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  • 8/3/2021

    Ah, the dreaded zipper! One of the most essential parts of creating bags, garments, cosplay, and home decor is also one of the most frightening for many sewing enthusiasts. We are here to say fear no more! Janome Maker Meredith Daniel from Olivia Jane Handcrafted is going to show you not only how easy it is to install a zipper by creating a zippered pocket in anything!!!  After you add zippered pouches to everything, you can use this skill builder to go forward adding zippers pillows, dresses, and so much more!




    hidden zipper pocket tutorial



    A zippered pocket is such a useful addition to any bag! Did you know they are also incredibly easy to insert? This tutorial will show you how to do just that, and you will be an expert in no time at all! 

    hidden zipper pocket tutorial


    You'll need just a couple of things:

    • the fabric you want to put a zipper pocket into
    • a zipper the length of you want your pocket opening (I'm using a 7" metal zipper)
    • a cut of fabric for your pocket (you'll need less than a fat quarter!)
    • a scrap of interfacing (I'm using SF 101)
    • a marking tool, ruler, and cutting tools

      hidden zipper pocket tutorial


    To demonstrate this technique, I'm installing a zipper on the front of my Basic Drawstring Bag. It would also make a great addition to my Mosaic Heart Tote, but you can use this to add a pocket to whatever you need! I am using my Janome Skyline S9 with a walking foot for the whole of this tutorial. That's right! You don't even need a zipper foot. Let's get started!


    Cut two pieces of interfacing 1.5"x 1" longer than your zipper. I cut a piece 1.5x8". Cut two matching pocket bags. They should be at least 1.5" longer than your zipper, and you will need at least 1" above wherever your zipper is at. I cut two pieces measuring 11x7.5".  Mark the placement of your zipper opening on the outer fabric. I find it useful to crease the fabric where I want the zipper to be, and then I have an accurate way to tell where to add interfacing.


           hidden zipper pocket tutorial   hidden zipper pocket tutorial

    Place one strip of interfacing on the wrong side of your outer fabric. Center it over where the zipper will be placed, and fuse according to the manufacturer's instructions. Repeat this on the wrong side of one pocket piece. The interfacing needs to be placed 1/2" under the top of the pocket piece. 


    **Tip: to help protect your iron and your ironing board cover, use a pressing cloth! 


      hidden zipper pocket tutorial


    Find the center of your interfaced section on the pocket piece and draw a line that is 1/4" longer than the teeth of your zipper. I marked a line 7 1/4" for my 7" zipper. Now mark two matching lines 1/4" above and below that line. You will now have three lines. Mark little triangles that reach from the outer corners to about 1/4" in on the centerline. Align your pocket piece and outer fabric right sides together so that the interfaced sections are at the same area since you will be sewing through all layers in the next step. I used clover clips to keep my fabrics still and in line. Sew around the outside rectangle that you drew, overlapping by several stitches once you reach the beginning. All the inner lines are cut lines.


                                 hidden zipper pocket tutorial     hidden zipper pocket tutorial    hidden zipper pocket tutorial



    Using very sharp scissors, cut through all layers along the centerline until you reach the triangle points, then very carefully clip along those diagonal lines to the corners. Do not clip your stitches. Turn your pocket pieces toward the inside through the hole you just cut, and press well.

                                 hidden zipper pocket tutorial



    Align your zipper within the rectangular opening, and begin stitching somewhere in the middle. You will want to use a 1/8" seam allowance since you are sewing close to the folded edge of the fabric. When you get close to the zipper pull, put your needle down, raise your presser foot, and carefully open the zipper so that you can stitch unencumbered by the bulk of the pull. You can then close it again when you need to.

                        hidden zipper pocket tutorial     hidden zipper pocket tutorial    hidden zipper pocket tutorial


    Place your remaining pocket piece right sides together with the sewn pocket piece, and pin the corners. You will now sew all the way around the pocket pieces with a 1/4" seam allowance. Move the main fabric out of the way as you sew. 

                            hidden zipper pocket tutorial    hidden zipper pocket tutorial



    You have now completed your hidden zipper pocket!

                                 hidden zipper pocket tutorial     hidden zipper pocket tutorial    hidden zipper pocket tutorial


    Give yourself a pat on the back for learning a new technique!  You can now include this skill in your sewing toolbox! 

    hidden zipper pocket tutorial  

  • 7/28/2021
    Are you ready for a fun and fast month-long Quilt Along?
    We have the perfect project for you to sew your way through the hottest days of summer with Janome Maker Natalie Santini from Sew Hungry Hippie! Natalie's very popular Candy Crush Quilt has been updated and is an easy patchwork quilt put together to create a fantastic colorful skull! This quilt is pre-cut friendly, so if you happen to have precut rolls on hand and weren't sure which project to use them in, this is the one! If you are a beginner, you will love this project! 

    The Candy Crush Quilt Along starts August 1st and runs through August 29th!  Nothing like a good project to get through the heat of August! To start off, you need to sign up for weekly updates from Natalie herself to prepare you each week with helpful tips and Zoom meet-ups! This quilt along has a community of over 300 already! You will have fun sewing along with and getting to know other quilters! So exciting! 

    Are you having doubts about being able to make this quilt? Not to worry! This is an easy quilt to make. You will be sewing squares or strips of squares together as easy a 1-2-3. You can DEFINITELY do this! The added support of the zoom meets and also weekly lives on both Facebook and Instagram will help you each week! 

    To receive emails and information about the Quilt Along:

    Sign up here.

    After you sign up, you will receive your first email Sunday morning with Zoom log-in info (if you want to join the Meet & Mingle happy hour). Natalie will also host meetings weekly, that will include special guests, prizes, as well as a low-pressure atmosphere to answer questions or share motivation and progress. Providing you with the support you need to finish this quilt in August! 

     To find the Candy Crush QAL community on Instagram, please share the graphic below and use the #candycrushQAL hashtag to help spread the word about the quilt-along. The more the merrier and people can sign up at any time, the sign-ups will be open through August! You do not have to own a Janome Sewing Machine to participate! All quilters are welcome! 




    On September 5th, after the QAL is finished, Natalie will be awarding the GRAND PRIZE of a Janome Sewist 721 sewing machine to one lucky winner!


    Whether you are just beginning your sewing journey or are an experienced sewing enthusiast, the Janome 721 mechanical sewing machine has features to enhance your sewing experience.  The 19 built-in stitches offer everyday stitches including stretch stitches and a 4-step buttonhole. Features include Adjustable Foot Pressure, Built-in Needle Threader, Extra High Foot Lifter for thicker fabrics, Drop Feed plus a Hard Machine Cover for safe storage. Plus it is lightweight for easy transport to classes.

    A random winner will be chosen from those who have finished the quilt top,  it doesn't have to be quilted and bound. There will also be other fabulous giveaways from brands like Oliso and Havel's for participating during the event! How cool is that news?

    (Entries for the machine are limited to US residents only, 18 years of age or older, due to laws and restrictions)



    Natalie pieced her entire quilt on the Janome Skyline S7, then quilted straight lines diagonally over the whole quilt! 


    Here's an introduction video if you'd like to see more!


    Below I'm sewing the binding on! The IG reel is here.


    "It feels like I harp about using quality machines and tools all the time, but there is something to be said about really understanding this. When I started sewing a long time ago I didn't have a quality machine, and EVERYTHING was so difficult to complete because of jams and problems. After my patience was worn out I called a local sewing shop and went to get the machine I truly needed. I've never looked back, and have had zero regrets for investing in ME!"

    That's how it should be viewed- it's not just "buying a machine" -- it's investing in YOURSELF.

    We hope to see you on the quilt-along! Be sure to tag @sewhungryhippie and  @janomeamerica in your posts and use the hashtags #candycrushQAL! If you are sewing along on a Janome please also use the #janomemakes hashtag! 


    Sign up here.


  • 7/28/2021

    Welcome back for the next step that will take you closer to finishing your Good Tidings Quilt designed by Janome Maker Melanie Call!  This week you will be sewing the Good Tidings Blocks together plus final quilt assembly with sashing and borders.  Soon your Good Tidings Quilt will be ready for snuggling or gift giving! Grab your fabrics for the race to the finish! Is there anything better to a quilter than a quilt finish? 




    Good Tidings Quilt Instructions (HERE) .


    It’s Melanie Call from A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog https://abitofscrapstuff.blogspot.com . I hope you are ready to assemble your Good Tidings Blocks! 

    Don't forget to share your fabric selection, cutting, flying geese, patchwork squares, and Good Tidings Block, and Good Tidings Quilt top on Instagram with hashtag #GoodTidingsQAL


    My Good Tidings Quilt was pieced and machine quilted on my Janome M7. I love how well my Janome M7 perfectly pieces blocks AND is fabulous for free motion quilting!


    The Janome Continental M7 features:

    A speedy 1300 stitches per minute (faster finish anyone)

    Automatic Presser Foot Lift

    Independent Bobbin Winding Motor and so many other features to make your sewing and quilting effortless!





    Good Tidings Quilt    

    #GoodTidingsQAL     59.5" x 59.5"

    Fabric used in Good Tidings Quilt -  All About Christmas fabric designed by J.Wecker Frisch for Riley Blake Designs






    You can find the past Good Tidings Quilt Along Blog Posts  to make this full quilt by visiting:




    Don't forget to download the Good Tidings Quilt Flying Geese Instructions HERE. I can't wait to see your Good Tidings Quilt progress photos!!! #GoodTidingsQAL


    Be sure to follow me on Instagram @ABitofScrapStuff  https://www.instagram.com/abitofscrapstuff/ and on my A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog https://abitofscrapstuff.blogspot.com  for more fabric fun! Also, be sure to follow Janome America on Instagram, and if you are creating on your Janome Sewing Machine, tag @janomeamerica and use the hashtag #janomemakes!  


    Have a great day and happy quilting! 

    Melanie Call






  • 7/27/2021

    Welcome back to the Rainbow Quilt Block of the Month designed by Janome Maker Carolina Oneto!This month you will make Block Six. The Diamond Block, is a block that is perfect for practicing your half square triangle skills!  Get ready to have fun! 




    Remember that all the blocks will have a finished size of 12” and the unfinished size will be 12 1/2”. All seams are ¼”.  Please read through all of the instructions prior to starting this block. Carolina sews on the Janome 1600P-QC that makes piecing and quilting effortless with an extra-wide work area, side loading bobbin for easy access, and an automatic thread cutter! 


    White background

    Three 5 3/4” squares

    Two 4” square


    One 5 3/4” square

    One 4” square

    Dark pink

    One 5 3/4” square

    One 4” square


    One 5 3/4” square

    INSTRUCTIONS for making HST four at a time:

    • Make four half-square triangles.
    • Place a white and colored fabric square (5 3/4”) right sides together.
    • Sew a 1/4″ seam allowance all around the perimeter of the square.
    • Make two diagonal cuts and press each piece open to one side.
    • Trim away the dog ears using a square quilting ruler, you will obtain 4 HST 3,5”


    Instructions for making HST two at a time

    Do this process with the 2 white squares of 4” and the two squares of the same size in pink and dark pink. You will assemble 8 half-square triangles that you must square up to the size of 3.5".


















    • Arrange your blocks in correct layout
    • Using a quarter-inch seam allowance, sew together in rows. Join all rows, using a ¼” inch seam allowance.
    • Press your completed block and trim down to 12.5″ square (if necessary).



    You can find the past blocks by visiting:


    Block One     HERE

    Block Two     HERE

    Block Three  HERE

    Block Four    HERE

    Block Five     HERE




    After you make your block, we’d love to see them!

    Janome Sewing Classroom

    Janome America Instagram – Be sure to tag @janomeamerica and use the hashtag #janomemakes and also tag @carolinaoneto!






  • 7/21/2021

    It is a new week and time for the next installment of the Good Tidings Quilt Along designed by Janome Maker Melanie Call from A Bit of Scrap Stuff! 

    This week Melanie stitched up  Good Tidings Quilt Along - Patchwork Squares on her Janome Continental M7! 

    Hi Quilty Friends! I hope you had fun making all the flying geese blocks and bonus half-square triangles last week. No worries if you are behind, this week is quicker! 

    This week we will be sewing the Patchwork Squares!  Patchwork is always been a favorite of mine! Simple and looks fabulous!



    Good Tidings Quilt Flying Geese Instructions (HERE).  I hope you are joining as there are AMAZING PRIZES from Riley Blake Designs, Fat Quarter Shop, and Oliso. Don't forget to share your fabric selection, cutting, and flying geese  on Instagram with the hashtag #GoodTidingsQAL

    Be sure to check my A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog  each week as I will be sharing a new pattern section each for the FREE Good Tidings Quilt Quilt Along (schedule at end of blog post)



    Good Tidings Quilt    

    Finished size:   59.5" x 59.5"


    A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog #ABitofScrapStuff #GoodTidingsQAL #GoodTidingsQuilt #RileyBlakeDesigns

    Patchwork Squares Instructions


    Good Tidings Quilt Along Schedule
    A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog #ABitofScrapStuff #GoodTidingsQAL #GoodTidingsQuilt #RileyBlakeDesigns

    You can find the previous Good Tidings Quilt Along Blog Posts to get caught up by visiting:
    A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog #ABitofScrapStuff #GoodTidingsQAL #GoodTidingsQuilt #RileyBlakeDesigns

    I can't wait to see your Good Tidings Quilt progress photos!!! #GoodTidingsQAL
    Be sure to follow me on Instagram @ABitofScrapStuff and on my A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog for more fabric fun!

    Have a great day and happy quilting! 
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