Friday, February 3, 2017

So long ago.

I started blogging in 2005. Seems like such a long time ago. Hubby and I had a blog together at first. Some of the older posts are from those times. I used to have two blogs. One for crafts and one for personal stuff. Many years ago, I combined the two. I try to keep this blog balanced but I tend to write more about crafts as they are a big part of my life. But I hope to write more this year on other subjects.

Sometimes it seems like we have taken many steps backwards because we don't live as simple as we used to. I don't regret where we are now and I don't regret the experiences we endured back then. I'm thankful for each adventure we shared.

I do hope this year to return to some of my simple living principles but it's going to take awhile to get to that point. I've gotten spoiled and set in some of my ways.

One of the things I have gotten into this week is growing microgreens. I had such a failed attempt at growing anything edible last year and it was a huge disappointment to me. But I have hope.

More later!

Crayon bag part 2

Ok. I'm very disappointed with the pattern I tried. Granted I used interfacing instead of felt or batting, but I was not expecting this-

This is with a book inside. The pockets are way too floppy. I should have made it double thick. And added interfacing. That would have driven up my cost though.

I had great plans for this material and ended up using almost all of it on this bag. Now it's useless. I'm cutting it up tomorrow to salvage as much as I can. :/

And next time I will just make the smaller version.

Even without the coloring book inside, it flops over.

This is the orange one.

I'm torn on thing to figure out which way I want the coloring book pocket to be. This way on the orange one it doesn't allow the book to fall out hanging up, but it slides out when the bag is put together. It doesn't fall out though. Maybe I should make a flap of some sort. 

Back to the drawing board...

Crayon bags

I love this pattern I found on Etsy. 

The shop seems to have disappeared but I hope it's coming back so I can share the link. I've seen several free tutorials out there but they don't compare to this pattern. One thing they have in common is that the crayon slots bunch in the middle. I don't have that problem with this pattern. 

In fact, I wanted to sew another style crayon bag. The style that opens up and saw a few tutorials and they too pinched in the center. So, I took some material and sewed this- 

No bunching. 

But curiosity got the better of me and I found this pattern. I had to try it. Only I put the pockets in my own way and did the straps differently and like how it came out. Sort of. I almost like my design better. (The orange one) It's smaller and more compact. 

I'll blog my changes later. In case anyone wants to try it. 

More later!

Fabric boxes

Found a cool pattern on Pinterest the other day. Had to make one!

I liked it so much I made another.

 I've got a bunch of material cut out to sew more!

Here is the pattern. Here is a YouTube version.

Be sure to check out the French seam version from the pattern website. I tried it with the secund one and loved the idea! It makes the box reversible.

How I add a handle to my boxy bags with new UPDATE

Someone asked me the other day what pattern I used for my boxy bags. And how I did my handles. I'm sure there is an easier way, but this is how I do it.

First of all, I use this pattern to make the boxy bag. It was the first pattern I used to sew a zipper. I have seen many patterns for boxy bags and this is by far my favorite one.  I like to use a fat quarter for my bags.

I'm not going to go into detail on how I see the boxy bag because I think her tutorial is great! But I did sew the tabs a little differently and will show how I add a handle to it. I will add that I have taken the handle before and placed it where the tab goes and sewed it that way, but I prefer the handles the way I'll show today.

Here we go...

I like to cut the material this way so the picture pieces still connect. 

This is my handle piece. It is 4 inches by 11. I put interfacing on the wrong side and press it in half.

Then I fold the edges toward the center. And fold in half again and sew down the sides. For the tabs, the pieces are 4 by 8 inches. After the sides are sewn, they come to 1x8 inches and I cut it in half to equal 1x4 each. The handle is now 1x11 inches.

Sew down on each side like shown.

Set aside and ready to go.

When you get to this part of the tutorial... This is where I put in the handles. I usually would trim the zipper ends by now but find it's easier to know which way is up if you wait to trim it.

Now, I know I do this a little backwards but this is how I make the handles and it works for me.

I go ahead and sew the flaps down then rip open a little bit in the middle and insert the handle in and resew it down. You only take out the middle stitches on the outer pieces on the top.

And make sure you have already trimmed about 1/4 inch off before you rip out the seams.

After you sew the first side in. Insert your hands into the pouch- to make sure the strap isn't twisted. 

It's easier to keep the handle centered when you only remove a few stitches.

Turn inside out. Sew up lining opening and you are done!

Let me know if you have any questions. Or need to see it on a video.

Update- So the other day I was curious to know how big my squares would be if I cut them out first and then sewed them up.

I sewed one like the tutorial showed and when I cut the tip off I measured it. And it came to:

Make sure that the 1 3/4 is shown in the exact spot like this, not the other way around. If you count where the seam line is it is also 1 3/4 inches.

I actually ended up forgetting and sewing it shut (out of habit) and then had to rip it open to put the handle in! Talk about annoying especially since I double backstitched several times.  In the end, I found that I could sew the seam closed, but leave a gap in the middle. (Pic coming)

Insert handle and then sew it shut.

I'll be updating this post again when I make more bags. I will show more step by step photos. Stay tuned!