Tag Archives: bag-making

Scrap adventures continue

Standard
Scrap adventures continue

I’ve been having so much fun with my scraps this month. Following on from the hot pink pumpkin bag and the tote bag made from scrap fabric squares, I continued to experiment.

These scraps were pulled from the “black” bag, and arranged on an 8″ square of batting and free motion quilted. It wasn’t particularly successful as the pieces wanted to move around so there were some little gaps where I could see through to the batting.

Then I moved on to 8″ squares of fusible interfacing.

These worked out a little better, because I arranged the scraps so that every one was at least partly touching the fusible, ironed it, then quilted it. I had an oopsie where I melted something and realised I had used a piece of polypropylene instead of cotton! I have now invested in a snazzy pair of Fons and Porter machine quilting gloves from work, which have little non-slip dots all over the palms and underside of the fingers. I think this will help a lot. My quilting on these is embarrassing to say the least!

Also, nighttime shots in artificial light are not the greatest!

So, after watching quite a few You Tube videos on creative ways to use up scraps, I tried this.

I cut 12.5″ squares of white broadcloth and white tulle. I put them together, sewed around three sides, and stuffed a bunch of scraps into the resulting pocket. I thought I’d gone overboard, but once I sewed the fourth side and then added wavy lines across the whole square it flattened down quite nicely. I didn’t even use my walking foot, just the everyday one.

The scraps didn’t reach the edge in a couple of places so I trimmed it down to about 10″ square and then added a binding. I will actually use this – it would be good mat for a hot teapot. And I used up SO many scraps, some of which I even rescued from the waste paper basket in my sewing room.

I also finished a project bag made from fabric created from thin strips of quilt cottons.

Instead of multiple squares, this time I cut some batting 12 by 30″ and applied the strips directly to it on the diagonal, leaving the edges raw.

At this point, I had sorted the heap on my sewing room floor by colour, so it was easier to follow the colour wheel. It was such a pretty effect! This rectangle became this….

The lining isn’t my favourite fabric but I had a big enough chunk of it to make it in one piece.

How has your week been? Mine has been somewhat overshadowed by the toothache that started last Saturday, continued through Sunday and made my work day very tough, and a dentist appointment on Monday morning when I had a tooth pulled. Since then I’ve had various aches and pains and sore bits in my mouth, and I’m ready for it all to just be over!

The good news is that Mr Fixit and I are going away for a week to a guest house that’s a couple of hours drive away – far enough to feel like a complete break, but still within the province. We’ve been once before and we know the food is great, there are good hiking trails, and we will get a few spa treatments thrown in as well. We don’t plan to check social media while we’re gone. My phone will be for emergency contact with our sons at home, if necessary. I’m taking a book, some crochet, some pens and a notebook.

I’ll ‘see’ you when I get back!

Hello September

Standard

I’m currently enjoying a beautiful long weekend. It’s Labour Day here tomorrow and I booked four days off from work to coincide with Mr Fixit’s time off.

Thursday was an insanely busy day at work, moving tonnes of fabric around, shifting tables, reconfiguring parts of the store, and so having this weekend off feels more precious than ever. (Also I am going to a four day week instead of three soon, so definitely appreciating this leisure time.)

Friday was a restful day. I was letting my body recover from all of the strenuous activity of the day before. Saturday we enjoyed a mini road trip south, repeating one of our favourite traditions for this time of year. We stopped to pick up lunch from our friends’ food truck at a farmers market, sat in a park to eat it, continued on to a fruit stand in a little town, bought lots of peaches, plums, tomatoes, potatoes, squash, peppers and beets, then turned around and stopped for a cup of tea. Further up the valley we parked by the side of the road at a small beach and enjoyed a swim and a sunbathe.

Today we were out early again and hiked up to the top of a local mountain, which we followed up with tea and baked goods at our favourite tea shop. This afternoon, after a fruit salad made with lots of local fruit, we hit the gym.

After dinner tonight, I finished a couple of things that I started yesterday. This crochet beanie was made from a cake of Caron Cupcakes grabbed out of the stash yesterday morning to keep my hands busy while Mr Fixit drove. (I used one of my new KnitPro Waves hooks and it was very comfortable.)

And the other finished project is this bag. I have seen some people on a Ravelry sewing group making Japanese rice bags (good tutorial here). They looked pretty simple. Just four squares for the sides, another square for the base, same for the lining, and sew them together incorporating tabs or loops for a drawstring.

Of course this bag would look a lot classier with fewer fabrics but I decided to do this…

Yes, I tipped all my quilting cotton scraps onto the floor and dug down to the bottom and grabbed pieces at random to make crazy quilt blocks. So the five outer panels are all different, all clashing, and once I’d sewn them last night I started to doubt myself!! (I started with 11″ squares of sew-in fleece and pieced the fabric right onto the fleece. They needed trimming a bit afterwards so ended up 10.75″ square.)

Tonight I thought, “To heck with it, I’m going to do it anyway,” cut some squares for the lining (all different, of course) and put it all together. It’s really easy to make, the trick being that when you sew the seams you leave the last little bit unsewn so that the corners come together neatly. (Watch the video I linked above.)

Seen from another angle…

And the inside (with my hand-dyed yarn inside)…

Oh yes, I haven’t told you about the yarn yet. These were four balls of white Drops Paris (worsted weight cotton). I dyed them with turquoise and yellow, overlapping the colours in the middle to make green.

This was only my second attempt at dyeing yarn. I think I am going to take four balls at a time and use different colours and methods on each batch and see how they turn out. I have no plans for the yarn once it’s dyed.

If you live in North America, happy Labour Day! How will you be spending it?

New goodies

Standard

Before I show you what came in the mail today, I need to show you this:

I made this from some old black jeans of mine, and a black T shirt that my son grew out of. It was one of the first things he bought for himself online years ago. I used the part with the words for the bag front and the lower body for the lining.

Another sewing project was this free pattern from Sew Sweetness called the Persimmon Dumpling Pouch. I used quilting cottons and some upcycled denim.

(Yes, that’s my birthday cake behind.)

I felt I did a really good job on the zipper, but unfortunately when you look at the ends of the bag it is painfully obvious that I didn’t match up my denim seams (where it meets the colourful cotton, either side of the zipper) very well and it looks wonky. Apart from that, it’s a really nice bag!!

And now, to my Wool Warehouse order. As soon as they opened up to international orders again, I was there, filling up my cart. I bought two kinds of white cotton yarn, Drops Safran and Drops Paris. I will do some dye experiments with those. And I was tempted by some lovely India-inspired fabric – I think the range was called New Delhi – of which I bought six fat quarters. And then there are the hooks – 17 of them altogether – all the sizes that Wool Warehouse carries in the Knit Pro Waves. Very exciting! In fact, I may have to sew a brand new hook roll to keep them in. I have wanted a set of hooks for a long time, rather than a mismatched bunch of miscellany!

How apropos that they arrived on my birthday!

I am now sitting here, absolutely stuffed after a takeout meal from one of our favourite places and a huge slice of vanilla/chocolate marble cake. It’s been an awesome weekend!

Sewing party

Standard
Sewing party

Yesterday was a great day! Three of my friends came over and brought their sewing machines, tools and fabric so we could make bags. We had decided to make the Continuous Zipper bag from the tutorial by Lorrie Nunemaker and the Easy One-piece purse with popper by Lizzy Curtis.

There was a lot of chat, a lot of sharing of tips and techniques, lots of good food, and fun was had by all.

My makes:

I just love the fabrics I used from my stash. The first purse was the maple leaf one and started out with a 6.5 inch wide piece of fabric. The second one used an 8 inch wide piece and I think it is more practical as you can fit bank notes into it. I am sold on the snaps and now want to get myself a kit so I can make more purses.

Today is a public holiday – Family Day – and is a quiet day Chez Nicolaknits. All five of us are home and are going out for supper later. My sewing machine called to me again so I made another continuous zipper bag using some batting inside instead of interfacing.

I’ve had this fabric for years. It’s cute!

Another idea I wanted to play with, because it was keeping me awake last night when I should have been falling asleep, is a bag with a front made up entirely of zippers. I had a few lying around, so I seamed them together, cut a piece of jeans leg to add to the top, bottom, and back, and added belt loops.

IMG_8356

The front bows out because of the zippers, but that’s not a bad thing. You can access the bag using any of the zippers. I was thinking that if I used a long zipper, I could use any trimmed lengths as well, even if they didn’t have a pull. But in this case they were all short.

In yarny news, I finished the mindless crochet project, which is a yarn cake holder for a friend who just bought a ballwinder. Having the cake corralled makes things much easier.

IMG_8351

And the double knitting project has grown a little. It’s slow going, and there are many mistakes because I’m still learning, but when I manage to get in the flow I enjoy it.

As you can see, the back is a mirror image of the front. It’s double thick. Ampersand Dragon

Hopefully your Monday was a good one. Talk to you again soon.