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I like to sew, and have somewhat known my way around a machine for many years. I made clothes in high school (though I never learned how to put in a zipper) and have made some basic things for the girl as well.
One of my goals for this year — OK, for every year — is to gain some sewing skills, but sometimes it’s nice to be able to complete a project with the skills you have.
Even if you’re new to sewing, you’re sure to find a project you can make and love in Never Been Stitched: 45 No-Sew & Low-Sew Projects by Amanda Carestio. This book is full of fun, cute fashion and home decor projects that use a lot of fabric glue and not a lot of actual sewing to get the job done (though there are places you can do more sewing if you like).
A quick getting started section gives an overview of some of the tools needed to make the projects, which are divided into things to wear, decorate, play, carry and give.
Some examples: a purchased skirt decorated with applique leaves (attached with fusible web; sewing optional), a sheer curtain made into a skirt, T-shirts made into a scarf, scarves made into a shirt, a round rug made of canvas and pompom trim, pillows made out of placemats, a catchall made with fabric and an embroidery hoop (I’ve made something similar before but can’t find it to link to it!), bunting made out of old maps, papercut placemats made of sturdy felt, an octopus toy made of fleece, a tutu for a dog, a backpack made out of a stuffed animal, bags made from a variety of materials and fabric flowers.
No Sew, Some Sew
I tried two projects from the book. The first, the Hexagon Art Tile, called for cutting hexagons out of lots of different kinds of fabric and gluing them to a canvas (with Mod Podge to make it sturdy and shiny). I used a different size canvas than called for because it’s what I had, but I still like it. (You can see the original on the cover in blue fabric.)
The girl decided it needed to live in the upstairs bathroom, so that’s where it is. As protected as it is I’m sure it will be fine there.
The second thing I made was the Crafty Kid Apron. This one calls for using vinyl for the body and edging it with bias tape, and using ribbon for the neckline and ties. It calls for gluing the bias tape to the fabric, then sewing on the ribbons.
I used regular fabric (love this cherry stuff and I have a lot left over) and ribbon I had in the house. I did buy bias tape because I didn’t have any pink, but other than that this was all out of stash.
I went ahead and sewed the bias tape on to eliminate some mess, and I really like the way it turned out.
The girl has declared this one her painting apron. She also wants to paint the apron, but that’s another story.
Lots of Projects to Try
These two projects caught my eye immediately but there are plenty of other things here I would like to make, and it’s nice having the option to sew or not to sew depending on the time I have and the materials I’m using.
This book would be great for people who don’t think of themselves as very crafty but who would still like to make cute things for their home, their kids and to give as gifts.
Sound like you? I’d love to know if you check this book out!