Sew Mini Sewing Machine

You may remember that I featured Kwik Sew Pattern #3596 on here a couple of weeks ago (see picture at left).

Well, I decided it was time to retire the Valentine apron, and make a new one for Spring. This week I am in Washington at one of the largest sewing expos in the country. We are featuring the Sew Mini Sewing Machine from Janome – so I thought my new detergent apron was a great time to try out the machine and get some photos of the stitching it produces.

Sew Mini
People will travel to this expo from all over the United States, and of course it has always been difficult to travel with a sewing machine. But because they are sewers, folks at this event are always looking for a sewing machine that they can carry with them. This Janome machine is very affordable, and is a great little machine to get you through a class, or to carry with you if you need to do some sewing while traveling. It only weighs 5 pounds, and takes up very little room, which makes it a great traveling companion!
I have also found this to be a wonderful machine to get a child to start sewing, being much less intimidating than a full-size machine would be.

Features on the Sew Mini

  • It is not a toy – it does work.
  • It does straight stitches and zig zag stitches.
  • Has a drop in bobbin.
  • Weighs approximately 5 lbs.
  • Tension adjustment.
  • Button to Reverse Stitch.
  • Uses regular needles.

Features you May Miss Having –

  • There is no light.
  • It is slower and is a little noisier than a regular machine.

However, to get someone new started sewing or for sewing when you are traveling it might just fit your needs.

Spring Apron Free Image Hosting at
Here is a close-up of the stitching.
This was stitched through five layers of fabric.

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And here is a close-up of the back of the project.

And finally, my finished apron. It’s going to look great at the sink!
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

Yo-Yos Everywhere!

I’m still finding things to do with my yo-yos, I’ve made up so many as demonstration models recently that I really have more than I need. But they do add such fun to a project!

My first idea was to find something I could do with tiny yo-yos, once again these have been made using the Clover Yo-Yo maker (please see my earlier posts on how this great tool works). While I was searching for inspiration, I came across the pattern at the right. You may not be able to see the detail well in small scale, but if you click on it you’ll see what the pattern is. Basically, small aprons for a doll, bottle of dish soap, or other application. The retro style appealed to me, and I knew that at least some of my tiny yo-yos had found a home! Pattern number is Kwik Sew 3596.

2 Aprons Closeup
The apron fits onto a bottle of 30 oz. dish soap, and I discovered that one brand (the name starts with a “J” and has only 3 letters), comes in enough colors to let you coordinate your apron to the soap!

On the left are the finished aprons – each with coordinating dish soap. And on the right is a closeup of one of the aprons. Can you see the yo-yo embellishments used? There are three yo-yos at the bottom of the blue/yellow apron, and the red apron has yo-yos that have been used on the shoulder straps.

Imagine giving one of these as a housewarming gift to a student moving into their first apartment – or just as something fun to give to your neighbor who loves the look of these retro aprons! I am thinking about making them with a summer theme and giving one to all the ladies that come to my house for Easter this year. This would be a fun project to have an apron for every holiday – and they dress up the kitchen a little bit.

Now, what could I do with the large yo-yos? Once again I turned to the pattern books for inspiration, and I found McCall’s #5441. I used yo-yos instead of the large buttons that were suggested in the instructions.

I thought this would be a great idea for someone who buys lots of greeting cards in advance of birthdays or special holidays. You could have up to three month’s worth of cards in easy reach – one month to a pocket. It would also be great for those who make their own cards, or even for scrapbooking enthusiasts as a place to stash photos until everything is ready to create that new page in the book.

If you made this up in Christmas colors, it would be a nice place to put all the cards that come in.
Or, a variation of an idea I’ve just seen for this time of year – assign a pocket to each member of the household. Make this their ‘mailbox’ where notes of encouragement, love or praise could be left. The kids will soon get excited to check and see what type of message has been left for them!

I yo-yo, do you?

Check back with me next week to see what I’ll be doing next – the yo-yos have been fun, and we may return to them later in the season, but there is so much more to talk about! Oh, and a special treat tomorrow – check back!

Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing