Pick up issue two of HomeStyle magazine and you'll be treated to one beauty of a home makeover: Lisa Comfort's two bedroom London apartment. It's positively dripping with incredible (and affordable!) home decoration ideas, budget-friendly upcycling and clever tricks to revitalise your home into a beacon of inspiration. For, in Lisa's own words, 'a home is so personal – you should do it how you like'.
You can read a little snippet of the interview here, and Lisa has joined us here to share her sewing secrets for beginner stitchers (try saying that three times fast...). Lisa actually owns the super-trendy Sew Over It, a duo of sewing cafes in Islington and Clapham, where she has taught over 5,000 budding creatives everything from patchwork to dressmaking. Check out her class schedule here.
So, HomeStylers, for ten tricks to avoid a stitch-tastrophe, we hand you over to material girl, super stitcher and all-round lovely lady, Lisa Comfort:
1. Nine times out of ten, problems with the sewing machine are to do with the threading so re-thread and see if that fixes it
2. Start off with simple projects that you can make well rather than projects that are too difficult and you won’t be proud of!
3. Cotton is the easiest fabric to sew, so learn with a lightweight cotton for your first few projects
4. Remember to trim your threads as you go
5. Always backstitch at the start and end of every seam
6. Most sewing projects take twice as long as you think they will – so give yourself plenty of time and don’t rush!
7. Good pinning leads to good cutting so don’t spare on pins!
8. Buy a good pair of fabric scissors and only use them for fabric – paper is a no no as it makes them blunt.
9. Steam iron or prewash your fabric before you cut your project out - this will preshrink the fabric to avoid things ending up smaller than you had planned!
10. Iron your seams at every stage - they will look a lot more professional if you do!
Thanks Lisa! If you've enjoyed these tips, don't forget to have a look at Sew Over It and Lisa's wonderful products and classes.