I grew up watching my mom and my aunts sew clothing, pillows, and curtains for their homes. There were no blogs to showcase their work, just their fellow community where they shared their tips and advice. It was the late seventies, times were tough, money was tight, and the economy was in the you know what. Ladies all across the nation were trading patterns and ideas, and sewing up a frenzy of home decor on a budget. Sounds kinda familiar doesn’t it?
The very best way to soften a space, to add texture, pattern and personality, is with the use of great fabrics, so I believe one of the best tools for an avid DIYer is a basic sewing machine. You’ll find plenty of tutorials online for ‘no sew’ decor, and they are fantastic, in fact I’ve done several myself. There are lots of times when fusible web, fabric glue, or safety pins have come to my rescue with a simple hem or a window treatment. Yay for those solutions! Yet one thing I’ve learned is that having the ability to work a sewing machine opens up an entirely new world.
Do you ever see a swatch of fabric, be it in the form of a dress, an apron, a napkin, a silk scarf, and you think to yourself, "This would make a great pillow!" or you find a great fabric and think "I want to make curtains out of this." It happens to me all the time! You can design an entire space around a single swatch of fabric that inspires, be it a damask, geometric, Ikat or simple stripe pattern, whatever speaks to you. I am constantly inspired by patterns I find beyond the racks in fabric stores, and I’m a big believer in reinventing them into new things.
For example, take these inexpensive napkins I found in a local kitchen store. Beautiful robins egg blue background with an apple green botanical pattern. Love! In fact, I loved them so much, I turned them into a pillow!