Tag Archives: fabric

Update on the clear out – all my fabric in one small box. Next up – UFOs!

20 Jan

I can now fit all my fabric stash into a single 32l box!

collagemaker_20190120_204422793

 

I have arranged it by:

  • Wide section (in left and right photos): pieces of fabric about 1 yard or longer, arranged by colour and facing up.
  • Narrow section (in left photo): pieces of fabric about 1 fat quarter, arranged by colour.
  • Narrow section (in right photo): any potentially useful scraps, in two box bags – blues and blacks in one, red pink and whites in the other.

Now my fabrics are all in one place, and organised by size and colour! I already feel like I can go into future projects without spending so long on finding fabrics. 😊😊😊

For the scraps I made two new box bags using the tutorial from Truly Myrtle. I made them 7.5″ long and 4″ tall and wide. This used up four fat quarters from the pile too 😊

dav

I also put together a pile of “pretty” or “interesting” small scraps, which I will cut around with the pinking shears to give some shaped fabrics (that won’t fray) for my niece and nephew to use in gluing with paper glitter stickers etc.

I did give a few bits to the charity shop, which I bought with something in mind (e.g. for when my niece and nephew were babies) but either didn’t get around to making or didn’t use up all the fabric on whatever I made. I had also held onto a grocryg bag worth of scraps that I definitely won’t use, so they are going to the local fabric recycling (to make insulation etc).

This felt like a huge step! It’s a weight off my mind to know I now only have the fabric I love and that I can find it all easily.

Here is what else I have done in organising my sewing stuff:

  • Allocated one box for patterns.
  • Assisted one box for measuring, marking, and cutting tools. It also contains my sewing machine tools.
  • One bag contains all fasteners (zips etc) and ribbons.
  • One bag contains all interfacing and wadding.
  • I’ve got rid of my old sewing box, giving it to a charity shop. It’s small and anything I kept in there was split with being kept somewhere else, which was inefficient. I got it from eBay for £2.50 in 2010 so it’s done it’s time! It’s still in excellent condition so someone else can love it now.
  • Organised my threads. They don’t yet fit into one box but I am closer than I was :-)

Next up is to tackle my UFOs… So I won’t be taking any new fabrics out of that box for a while. Wish me luck…!

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E-reader case (kobo/kindle)

17 May

After I made my own kindle case (back in 2014!), a friend liked the design – it has a great little pocket you can protect your Kindle in when you’re not using it, or that you can use to hold your train ticket like I do… So, she asked if I’d make a case for her e-reader. She even bought the fat quarter and had it mailed to me, and it still took me three years to get around to making it – and maybe an hour to make once I started! I’ve never sewn anything for anyone outside of my family, so I think I was very nervous about giving over my handiwork to someone to judge!

I quilted the outside cover/interfacing before I sewed all the layers together. I decided to quilt it in only one direction – I wasn’t sure if it would clash with the swirls too much but I like it! I am glad because I didn’t have the energy to try to follow the swirls, it was straight lines or nothing…

She has a kobo glo, not a Kindle, but I figured it’d be easy to change the measurements. As it is, I only had to reduce the height by 3/8 of an inch (so where the tutorial says 8 inches I used 7 5/8 inches). You can see the difference below with my kindle in the case.

Other than the size adjustment and a bit of quilting, I followed the tutorial from Whip Stitch exactly – the instructions are so clear. The only difficulty was recognising the need to adjust the thread tension when sewing more/fewer layers.

I really enjoyed making this, and think I might even make myself a new one! I used an old spool and bobbin of thread and was gutted to run out of bobbin thread an inch from the very end! Aaargh!

I find that once I’ve found a tutorial that works for me, I tend to reuse it. Here’s a quick list of my other favourite tutorials worth remembering!

A new laundry bag from curtains

27 Jan

My boyfriend and I have been taking the term ‘laundry pile’ quite literally since we moved in together a few months ago, and finally decided enough was enough. When in town we popped into the charity shop, looking for some fabric that might make a suitable laundry bag – something a little thicker than usual fabrics, with a nice pattern that isn’t too light. We found these curtains, a set of two 66×53″ for only £4.50! It’s a half cotton half polyester mix.

Laundry_bag_fabric

I previously used a different tutorial for a lined drawstring bag, but that felt unnecessary for a laundry bag, so I wanted something a little simpler. I found the Great British Sewing Bee tutorial! It’s available on the Radio Times website. It shows you how to make the ribbon as well as the bag. It took me three evenings of an hour or two each, so probably about 4-5 hours in all – most could probably do it faster as I always seem to take much longer than the tutorials suggest! It didn’t help that the fabric had a slight stretch to it which made measuring and cutting it tricky! :S

Laundry_bag_finished

The finished bag! It looks brighter in real life but the camera on my phone is playing up.

I didn’t like the raw edges inside, as this fabric frays quite a lot and I don’t have pinking shears, so I used the zigzag stitch on a low length to hold the raw edges in instead of ironing them into opposite directions as the tutorial suggested. I first did this to the sections of the side seams where the hole is for the ribbon to pass through, so through one piece of fabric for the 4 inch gap, and then to hold the double layers of every other seam together, so through two pieces of fabric for all remaining raw seams. It’s much better now and I am really happy with it! I don’t think french seams would have worked as well as this did because of the holes for the ribbons.

I am really happy with it! And since it only used one of the two curtains, I might use the other curtain to make one for my sister, as she previously mentioned she was on the lookout for a new laundry bag. [Edit – I finally made my sister one, so that’s most of this fabric gone from my stash now, phew!]

This is the first time I have sewn using charity shop fabric (well, repurposed) and I wish I’d thought of it sooner – will definitely be going again. Maybe once I have used up some of my stash….

What to do with a (vintage floral) fat quarter…

3 May

So, I’ve been quite naughty and started late-night fabric hunting on the internet. Picked up this lovely vintage fat quarter (£1.79 which isn’t that much of a bargain but look at it!!) which is 100% cotton 130gsm.

The result of late-night eBaying!

Anyway so I have been trying to work out what to do with it. While I’d love to do something without a sewing machine, by the time I get round to using this I hope to have a new one anyway so can do something super neat and speedy :)

Current possibilities are:

  • coasters: 8 from one fat quarter (!) from ‘Made-by-Fabi’ here,or one with a cute quote from ‘Saltwater-Kids’ here
  • a sunglasses case, like this one from ‘Create Craft Love’
  • line a purse that I will *definitely* make in the future
  • maybe a camera case would be possible?

What do you do with your fat quarters? The simpler the better but I can keep any more complicated ideas for future!