Pressing Matters – A Couturier’s Secrets to Success


Ironing-Pressing-Station.jpgby Martyn Smith

Having a variety of pressing equipment offers a sewer or crafter more versatility during the making of a project. Many sewers were taught to “press as you sew” but the reality of moving from the machine to the iron can seem like much bother when dealing with annoying little tasks.

Having a mini pressing station set up next to the machine allows the stitcher to “do the right thing” without moving from the work station. Quilters often have a flat work surface beside the machine to press seams while piecing, and both garment makers and embroiderers should consider this as well.

An easy solution to your pressing needs could be:

The Echidna Silicone Rubber Embroidery/Pressing Mat is ideal as a hooping surface to prevent movement during hooping. Its heat resistance also makes it a perfect ironing surface. It won’t melt if the iron is left face down on the surface for short periods of time during the preparation of fabric.

Under-pressing while sewing (the method of pressing seams as you construct) makes the finished item easier and quicker to press once completed. The mini 20cm x 20cm mat is also ideal to place an embroidery hoop onto while trimming away or applying appliqué fabric or giving a quick press to flatten a seam during the embroidery process.

Ironing and Pressing Products

We have a wide range of product to help you setup the perfect ironing and pressing station. For more information please visit our website or call us on 1800 000 360.

Kids or Pet Applique Pillows

Create these cute, fun and easy pillows for your child or pet! They come in either dog, fox or bunny and take very little time to make.  Plus, if you’re an embroiderer check out this free bunny embroidery design to match the bunny pillow.

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 Patterns

When printing unselect ‘print to scale’. Use the test square to check the correct sizing.

Materials Needed

  • 110cm x 90cm fleece for the pillow. The final pillow size is approximately 50cm x 40cm
  • Mixture of felt or fleece colours for the face
  • Stuffing or bean bag fill (you can buy this in a large bag)
  • Thread colours to match the felt fabric
  • Hot Melt Web

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Learn to Sew – Helpful Books

by Erin W

These days with so many online tutorials, YouTube videos, blogs, patterns and programs, it’s very easy to get distracted and not know where to start on your sewing journey. Instead of being overwhelmed or spending large amounts of money on online tutorials, videos or subscriptions, why not start with something a little more basic… a book!

When you have so much information at your fingertips it’s easy to forget about the idea of hiring or buying a simple book that will guide you through the very basics of sewing, fabric types, techniques, tips, tricks and much more! Plus, if you search your local library you will often find a number of different topics whether you’re interested in the very basics, learning how to sew for children, learning how to make quilts, applique, embroidery, dressmaking and the list goes on. Best of all, this information is ready available to you for a simply library subscription.

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Image – Book Depository (Sewing Books)

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Echidna Sewing at Supernova!

The Supanova Pop Culture Expo is dedicated to science-fiction, comic books, animation, gaming, fantasy and a world of imagination for fans young and old. You’ll also find amateur and professional costume designers creating the biggest, boldest outfits to compete in the Madmen National Cosplay Championships.

Countless hours are spent on each costume, which can comprise sewing, embroidery, 3D-printing, crafting, foam cutting and more. The results are impressive proof that given an idea, and powered with the right tools, the opportunities are endless.

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Craftsy Bag Patterns & Classes

If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to make your own bag which is fun, affordable and ideal for any occasion check out Craftsy’s Online Educational bag classes.

Design Your Own Handbag Class by Brett Bara

Design and sew your very own high-fashion handbag in this class taught by author, designer and television host Brett Bara.

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Sew Better Bags Class: The Weekend Duffel by Betz White

Sew beautifully constructed duffel bags that stand up to travel and stand out with custom style. Build your sewing skills to create bags as fun as they are functional.

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Learn to Sew – iPad Case with Ruffles

by Erin W

Create this cute iPad case with front ruffle and snap button. Plus, you can also embroider this free 130 mm x 150 mm (5″ x 7″) Koi Fish design thanks to John Deer and his Ultimate Stash Collection.

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What you will Need

Print out the free downloadable iPad Case pattern (pdf, 538kb) Make sure to press “print to scale” when printing.

  • 0.7m x .35m outer fabric – thicker fabrics such as denim, linen or cotton blends would be ideal.
  • 0.7 x 0.5m lining & ruffle fabric – cotton or cotton blends would be ideal.
  • 0.7 m x 0.35m thin wadding material or iron-on pellon.
  • 1 x button – to match your lining/ruffle material.
  • Scissors
  • Matching thread

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Learn To Sew – Choosing a Machine

by Erin W

If you’re new to sewing and are looking at buying a machine, it can often get a bit overwhelming with the variety of  brands, makes and models to choose from. Unfortunately, we see time and time again people opting for a low cost machine from larger retail chains. The problem with this is that some of these machines come with little to no functions, which can make your first sewing experience a frustrating and unpleasant one. Also, what happens when you run into trouble? Will they offer ongoing support or advice? Can you pop into the store  or phone someone and actually get some help from a knowledgeable person? Can you participate in classes and events where you have the best chance at learning everything you need to succeed?

When someone comes into our store looking to purchase the cheapest, smallest sewing machine as a ‘starting out’ machine, we will always try our best to explain that cheap and cheerful rarely equals a good sewing experience and we’ll encourage them to think long term by getting a machine we know and trust. We want to give them the best experience money can buy, allowing them to invest in a machine that will invest in them for years to come.

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There’s nothing worse than starting a new hobby, especially one that can seem a little daunting at first, and not having the right tools or equipment to get you started. More often than not, having a cheap, low cost machines lacking in mordern user friendly features will force you to throw your hands in the air saying, “I give up! It’s all too hard.” It would be like buying a new car and not having air-conditioning, power steering, disk breaks or even a radio. It might get you from A to B but it’s just not enjoyable.

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