Tag Archives: cotton

Floral Fabric Designs

Do you plan your fashion sewing projects season by season?

My floral fabric stash
My floral fabric stash

As you know I love taking inspiration from the catwalk shows and designer’s latest looks. One of the key influences that I have noticed for this spring is definitely florals. Big bold prints along side tiny, fussy small ones. Both light on dark and pale on light backgrounds.

I am excited about using all of the different styles in various sewing  projects.

I’ve pinned some of my favourite floral inspiration pictures to share with you. They include designs by Dolce & Gabbana, Alexander McQueen, Oscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera.

Follow Sewing Avenue’s board Floral Designs, Fabrics and Dresses on Pinterest.

I have a confession to make though because I have been collecting floral print fabrics throughout the winter months eagerly squirrelling it all away in anticipation of using them in the springtime. I feel that it is time for me to move on from the dark winter colours to lighter, brighter shades.

Floral fabric designs for dresses

There are some pieces of clothing that  I definitely need to include in the floral makes. They include a new over sized shirt or two, an easy fitting dress and a jersey T-shirt top.

Lillia shirt flat line pattern
Lillia shirt flat line pattern
Sheer fabric, floral
Sheer fabric, floral

Oversized shirts seem to be everywhere in the shops right now. I will use the basic pattern and maybe add a bit more fullness across the lower edge of the yoke on the back and fronts.

Dallia Dress Pattern - Fashion Flat
Dallia Dress Pattern – Fashion Flat
Floral on a black background
Floral on a black background

I’m not one hundred percent convinced that I like the florals on a dark background trend, however I am going to give it a try  with the black cotton and make a short sleeve,  easy fitting Dallia dress with added inseam pockets, for a casual everyday style.

Dallia Dress Pattern - Fashion Flat
Dallia Dress Pattern – Fashion Flat
Floral design on dark background
Floral design on dark background

This purple, viscous, floral fabric  moves beautifully so I’m thinking about using it either to make a second comfort fit shirt or seeing how it would work in a more fitted dress style. Maybe with a bold pink accent colour piping at the neckline and on the sleeves. Sometimes I think that floral prints can look a bit old fashioned and dated so I will be mindful of creating the look I want with the correct type of fabric qualities.

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Happy Sewing


How to sew a flat-felled seam

A flat-felled seam is an easy technique to master and very useful. It gives a very strong seam finish to a garment. It is often used on trousers and denim jeans as well as shirts for extra durability. It can also be used as a decorative seam finish as it is formed on the right side of the fabric.

I’ve used two different cotton fabrics and a contrasting thread so hopefully its easy for you to see what’s going on and how I’m making the seam

Step 1

With the wrong sides of the fabric together, stitch along the seam line. Take the full width of the seam allowance. On most commercial patterns this will be 15mm or 5/8 inch, but please check first as they can vary. Press the seam open.

Step 1 - How to sew a flat-felled seam - Sewing Avenue
Step 1 – How to sew a flat-felled seam – Sewing Avenue

Step 2

Trim the inner seam allowance to about 3 mm or 1/8 inch. Take care not to cut into the sewing line. You should be able to judge this by eye, there is no need to measure for exact accuracy.

Step 3

Press the outer seam allowance under by 6mm or ¼ inch; making sure you keep it uniform all the way along all of your seams. Be careful to press like seams in the same direction as one another (e.g. both shoulder seams should be pressed towards the front).

Step 3 - How to sew a flat-felled seam - Sewing Avenue
Step 3 – How to sew a flat-felled seam – Sewing Avenue

Step 4

Stitch this folded edge to the garment using a top stitch. Top stitching usually uses a longer stitch length than a seam line stitch. Take a note of the stitch you are going to use, either straight or decorative and ensure you keep using the same one through out the whole garment. This can be colour matched to your fabric or you can use a decorative thread or stitch for added effect.

Step 4 - How to sew a flat-felled seam - Sewing Avenue
Step 4 – How to sew a flat-felled seam – Sewing Avenue

I like to use different types of seams to achieve different looks on the projects that I make. The flat-felled seam is a useful technique to master for use on shirts, especially men’s formal or dress shirts. It gives a clean, defined look with its rows of straight topstitching. It is also a good choice for children’s wear as the extra line of stitching add a lot of strength to the seams. Sports wear often uses visible, decorative seams too for both durability and decoration. If you are making sports clothing in a stretch fabric though, be sure to use the correct stretch stitch on both the seam line and the top stitching. A zigzag or flat lock stitch can look good here.