Friday, December 12, 2014

Teacher's gift bag

It's been pretty crazy here the last week or so as the school year comes to end for my boys.
There have been end of year class parties to bake for and errands to run and appointments to be squeezed in before I have the boys home full time for six weeks. All this has left me little time to be creative.

I did need to whip up something for the teacher's gifts though. I only got them boxes of chocolates this year and I felt I needed to personalise the gift a little by making a nice bag to put them in.

I only needed a simple Tote but I wanted to use the furnishing remnant that I picked up from Spotlight so I teamed it up with some black cotton and lined the tote with Red to give it a pop of colour.

I love that these Totes are so quick and easy to whip up. I didn't add a zip or any velcro this time as I really just wanted to keep it quick and simple.

I also decided not to use any interfacing this time but I did reinforce the bottom of the bags.

I actually quite like this furnishing fabric on the bag, might have to make myself one of these but I will add some interfacing so that the bag will hold it's shape better.

Thank you for stopping by my little blog today :o)

Please leave a comment and a link back to you and I will pop on over and say Hi.

I will enter this Tote in to the following linky parties:

Michelle :o)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Feeling organised now

I've been playing around with some remnants I picked up from Spotlight this week and some more of the Doona cover that I am up cycling.

Not sure what kind of fabric it is (pictured below) but when I saw it in the remnants bin I thought that it would be great to use as a cover for the second hand sewing cabinet I picked up. The cabinet is in brand new condition but does not go with the rest of the furniture in my house. Turns out that there wasn't quiet enough of this fabric to cover the cabinet so I thought I would see if I could do something else with it instead. I also picked up a 55cm  x 250cm piece of black quilting cotton for $1.20 which seemed like a really good score.

I have been wanting to make myself a little organiser to go in my handbag so I had a little play around with a simple design to hold a small spiral bound note pad, a pen and some business cards.

I found the silver fabric a bit tricky to work with as it is quite slippery and frays really badly.

But i did manage to create a little organiser that was pretty much what I had in mind.

 I made a couple of mistakes in the design, like that the velcro tab wasn't long enough so I had to stitch a bit of extra fabric to it to lengthen it. So I thought I would have another go with some of the fabric from the Doona cover I am up cycling.

The second organiser worked out better but the denim did become too thick and made it hard going in places.

I might have another go with out the denim next time. Practice makes perfect they say :o)

I am entering my organiser in to the following linky parties:

I'm off now to have a look around blog land for some more inspiration. I

Thank you for stopping by and for your lovely words of encouragement.

Michelle :o)

Thursday, November 27, 2014

It's a little bit country/cottage but I love it

I could feel the anxiety rising this week...
I was itching to keep stitching but my fabric stash is still pretty non existent so desperate times call for desperate measures........

I raided my linen cupboard and found this old doona cover which has hardly ever been used and is in excellent condition.

I decided to pair it with the left over denim from the skirt I made last week and make another Tote.

(sorry the colours are a bit off as the photos were taken in low light with my ipad)

I used the same Tote pattern as I did with my Vintage Tote that was by Debbie Shore but I modified it a little this time to incorporate the two fabrics on the outside and the straps down the sides as well as a pocket on the inside.

I forgot to do a row of top stitching at the top of the bag where the flower fabric meets the little strip of denim before I put the straps on but I did add it to the bottom.

I used my usual method of stitch and unpick for most of this project and I think the main problem may have been that I was somewhat distracted by the eye candy on TV ;)

I am really happy with how this Tote came together quite quickly. My confidence is growing and I like that I can "tweak" designs now to suit my needs.

I added a pocket to the inside that was large enough to hold my phone, a note book (and my big bunch of keys!)

I was also really pleased with how successful I was at lining things up this week!

Thank you for stopping by my blog today. I really appreciate your kind comments and words of encouragement.

I will be sharing my bag on the following linky parties this week.

Michelle :o)

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Something for me

Well, how chuffed am I on a scale of 1 to 10?

A solid 10 I'd say :o)

I decided to make the leap from bags to something wearable this week. My favourite skirt that I have worn till it was completely thread bare finally fell apart so it seemed only right to start with a new skirt for me. Turns out I am capable of creating something completely wearable within a couple of days, how cool is that! 

I started out by having a close look at how my most comfy skirt was constructed.

Then I  de-constructed it so I could use it as a pattern.

I had hoped to find some fabric that was similar to the original skirt fabric but no luck so I settled on some light weight denim.

I managed to get all the pieces on to about a metre of fabric. (There were more pieces than shown in the photo)

Re-constructing the skirt was not too hard although fitting the yoke (I think that is what it is called) to the skirt panels was challenging and it took a few tries.

I love the extra row of stitching on each of the panels of this skirt. Gives a really nice finish.

I still need lots of practice with zips but I am not as nervous about them as I was in the beginning.

Turns out the style of skirt with its flowy sort of hem with the sides being longer than the centre didn't really work with the denim as it was too stiff so I decided to cut the skirt a bit shorter. I have to say that I was pretty nervous taking the scissors to my newly constructed skirt but I think it looks much better at this length (sorry I didn't get a photo before I cut it)

I wore my new skirt out on Saturday and it was so comfortable, I felt so proud that I was able to make something like this :o)

Thank you for stopping by my blog today and for your kind comments.
Remember to please leave me with a link so that I can come visit you too.

Michelle :o)

I'm linking my skirt up to the following linky parties:

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Don't look too closely

After doing my head in for the last couple of nights trying to figure out how to do the concertina part, this wallet it is finally done!

But don't look too closely!

I was thinking to myself I really need to wait until the day time to take better photos but then I thought about it and figured the poor lighting is probably going to work in my favour in this instance :o)

I made this wallet to go with the Vintage Tote I made last week.

I didn't use a pattern, figured I could work it out for myself, yeah, I was chewing that bite for a while, lol.

Actually, it wasn't too bad until I got to the part to put the coin pocket in, then I realised I was going to run in to some difficulty. That is a lot of layers for my poor little machine to sew through, but it managed. What I didn't take in to consideration was that the stitching would show through on the outside of the wallet. Nothing like bright red stitching against light fabric to show up all your mistakes hey!  Still I must remind myself this is only my third sewing project and that I will improve with practice.

With this patterned fabric I had to give some consideration to which way it would be facing when the wallet was folded closed so I decided to do it in three pieces.

I created a pocket in the back of the wallet. I had actually done a pretty good job of this in the first instance then when I turned it over I realised I had sewn through the pocket. Second time around I didn't conceal the red lining well enough. Oh well,live  and learn


I considered making some bias binding from the red lining material to put around the outside edge of the wallet to hide my wonky stitching but I'm not sure. Sounds like a lot of hand stitching to me....

All in all I'm pretty happy with how this turned out. Again, it's all a learning experience and I think I am improving with each project.

Thank you so much for stopping by today and for your kind comments.
Please leave a link so I can come visit you too.

Michelle :o)

I am added my wallet to the following linky parties:

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Vintage Tote

The internet is proving to be an excellent source of inspiration and instruction in my endeavour to teach myself to sew.

I found this wonderful YouTube video by Debbie Shore for a zippered, lined tote

It seemed like a great project to step me up from the first bag I made  as it involved zippers (yikes).

Having some tension issues here. Could be the fact that I was stretching and pulling that thing so tight it was a wonder I didn't bust a needle :o)

This little exercise really helped confirm that the name I had chosen for my blog was perfect (stitch, unpick, repeat) as there was a fair bit of that going on.

I am also learning that I have perfectionist tendencies which I'm obviously going to have to get over, at least while I'm learning.

It was a bit easier for the second zip.

I forgot to take photos as I was going along but I have made up for it with photos of the finished bag :o)

I am really pleased with the finished product. It came up much better than I thought it would and there was only a couple of places that I had to unpick and try again.

Thank you for visiting today and for you kind words of encouragement.

I will be looking for a few places where I can link my new bag up and to see if I can find a few more new blogs to visit.

Michelle :o)

I'm adding this Tote to the following linky parties:

 A Round Tuit Linky Party.

Threading My Way - Bags and Totes

Show Off Saturday

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

And Sew It Begins...

My obsession with beautiful fabric that is.

I was invited to attend a sewing class a couple of weeks ago and in desperate need for some new creative mojo (having been paper crafting for the last four or five years) I decided to go along.

Well,  it was fantastic. We got to make a cute little tote from start to finish and I was hooked!

I picked up this gorgeous fabric from Spotlight.

Having never sewn before I am really pleased with the end result.

Now I am on the hunt for some inspirational sewing blogs and I am looking forward to gaining some new crafty friends and learning lots from all of you!

Thanks for stopping in to say Hi.

Michelle :o)

I'm adding my bag to the following linky parties