Friday, 8 November 2013

Make Your Own Garter (that will fit real people thighs)- A Super Simple Tutorial

I apologize for my absence over the last week. I shall spare you the gory details and simply say that I had minor procedure done and I was not well, not well at all. Needless to say, I wasn't feeling up to making any tutorials. But now that I'm all better, it's Teachin' Time!

And so without further ado, I give you:

The Make Your Own Garter For Thighs That Touch Tutorial.

Keep in mind, this is mostly for practising your newly acquired sewing skills, so it's not particularly fancy. If you'd like me to make a tutorial on how to make a lace garter, or something a little nicer, let me know!

For weddings, for sexytimes, for practicing your basic sewing skills!

What you'll need:

A piece of elastic that's long enough to fit around your thigh when slightly stretched.
A piece of fabric of your choice (I happened to have a piece of satin mint green leopard print hanging around. Of course. I mean, who doesn't? Also, I'm not going to show you my scrap fabric bin, mostly because I don't want anyone to know about my secret material hoarding...)
A piece of ribbon/lace/whatever you feel like making a bow out of.
Some thread that goes with your fabric (I went with brown. There's brown in my fabric. BOOM. Logic.)

Now head on over to your sewing machine and get it all set up.

First, take your elastic and stretch it around your thigh- make sure that it's tight, but still has stretch to give.
Cut off any excess.

Lay out your fabric and stretch your elastic along the edge as far as it will stretch. Cut your fabric up two or three inches from the edge- this is how long your fabric will be. Long enough to add a little ruffliness/wrinkle.

Now fold the edge of your fabric over until it is about the width that you would like your garter.

Don't forget to include your seam allowance.

To cut the width of your fabric, make a small cut where the fabric end is overlapped.

Most fabrics will rip straight if they are being cut parallel to the selvage, so all you have to do is make a cut, and then ripping will do the rest. If you're not cutting along the selvage, just cut as straight as you can.

Now you'll have to figure out which is the front side and which is the back side of your fabric.

Fold your fabric in half, front sides facing in, length-wise.

Pin your fold in place, being careful to keep the edges straight and together.

Sew your pinned edge together using a 1/4" seam (using the edge of the foot as your guide).

Since this is a slippery, non-stretch fabric, I used a small straight stitch.

Sew the entire length of the fabric so that you are left with a tube.

Attach a safety pin to one end of your tube.

Using the safety pin as a guide, push fabric into the inside and through the tube. As you continue to push the safety pin through, the tube will eventually pull itself right-side-out.

Now attach one end of your elastic to the end of your tube with a safety pin.

Attach another safety pin to the other end of the elastic, but leave this end loose.

Just like turning your tube inside out, you will now push the loose end of your elastic back through the tube, essentially threading the tube with elastic.

Now you should have elastic sticking out on both ends of your tube.

First make sure that your elastic isn't all twisted and kinked (I suggest attaching both ends of the elastic to the fabric while doing this so that you don't lose either end when it SPROINGS back inside like an angry Christmas Tree Worm). Then line up your two pieces of elastic like so.

Do a big, fat, ugly zig-zag stitch to hold them together. Doesn't matter if it's pretty, nobody's going to see it.

Now roll one end of your fabric tube inside of itself about a half inch.

Push the other fabric tube end inside of your rolled end.

And add a straight stitch across the whole thing to attach those badboys together forever in unholy matrimony.

Super fun tip:

This little contraption here is going to be a good ol' buddy, ol' pal of yours. It's a thread ripper. So when you're done stitching and want to cut your thread, pull it up there, put it in 'im, and give 'er a yank. BOOM. SHAZZAM. RIPPED THREADS. Fancy.

Now we're going to add a bow!


Because I bloody well said so.

Also, otherwise it just looks like a huge scrunchy. And nobody wants that. Unless you do. In which case, pretend that this tutorial is actually entitled "Make Your Own Gigantic Scrunchy For Your Huge Rapunzel Braid."

So for your a-learnin' pleasure:

How to tie a pretty bow:

Remember when you were in Kindergarten and were learning to tie your shoes? Remember the lazy way? Yeah, that's how you should be tying your craft bows.
For those of you that don't remember being five years old, here's a refresher course.

Step 1.

Tie a knot in the middle of your ribbon/lace/whatever.

Step 2.

Make a loop.

Step 3.

Make another loop.

Step 4.

Tie your loops together.

Step 5.


Step 6.


Alright. So now you have a huge scrunchy and a bow.

Let's sew that shiz together.

I realized as I was doing this, that since I'm teaching the absolute basics, I may as well include how to thread a needle properly for hand sewing.

So here we go again with the wonderful learningses.

How to thread a sewing needle:

Step 1. 

Get out your needles and thread. Cut a piece of thread that is twice as long as you think you'll need.

Step 2.

Fold your thread in half/put the ends of the thread together. Samesies.

Step 3. 

Just like with threading your machine, get the end moist then stick it through the eye of the needle.

BAM. Threaded a needle. Like you're a big girl.

Alrighty. So now it's time to put your bow on.

Step 1. 

Push your needle through the back of your bow.

Step 2.

Now to anchor your thread, put your needle through the loop at the bottom of your thread and pull it tight. Convenient, huh? No knots. Double extra fancy.

Step 3.

Push your needle through a small part of the fabric of your garter/scrunchy. Pull the thread all of the way through and tight. I put my bow over top of the flat part where my visible stitches were, to sort of cover that up. 

Step 4.

Now put the needle through the back of the bow again, and again through the fabric, always pulling tight.

Step 5.

Go through the back of the bow one more time, this time leaving the thread with a loose loop. Put your needle through that loop and pull tight. If you'd like, you can continue leaving loose loops and putting the needle through them, this will just anchor the bow on stronger.

And with that... You're done your giant scrunchy! ... I mean sexy garter...

Triple super duper extra fancy.

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