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Giveaway: The Way Sewing Used to Be

the way sewing used tobe 1 of 4 Giveaway: The Way Sewing Used to Be

“You’ve gotta dance like there’s nobody watching, love like you’ll never be hurt, sing like there’s nobody listening, and live like it’s heaven on earth,” wrote William W. Purkey.

Writing is either something you hate or you love. I definitely fall into the latter category. For me, the process of finding catchy yet real-world words is a halcyon time of creativity and peace. And when sentences just spill out like I’ve connected my mind to the computer via USB cable, I feel energized mentality. Refreshed. Both can be a good thing and a bad thing. Good because I do exactly as Purkey asserts – I pursue my passion of writing void of trends and neglect what everyone else is doing or saying. Bad because when I advocate people to do something, I forget they actually might do it!

Ten weeks ago, I started an Instagram series with the hashtag #thewaysewingusedtobe. Meant as a way to document the impeccable design, color and packaging of vintage sewing notions, I initially thought I would be the only participant. Two weeks later, I checked the album and what’d ya know, other people were posting! I was moved as well as touched. Moved because people actually became involved and touched because I now knew that I’m not the only one who gets the munchies for great design, vintage notions and pretty little doodads.

Can you believe it, but the album has almost 80 images! No, that’s not triple digits, but anything more that 1 is a towering number. So, as a thank you, I’m giving away a lot of vintage sewing notions. Just some sewing gismos, thingamabobs and whatchamacallit a that I picked up on Ebay and compiled into diverse assortment. It’s not worth a lot in dollars, but it’s worth a lot in value.

To enter, like Madalynne on Facebook and follow Madalynne on Bloglovin. Then, in the comments below, specify your method of entry and where I can contact you (email, Facebook). If you’re already a follower, don’t worry, just tell me so. Contest opens immediately and closes Wednesday, September 10th, when a winner will be chosen, notified and featured on this blog. Last, contest is open internationally. Good luck!

And in the meantime, check out all the photos below and don’t forget to add your own images – #thewaysewingusedtobe

the way sewing used to be2 01 Giveaway: The Way Sewing Used to Be

Bra Making: How Much Should I Pull Elastic?

pulling elastic 1 of 1 Bra Making: How Much Should I Pull Elastic?

When it comes to stretching elastic when sewing a bra, there are many different theories on how much to pull. Some rely on mathematics, reducing the length 10-15% or 1-2″ to get the correct/even amount of stretching. Because elastics come in different widths, qualities and amounts of stretch, I do not calculate the amount I should pull. Surprising, considering my very particular nature. Over time, I have developed a hand where I know how much tension the elastic needs and that’s usually a slight pull. The elastic should create a snug fit, but not ruche or gather the fabric like a skirt. In my bra making class, I tell students to stretch the elastic on one of their ready-to-wear bras several times before taking sewing their first pass. Just like muscle memory, the goal is to develop a “feel” through repetition.

Also to note is that the elastic is stretched different amounts at different places in a bra. While I stretch the elastic the “normal” amount on the top and the bottom band, I stretch it slightly more in the underarm (to encourage it to shape up towards the straps point and to cover that little flab of underarm flesh) and almost don’t stretch it along the neckline (so that is doesn’t cut into breast tissue).

This is very hard to show in pictures, so in the video below, I demonstrate the “normal” amount of pull. You’re probably wondering why I don’t start stretching further back from the presser foot, and that’s because I have found that if I do,  I lose the original amount of stretch while I sew; I let go of the elastic slightly as I sew.

post footer bra making Bra Making: How Much Should I Pull Elastic?

Weekend: Labor Day

weekend laborday Weekend: Labor Day

If you live in the U.S. of A., then you will be celebrating Labor Day this Monday. Surprisingly, the holiday has been around longer than your probable hunch. Older than both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, it was implemented in 1882, and since then, there’s one major thing that’s changed – the very nature of labor. As written by Peter McGuire, one of the founders of the American Federation of Labor, the holiday was meant to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.” We Americans don’t do much carving or delving anymore, unless it’s into a McDonald’s cheeseburger. On that same note, labor isn’t as rude as it once was. Let’s be real, Labor Day today is simply a respite for everyone with a Monday job, and for us sewers, an extra day to stitch up what’s been on the backburners (UFOs!).

For me, Labor Day is the line between summer and that in-between season that loiters just before autumn and winter breeze in. It’s not a semi-colon like Christmas or Thanksgiving – we don’t put our lives on pause for a week or two to celebrate. More like a comma, we pass it in a short breadth with no preparation, which I like. So, while the motive behind the holiday has changed, the holiday has taken all its full meaning, a day without labor. Good or bad? Who knows? That question may be too much to cogitate.

I’ll end on a positive note and say that if you’re in America, I hope you enjoy the day as I am – sewing!

And Lauren, be on the lookout for your care package (pictured above), which I put in the mail this week. No pressure, but I hope it makes a beautiful bra one day!
post footer weekend Weekend: Labor Day

Fabric Giveaway with The Smuggler’s Daughter

cup seam tutorial 16 of 17 Fabric Giveaway with The Smugglers Daughter

There’s nothing blasé about florals. From Aussie Sophie to purple-haired Lauren, sewers from all continents have made their own verdant iterations. With so much inspiration, I hope you’re ready to make a flourishing dress or pant of your own and scour for the next garden party or something similar because Susan Liane from The Smuggler’s Daughter is offering a very luscious fabric to 1 Madalynne reader. To those on the northern hemisphere, squeeze in one more make before pumpkin spice latte season begins, and to those on the southern hemisphere, prep for the hot days that are fast approaching.

To enter, like Madalynne and The Smuggler’s Daughter on Facebook. Then, in the comments below, specify your method of entry and where I can contact you (email, Facebook). If you’re already a follower, don’t worry, just tell me so. Contest opens immediately and will close Thursday, September 4th, when a winner will be chosen, notified and featured on this blog. Last, contest is open internationally. Good luck!

Also, Susan Liane is also offering free shipping on this fabric to everyone who enters the giveaway, which some of those who don’t win may like to take advantage of. Win or not, head on over to Smuggler’s Daughter and take a tip from Susan herself when shopping – fabrics are added on most Fridays and fabrics are marked down on most Mondays.
cup seam tutorial 17 of 17 Fabric Giveaway with The Smugglers Daughtercup seam tutorial 15 of 17 Fabric Giveaway with The Smugglers Daughter

post footer smugglers daughter Fabric Giveaway with The Smugglers Daughter

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