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Sunday, July 28, 2013

How to make a reversible fabric basket

In my everlasting hunt for storage space and containers, today I made fabric baskets.

They are easy and quick to make.

You need: fabric and batting

For a basket with 20cm side length and a heigt of 15 cm cut your two fabrics and batting into a 50x50 cm square.

Fold all three layers in half and cut away the corners on the fold as shown below.

 Start by sewing one of the fabrics and the batting into a basket.

Place the fabric onto the batting right side up and fold in half right side on right side. Join the two short sides with a straight stitch.

Then open the remaining opening up folding it perpendicular to the seam and close with a straight seam.

The first par to of the basket is done. Proceed in the same way with the second fabric.
When done place the fabric and batting basket with the fabric outside and insert the second fabric right side up into the basket.

Close the upper open edge with binding. I used a simple red ribbon, but you can make your own binding following the instructions in this tutorial.

Pin the binding in place.

And attach with a simple straight stitch.
The basket holds a lot of stuff.

And when it's not completely full, just fold the rim over.

Have you made a project following this tutorial? Let me know what you think. Did you like it? Was it easy to understand and to follow? Do you have any suggestions?
Write a comment or send me an email using the contact form at the bottom of the page.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

How to make a spacious beach bag

It's late july, it's hot, it's time to go to the beach.


This is how you can make a spacious beach bag with a small inside pocket.

The bag is made from a strong cotton fabric. It measure 55 cm on the top and 40 cm on the bottom and has 15 cm bottom width. The height is 40 cm.

You need to cut two identical shapes from your fabric and lining, I am using the same fabric for both.

I am using a 0.9cm seam allowance therefore I need to cut 2 rectangles measuring 101.8 x 56.8cm.
Then I fold the rectangles in half and cut out two rectangles on the bottom side (where the fold is) measuring 15 x 7.5 cm but given that we're cutting on the fold the actual cut will be 7.5 cm x 7.5 cm.

Start by preparing the outer and inner bags.
Keep each piece folded in half (as you cut the bottom squares out) right side to right side and join the two longer outer sides with a straight seam. I additionally zigzag the rough edges in order to better protect them.

Then open the reamining opening, closing it perpendicular to the 1. seam. Practically you need to match points A and C folding the two edges of corners B onto themselves.

 Close the opening with a straight stitch, and if desired, zigzag the raw edges.

When done take the four rectangles you cut from the big rectangles before, we will use those to make the inside pocket (if you prefer a pocket of different dimensions, cut the pieces from the fabric and proceed as indicated below).

We have four rectangles and we will need two identical pieces for the pocket. Therefore we place two pieces right side on right side and join them to two squares measuring 15 x 15 cm.

Now place the two new squares right side to right side onto each other and sew all the way around, leaving only a small opening for turning the piece inside out.

Place the finished and turned square onto only the lining, positioning it in the center of one side.

Sew in place with a simple straight stitch attaching three sides and leaving the upper edge open.

Now it's time to join the outer bag and the lining.

Place one inside the other, right side to right side and sew together the upper raw edges (zigzag if desired) leaving a small opening to turn the bag inside out.

Next you need to prepare strips for the handles. I wanted the handles to be long enough to comfortably carry the bag on the shoulder.

I cut strips 22 cm wide and joined them into a complete loop of 340 cm. This is how you join shorter strips to one long loop. Take care not to twist the strip when closing the loop.

Now iron the seam allowance of 0.9 cm on both sides of the strip towards the wrong side.

Then iron the strip in half lengthwise, hiding the raw eges inside. Sew a straight seam close to each side of the long loop.

Now position the handles carefully making it run along the bag as shown below and paying attention to having both handles of the same length.

When satisfied with the position of the loop and handles, sew in place all along both sides of the strip wherever it touches the bag. Reinforce the seams on the upper edges of the bag,  just where the actual handle starts, sewing a cross and square as shown below.

Now, to finish the bag, you need to attach the zipper.

Use your zipper foot and sew it about 1/2 cm below the edge of the bag to the inner side of the bag.

Attach both sides of the zipper and you're done. This is the finished zipper:

This is what the inside with the small pocket looks like:

In the pictures you can see, how the additional width in the bottom makes the bag pretty spacious:

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Have you made a project following this tutorial? Let me know what you think. Did you like it? Was it easy to understand and to follow? Do you have any suggestions?
Write a comment or send me an email using the contact form at the bottom of the page.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Beach inspired bathroom caddy

This bathroom caddy is made with a thicker and rather rigid batting. Given that my bathroom has beige tiles I chose this beach inspired beige linen fabric.

First I cut the basic shape from my front fabric, rigid batting and backing. Then I cut the pockets, two strips for the upper and two strips for the lower pockets, that are just as wide as the batting and as high as I wanted the pockets to be. Additionally you will need strips for binding.

I joined the front and lining of the pockets placing the pieces right side to right side and sewing only the top seam.

 For the upper pockets I ironed a double hem towards the inside of the pocket

 Then I laid all layers out as follows:

Backing fabric, wrong side up
Front fabric, right side up

and I placed the pocket strips on the background, clipping everything in place.

All open edges of the lower pockets will go into the binding, while the lower edge of the upper pocket will have to be attached before. I placed the strip with the hem towards the inside in position and attached it with a simple straight stitch.

Then I made the seams dividing the upper and lower strips into pockets.

For the binding prepare a long enough strip and pin/clip it in place all around the caddy. For more information on how to bind a quilt have a look at this tutorial.
Cut another two short strips of 5x2 inches. Iron the seamallowance on both long sides toward the inside, fold in half right side outside and sew together.

Fold the two strips in half and place them underneath the binding close to the top corners of the caddy as shown below.

Attach the binding and, at the same time, the loops. Given that I used the heavy batting and fabric, I used a heavy duty jeans needle.

With the rather rigid batting, I wasn't able to finish the binding as shown in my binding tutorial. Therefore I did this:

I cut the two ends so that they overlap for perhaps 2 inches.

I placed one end along the edge of the caddy while I turn over the edge as shown below on the second end.

Then I folded the second end (with the folded corner) around the edge of the caddy achieving the effect shown below.

I turned the binding over to wrap around the outer edge of the caddy and the other end of the binding.

Last, I finished the binding by sewing it in place.

And here's the finished cadd:

Have you made a project following this tutorial? Let me know what you think. Did you like it? Was it easy to understand and to follow? Do you have any suggestions?
Write a comment or send me an mail using the contact form at the bottom of the page.