Friday, August 24, 2012

Making Boutique Style Accessories, Part 1: Wide Fabric Headband!

It's been a few days since I have blogged anything because honestly it has been crazy around here! The garden is in full swing, and veggies are just begging to be put into jars, I got tired of the kids toys all over the house so I made a make shift toy room down in the unfinished basement. I have been waiting for the extra money to finish it properly, but that extra money seems to keep eluding me, so I took matters into my own hands, literally and got it done. (I'm that kind of girl, flexible and do it myself like that!) Oh...and school started! With school comes school shopping and new clothes. This is what has prompted my next random blogging: A series of blog posts that will be dedicated to making your own "boutique style" accessories. You know the type I'm talking about (any accessory that you might find that talented, creative people make and sell at boutiques, markets, parties, etc.) I have been one of those people, selling my wares in a little cubie at a huge expo and have decided to share a few things I have learned by doing so. The first thing I will suggest is look at the clothes that you want to make accessories to accompany. Choose ribbons, fabrics, embellishments that match or coordinate really well. For instance some of the clothes my kids chose this year had little bling crystals on the dresses and shirts, so I found some matching ribbon with similar little bling crystals on it, to use for one of the headbands I will show later. Another suggestion, choose many different textures in those colors, for instance choose some fabrics that are smooth, then somethings with texture, like a corduroy or lace. And another thing I have learned is that the accessories must be comfortable or no one wants to wear them, especially children! For example, lace against skin: not so good! And with your embellishments choose lots of different ones. I like to use buttons, resin flowers, pearls, beads, Swarovski crystals, bows, fabric flowers etc. I love places that sell things by the one because then I can pick lots of different things, like the local copy shop I frequent sells resin flowers individually and I sort through. (I realize buying in bulk is also a good thing, for instance I buy my Swarovski Crystals and a few things that I know I use a lot of, but I also don't want everything to look the same and unless you are making and selling many you probably don't want to buy too much in bulk.) So the first thing I decided to share is a pattern I made up for a wider headband. It features a comfortable fit because I used a stretchy soft knit for the backing and a beautiful glittery lace for the front. It slips on and off, donning a piece of elastic in the back for extra stretch. I have included pics and instructions for making this headband. Have fun!! And look for more tutorials on making other "boutique style" accessories coming your way!

Cut a piece of fabric, scraps work great! I did mine about 9" long and about 3.5" wide then tapering down to about 2.5" wide at the end. Make sure to cut the 9" end on the fold. (As shown in photos)

Then open up the stretchy fabric and put it on top of the lace fabric (right sides together), pin and cut out the front piece. (this saves a step by doing it this way, this way the two pieces are already to be sewn together!)

Then before you sew, sandwich an elastic piece in between the two fabrics and pin in place so it will be sewn in. (The size of the elastic will differ upon the size of the head you are making this for, I would start big and before you sew the other end into the elastic put it on the person and see how long it should be.)

Now start sewing the two pieces together starting at the end without the elastic and sewing all the way around the whole piece using the sewing machine foot as your guide, and leaving the end (without elastic) open. When you sew around make sure that your stitches catch the elastic. If you have pinned it to the end you should be OK.

Now using my favorite "grabber thingy" turn the headband inside out. (I know it looks kind of twisty turny, this is because of the knit fabric I chose, but don't freak out, a little top stitching will help flatten it out.)

This is what it looks like turned right sides out and the little piece of elastic sticking out.

Now for the top stitching so it doesn't look so twisty-turny. I again use the edge of my presser foot as my guide and top stitch starting at the open end, again leaving open at the end without elastic.

And this is what it looks like with the top stitching.

Okay, now working at the end without elastic, you will turn both the lace and the knit fabric ends to the inside, to make a nice finished edge and insert your elastic end into it and pin it down.

Now stitch the ends closed catching the elastic inside.

This is what it looks like from the back finished.

Front finished view. Now it just needs embellishments!

A few ideas for embellishments. Using your favorite adhesive attach the embellishments you have chosen. (I usually like hot glue). 

Always get a plan for where you want your embellishments to go before you glue them down. Then one by one glue them into place. (I like to group them together and stack too, for instance, these different kinds of flowers are grouped close together and then the glitzy button is stacked on top). 

This cute little knit and lace tunic I found at Target and was the inspiration for this headband.

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