Recently a few people have asked me how I get the nice ‘firm but squidgy’ effect for the pouches, wallets and bags that I make, and as I think getting a handle on using interfacing has been one of the things that has made a huge difference to my products over the last couple of years, I thought I’d blog about my personal preferences. There’s also a chance to win some to try out, so – read on!
If I’m making anything with an inner and and outer – bags, wallets, crochet hook wraps etc. – I always use 2 kinds of interfacing. On the outer I generally use a low loft fusible fleece, and my preferred buy is Vilene H630 (available here at Gone to Earth), because it provides structure without bulk. I generally prefer use an iron-on interfacing because you don’t get fabric ‘creep’ as you sew in zips and sew seams, and as I don’t have a walking foot for my sewing machine, this is essential. This fusible fleece is soft but doesn’t give a huge amount of bulky padding – which of course you don’t want when you are sewing small stuff like this wallet:
H630 is really easy to use, you just cut a piece the same size as the piece of fabric you want to fuse it to, minus the seam allowance. Place the fabrics together, cover with a damp pressing cloth and press firmly with a hot iron for 15 seconds. Here’s a brilliant video at the Vilene website, showing how to use H630.
H630, along with its fatter cousin H640, are brilliant, but the totally indispensable interfacing in my sewing is a different Vilene product – the truly wonderful G700. This is a medium weight iron-on interfacing, but what makes it so brilliant is that it is woven. When ironed to a piece of quilting weight cotton it gives weight without that awful cardboardy stiffness that is so common with other iron-on medium weight interfacings. I found out about it from Julia, who runs Gone to Earth, and now buy it regularly from her – here it is. It’s pricier that the ordinary non-woven interfacing but worth every penny. I always use it to give weight to fabrics I’m using inside my products. For example, in the inside of my Red Riding Hood wallet I used it to interface all the pockets, and the inner fabric itself, and both sides of the tab closure, to give added strength around the magnetic snap.
Again, the trick is to cut a piece of interfacing the same size as your fabric piece but without the seam allowance – this stops your seams getting incredibly bulky. Around the edges of this wallet there are up to 6 layers of fabric, the last thing I want is layers of interfacing too! Here’s another excellent (and strangely relaxing) video about how to use G700.
So, do you want to get your hands of some of this alchemical sewing essential? Well the good news is that I told Julia I was going to write this post, and she offered to put together a lovely pack of these crafting essentials together as a prize for a lucky Very Berry reader.
- The winner will receive a half metre each of H630, H640 and G700.
- The giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere in the world.
- Just leave a comment before midnight on Sunday 27 May to be in with a chance of winning.
- As Little Red Riding Hood seems to have a starring role in this post, why not tell me your favourite fictional heroine (or as usual, you can always just say, ‘Pick me!’).
A huge thank you to Julia for her generous offer. Good luck everyone!