Monday, December 29, 2008

How to Start a Textile Machinery Business


In one of my previous posts, I had talked about business opportunities with fabrics. That was for those who want to start a small business related to fabrics and then moving upwards. However, those textile enthusiast who have a good amount of money to invest and want to make it big, may start a textile machinery business too. But how? There are certain factors to be considered for starting such business.

Value Proportion: How much money are you prepared to invest in your new business? First and the foremost thing to do is defining the value proportion of your proposed business.

Knowing About Competition: What competition is there in the market? What are the textile machines in vogue and how their market looks like in the city or region where you are thinking of setting up your business? To find out the answers, you might search any Textile Machinery Companies Directory. If you see a lot of competition in one of the machines or equipment of your interest, you might consider starting business in a less competitive market of some other machinery or related area such as Textile Machine Accessories.

Proper Guidance about Running the Business: This can only be given by those who are already in the business. Local companies for whom you are going to be a competitor, might not be interested in becoming your mentor. Search again for textile machinery companies or textile mill equipment and supplies business outside the region of your business interest. Many entrepreneurs are interested in giving advice to the new entrants in their field. You might even think of investing some of your time as an apprentice to gain knowledge of the trade.

Other Low Risk Options: Instead of taking higher risks by establishing a whole new Textile Machinery Company of your own, you might become a franchisee. A Franchise is an easy way to start your own business under the stability and security of an established brand. You will have exclusive rights to trade the textile machinery in a particular area under the name of some established brand and can have profits without spending years on building your own brand to compete with the big names in the industry. To check out whether there are good franchise opportunities available, look for a franchise directory where you might find the business opportunity you've been looking for. Alternatively, you might consider buying existing Textile Machinery Manufacturing businesses for sale. This can save you from bothering about the basic infrastructure needed for establishing an industry.

A successful business is the result of proper planning, good marketing strategy, hardworking team, good network for selling, keen monitoring of finance, selective recruitment and similar other policies. If you go ahead with your textile machinery business keeping all these factors in mind, your investment will definitely be fruitful.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Modern Embroidery Machines


From the ancient times, man had been sewing his clothes and decorating them as well. Embroidery had been the main medium for decorating garments. It was initially done by hands. Then the sewing machines were improvised to give them the form of embroidery machine. These simple embroidery machines then gave way to commercial computerized embroidery machines. Today embroidery is a big and a very important industry. As a result of innovations in the field, many newer types of embroidery machines have been introduced. While manufacturing any new machine, the two factors that are kept in mind are- adaptability and ease of use. The modern embroidery machines are computerized, complete with software applications, automatic re-threading, artistic embroidery designs, good storage memory and many other advanced features. Chenille Machines and Multihead Machines are the two types of embroidery machines that are mostly used by the embroidery industry of modern day.

Chenille Embroidery Machines are used for the most recognized form of embroidery, the chenille embroidery. The first industrialized chenille machine was the lockstitch sewing machine which could produce both the stiches - chenille stitches, also known as moss stitches and chain stitches. Then came its variations for taping, cording and sequins but all of them still required skilled manual labor. As a result of researches by the textile machine manufacturers, such electronic chenille machines were developed that had various mechanical functions controlled by pulse motors. Now with the development of digitized software for embroidery market, some very sophisticated and easy to use software for chenille work have also been introduced. Multi-Head Embroidery Machines justify their name by handling multiple patterns at the same time through their 2 to 8 multi heads and multiple needles. They are all networked by one computer. They have much greater speed that can do even about 1500 stitches per minute. They are used for both- multi variety small- lot production and small variety large-lot production. These machines have, in reality, revolutionized the embroidery industry.

Friday, December 26, 2008

New Year Eve Dresses for Your Body Shape!


Christmas is over! So what? There's New Year eve celebration round the corner! Everyone of us want to look our best on this special evening! We can sure look our best just by choosing clothing that flatters our body shape. Women's clothing market is full with stylish dresses. Those of us who are style savvy have learned which styles make us look fabulous and which styles are a straight no-no. But for women who don't know that yet, there's a great lot of information to help.

Clothing Tips for Your Body Shape

The first and the foremost thing to do is determining your body shape, howsoever embarrassing it might be.

Apple Shape: if you have upper body larger than your lower body and weight gain tends to happen around the waistline, emphasize lesser on waist and broad shoulders. Go for dresses that are shaped but not tight. V-neck will give you more elongated look. Cinched waists or wrap tops and belted or nipped waist jackets will give illusion of a smaller waist. Empire style dresses with raised waist can camouflage the tummy. Skirts, fitted at the top and flaring at the hemline will balance the top and the bottom.

Don't wear boxy blazers that make waist and rest of the body appear bigger. Instead, wear single-breasted fitted blazer after ensuring that it defines the waist but is loose enough in the chest to make you comfortable.

Pear Shape: if you have a smaller upper body and weighty hips, thighs, and legs, bring attention to the upper half of your body. Go for wider necklines like bateau, squared, or cowl necks. Jackets that fall just above the hip are better than longer ones. Vertical patterns on the lower half will give slim appearance. Wear dark colors, that don't shine, on the bottom half and lighter colors on top. A full skirt with defined waist or a full, pleated knee-length skirt will conceal a wide hip and if paired with strapless cut dress, it will highlight your smaller upper half. A funnel shaped coat with buttons on the top half or with a belt will bring attention to the waist.

Don't wear clingy skirts that highlight hips, or empire waist dresses which hides the waistline. Instead go for A-line skirt or wrap dress that will accentuate your upper half.

Hourglass Shape: if you have a defined waist and curvy upper and lower body, try to draw attention to your narrow waist, or de-emphasize breasts and hips to give impression of a longer, leaner look. Waist-defining belted garments or wrap dresses, apparels with cinched waists, high raised pants and skirts, fitted skirts and dresses, all will bring out your curves. For elongated look, go for v-necks, monochromatic colors, thin & lightweight fabrics, single buttoned jackets, or empire-waist dresses.

Don't wear tight, wide-cut pants that make the bottom appear wider. Instead wear wide legged trouser which is full but not flared.

Rectangle Shape: if you have fewer defined curves and your waist, hips & breast measurements are similar to each other, try to create illusion of curves. Scoop or v-neck tops, jackets having defined waists or flaring out from the waist, tops and blouses having details around the chest area for giving shape, draping dresses having patterns on them, halter tops, gathering and pleating on sleeves and waist, Skinny jeans hugging the hips, all will help you in creating curves. Trims such as lace, beads and waist-defining belts over shirts, cardigans, coats, etc. will also help you in your task.

Don't wear bright metallic tops to avoid attention on large chest. Don't go for white belt, instead wear dark brown one and avoid horizontal stripes that tend to make anything look wider. Try monochromatic tops and bottoms that give taller and leaner look.

The most important tip is that of accepting your natural body shape and accentuating your unique beauty by experimenting with fabrics, colors, and styles!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Silk Gift Items for Christmas!


Christmas is the loveliest festival of the year and here I am, wishing you Merry Christmas!!

Right from decorating your home to select gifts for the loved ones, Xmas is special in every way. And if you are busy even now with the last minute shopping for Christmas, I'll be more than happy to suggest you some gift items for your family & friends and also for you that are made of silk fabrics! Silk is the only thing I have on my mind these days!After all, what else will suit the charming spirit of Christmas other than the rich and elegant silk!

Silk Dresses: Dresses are the most admired gifts and as silk is so gorgeous, a dress made from it will look all the more beautiful. For women, you can select from short silk chiffon dresses to long and elegant silk gowns and maxi. Smocked, pleated, embroidered, or decorated with trims like laces, satin ribbons, bows, beads, or sequins- they will all be perfect for the party mood of Christmas. Also, there are soft and comfortable silk lingerie, silk robes, silk chemises, silk pajamas for women and men's silk sleepwear & Pajamas to choose from among. For little girls, the traditional Silk and Velvet Christmas Dress is always a good choice. For men, silk shirt, plain or embroidered, will be extremely luxurious gift.

Silk Accessories: If you are worried about the size of the dresses to be gifted, then silk enriched accessories to go with the Christmas dresses can be an easier option. For men, silk woven ties with Christmas patterns like Santa, or Christmas tree are occasion perfect. They can also be gifted with silk hats and handkerchiefs, or men's scarves. For ladies, there are silk scarves, stoles, or shawls and if you don't want to go for these traditional ones then select from trendy silk embroidered ladies bags, wallets or coin purses. You can even go for ravishing silk footwear. Silk baby shoes are also available in the market for your little angels.

Silk Home Furnishings: The market is flooded with great selection of silk home furnishing products for the festive season. Silk embroidered cushion and pillow covers, bed covers, table

runners, table cloths all are their to adorn your and your loved one's living room, bedroom and kitchen table. There are magnificent hand-knotted silk oriental rugs and carpets meant for floors but can be hanged on walls too. Such a vast range makes your work faster and easier!

Innovative Silk Gift Items: There are certain creative and innovative silk gift items for those who want to be different but don't have much time to create them personally. Silk covered decorated glasses cases, silk covered lipstick boxes with inside mirror which come in sets too, silk decorative bottle bags with bottleneck decoration, silk embroidered shoe bags that can be used for other purposes too, silk embroidered coasters set with embroidered patterns to decorate kitchen table or living room table, silk make-up boxes, silk and bamboo hand made Asian fans to hang on walls or as collectible and many more that you will come across once you step into a silk gift store.

That was a good lot of gifts to be selected from, and if you can't decide even now then better browse the net for a good silk gift store and get gift vouchers so that your loved one's can select their gifts themselves and they'll be happy too!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Marvelous Silk!


Hi there! Its a long time now that I haven't posted any information regarding the amazing world of textile. In fact, apart from being busy with all my Christmas preparations, I was also engaged with one of my friends who visited me and guess what, she came from China where she works in a silk company! And as you have come to know by now that I am obsessed with textile, I could not stop myself from gathering her first hand information about silk manufacturing process. She also knows my passion for fabrics so she brought a video of her company's silk factory for me to see. So, here I am for sharing this silky knowledge with all of you!

Silkworms and the Cocoons

We all know that silk fiber is a natural fiber that is obtained from silkworms. What's interesting to know is that there are farms to raise silkworms by feeding mulberry leaves for harvesting their cocoons! The silkworm creates its cocoon from a single silk thread which is about 3,500 feet long. When these cocoons are ready with all that surrounding silk, they are hand-picked and placed in an oven or hot water so that to kill the silkworm inside but not to damage the silk in the cocoon. Then they are soaked in water for easily identifying the end of the silk thread so that it may be unraveled from the cocoon.

The Silk Thread

The single thread of a cocoon is too thin and thus 3 to 10 cocoons are combined together and placed on the spinning machine where the threads of these cocoons are automatically unraveled to form a single strand of silk from multiple cocoons. These newly formed silk threads might be further combined to form thicker strands or yarns. During this process, the silk strands are given desired amount of twist to give them strength, desired diameter and other such properties. Silk yarn is then washed with soap and water for bringing out its natural shine and the soft feel. They are then dyed for desired colors.

Silk is now all ready to be used for making end products including silk fabrics through weaving or carpets that are woven either by hand or through machines or the silk thread may just be used for sewing or embroidery to produce decorative garments, home furnishings or other products like shawls, stoles or bags.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Designer Fashion Accessories for Christmas


Choosing the right fashion accessories that perfectly match your carefully chosen Christmas party dress brings you instantly in limelight. There are many many fashion accessories available in the market! And if you are that perfectionist kind of a person who don't gets what he wants in the shops, then what are the options available with you? Lets find out!

Fashion Accessories for Men: Neckties, belts, and cuff links are the must haves for men's fashion accessories. Choose them with a little care only! After all, its Christmas! Give try to some off beat and stylish designer belts- may be hand woven leather belts with a buckle having some wildness into it. However, if you are wearing a proper vest or tuxedo then you can go for designer belts made of alligator or crocodile leather with a silver buckle having an antique design on it. As for ties, choose silk ties having some masculine designs, can go for bow ties too. Snowman tie is no no for summers, but its no summer, so you can even go for this one! Its celebrations time, so you can afford to fall for gold, silver, white, sterling silver, pearl or even engraved cuff links just for giving yourself an elegant style. You can also go for a custom cuff link with your personally selected engraved text!

Fashion Accessories for Women: There are so many fashion accessories available for women as there are for no other segment of population! So ladies! Go for some stunning, stylish, designer and wild accessories! Double flap bags in felt, corduroy and leather, hand painted leather bags with muted tone metallic silver and gold paint, an embroidered velvet bag, or a trendy metallic bag, any of them will look good. A hand knitted cable scarf made of baby alpaca wool, in black, silver or some bright color will give you the matching warmth of Christmas. A double shaded wrinkle stole in red or multicolor thread fringes is truly amazing. And what about bright colored symmetric or asymmetric soft scarves made of silk, polyester, viscose or Satin! Or you can go for a bright color roving yarn scarf and gloves set too!

Customized Fashion Accessories: And if it happens that you don't get any accessory of your choice then you can design yourself a bag, a belt, scarves, stoles or shawls. You just need a little imagination and mixing and matching of colors and styles that go with your dress. You don't need any special items too for making them. Simple things like trims such as beads, sequins, ribbons, appliqu├ęs, embroidered patterns, braids, bows, fur etc. can be used to embellish your bags or stoles and scarves. You can even use closures such as buckles on bags and also design a buckle get it on your belt made of braids. Even closures like buttons and zippers can be used for decorating a bag. A lot of buttons, beads and sequins in beautiful patterns or on fringes will give a trendy look to your bag. A number of strategically laid buckles and Velcros will also give a designer look to your bags or even footwear!

While you buy or make your fashion accessories, just keep watch on your dress with which you are going to wear them. Matching or contrasting colors and styles will only give you your desired party look!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Decorate Your Home for Christmas


Holiday season is on and everyone is thinking of making the festive season a grand one! Lights, Christmas tree, gifts, cards- a brainstorm is going on in all the minds- how to make them all unique and memorable? These are of course, the most important aspects of a grand Christmas celebration but one more thing needs your concern and attention and that is 'Your Home'! A well decorated home lends a grand ambiance to your surroundings and enhances the joy of celebrations. Home Furnishing the most basic aspects of decorating home, without which all the other decorations loose meaning. So, lets explore, how we can use home furnishings in imaginative ways!

Curtains: Just imagine that you have decorated your Christmas tree fabulously and placed it in a corner of your room decorated with all sorts of lights and other decorative pieces and the background has a beautiful embroidered curtain having wonderful lace on fringes! Doesn't that inspire you to invest some time and money for the curtains for your windows and doors? You can choose from various decorative curtains – beaded curtains, lace curtains, embroidered curtains, printed curtains or valence curtains. If you are going for a simple one then tie ribbon bows on curtains. And yes, don't forget the cafe curtains of bathroom and kitchen. Make them in lace, sheer or lightweight fabric with one hung at the top of the window and the other positioned halfway down the window!

Table Linen: Whether dining with family or friends, one needs a well decorated Christmas table for the right mood for Christmas celebrations! Use an impressive tablecloth along with equally interesting table runner, place mats and napkins. You may, as well, use tablecloth with holiday theme! Don't forget to decorate the chairs with matching chair covers, chair mats and chair pads! If you are ready to put more efforts, decorate the chairs further by tyeing ribbons and bells!

Bed Linen: While decorating the home for guests, don't forget to give a gift to yourself by decorating your bedroom in style! Set aside some money for a full bedroom set of your favorite color consisting of bed covering, bed throws, blanket, duvet with duvet cover and pillows in the most luxurious fabric of your dreams! A bedroom carpet or a couple of throw rugs will add spark to your room! After all, you'll need a relaxing sleep after all that hectic Christmas celebration! For kid's room you can go for bedroom set specially designed for your child including bed sheet set, bed comforter, throw blankets, window curtains etc. in all pinks or blues! Pillows in shape of butterfly or Santa's bell will also make your children happy!

Cushions: A pretty, plump cushion or a throw casually laid across a sofa or chair can really brighten up a room. Several cushions to match or contrast with your walls will bring great ambiance to the room. You can even make decorative cushions in trendy shapes like those of a triangle, heart, star or a bell! And go for stylish cushion covers decorated with laces, beads, sequins or ribbons in bright colors to bring the Christmas mood right in your room!

Bathroom Furnishings: Your bathroom, or at least the guest bathroom, is the room that all your guests will see. So don't neglect it and get some pretty bath towels and shower curtains for it. Tie the bath towels with raffia or pretty ribbon and place them on decorated bathroom racks. Among other things, decorative bath mats will give both, security and beauty to this so essential part of your home!

Those were only some of the ways to use home furnishings for decorating your home. You can let your imagination do rounds and find more innovative ways of decoration!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Expanding Market of Outsize Clothing


Have you seen or at least heard the stories of your grandma stitching clothes of various sizes- personalized clothes for each and every member of the family? Today, no one has so much of time to stitch clothes or even get them stitched from professional tailors. What all of us do is, go to a boutique or a mall and buy clothes of standard sizes available there! Many of you might recall your experience of not getting perfect sized dresses because of your being petite or plus size or tall and some of you would have even written your feedback to the retailer. Why am I telling all this to you? In fact, while surfing net today, I saw a news which told about the expanding outsize clothing segment of apparel garments market and it's really interesting to know the reasons for this growth!

Factors for Growing Demand of Outsize Apparels

  • Globally, people are always on a move, which creates a diverse demographic in a country and the apparel suppliers and retailers must sell customized clothing.

  • Due to the changing dietary and work habits, the proportions of petite, plus-size, and tall individuals in a country's population also change creating demand for garments of various sizes.

  • Globalization have resulted in the apparel garment companies marketing their products in different countries having differently shaped people and thus they have to produce outsize clothing too, along with the regular ones.

  • Apparel Manufacturers and clothing retailers are working in collaboration, retailers taking feedback from the customers and passing it on to the manufacturers who then make garments that fit the customers like never before.

The Growth of Outsize Apparels

The outsize apparel garment market, which manufactures clothing for petite, plus-sized and tall customers, is fast growing in scale and sophistication. According to the United States Department of Commerce, outsize apparel sales grew from less than 5% of total market share in 1980 to nearly 20% in 2008. It is expected to reach US$73.3 billion and will represent 28.8% of all US apparel sales by 2014. From among this outsize apparel market, most of the growth is recorded by the plus-sized apparels, thanks to the increased daily intake of calories. As far as petite apparel is concerned, the demand in units has fallen in the last two years due to reducing percentage of petite women in the population but revenues are likely to rise in the future due to rising unit prices, higher quality and fit. Tall customers represent a small but fast-growing segment of the total apparel clothing and garments , that has recorded 40% growth in three years. If the garment manufacturers and dealers in wholesale apparels are reading this, I must tell that the tall market hides immense opportunities to profit from the global market gap between demand and supply.

I've given this data just to give an idea about the gradual changes in average clothing size which has provided the necessary incentive for manufacturers and wholesale apparel suppliers to deliver fashionable outsize clothing in a variety of styles. So, now you can get personalized clothing in the guise of mass customization!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Decorative Curtains- Special Window Treatments


Are you bored of the same regular types of curtains? Then we'll talk about some special window treatments that can give an aesthetic feel to your home, the Decorative Curtains!

Beaded Curtains: Beaded curtains can be used in a variety of ways, a curtain made entirely of colorful beads having strands from the top of the window right down to the floor, lends remarkable beauty to the room. A beaded curtain as a room divider defines your choicest of areas without completely closing them off from other areas. They can also close off a closet area if you have lesser space to adjust doors. Beads in contrasting colors, made of acrylic, bamboo, fabric, PVC and what not, reflect light in beautiful tones. If you don't want an entirely beaded curtain then beads can be sewn in random patterns across the fabric or can make an elegant edging. For added beauty, you may even dress up furniture with throw pillows accented with the same beaded edging as the drapes!

Embroidered Curtains: For giving an exotic charm and charisma to your home, use embroidered curtains whose elegantly shaded threads will brighten up the whole surrounding. The most suitable curtain materials for them include cotton, organdy, tissue, hand loom fabrics, and polyester. If going for hand embroidered curtain then just be careful that patterns of embroidery reveal the precision and creativity of skilled craftsmen.

Lace Curtains: If you have always longed for a romantic look for your interiors then go for the simple, traditional, and beautiful lace curtains. Although they are available in many colors these days but the white lace curtains have an extra appeal in them. They can be hung alone in rooms where privacy or controlling of lights are not a consideration and alternatively can be used over simple window shades or blinds.

Valence Curtains: Frill fabrics, that are exclusive feature of valance curtains, are also good option for giving a different look to your home. The short piece of fabric or the valence that decorates the top fourth of the window, has pleats in a variety of style. These pleated headings can be decorated with braid, ribbons, tassels and trimmings and your beautiful customized valence curtain is ready.

Cafe Curtains: Although mostly used in kitchen and bathroom, they can as well be used in any other room. A little imagination and they'll become stunning! For a layered look, matching cafe curtains can be made with one hung at the top of the window and the other positioned halfway down the window. They can be made lined or unlined in lace, sheer or lightweight fabric to give that beautiful look of your dreams!

If you don't want to spend much time or efforts at the moment, then simply go for printed curtains or draped curtains. Make them or buy them. Available in various prints and designs, these curtains can easily match the different types of walls and decor. If you don't even want to invest in curtains right now then just decorate your existing curtains with ribbons, buttons, shells or any other thing that can give that new look to your curtains! So, enjoy looking at the great pieces of artwork on your windows and doors!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Organic Clothing- Is Yours Certified!


With the increasing public awareness about health and environment, a large number of global population have started thinking organically. Now, they not only prefer consuming organic food but also wear organic clothing! But have you checked whether these environmental friendly garments of yours, are truly organic or not? But first, lets analyze, what is organic clothing and why it has become essential?

Organic Clothing

Organic clothing is the result of organic agriculture. Some of us may confuse organic with natural but natural fibers, such as cotton, may or may not be organic. When no pesticide or herbicide is used in its growth, then only cotton can be termed as organic cotton., organic cotton is not the only healthy textile. Hemp is the most environmental friendly crop which actually improves the soil during its growth process. As it is naturally resistant to insects and other pests, no herbicides are used for growing it. Again, there may be comparison between organic clothing and sustainable clothing. Sustainable clothing, although serving the same purpose, is different from organic clothing as it lay emphasis on reusing and recycling of manufactured products, thus helping only in reducing landfill waste.

Why Organic Clothing

The number of people experiencing health problems like allergies, respiratory problems, rashes, lower concentration etc. is increasing day by day. Those who are sensitive to chemicals find organic clothing very effective in making them comfortable. Apart from this main reason, there is growing awareness among many corporates and fashion designers too, who have committed themselves to the cause of reducing their share of carbon footprint. Thus, Organic Clothing has come to be the new definition of eco- fashion!

Certified Organic Clothing

Now we know that sustainable clothing is not organic clothing. Sometimes garments made of synthetic fabrics are also labeled as organic! How can they be so? Although there are no standardized global procedure for establishing a fabric as an organic one, yet there are a number of private sector standards, certification and accreditation systems. There are private organic trade associations who have established standards for defining and regulating what constitutes organic and sustainable fabrics, textiles and garments. The standards of the different organizations try to codify the organic fiber handling and processing standards for all natural fibers including cotton, wool, cashmere, hemp, silk, flax, linen, jute, ramie, and new plant fibers such as bamboo and soy. So, if you want to have a truly organic wardrobe then ask for "certified organic" clothing when shopping and also check for the "certified organic" labels before payments.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Buying Tips for Sewing Machine


It feels so beautiful when we look at elegant dresses! The stunning beauty of garments is received through great efforts. Fibers are spun into yarns and threads and then yarns are made into fabrics by different methods like weaving and knitting. And then comes the time of union, the time to join the threads and fabrics, the time to give beautiful shapes to textile fabrics! In all these processes, a wide range of textile machinery is used right from textile spinning and weaving machinery to textile finishing and packaging machinery and even the textile testing equipment. One of the very important machines of all these, is the sewing machine! And sewing is fun when the machine works well!

Sewing Machine- Points to think before buying

Modern automated sewing machines have many features for hassle free sewing and can be bought in less than one hundred dollars to over a few thousand dollars, so fix your budget and stick to it! Take some time to analyze what type of sewing you will do (garments, quilting, heavy duty, embroidery, lace, etc.) and make a list of features that you need for each type. Buying a machine having high- end features and never using more than 3-4 of them will mean wastage of your hard earned money. If going for online purchasing then visit the sites of famous brands and compare their features, prices, reviews. Find out some acquaintances using sewing machines and take their views too. If buying from a shop, go for a local one, that will help you in easier after-sales and repair services. Inquire about the dealers and return policy too. In both cases, go for brands with good history as you are making a long term investment and the availability of parts in future is important.

Buying a Sewing Machine

When buying the machine, take samples of the types of fabrics you are going to sew frequently. Challis is a good fabric to test on, also test on leather strips and several layers of denim. Test the basic sewing techniques on the machine. Do it yourself to check the smoothness of the operation. Don't let the salespersons rush you. At least, try some basic stitches that are frequently used like straight, zigzag, and blind hem. Even if you are not planning on sewing buttonholes, test them on the machine. Check the stitching which should be straight and even on the top and bottom. If the machine skips stitches don't consider it further. Check the foot control, knee lever, belts, wiring, vibration, operating noise etc. to your satisfaction. Electronic machines sew faster, more efficiently and give a much better stitch. Check whether it is easy to clean. Computerized machines with LCD touch screens are sensitive to temperature and if you are going to move around with it, check whether it comes with a travel case made just for it.

If you are going to sew for the first time, learn everything about sewing machine, its parts and how it works, before going to buy it. Look for the instruction manual with the machine and if possible take a friend, who know sewing, with you. You might be thinking, a lot of preparation to buy a sewing machine...! But then its for frustration free sewing experience!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Experimenting with New Fibers


With luxurious and fancy clothing, we do feel like a king or a queen! However, sometimes when we pay more attention to the appearance and feel of the fabric, we somehow neglect its comfort aspect. While selecting any fabric for our clothings, we must therefore keep in mind whether it is comfortable to wear or not, especially when we are going to attend a large gathering like the holiday season parties and of course, the grand Christmas party! Comfort can only make you enjoy these parties with full enthusiasm. But this doesn't, in any ways, mean that our dresses should not be luxurious or soft and attention seekers! There are many new textile fibers that are both, luxurious and comfortable, and many of them are environmentally sustainable too!

Bamboo fiber: The revolutionary fabric made of bamboo fiber, which is extracted from bamboo, is four times softer than cotton and has sheen like silk and cashmere. It feels like satin and drapes like silk. It is a breathable fabric with superior absorption quality and due to its anti-bacterial property, it keeps you odor free. If you have a sensitive skin then you can well rely on this fiber as it is anti-allergic too! It also keeps you warmer in winter and cooler in summer. So now wear a dress made of bamboo fiber fabric and dance without bothering yourself of anything else! And yes you'll be contributing positively towards environment too as it is eco-friendly. Great! Isn't it

Banana fiber: This plant fiber, banana fiber, is extracted from the bark of banana tree. Its appearance is very much similar to bamboo fiber fabric and is truly very fine having luster, light weight, strong and fast moisture absorption and release and yes it provides environmental protection too. Due to its higher capacity of water absorption, banana fiber clothing is very cool. As these banana fiber fabrics have a very good drape, you can convert them into garments of your choice and then enjoy the fruity events!

Polypropylene fiber: If you are going for a cool fabric, like the banana fiber, for this party season then you'll need an outer dress also that can keep you warm! If your dress is accompanied by some woolen garment then it's all right. But if not, then you'll require something like polypropylene, which is a synthetic, plastic-based fiber often used for the layer of clothing which is directly in contact with skin. It stays dry and thus keeps your body warmer. The lightweight and hydrophobic polypropylene yarns keep the moisture vapor away from skin. Now you know how to keep yourself warm while even showing off your beautiful dress!

Tencel fiber: Also known as Lyocell, tencel fiber is made from cellulose in wood pulp. This luxurious and refined fiber is soft, breathable, lightweight & comfortable and is similar to rayon in feel. It is an exceptionally strong fiber, along with being economical and makes fully biodegradable fabric. Tencel fiber fabric is often used for making garments, such as pants, shirts, suits, skirts and leggings but no one has stopped you from experimenting with it for making trendy party wear!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Customized Gifts – Personal Fabric Creations


For last few days I had been talking about Christmas dresses. Although beautiful costumes are the life of this season but they are not our only concerns. We are also equally concerned about the gifts that we have to give away to all our dear friends and family. And we do pay real attention while selecting these gifts! It's hectic too- selecting a separate gift for so many people! Why don't you go for a personalized gift....!

Why a Personalized Gift?

Gifts are always a token of love, respect and affection, we have for the receiver. When they get a personalized gift from you, they fill with joy that you can't even imagine unless you see it! At the same time when you get these personalized gifts designed and prepared, you have to give only some of your precious time, energy and efforts thus saving you from unwanted trips from one shop to another! Here are some ideas to get your customized gifts made from fabrics!

Personalized Gifts Ideas

T-Shirts: They are loved by both- boys and girls. Personalize them through custom printing or custom embroidery. If you want it to be Christmas specific, then go for some religious text and patterns otherwise you can go for humorous messages or sport messages if your group identifies with one or any other pretty message or image. In fact, they are also good as a Corporate gift. The companies can get their name or other occupation related messages custom printed or custom embroidered. There are many companies who provide these textile services.

Other Textile Stuffs: If you want to gift something other than garments then handkerchiefs and hats are some of such items. Custom printing or embroidery of personalized messages or patterns will really make the receiver excited enough to use them frequently. Bags are also very useful items that can be customized as gifts. Personalized Tote bags, Backpacks, Accessories & sport bags, Cosmetic Organizer or a wallet all can be custom printed or custom embroidered for making that special gift. And if you want to be unique then get tuxedo and gown boxes made of fabrics with personal messages as a gift for couples. For kids, you can always get cartoon characters custom printed on their schoolbags or umbrellas so that they may love going school as much as they'll love your gift.

Unique Gifts:
If you are ready to spend some more money then you can hire a textile designer design a fabulous unique upholstery fabric and then get them printed, you can even go for silk screening or custom embroidery. Then get them made into cushion covers and gift them to your known families. For some more fun, you can send your holiday greeting bundled in a beautifully patterned custom printed personalized stockings.

And now after reading these gift ideas, if you are thinking about how to do it then simplly search the net for designing, ordering and getting home delivered your personalized gifts!