In many ways I'm very grateful for my more traditional sewing background. Having inserted hundreds (seems impossible, but is probably true!) of zippers over my lifetime, I can comfortably adjust almost any part of the process and still be confident about it being functionally successful.
And yet these days, I'm experimenting with zipper treatments on the backs of the pillows. Having seen some designers use topstitched zippers, I'm rethinking my traditional zipper installations.
It's always an adventure, isn't it?
I admire new sewists who courageously "just try things" because they aren't juggling in their heads all the pros and cons of the "right way" to do things. I'm hoping to adopt more freethinking processes in the months to come--in my garment construction, machine quilting, and home dec sewing.
As an example, this past spring I gave up my traditional piped-edge pillow techniques and went through a "ruffled pillow" phase. Adding ruffles instead of piping to my pillow edges became my new favorite sewing technique. Nothing got between me and the ruffler attachment for my sewing machine.
And yet having my traditional technique came in handy with my latest modern pillow. This pillow was a test project. I'm working on my machine quilting and pillow tops are a manageable size for me--big enough to do some planning, yet small enough that I can have a measure of success when I'm done. Traditional piping seemed a better solution for this pillow. I pulled the various black and white prints into the binding which gave a clean finish to the more modern design of the pillow.
As sewists, we need a good dose of the functional and the fun. For more tips and techniques turn Sewing Solutions: Tips and Techniques for the Savvy Sewist by Nicole Vasbinder. It's organized so that it is easy to find the answers to sewing processes which allows your imagination to roam free. And I personally love the illustrations.)
Now I have a question for both sides of the learning curve. If you learned to sew in a more traditional manner, are you experimenting with any new techniques? And for those of you who just sat down at your sewing machines and "got going", how do you fill in your knowledge gaps? Let's learn from each other!