Did you read Part 1 and the Intro? Dont skip ahead, read it now.
For this section I’m providing some “must”s. I will add on to it as I think of it and I will provide I link so you dont have to keep checking back. I will fix some of the crappy phone photos in time.
- My favorite place to go is Jo-Ann fabrics. Everything is reasonably priced and there is so much variety! My second runner up is Michael’s. Michaels is great for beads and yarn and ribbon but unfortunately no fabric! So I usually head to Jo-Ann’s for my fabric. Whatever little knick-knacks I cant find there, I head to Michaels
Be flexible and be creative! You wont always find exactly what you want and thats okay. For example, I couldnt find my leaf sequins. So instead of throwing a hissy-fit I decided to go with some little oval rhinestones, which I think look even better than the sequins. Originally, I wanted to make sequin flowers, but then I found some rhinestone flowers and they were so perfect! So even if everything doesnt go exactly to plan, its okay. Dont freak out
- Please dont shop online unless the website is well known and reliable, you are not on a time crunch and whatever you buy is returnable. Because sometimes it looks cute in the picture, and when you get it 5 weeks later, you dont remember what you saw in those 12 yards of swirly green and pink batik fabric.
- Get more than you need. Its always good to get a little more than you need. Why? you’re going to mess up. I mess up all the time. And having to go all the way back to the store is time consuming and you could run the risk of your fabric being out of season by the time you get there. Usually I get between 1-2 yards depending on the outfit. I know that I could make a whole outfit with about 1/2 yard but again, play it safe. Same is true for trim, except it doesnt really have seasons, but it can run out, so do buy more than you may need. I buy about 4-5 yards.
- Sewing machine- invest in one and learn how to use it. A sewing machine is a time saver. It doesnt have to be anything expensive, mine cost close to $300. If you cant afford one, thats okay. But it will take you much much longer to sew your outfit. I went for years without one and now I suffer with serious backache.
- Fabric scissors- A true dressmaker has a pair of fabric scissors that they use ONLY for fabric. I stress this because if you use these scissors for anything else, they will wear down and you will be sad. Save yourself the emotional torture. Save your fabric scissors FOR FABRIC ONLY. I have a fancy pair here that cost me around $50 (more or less, I cant remember) and they last a very very long time compared to other scissors.
Fray check- this is a godsend. You put this at the end of your fabric so it doesnt fray and it’s wonderful. You may or may not need this but I love it and I always make sure to keep a couple bottles. Oh, and no, this is not supposed to replace sewing in the ends of your outfits, you will still sew it in, but your outfit will look nicer for longer if you make sure to drizzle some of this stuff on the ends. Oh and the $6.30 that they show on there is for two bottles, not just one.
- Fabric glue- aka “liquid stitch” a new addition to my “must have”s. This is for the rhinestones. If there is no way for you to sew it on, use a little fabric glue and its on there pretty tightly, this glue is much better than other glue because its thicker, other glues fail because they dont stick well with porous material. Please dont replace sewing in your trim with gluing it in.That is not what this is for and you will regret it later.
- Something cool to look at when you are shopping for fabric- check out the sari/brocade fabric. Its GORGEOUS! If you want a fancy look without exhorting too much effort then look no further! Do try to get it on sale or clearance though since it runs about $10.00/yard. Ouch.
- before you make your dress, do measure your Deites and make a scrap outfit. This way, you dont have to run to your Deites every five seconds to make sure its long/short/small/big enough for Them.
Thats all I can think of….for now…