Underbust Corset

I absolutely love corset making! I have made several over the years, and while they can be a challenge I always consider them a fun endeavor and a great addition to many costumes.

I recently picked up the book Corset Making by Julie Collins Brealey, and I really enjoyed it. I used the techniques described in her book to draft my own underbust corset pattern. It turned out great! I highly recommend her book if you would like to draft a corset pattern specific to your body measurements.

After completing my corset several of my students expressed interest in making a corset of their own. So, I decided it would be fun to share the techniques I used with everyone! This is just a simple costume corset and is not intended for tight lacing. I also used budget-friendly easy-to-find materials. For beginners, I think it is important to see if you enjoy the process of corset-making before investing in some of the more expensive materials and tools. I find corset making very rewarding, but many find the process frustrating and would prefer to purchase a ready-made corset instead.

But for those willing to face the challenge, who love corsets as much as I do, this tutorial is for you!

What are the most important skills in corset making, you ask? Organization and precision!

Unfortunately, in corsets, errors are often amplified. There are SO many seams, that a small discrepancy in cutting or sewing can leave the size of your corset off by an inch or two. As a result, I make precision a priority and cut the pieces out in a single layer. Corsets have tons of pieces. Those pieces often look very similar. It is super easy to get them mixed up. As a result, I like to label all of my pieces with significant markings, piece names, and top edges. This helps me ensure that I don’t get pieces mixed up while I am sewing.

For similar reasons, I like to lay out my pieces in the correct order prior to sewing so they stay in the proper position as I put them together.

This corset is constructed by assembling a fashion layer and a structure layer and sandwiching them together. Boning casings are made by sewing the two together. No separate casings are needed!

The trick is to ensure that those two layers are the same size so the seams align!

I tried two different pressing methods for my corset. Pressing the seams open and pressing to the side. Watch the detailed instructional video to see what I liked best!

I used zip ties for the bones in my corset! I have always wanted to try them out, and while I found that a lot of them weren’t perfectly straight, they worked great! It was simple to grab a package of zip ties and some pet nail trimmers at Walmart. No waiting for shipping or delays. While they may not be the best option, they worked surprisingly well, and I wouldn’t hesitate to use them again for simple costume corsets.

Rather than eyelets, I used grommets with washers in my corset. These are a bit stronger and last longer. I used a grommet press, but grommet setters that use a hammer are also available.

To finish off the corset I made coordinating bias binding. You can see my skill-building tutorial for how to make your own! I just love it when the binding actually matches your project!

I like to finish the binding by hand to give it a nice finish.

Supplies: (Actual quantities may vary depending on size and style)

Tools:

  • Basic Sewing Supplies
  • Sewing Machine
  • Grommet Setter (and hammer) or Press
  • Awl or Grommet hole punch (I use a small sharp awl and a tapered awl)
  • Rulers
  • fabric marking tools
  • Plastic boning trimmers (I used pet nail trimmers. Sturdy scissors often work for thin plastic boning.)
  • Protective Eyewear
  • Sandpaper (optional)
  • Sewing Clips (optional)

Patterns: PATTERNS INCLUDE NEGATIVE EASE! There is an intentional 2-inch gap in the back. Corset will be smaller than the measurements given. (Measurements indicated are the body measurements, not corset measurements, with the exception of height.)

Measurements are in INCHES

SizeUnderbustWaistHigh HipWaist to HHHeight at Center Front
Original302934.53.59.5
C26.423.929.749
D2825.531.349
MORE SIZES COMING SOON!

Size Original: (UB 30, W29, HH 34.5, W to HH 3.5, CF Height 9.5)

Size C: (UB 26.4, W 23.9, HH 29.7, W to HH 4, CF Height 9)

Size D: (UB 28, W 25.5, HH 31.3, W to HH 4, CF Height 9)

More sizes coming soon!

Quick Overview:

Detailed Instructions:

Happy Sewing!

Sloth Plush Video Tutorial Part 2 and Backpack

Part 2 of the Sloth video tutorial is finished and ready to share! I hope you are excited to complete this project!

Sloth Supplies:

  • 7 x 48 inches Faux Fur or Fleece for body and legs
  • 4.5 x 18 inches of fleece for the face and claws
  • Scrap felt for face details
  • Two 16mm Safety Eyes (You could also use felt circles or buttons if you prefer)
  • Embroidery floss
  • Magnets, Velcro, or Snaps (optional)
  • Scrap fabric to cover magnets (optional)
  • Coordinating Thread
  • Poly-fil Stuffing

Helpful Tools:

Files:

Sloth Quick Overview:

Sloth Video Detailed Instructions PART 1:

Sloth Video Detailed Instructions PART 2:

BACKPACK

When I made the sloth plush project I always intended for there to be accessories to go with it. So, here is the first!

This is a tiny little backpack that is just adorable on the sloth project!

It could easily be adapted for other dolls and stuffed animals by adjusting the elastic straps.

You can choose to make the backpack out of a single layer of fabric (like my denim example), or you can make it with lining (pink example). There are also two different options for the lower straps. Loops that go around each leg, or a single strap that goes around the belly.

Overall, I was really happy with how this one turned out. I hope you enjoy it as well!

Supplies:

  • 4.5 x 18 inches of Main Fabric
  • 4.5 x 18 inches of Interfacing (optional – I used Pellon SF101)
  • 4.5 x 18 inches of Lining Fabric (optional)
  • 1.75 x 4 inches of fabric for the trim
  • 3 inches of 1/4 inch wide ribbon (optional)
  • One 7 inch Zipper
  • 3/4 yard (27 inches) of 1/4 inch wide elastic
  • Coordinating Thread

Files:

Backpack Video Instructions:

Sloth Plush Video Tutorial PART 1

The sloth plush has been one of my posted free projects for quite some time, but I thought it was time to make a video!

I absolutely LOVE this project! It is so cuddly, which just makes me happy! It does take a bit of time, especially if you choose to work with fur, so the instructions for this project will be in two parts.

Supplies:

  • 7 x 48 inches Faux Fur or Fleece for body and legs
  • 4.5 x 18 inches of fleece for the face and claws
  • Scrap felt for face details
  • Two 16mm Safety Eyes (You could also use felt circles or buttons if you prefer)
  • Embroidery floss
  • Magnets, Velcro, or Snaps (optional)
  • Scrap fabric to cover magnets (optional)
  • Coordinating Thread
  • Poly-fil Stuffing

Helpful Tools:

Files:

Video Instructions PART 1:

Lace Overlay Face Mask

I just had to give this project a try, I couldn’t help myself. I normally do a lot of costuming, and when I had the idea to branch away from cotton fabrics for the mask I couldn’t resist!

This was a lot of fun to make 🙂 I don’t think it would be my everyday mask, but for special occasions or when I feel the need to be a bit fancy, this mask would be great.

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This mask uses my contoured face mask pattern with adjustable ties. I used 1/8 inch ribbon.

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This mask also has a satin lining. It’s a little bit trickier working with specialty fabrics, but I was really pleased with how it turned out!

Supplies:

These dimensions will work for all sizes. Actual size needed may be smaller if you make a smaller size. Make sure the fabric can be washed and pressed.

About 8 x 15 inches Main Cotton Fabric ( I used satin)

About 8 x 15 inches Lining Fabric (I used satin)

About 8 x 15 inches of Lace

About 8 x 15 inches Interfacing (Optional – I used Pellon SF101.)

Elastic, Ribbon, Bias Tape, or Fabric for Ties

Here is the free pattern:

Contoured Face Mask Pattern by learncreatesew

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS:

Thanks for Watching!

 

Fun Size Backpack Tutorial Part 2 Now Available

I finished the instructions to the backpack!

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I hope you enjoy making this project! I have added a quick overview as well if you just want a peak at the project.

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS PART 2:

QUICK OVERVIEW:

Free Pattern:

Please note: This pattern has been updated. There was an error on the original pattern. The bottom pocket gusset should measure 12.75 inches in length. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Fun Size Backpack

I absolutely LOVE this backpack! This is my favorite size backpack to take to amusement parks. At 9 x 11 inches it is smaller than regular sized backpacks, but large enough to hold a lot. I’ve stuffed this thing with water bottle, snacks, extra sweatshirt, wallet, keys, notebook, first aid kit, and more. However, it’s not so big that it gets too heavy, as regular sized backpacks can.

It even fits in a lot of the ride compartments at Disneyland. That is it’s best feature in my book!

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It is constructed with a layer of cotton overlaying duck canvas. I used bias tape to bind the seams.

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I’ve made six or seven of these bags using a variety of fabrics and interfacing. I’ve used vinyl, suede, plain canvas, fusible fleece, and even satin. The cotton covered canvas, with woven interfacing is my favorite combination! It is nice to work with, strong without being bulky, and holds its shape very well.

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I love the pocket in front. While it takes patience to construct it’s not too difficult once you know the method.

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This bag also has adjustable straps depending on how you like to wear your backpack.

Supplies Needed:

1/2 yd 41” wide Main Cotton Fabric
42 inches 19” wide Interfacing (I used Pellon SF101)
3/8 yd 58” wide Canvas (I used duck canvas from JoAnn)
One 20 inch zipper
One 13 inch zipper

1 pkg Extra Wide Double Fold Bias Tape
75 inches 1” wide Strapping
Two 1” wide Rectangle Rings
Two 1” wide Tri-glide adjusters
One “Handmade” Metal Tag (Optional)

This project takes a bit of time and patience when working with multiple pieces, zippers, curves, and interfacings. Difficulty 7/10.

Approximate Finished Dimensions (inches):

Main Compartment 9 x 3.75 x 11, Pocket 7 x 1.5 x 5.75

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS: PART 1: Fabric, Zippers, Pocket

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS: Part 2: COMING SOON!

Free Pattern:

Please note, this pattern has been updated. There was an error in the first version of the pattern, the bottom pocket gusset piece should measure 12.75 inches in length. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Pintuck Throw Pillow

I have been wanting to finish this project for years! I made it a few years ago, but never got around to writing the instructions. I am super excited to finally have it completed 🙂

 

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This is a cute little throw pillow and is a lot of fun to make. I absolutely love the beads attached, especially on the dark colored fabric.

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You have to be quite precise in your measurements and seams when completing this project. For example, on the side pleats if you are consistently off by even 1/8 inch, you could end up several inches off the mark when you finish. As a result, this project is for more advanced sewers, or those confident in stitching accurate seam allowance sizes. Difficulty 6/10

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This is one of my first home decor projects and I really like the results!

To make this project you need the following:

5/8 yard 60 inch fabric (I used taffeta)

One 9 – 11 inch zipper (I used an invisible zipper)

One 12 x 16 inch pillow form

Beads (Optional)

Coordinating Thread

 

Here is a cut layout and pressing guides for the pillow if needed. I recommend printing the pressing guides on a heavyweight cardstock.

Pintuck Pillow Pressing Guides and Cut Layout by learncreatesew

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS:

Dog Poop Waste Bag Holder

Thank you to my Grandparents for giving me the idea for this project! It was a challenge, but a lot of fun. I have to say, I never thought I would be making a tutorial that had anything to do with dog poop, but here it is 🙂

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I have two dogs and they always…always…do their business while we are out and about. As a result, I have to carry these with me every time we go for a walk. Having a case to store the bags in is a must.

The pattern and instructions provide two different styles for the bag.

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One is a loop handle which can be attached to the leash using Velcro, snaps, buttons, or more. This is a really cute style and is the typical style for waste bag holders.

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The other is a simple drawstring bag. Both options have a slit in the side to allow for easy removal of the plastic bags.

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This project is a bit challenging. I would say 6/10. Primarily because it is so small. Special tools can help, such as the Purple Thang to protect your fingers, and a detail pressing tool to reach the small areas.

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Here is the free pattern.

Dog Poop Bag Holder Pattern by learncreatesew

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS:

Stretch Knit Face Mask

This is one of my favorite face masks. SO comfortable! And I love the fit!

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With a lot of face masks I have a hard time finding just the right fit. Since the knit fabric stretches, it wraps around the face quite nicely.

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I used a brushed polyester spandex from JoAnn that has a great stretch and holds its shape.

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In addition to providing a safer environment, these masks also double as protection against dog licks.

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This masks can be made using a zigzag stitch and stretch or ball point needle, or with a combination of a zigzag and twin needle. I used a stretch twin needle with width 2.5. The purple thang tool was very handy when sewing the binding.

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Here is the pattern for the face mask. The pattern is available in a variety of sizes. I made a medium for myself and used 26 – 26.5 inches of trim. I used 26.5 of the zigzag stitched trim, and 26 with a twin needle.

Stretch Knit Face Mask Pattern by learncreatesew

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS:

 

 

Classic Fanny Pack

I have been wanting to make a fanny pack for years, and I finally did!

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This is a classic fanny pack with a curved top flap. It’s what I always picture in my head when I think of a fanny pack. I made several different patterns before I settled on this one, and it was by far my favorite. It is fully lined, so no raw edges! But you could definitely make it with a single layer if you wanted to.

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The waistband is also adjustable.

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Since the zipper is on a curve, there is a bit of difficulty, probably a 5/10. If you aren’t as comfortable sewing zippers and think this might be a bit much for you, don’t worry! My next tutorial is a flat fanny pack and the zipper installation is much easier.

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The dimensions of the fanny pack are approximately 13.5 inches side to side, 4 inches tall, and the top flap is about 2.5 inches deep. It tapers to a point at the bottom.

Here is the free pattern & my video instructions!

Enjoy!

Classic Fanny Pack Pattern by learncreatesew

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS:

You can use different fabrics for the fanny pack.

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Canvas and denim are great for the exterior. You can even use regular cotton fabric, but I do recommend interfacing. I used SF101, but a fusible fleece would probably work good as well.

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You can use top stitching as  a decorative element and to add stability to the bag.

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On my denim bag I used contrasting thread so the top stitching would stand out, and two rows on the sides to give it more of a “jeans” feel.

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Keep an eye out for my next tutorial and I’ll show you how to make a different style of fanny pack!