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A Tie for My Dad (and pattern review)

8 June 2011

My dad rarely dresses up enough to wear a tie – mostly only when he’s on a cruise and the dining room dress code requires one. When that happens, he gets a kick out of wearing a (often somewhat silly) tie with something on it that my sister or I enjoy – like a favorite animal. I thought for father’s day/his birthday this year, I’d make him a tie with one of my mom’s favorite animals: hummingbirds. Its surprisingly difficult to find a silky fabric with a hummingbird print (I guess there’s not a huge demand), so I ended up trying out freezer paper stenciling – which I thought turned out pretty well!

Finished Tie
I used this pattern/tutorial from the Purl Bee. There’s a free pdf to download for all the pieces, and great pictures and descriptions in the tutorial itself. As great as the tutorial was, there are a few things I’d change if I wanted to make another one.

The tutorial itself had lots of great pictures that explained the processes quite well which I found very useful. There were great descriptions of how to hand sew the linings to the front and back ends of the ties, fold in the front and back ends of the tie and lining to get a nice point, and sew up the back of the tie to get a nice finished look.

I had a couple things I’d change about the pattern itself. While the tie was for my dad, I had my husband try it on before I sent it home to make sure it was OK. My husband isn’t super tall and doesn’t have a particularly large neck, but the tie was still noticeably short on him. This usually wouldn’t be a huge deal – just make the back-side tail really short. However, this pattern had an unusually wide back end, which meant that if you tried making it very short it peeked out from behind the front end of the tie. If I were making the pattern again, I’d add some length to the middle piece of the tie (maybe about 6-10 inches) and narrow the width of the back end of the tie.

The pattern uses a cotton lawn for the main tie fabric, a lightweight fusible interfacing to back the entire main fabric, and then a heavier sew in interfacing to be inserted into the tie (this makes sense if you read the tutorial, I promise). I used what I think of as a more typical tie fabric than cotton lawn – a satin fabric from JoAnn’s. Probably because of this, but maybe due to my fusible interfacing choice, I found that my tie was definitely stiff enough without the heavy weight sew in interfacing – I think adding any additional interfacing would have been too much.

I also used the same fabric as the front of the tie for the liner instead of using a quilter’s muslin because I wanted the silky-shinyness I’m used to in ties. The fabric is much less stiff than cotton, and I had a hard time getting it to lay flat. An helpful thing to remember is that most of the lining is going to be hidden once the sides of the tie are folded in – and the lining is on the back of the tie anyways!

Tie Lining
Overall, though, the pattern was helpful in terms of how the pieces of a tie go together (although as mentioned above, if I were making another I’d lengthen the middle section and make the end of the back section narrower). The tutorial was absolutely wonderful as far as techniques, tips, and how to make sure everything came together nicely.

Husband wearing tie I made for my dad
Shared at Sumo’s Sweet Stuff, Somewhat Simple, The Shabby Chic Cottage, House of Hepworths, Fireflies and Jellybeans, Rhinestone Beagle, Sew Chatty, Sew Can Do, Tidy Mom, Creation Corner, At The Picket Fence, Fun To Craft, Shabby Nest, Fingerprints on the Fridge, Its a Hodgepodge Life, Finding Fabulous, Lovely Crafty Home, Simply Designing, 733, Romantic Home, Today’s Creative Blog, Sugar Bee Crafts, Along for the Ride,¬†Tatertots and Jello, Nifty Thrifty Things, I Heart Naptime, and The Train to Crazy


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7 Comments leave one →
  1. 20 June 2011 12:02 PM

    I made one!! Thanks for the heads up on adding length to the pattern. I didn’t quite add enough, but will next time, and it all worked out ok — hubby just needs to take a small piece on the back end of the tie.

  2. 17 June 2011 12:03 PM

    This turned out really cute!
    Thank you so much for linking this up to {nifty thrifty sunday} last week!
    Hope to see you again this weekend!

  3. 14 June 2011 10:52 PM

    Your stencil turned out great for the tie. Im a sucker for hummingbirds and peacocks.

  4. Nicole @ permalink
    11 June 2011 2:36 AM

    Hi Julia!! I originally wanted to sew an actual tie to my Father’s Day Apron, but realized right quick that I didn;t have that kind of talent, lol. =] But reading your post gives me the courage to try again. That tie is darling (I know, it’s a MANLY tie, but I am absolutely IN L-O-V-E with those adorable hummingbirds!!) ^_^ Thanks for sharing, as well as for leaving me a comment on my blog about the coral earrings.

    Oh, and if you decide to visit Southern California, go to a city called San Clemente directly north of Camp Pendleton. There you will find an adorable shell shop called Russell Stationers, which sells gallon-size ziplock bags of broken coral. In fact, I just realized they have a website and sell things online!! I bet you could call them and see if they would send you a bag. =]

  5. 10 June 2011 7:22 PM

    Thanks for the tips! I wanted to make this tie, and am glad to know to add more fabric to the middle — my hubby has a thick neck. LOL
    And, although I don’t stencil, I do machine embroidery and your photo gave me the idea to embroidery on the tie! I cannot wait to try this! :)

  6. 9 June 2011 5:10 PM

    Wow! You made a tie and did the stenciling. I would have never thought about making my own tie, or one for Daddy or hubby. Great job!

  7. 9 June 2011 1:01 PM

    Visiting from your blog comment…Wow! That tie is really cute, and the hummingbirds are perfect! I totally need to try this! Thanks :)

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