County 

~ ~ ~ Web Resources ~ ~ ~
Recently I've created several postings related to the fall colors mentioned in this months 'cast,  in my Postcard from California blog

My regular sewing blog  - includes postings about the princess-seamed shirt Marigold are in the Me Encanta Coser/Enchanted by Sewing blog

Thursday, October 20, 2016

EnchBySew-48:Garment Copycatting

Click on this link in iTunes   to download the 48'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  produced in October of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

This Month’s Show 
TechnicosI'm learning to copycat a favorite knit top, without cutting the garment apart. 

Blog Posts from this Project
Part 1: Getting Started

Part 2: Continuing up through Basted Garment

~ ~ ~ Other Resources
I have a number of Sewing Pinterest Boards:
I meant to refer to Lynda Maynard, not Lynda Myers!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Ench By Sew-47: Oscar de La Renta Field Trip

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 47'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  produced in September of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

This Month’s Show 
Come along on a field trip to the Oscar De La Renta Exhibit at the De Young Museum in San Francisco

Bolero Jacket was style I couldn't think of  in regards to the gold lame outfit

Alluring Spanish dances I was trying to think of might be a tango or flamenco.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Ench By Sew-46: Ready Set Sew! - Sewing Style

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 46'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  recorded in August of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

Ready Set Sew! Sewing my own garments, allows me to define and create my own style.

This Month’s Show 

1) Primeros Pensamientos/First Thoughts
* Defining this sewist’s current style 

* Elements of Style- According to Laurel
-Design Lines and Fit, 
-Fabric and Drape

In reference to wearing fur -We go with what the always charming Felix Bassenak (S.Z. Sakall) said to Elizabeth Lane (aka Barbara Stanwick) in Christmas in Conneticut…

"You need it? Nobody needs a mink coat but a mink!"

2) Entonces/Then
Technicos: Techniques I used for altering M6403, the pattern I used for my black linen summer pants

In Pensamientos Finales, I recall
the importance of
sewing this maxi jumpsuit
3)) Pensamientos Finales/Final Thoughts
Looking back- Sewing myself as a grownup


M6403 pants pattern - out of print but many copies available on the web
M6076 Palmer and Pletsch princess-seamed shirt

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Ench By Sew-45: A Purse for Pinto (Green Sewing)

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 45'th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  recorded in July of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

"Pinto" (Spanish for Spotted)
with her new purse
 ( )

Web Resources:
In this show I talk about sewing Pinto's Purse using the free buttercup purse pattern from Rae at MadeByRae. Her original (free) pattern is available at

Rae's pattern is designed for laying out on a fat quarter.

My buttercup purse is an example of green sewing. I created it both from remnants saved in my fabric inventory and scraps from Pinto, a sleeveless princess-seamed shirt I had just finished.

Snapshot of This Month’s Show

* Primeros Pensamientos//First Reflections  

Rae has created a number of patterns linked at her site. One of them is this darling free purse. It’s a tiny bag, though you can enlarge the pattern easily on a photocopy machine or extend the pattern freehand. I’ve made several of these purses both in the original small size and also larger versions. The small original, which is big enough to hold my keys, iPhone, iPod and maybe a little cash or a bag for a doggie’s needs, is perfect for a walk or an evening out.

When you visit Rae’s site to download this free pattern, you’ll find the terms of use. It’s free when you’re making it for personal use. Rae sells a licensed-to-sell version of this pattern for only $10. She also links to sewists who sell these licensed buttercup purses from her site.

I often vary the size, construction, and details of this purse.

* Technicos/Techniques I use for altering and sew Rae's buttercup purse pattern

Rae includes directions for working at this pattern in the site, along with a how-to-layout the pattern.

The pattern pieces include:
a) Purse Outer Top – I call this the yoke. It shows on the outside
b) Purse Outer Bottom – . It shows on the outside.This is what you see the most of from a distance. This piece has tucks at it’s top edge to give the purse fullness, and make it blouse out from the bottom of the yoke.
c) Lining – The lining extends from the bottom of the outer bottom to the top of the outer top. This piece does not have tucks or gathers.
d) Strap (no pattern piece – Dimensions are Given)
e) Tab/Decorative Button Flap ( no pattern piece – Dimensions are Given)

My Buttercups
1) Turning Scraps into Lining and the Magic of the Zig Zag
2) How I increased the pattern size
  a. 129 percent size
  b. Extend the bottom for a bigger purse
 3) Play with it
            1. Paper
            2. Muslin
            3. Paper towels
 c. Vary strap length
 d. Add rings

4) Interfacing for Light Weight Fabric Body
5) Altering the original details to suit me
6) Considering Embellishment Options

  Pensamientos Finales/Final Thoughts

Buttercup purses Known and Loved – Kept and Given.
A few Buttercups that stand out in my mind

1) Red Toile Evokes Marie Antoinette
2) Think Vintage - Bluebird with Tatting
3) Little Christmas Cowgirl
4) Engagement Celebration
5) Buttercup Dreams …
. . .
I never get tired of using, sewing, or envisioning, these charming accessories. Thanks Rae! Your buttercups purses are just one more thing that keep me… 
Enchanted by Sewing

Monday, June 20, 2016

Ench By Sew-44-Part 2: Embellished and Printed Fabric, Reflections on an Exhibit at the Met in NYC

The Third Knot”. Interlaced Roundel with Eight Wreaths and a Scalloped Shield in its Center  - After Leonardo - Before 1521

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 44'rd episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  recorded in June
of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

This month's show is, PART 2 of Embellished and Printed, Reflections from a Historical Exhibit from an Historical Exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City - Fashion and Virtue: Textile Patterns and the Print Revolution, 1520–1620

In this Show
*Primeros Pensamientos/First Reflections – Chatting about my sewing and a little more

My Kensington Gardens Shirt - Terminado!/Finished!
*D’accurdo, tambien/OK also 
       And a little more /y un poco más
At work on Pinto another summer shirt

*Entonces/Then Back to the exhibit at the Metropoliton Museum of Art in NYC -  Fashion and Virtue: Textile Patterns and the Print Revolution, 1520–1620

Web Resources 
I mentioned the Tanna Lawn fabric for my sewing project, that I purchased a few years back from Liberty of London. In this podcast "Laurel Loves London" I talked about a trip to Liberty

One of the items in the exhibit we visit in this cast comes from the Victoria and Albert in London (V&A). Below is a link to a walk I shared with you around the fashion gallery at the V&A.

-Fashion and Virtue: Textile Patterns
and the Print Revolution, 1520–1620

“The Third Knot”. Interlaced Roundel with Eight Wreaths and a Scalloped Shield in its Center
Albrecht Dürer (German, Nuremberg 1471–1528 Nuremberg)
After Leonardo da Vinci (Italian, Vinci 1452–1519 Amboise) (or workshop)
1521 before

- Link to the 10th century block printed lions - that I think would make a great quilt block - Spoonflower would be my ticket!

Ancient Egypt print block

Many wonderful links turn up when I searched on 'printed textiles' at the Met

"Nineteenth-Century European Textile Production