Make a Sewing Machine Cover

How about making a new sewing machine cover for your machine? In our last house, which was a converted Salvation Army Hall, a cover for the machine was really necessary. The roof was traditional slate and on the inside were wooden boards. Let’s just say that it tended to be dusty! Now, we have moved, I keep my machine in the studio which is in a church hall with a tiled roof and boarded interior. I reckon to still need a machine cover. Keeping your machine dust-free helps it to function perfectly when you are ready to use it.

So I have written a pattern for a sewing machine cover for my Pfaff machine. It’s a Pfaff Quilt Expression 4.0 (which looks like this).

Here is the Sewing Machine Cover.

The Sewing Machine Cover is intended to celebrate sewing and quilting, so it has hearts on the front (for love of quilting) and stars on the back (because the sewing machine is the star of the show, the thing that makes it all happen).

The two areas can be swopped over, or you can have all stars or all hearts. It’s a very adaptable pattern.

Speaking of which, the pattern has been designed to fit a number of different sizes of machine and full instructions are given in the pattern for how to make the necessary changes, if your sewing machine has different dimensions.

The original cover is made up in this year’s trending colours of grey and yellow. However, it would look good in other different colour combinations. An entirely ‘scrappy’ cover in a myriad of colours would be fun.

This is a detailed pattern with step-by-step photos. It is a full nineteen pages long! The pattern is suitable for intermediate quilters.This would make a great summer project (for those in the Northern Hemisphere!). This cover will enhance your sewing room and your machine will work all the better for being under a cover.

Here’s the pattern cover:

You can find the pattern here

Last week in the studio, a sewing enthusiast became a brand-new quilter on the ‘Quilt in a Day’ course. The course is now based here in Ramsgate. It’s a one-day course with individual one-to-one tuition. You can book it on the ‘Classes’ page here

A Mask for a Hairdresser

Not long ago I was commissioned to make a mask for a hairdresser. It so happens that one of my many fabric designs depicts a set of clients, all seated in a salon chairs and each sporting a new hairdo. In fact, it’s called ‘New Hairdo’. This fabric was specifically requested for the mask.

;New Hair-do by Amanda Jane Textiles – you can find the fabric here

As you can see from the measurements in inches at the top and side, it’s a relatively large-scale pattern. So when I was asked to make a mask using this fabric, I wanted to make sure that the design would fit onto the pattern pieces.

For this mask, I used the templates and instructions entitled ‘The Olson Mask’ by Jan Allston on the Bernina blog. You can find the instructions and a link to the template here. I used the medium template on this occasion. It downloaded and printed out perfectly. You can see the template pinned to the cut fabric below.

Paper pattern for the Olson Mask pinned onto cut-out fabric

I placed the pattern pieces very carefully to make sure that a ‘client’ and their reflection would fit onto the side of the mask.

Pieces of fabric cut out ready to make the Olson mask

I used a plain white cotton fabric for the lining of the mask.

As I did not know the end-user personally, I decided to make the mask adjustable. I did this by adding a bead to each of the elastic straps. Here’s how to do this.

1 Make up the mask according to the instructions on the Bernina Blog until the point where you stitch in the elastic.

2 Allow a little extra length for each piece of elastic. Use quarter-inch (6mm) wide elastic and a bead with a wide hole through the middle.

3 Create a loop on the table with the elastic. With a double thread in your needle, go down through the centre of your bead, through the end of the elastic loop and up through the bead again.

4 Then gently, but firmly, pull on the thread until you are able to ease the elastic up through the hole in the bead. Be patient. You need to persuade the elastic to go through. If it goes through too easily, you need a bead with a smaller hole – you don’t want the bead to come off in wear.

Pulling elastic through the centre of a bead using a double thread

Then continue with making the mask. When the mask is worn, the bead can be moved up and down to lengthen or shorten the ear loop.

So here is the finished ‘mask for a hairdresser’. This is the right-hand side…

The right hand side of the finished mask showing a girl in a hairdresser's chair

…and this is the left.

The left-hand side of the 'mask for a hairdresser'

Today (19th July 2021) is officially the end-date of many Covid-19 restrictions in England which are enforceable by law. This brings some welcome changes: we can – at last – sing in church again, which I am very glad about. However, infection rates are very high in this country. Mask-wearing will be optional, not obligatory. It is left to the individual to make their own decision for themselves (and for others!) about whether to wear a mask or not. So you may find that you still want to wear a mask on occasion. I hope you find this post useful!

I have just sent out the July-August edition of my monthly newsletter, packed with all manner of good things: colour and design inspiration, a delightful textiles-related link from the internet, news from my studio, a book recommendation and more. If you’d like to receive it too, just sign up here.

Looking for a pattern for a sunny, summery baby quilt (or wall-hanging or throw)? ‘Here comes the sun’ might be just the thing. You can find it here

a cot quilt in oranges and yellows called 'Here Comes the Sun'