TOP 10 Tutorials of 2017

Dec2017RoundUp Nancy Zieman

TOP 10 Tutorials of 2017

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Dec2017RoundUp Nancy Zieman

Tis the season to see our top 10 sewing, quilting, and machine embroidery tutorials from 2017.  Not only are these links some of our own personal favorites, they are yours, too. In fact, we used one-year’s worth of data to determine the list. Join the NZP Team as we count down the most popular tutorials of 2017, on the Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC blog.

 10. Machine Embroidery in 6 Easy Lessons: Lessons 1–3

Machine embroidery could possibly be your passion, or maybe it’s something you’d like to try. If you’re a newbie or want-to-be embroiderer, Eileen Roche, friend and Sewing With Nancy guest, and Nancy Zieman show you how to learn Machine Embroidery in 6 Easy Lessons on my newest 2-part series. Watch parts ONE and TWO here.

Learn Machine Embroidery in Six Easy steps on Sewing With Nancy Zieman

 9. 30-Minute Doll Clothes

Nancy was always a proponent of taking advantage of 10 to 30 minutes of free time to sew or quilt. Minutes spent sewing, result in finished projects. When Joan Hinds proposed the idea of 30-Minute Doll Clothes for a Sewing With Nancy program, Nancy’s interest piqued. Nancy questioned Joan, asking if pieces could truly be made in just 30-minutes instead of several sewing sessions. Her answer—absolutely! Read more and watch here.

30-Minute Doll Clothes with Joan Hinds and Nancy Zieman - Sewing With Nancy

 8. No Strings Attached—Sew an Apron in an Evening!

Sew a quick, easy, and reversible Crisscross Apron ideal for wearing while baking, during a garden harvest, or for next weekend’s BBQ! Frequent Sewing With Nancy guest and Nancy’s friend, Mary Mulari shares her all-time most requested apron style! You can sew Mary’s Crisscross Apron in an evening—with no strings and no ties! Read more about Mary’s aprons here.

Mary Mulari Shares Criss Cross Apron Pattern Details with Nancy Zieman | Sewing With Nancy

 7. Sew To Give—Sewing & Quilting Outreach Opportunities

Sew To Give is Nancy Zieman’s community service commitment to sewing, quilting, and volunteering outreach programs. Over the years on Sewing With Nancy, guests have shared amazing charitable goals during the Nancy’s Corner segments. Here’s our grouping of many of the organizations that Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC is aware of, giving you options to sew and quilt for others. As Nancy often said on Sewing With NancyThe gift is in the giving! 

SewToGive Collage NancyZieman

 6. Absolute Easiest Way to Hem Anything!

If you are stitching, there’s a good chance your project will have a hem. Nearly everything you sew has a hem—skirts, pants, sleeves, and even home décor items such as curtains and table linens. By using a few simple hints, you can turn the hemming step into a simple sewing task. Read the Hemming Round-Up here.

Find Nancy Zieman’s hemming tips and more in The Absolute Easiest Way to Sewand watch on Sewing With Nancy’s three-part series on The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew (Part OnePart Twoand Part Three).

Absolute Easiest Hems Nancy Zieman Roundup1

 5. Sew an Alzheimer’s Activity Mat

Sew an Alzheimer’s Activity Mat with free sewing instructions as seen on Sewing With Nancy! Marcia Engquist, who designs Alzheimer’s Activity Aids, designed these activity mats after watching residents at a care center restlessly fidget. These easy-to-sew activity mats help sooth the agitated fidgeting of people with dementia or autism. Plus, the mats help focus their attention, stimulate senses, exercise hand muscles, and entertain users. See the complete post for Alzheimer’s Activity Mats here.

Alzheimer's Activity Mat as seen on Sewing With Nancy



 4. Quilting With Nancy—Fat Quarter Mystery Quilt

Nancy Zieman launched the 2017 Quilting With Nancy Block of the Month program in January. This blog post and subsequent block of the month posts are highly viewed. Each month contains a complete FREE sewing tutorial. While January’s kick-off post is the most popular of the series, you can see the collection of quilt blocks here.

GarnetMystery 1

 3. Illusion Quilts Made Easy: Slip Knot Quilt Pattern

There’s something magical about quilts. Perhaps it’s the creative process of selecting color combinations, arranging the blocks to create an overall pattern, or simply enjoying the satisfaction of a well completed project. Illusions Quilts allow quilters and sewists to experiment with hues of color and arrangement of blocks to trick the beholder’s eye into believing the illusion. Based on half-square triangles (HSTs), the illusion quilts are easy to sew and to enjoy. See the Slip Knot Quilt pattern and many more on the third-most-popular post of the year.

Slip Knot Quilt Nancy Zieman

 2. The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew Elastic to a Waistline

Okay, the yellow skirt’s waistband picture doesn’t look like much. That’s the point! It’s the easiest way to sew elastic to a waistline without the telltale topstitching of an elastic waistline.

Over the years, Nancy tweaked and personalized sewing techniques. Our favorites are collated in Nancy’s book, The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew.  On this post, Nancy shares a bonus technique for the letter “E”—for inserting Elastic in a waistline. You’ll find this technique to be the absolute easiest way to sew elastic to a waistline.

Nancy Zieman's Sewing A to Z

 1. The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew in a Zipper

How to sew a zipper into a seam is a commonly requested sewing technique. Nancy shares with you the absolute easiest way she’s found to insert a zipper. Use tape instead of pins. Curious? It’s found in her book The Absolute Easiest Way to Sew. Read more about her technique here.


Watch Sewing With Nancy online and on any TV.

Five Ways to Watch Sewing With Nancy | Nancy Zieman

For a chance to win an assorted Nancy Zieman Notions prize bundle, from Clover, worth $25, please leave a comment sharing your favorite Nancy Zieman blog post, technique, or tutorial from 2017.

Nancy Zieman's Giveaway Winner

The randomly selected winner a copy of Amazing Designs Snack Shop Collection from Nancy’s Notions is Patty Graves.

Her comment is, “My five and three year old grandchildren would love to make sandwiches for me, grandma, to eat. They love pretending to make meals and snacks—hours of fun. Thanks.”

I Sew For Fun Snack Shop Embroidery Designs by Nancy Zieman

Happy Sewing,

Team Nancy Zieman

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC.

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC

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  • Kathie Pavin
    December 26, 2017

    I learned a lot of tips about embroidery by watching this post. It is dated 2012 which was 5 years ago. My time and learning has changed over those 5 years, but this tip page is still a great reference!

  • Nadine
    December 26, 2017

    The 30 minute doll clothes is my favorite!

  • Kimberly Tilley
    December 26, 2017

    I enjoyed the doll clothes and the Alzheimer’s mats.

  • Nancy Ballard
    December 26, 2017

    I really enjoyed the fat quarter mystery quilt. The pictures made the techniques much clearer.

  • Marcia
    December 26, 2017

    I loved the embroidery tips with Eileen, there r so many wonderful ideas which can b applied with all machines.

  • Erin
    December 26, 2017

    The 30 minute doll clothes segment was wonderful! It’s always difficult to choose a favorite from among Nancy’s tutorials.

  • BevM
    December 26, 2017

    I am intrigued to try the elastic waist technique. I also plan to sew Alzheimer’s activity pads.

  • Judy Sharpe
    December 26, 2017

    I love to receive NZP emails and have to almost pinch myself to remind myself that Nancy isn’t with us anymore. I was thinking about her (and her family) this Christmas and how much pleasure she has given so many people over her years of sewing and sharing.
    I would like to wish all of you a very happy new year and all the best in 2018. Keep up the good work.

  • Deb Hanen
    December 26, 2017

    I enjoyed her more recent episodes sewing with her grandchildren. It’s always fun to see another generation being creative. Miss you, Nancy

  • Jade
    December 26, 2017

    The machine embroidery lessons are my go to helpline now to get me started embroidering on my new embroidery machine!

  • Lillian K (TX)
    December 26, 2017

    I enjoyed the quilting Mystery Blocks every month. I was able to sew just one block per month (no stress) and learn a new technique with many of the blocks that were presented.

  • Bridget
    December 26, 2017

    The mystery quilt was my favorite!

  • Jean G-Bauer
    December 26, 2017

    I like the slip knot block. The illusion of the colors wrapped around each other makes the pattern look harder than it really is. The Ladies of the Lake block is also dear to my heart cause that is the name of our quilt guild.

  • Janice K
    December 26, 2017

    I made several outfits for my two nieces’ dolls.

  • Margaret Scott
    December 26, 2017

    Looking forward to the 2018 blogs.

  • Pat
    December 26, 2017

    My favorite was the machine embroidery in six easy lessons. Nancy and Eileen were an unbeatable pair. Hopefully we will see more of Eileen. If Sewing with Nancy is continued (and we all hope it will be) Eileen would be a wonderful choice as a host.

  • Karen Lockart
    December 26, 2017

    My favorite blog is Nancy Zielman’s Personal Barn Quilt. I enjoyed learning about the history of the farm and the use of quilt designs in other ways.

  • Kay Huchteman
    December 26, 2017

    There’s plenty of inspiration for me in every blog and in the broadcasts. I’m especially interested right now in improving my embroidery skills, thanks to the teaching of Nancy and her guests.

  • Marty
    December 26, 2017

    This past year I really enjoyed and looked forward to each new block in Nancy’s BOM with triangles and her red fabric line.

  • Mel
    December 26, 2017

    I love the 30 minute doll clothes. It explains how to sew them so nice and easy. You can even have your child help you.

  • Mary Snyder
    December 26, 2017

    That’s a tough one because of all the tutorials, but I like the mystery quilt and the 30 minute doll clothes. I hope to finish the quilt in 2018 and do lots of doll clothes for our granddaughters dolls.

  • Darrell H
    December 26, 2017

    I have been watching Sewing with Nancy for years and what a legacy she is leaving behind. I followed Nancy’s blog especially for her Block of the Months and really enjoyed her Fat Quarter Mystery this past year. The new techniques learned and rediscovered during these tutorials has enhanced my quilting experience and why I love to do a BOM.
    dquilterguy48329 (at) prodigy (dot) net

  • Mary Beth Boher
    December 26, 2017

    I knew I would miss Nancy and always will, but I am so happy that Team Nancy is keeping her values and interests alive. I have watched Nancy since her very first program and loved and incorporated her ideas into all my sewing. It is difficult to pick my favorites, but the sewing hacks, doll clothes and sweatshirts maker overs are ones I use a lot. And, yes, Nancy taught me to quilt. Much love and blessings on both her family and you for keeping her memories alive. Mary Beth from CA and TN

  • Susan Spiers
    December 26, 2017

    Loved the program where Nancy shows how to make an art quilt – this way is absolutely doable!

  • Donna Webster
    December 26, 2017

    My favorite programs were how to make and design handbags. I purchased the trace and create templates. They are easy to use. I also love to watch all her videos.

  • Elizabeth Dicrescenzo
    December 26, 2017

    My favorites are the Block of the Month. I completed 2015 and 2016 and donated them to my guild’s Comfort Quilt program. I didn’t have time this year to do the 2017 BOM but I saved all the tutorials and plan to do it in the future.

  • Carol
    December 26, 2017

    I am so glad NZP is continuing on with Nancy’s legacy. I too have followed her since the beginning and still have and use her reference booklets…………..I think I have tried almost everything she has put out there. You can never have too much information and as a teacher she sure nurtured my love of sewing. From the list above, most recently I have been altering some clothes so I’ll go with the hemming one but in reality I usually check out her website to refresh my memory so that I have the most up to date techniques before proceeding with my project.

  • Bonita
    December 26, 2017

    I have loved Nancy’s Mystery Quilt for 2017. I liked it so well that I completed the month block within a week or two of its release. I am “patiently” awaiting the 30th to receive the finishing information. I did not use Nancy’s fabric, but I do love the designs of the block.

  • Julie
    December 26, 2017

    Just this morning, I learned a lot from the episode of learning to quilt with your embroidery machine. Almost all of Nancy’s episodes I enjoy watching and rewatching because there is so much information. She is greatly missed by her community of sewists.

  • Clovis
    December 26, 2017

    I like the zipper technique. My zippers do not come out even. I’m doing her BOM 2017 and await for the final on December 30.

  • Betty Eiring
    December 26, 2017

    I feel like I lost a friend. I watched Nancy every time she was on and have many, many of her pattern books. I have been sewing for many years and Nancy got me back to making quilts and sewing different projects. THANK YOU for being my sewing friend. GOODBYE love you.

  • Judy
    December 26, 2017

    So many really good ones. Nancy has never turned out a dud, always teaching us something new! I believe the idea for alzheimers mat is most interesting and what I’ll need sooner than later.

  • Kathy Myers
    December 26, 2017

    I love the ideas for different scarves. My favorite!

  • Gail Beam
    December 26, 2017

    So hard to choose my favorite technique or video from Nancy, as I always learned something new in each and everyone. The 30 minute doll clothes, making bags and totes, and recycling jeans are just some of my favorites.

  • Noreen
    December 26, 2017

    I liked Nancy’s tips on Common Garment Alterations. She always had great ideas for everything.!

  • Cheryl Moxley
    December 26, 2017

    My favorite was the mystery blocks, I hope that is repeated with different blocks soon.

  • Bonnye
    December 26, 2017

    I love the embroidery.

  • Karen
    December 26, 2017

    The BOM post have been my favorite. I am way behind on mine.

  • Rhonda D in KY
    December 26, 2017

    I have saved the 2016 & 2017 BOMs. I’ve had too many grandbaby quilts to make so I’m looking forward to working on a quilt for us.

  • beth
    December 26, 2017

    My all times favorites are the patchwork shows for quilting, also love machine embroidery shows with Eileen roche and nancy zieman.

  • Mary Okruhlik
    December 26, 2017

    I enjoy all of Nancy’s videos and especially was intrigued with the sewing with rope. The special interviews she had at the end of her shows were such an inspiration.

  • Beverly
    December 26, 2017

    My favorite tutorial from Nancy this year was fitting and altering the pattern for a knit top. Soooo much better to make your pattern fit your measurements than to try to adjust a little here and a little there and hope the fit will be right.

  • Berenice
    December 26, 2017

    Nancy’s tip on totes and bags were a never ending source of help and ideas.

  • Florence Dupuis
    December 26, 2017

    I love the column quilts shows Nancy has a done over the years. I used one pattern to make a quilt for my granddaughter.

  • MaryEllen
    December 26, 2017

    Although it is hard to choose just one…the zipper tips etc is the most helpful. Zippers have always been hard for me. As always Nancy makes it fun and educational at the same time.

  • Gayle
    December 26, 2017

    Nancy’s tutorial on zippers is my favorite as I’ve been asked often to repair grand kids zippers on jackets. All Nancy’s quilt videos are a very close second, so much helpful information.

  • Becky
    December 26, 2017

    My first two quilts were the illusion quilt pattern. I gave both away as treasured gifts! Loved making them!

  • Carol Netzler
    December 27, 2017

    I remember reading all these blogs. The Alzheimer’s Activity Mat I have saved. My mom had Alzheimer’s and I want to make these to pass it forward.

  • Anne Z.
    December 27, 2017

    I look forward to reading every bog, but I especially enjoyed the blog entitled Sew a Smart Three Season Jacket. The jacket has such style. While I mainly sew quilts, I began sewing clothing and would like to get back to it. I definitely need to learn tips and tricks for today’s fashion sewing. Thanks for keeping Nancy’s legacy going.

  • Debbie
    December 27, 2017

    I love all of Nancy’s tutorials, but especially the quick and easy doll clothes. I have 12 young granddaughters, and they are always asking for new doll clothes as they get tired of the same ones.

  • Suzanne G.
    December 27, 2017

    Among everything good related to Sewing With Nancy – the blog, website, tutorials, etc., the best of all was and is Nancy herself and her marvelous legacy. Her depth of knowledge, sweet attitude and ability to make even complex techniques easy to understand will never be duplicated.

  • Doreen Linehan
    December 27, 2017

    My favorite is 30- minute doll clothes. I bought the book & DVD. Now I just have to watch & do!

  • Donna Lee
    December 27, 2017

    I love the Slip Knot quilt pattern! I’m new to quilting and the instructions are so clear, even I feel like I can do this! Thank you so much for continuing Nancy’s legacy of encouraging, teaching, and inspiring!

  • Donna Lee
    December 27, 2017

    My favorite is the Slip Knot quilt pattern! I am new to quilting, and the clear instructions and diagrams make even me feel like I can do this. Thank you for continuing Nancy’s legacy of teaching, encouraging, and inspiring!

  • Patricia Wester
    December 27, 2017

    There were so many wonderful tips and hints that I learned from Nancy’s shows. I miss her so much. Her quilting shows were my favorite. Thank you for keeping her legacy alive.

  • Teresa Celusta
    December 28, 2017

    I enjoy the 30 minute doll clothes.

  • Cheryl Seal
    December 28, 2017

    I love reading Nancy’s blog…..she seemed so down to earth and “just like me”. I loved the way she wouldn’t always sound as confident as she wanted to and loved to see that she made mistakes just like any other sewer does. Meeting her was on my bucket list and I am so saddened that the Lord called her home before I was able to do so. My favorite tip from Nancy was hemming jeans without removing the factory hem and they looked like they had never been shortened. I use this method every time I hem a pair of jeans.

  • Nancy AZ
    December 28, 2017

    Love anything sewing. Right now my passion is quilting in the hoop with embroidery a close 2nd. Keep the blogs coming.

  • Carol
    December 28, 2017

    Oh my goodness, it’s so difficult to choose a favorite. I guess I’ll have to say the video showing how to make pockets is my choice. I’ve always struggled getting pockets to lie flat. Nancy took the challenge out of pockets for me.

  • Kar
    December 29, 2017

    Love Nancy’s techniques for easy zipper repairs/replacement. Seems like I am always replacing my grandsons’ jacket zippers and snow pants zippers. Have used her fast and easy technique many times.

  • L Watson
    December 29, 2017

    How do I pick just one? Well, I like her handbag tips, I have one of her templates too, so easy to use!

  • Cheryl
    December 30, 2017

    My favorite is the sweatshirt makeovers. Going to try to make some.

  • Sarah
    December 31, 2017

    I love the yoga bag tote, where you can put your yoga met under your bag and still have the whole tote left for other stuff!

  • Sarah
    December 31, 2017

    I love the yoga mat tote, where you can put your yoga mat under your bag and still have the whole tote left for other stuff!

  • Mary
    December 31, 2017

    Just bought an 18 inch doll for my granddaughter. I would love to make some doll clothes for her.

  • Kathryn Smotryski
    January 1, 2018

    I’ve enjoyed any and all tutorials on embroidery. I’m just learning the techniques and am soaking up all I can find. This blog is the best.

  • Donna Fecteau
    January 3, 2018

    There were so many that I enjoyed and learned from that it is impossible to pick!

  • E. Watson
    February 3, 2018

    My favorite tips and techniques that Nancy shares, are the ones about scarves, purses, and totes. I have already made two of the same scarf because my family and I love it so much! I made one for myself and one for my mom, she loved it! I can’t wait to continue sewing, because Nancy makes it “sew” easy. 🙂

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