Tutorial: Making thread belt loops with Nancy Zieman (and 3 ways to use them)
Nancy Zieman is one of my sewing heroes. From the wonderfully clear writing in her books to her fantastic TV shows, she’s done a lot to bring the craft of sewing into our homes. So I’m thrilled to be the final stop on the blog tour for her newest book, Nancy Zieman’s Sewing A to Z.
This is a really cool reference book because it’s arranged alphabetically, making it really easy to find various techniques. It has a clear and clean layout with excellent illustrations, just like Nancy’s other books.
One of the techniques that caught my eye was this super easy way to make belt loops out of thread. You see these types of belt loops often on vintage garments. They’re nice because they don’t stand out too much and they’re very quick to create. But I immediately thought of other handy uses for them!
To make them, change your stitch to zig zag, use a stitch width of 4 and a stitch length of 1. Simply zig zag over six strands of thread while holding them taut, as shown in the illustration above (from the book).
We tried it out in the studio, and it was fast and easy. When sewing the thread loop, pull on both ends of the threads while sewing slowly. This helps you keep them in place as the needle zig zags over them.
With a large eye needle, thread the thread loop through the eye. This is a little tricky and might take a bit of working to pull it through.
Here are my ideas for using them:
1. Lingerie guards: The thread loop is excellent for making lingerie guards on the inside of a shoulder seam. Make sure you use a snap on the other end. These lingerie straps go around your bra strap, making sure it doesn’t slip out.
2. French tacks for lined garments: You can also use the thread loop to make an easy version of a French tack. A French tack is a short, somewhat elastic bit of sewn or knotted thread that attaches a lining to the outer garment. That prevents the lining from riding up or twisting. There are various traditional ways to make a
French tack, but you could also just use the method shown above. Simply leave about 3/4″ of thread between the lining and the garment.
3. Belt loops: Finally, the original purpose of this method, belt loops. Before you sew the side seams on a dress, place the thread loops at the waist. Sew up the sides as usual. Now you have small belt loops ready for your handmade or store bought belt. If your dress doesn’t have side seams, simply sew the belt loops in with a needle. Make sure you measure the width of the belt and leave a little extra room.
Nancy is also giving away a wonderful prize of several books and notions worth $450 to celebrate the release of this book! All you have to do is head over to her blog post and leave a comment (don’t leave it here, the giveaway is over there!)
You can visit the other stops on the blog tour as well, listed below. Some of these blogs are new to me and have been great discoveries, so check them out!
08/15 – Nancy Zieman’s blog
08/16 – Whipstitch
08/17 – Sew Mama Sew
08/18 – Diary of a Quilter
08/20 – Amy’s Creative Side
08/22 – Quiltville
08/23 – Crap I’ve Made
08/24 – Eileen Roche’s blog
08/25 – I’m Just a Guy Who Quilts
08/26 – The Free Motion Quilting Project
08/27 – Sew Serendipity
08/29 – Lazy Girls Designs
08/30 – Pat Sloan Blog
08/31 – Tallgrass Prairie Studio
09/01 – True Up
09/02 – Sew News
09/06 – Off the Cuff Sewing Style
09/07 – V and Co.
09/08 – The Cottage Home