Sewing Machine Cover Tutorial

We’ve been asked so many times for a simple sewing machine cover to feature on the blog, at last here it is! The lovely Kelly designed this simple machine cover to show off one of her favourite prints from the Dashwood Studios collection Nature Trail.Sewing Machine Cover TutorialThis sewing machine cover will fit a machine up to 20″ wide, 9′ deep and 13″ high.

Cutting list
(2) 10” x 14” side panels – Main Fabric*, Interfacing, Lining Fabric
(1) 38” x 21” main body – Main Fabric*, Interfacing, Lining Fabric

*Note: This project uses non directional fabric due to the way it is constructed.


Iron the interfacing to the back of the main fabric pieces following the manufacturers instructions.

Take the two side panels and use a side plate or something similar to draw around to curve the top two corners. Trim along the line you marked. Then use this as a template to do the same for your lining fabrics.Sewing Machine Tutorial 2

*Take your first side panel (main fabric and interfacing) and fold in half lengthways to find the middle of the top edge. Mark with a pin.

Repeat for the main body piece along the longest edge. Mark the middle point with a pin.Sewing Machine Tutorial

Place the two pieces together matching up the pins. Then pin right around and down both sides – see picture. You are likely to have some overhang – this is because we rounded the corners – we will trim it later.Sewing Machine Tutorial 4

Sew a 1/2” seam around pinned edges.

Repeat for other side.

Using a rotary cutter and ruler trim off any excess at the bottom. Sewing Machine Tutorial 3

Clip the seam allowance of the curves.

Repeat steps from * for the lining pieces – but leave a 3” gap on one of the lining side seams for turning later.Sewing Machine Tutorial 6

Turn the lining right sides out and slide it into the main cover with right sides touching. Match the 4 corner seams and pin. Then pin around the whole edge.

Sew a 1/2” seam all the way around the bottom of the sewing machine cover, taking care at the bulky corner points.

Turn cover right side out through the hole in the lining.

Press the bottom seam so that the lining lays neatly inside and then sew the gap closed.

Finally top stitch around the bottom of the sewing machine cover to keep it all neat and tidy.

Pop it over the top of your machine and admire your handiwork.

Christmas Advent Bunting: Free Tutorial

After the amazing response to last years advent bunting we asked Julie of Mack and Mabel to design more for this years festivities! Julie used the very gorgeous Christmas Dreams collection from Dashwood Studios to create this super cute bunting!

Hi, I’m Julie and I blog at I’m very pleased to be today’s guest blogger and to hopefully kick start your festive sewing! About this time last year I designed a pattern for some mini Advent bunting for Justine and Lisa and this year Justine asked if I could design a larger version. So here it is!

Scallop Advent Bunting J

Each of the pennants along the bunting is actually a pocket that you can fill with little treats to be opened one day at a time throughout Advent, just like a traditional Advent calendar. The pockets close with a loop and button, so little hands can’t go prying before the day!

To make the bunting you need 6 fat quarters of Christmas print fabric, 6 fat quarters of solid fabric for the lining, 1.5 metres of ribbon for the loops, 24 buttons and 5 meters of bunting tape. This Christmas Dreams line by Dashwood Studios is the perfect fabric, I think!

Scallop Advent Bunting 1aaDownload the Free PDF pattern to get detailed instructions with photos and full size templates. The pattern is easy to sew and suitable for beginners.

I used a machine zig zag stitch to sew the numbers on, and a Sewline glue pen to hold them in place whilst I sewed, but you could just as easily use a regular straight stitch or sew them on by hand.

Scallop Advent Bunting 1bIf you are short of time, you could use adhesive felt numbers instead.

The pennants are sewn to tape which sits inside the pocket flap.

Scallop Advent Bunting 1gYou can choose to place all the pennants in one long line or make 2 separate pieces.

I made 2 separate ones with numbers 1-12 in the first section and 13-24 in the second, but then ended up placing both together to get this shot!

Scallop Advent Bunting DThey will make a lovely bright start to the Christmas festivities, so download your pattern and start your festive sewing today.

Scallop Advent Bunting C———————————————————————————————————————-

How lovely is the bunting? If you come and visit us on stand A120 at the Knit & Stitch show in Harrogate this week you’ll be able to see it for real!

We’ve also got kits available that contain all the fabric required as well as the buttons, bunting tape and ribbon for just £35, see here.

Simple Skirt Tutorial

Today we have a great tutorial from Amy on how to make a simple child’s gathered skirt! We get asked how to do this so many times from customers new to sewing that visit our bricks and mortar shop in Huddersfield,  Amy is one of our dressmaking tutors.

Easy Gathered Skirt tutorial

You will need:

0.5 metre of your main fabric

Fat quarter of contrasting fabric for the pockets

1 metre of 1 inch wide elastic


This skirt can be made for anyone, just adjust the measurements to fit.

First things first, measure the waist (or where you want the skirt to sit) and add ½” inch for seam allowance. I’m making a skirt for the average 6 year old, the mannequin has a 22 inch waist, so my measurements will be 23.5 inches for the length of the waistband. The ½” is for seam allowance and the extra inch is for ease so you can still breathe in your skirt!

Start by cutting your waistband out of your main fabric, you’ll need to make it the length of your waist measurement and 3.5 inches wide.


Multiply the width of your waistband (including the seam allowance) by 1.5, for my skirt that’s 23.5 inch x1.5 = 35 inches wide (I rounded it down for ease of measuring!). Depending on how full you would like the skirt to be (or how wide your fabric is) you can include more fabric, multiply your waistband by 2 for a full skirt.

Measure on your model where you would like the skirt to fall, I went for 15 inches to make it knee length.


Mark the middle of your skirt and waistband with a notch or a fabric pen.

Sew the short ends of your waistband together using a ½” inch seam allowance and finish the seam in your preferred method, I’m overlocking mine but a zig zag stitch or using pinking shears is fine. Fold in half lengthways and press.

skirt4skirt5Gather your skirt, the easiest way I’ve found of doing this is the embroidery method but you can also any other method. On the right side of the fabric take a piece of embroidery thread and zig zag stitch over the thread, try not to catch the thread in your stitches otherwise it won’t gather properly. Make sure your gathering thread is inside the seam allowance otherwise you’ll see in on the skirt. Tie a knot in one end of the thread and pull to gather your skirt.

skirt6Sew the side seams of the skirt together.

Match up your notches or fabric marks with the skirt and waistband, match the side seam of waistband with the side seam of the skirt, make sure your gathers are even and pin.

skirt7With the right sides of the waistband and skirt together sew with a ½”seam allowance. Finish the seam allowance of the other side of the waistband using your preferred method.

skirt8Cut your elastic to 3 inches shorter than your waistband measurement (including ease but not including seam allowance). Butt the short ends together of your elastic together, close but not overlapping, either using a zig zag stitch or overlocking. Insert your elastic, finger press the waistband down and pin. Don’t use an iron to press as it will flatten your gathers. Stitch the waistband down by ‘stitching in the ditch’ where the waistband and the skirt meet, make sure you don’t catch the elastic when stitching.

skirt9Turn your skirt inside out and stitch down the skirt side, finish the seam as you like. Hem the skirt by finishing the raw edge, pressing ¼ ”and stitching.

skirt10Now for the pockets! Cut 2 squares 3 inches by 3 inches and round off the corners on one side, this will be the bottom of your pocket. Press ¼” around the raw edges and stitch the top of your pocket down. Decide where you would like the pockets to go and pin. Stitch the pockets down.

Ta da! One finished skirt.