Saturday, February 19, 2011

Sweet Make-up Purse

Well this weeks tutorial has a challenge with it, mastering the Zip! I have never sewn a zip in before and so out came my sewing machine manual!!! To my surprise I found that I had this (pic on the left) in my sewing basket! A zipper foot.
The way it is designed is that you clip it on so that the needle is either to the left or the right of the foot and it allows you to sew very close to the inner part of your zip on either side.
I don't think this is an essential for this tutorial however check if you have one with your machine as it does make it much easier!

So we are going to make a cute little make up purse, which of course can be turned into all sorts of things especially if you are a mum! I used some wadding in between my layers to make it a bit softer, and you can use interfacing to make it stiffer, but it is not essential. So pick out your favorite fat quarter, ( I used some shabby chic,  Red Rose Farm) or choose something your bff would love and fill it up with some make-up as a great present.

Fat Quarter or less of quilting fabric
Fat Quarter or less of lining fabric
Ruler, Rotary Blade or scissors
Medium weight interfacing or lightweight wadding (optional)

1.To start, cut out  rectangles measuring 35 x 20 cm (13.5 x 8 inches) of outer, inner & lining fabric.

2. Lay out your interfacing/wadding, then put your fabric on top face up and your zip face down on top (i.e. right sides together) making sure the top of the zip lines up with the top of your fabric. Sew (using your zipper foot) across the top

3. Take your outer fabric once again faceup and make sure the zip is still facedown on top, then place your lining fabric directly on top of this lining it up once again with the top of the zip and sew once again.

4. Next place your fabric once again face cup and fold your zip face up now too. Bring the bottom of your outer & wadding up to the other side of the zip and sew once again. Leaving the lining fabric behind.

5. Now just repeat the other side with your lining fabric, fold the lining fabric up to the top of the zip and sew along the top.

6. Your bag should look something like the first picture below at this point. So now you need to fold the lining over the wadding & outer fabric piece. If you place your hadn inside the lining and just grab the outer fabric piece and pull it through and you should get it right.

7. We are now going to sew up the sides of the bag, so at this point it is ESSENTIAL!!! that you open up your zip by pulling it towards the middle of the bag. (this is so that you can turn your bag right side out afterwards) Pin and sew up the sides of the bag going over the zip a few times to strengthen it.

8. Pinching your corners: Give your bag a bit of volume by pushing out the corners from the inside and pinch the corners of the bag so that you have a triangle making sure it is as smooth as possible. Pin and sew a  little line. You can use your sewing machine ruler lines to check that each corner is the same width by making sure the tip of the triangle is pointing at a specific measurement.

9. Now the fun part, turn your bag right way out! And you are done! Fill it up with all that make up and organize your drawers! And think how great you will feel when you see such a pretty item at the start of each day! 

Friday, February 11, 2011

Designer Hairband

I could not wait to get onto the next project with so many great responses from the first! Thank you to everyone who left them. I can see this becoming an addictive habit, Friday night tutorials! So with a very busy week I decided it needed to be something simple but chic and I decided to do some Sew Pretty hair bands.

Now I have never made these before (probably due to my short hair & 2 budding boys) but I was surprised at how easy and quick they are to make (watch my cup of tea during the photo's to get an idea on timing!) and that made me think these would be awesome for craft markets.

To experienced sewers, note I have bolded the main instructions.

To start these are the supplies you will need for this project

1.) Cut 2 rectangles, one for the main headband and one to cover the elastic around the back. Sizes are below the picture.

Large (fitted on my head!) 
40cm x 14cm (16  x 5 1/2 inches)
6.5cm x 28cm (2 1/2 x 11 inches)

Medium (18 months +)

38cm x 12cm (15  x 4 1/2 inches)
6.5cm x 25cm (2 1/2 x 10 inches)

Small (12-18 months)
36cm x 10cm (14 x 4 inches)
6.5cm x 22cm (2 1/2 x 9 inches)

(If you are not sure on your sizing, just make one, try it on and adjust by a few cm if it is not quite right. You can even unpick and cut it shorter if necessary)

2.) Next fold right side to right side horizontally and pin and stitch each rectangle

3.) Turn the each rectangle the right way out and iron with the seam down the middle of one side

For the smaller rectangle it is a bit more tricky, so using a pen or knitting needle push your tube the right way out and iron as above. (Tea going down quite well at this point!)

4.) Now cut a piece of elastic and attach your safety pin to one side. (Sizes below)

Large - 15cm (6 inches)
Medium - 13cm (5 inches)
Small - 10cm (4 inches)

5.) Thread it through your smaller rectangle tube, and when the elastic just starts to disappear at the back, grab it and sew it closed about 1cm in. Then scrunch up your tube until your safety pin emerges, remove pin and sew the other side. 

 Now take your large rectangle and lay it seam side down: ( I did this wrong 2nd time around, unpicking!!!)

Take your smaller rectangle and line it up to the one end of the larger rectangle. 

6.) Wrap the larger rectangle over the smaller one from each side, and sew it closed at least 1cm in if not a bit more. (Make sure you are sewing lower than your sewing line of the elastic otherwise it will show through)

7.) Now stretch the smaller rectangle elastic tube, to the other side of your head band and repeat.

8.) Finally turn your band over at each corner and ta da! You are done! Now if you are like me make lots more with all those fabric scraps!

Why not decorate your hairband with a one of the lovely fabric flowers that Molly the Bear shows you how to make in her tuturial found here

Friday, February 4, 2011

Scrummy Yummy Designer Coasters

Love Fat Quarters?? Do you find yourself collecting them? I certainly do! To start off Sew Pretty's month of ♥ and  free tutorial's, I am going to show you how to make a set of fabulous, scrummy coasters, perfect for resting that hot cuppa on for the rest of your sewing time this month. 
Or why not make up a quick set for a gift for a friend? You can have these done easily in under an hour. To begin, this is the list of materials you will need (not all are essential but they are a great help for sewing quickly!)

You can substitute the ruler & rotary blade with a cut out pattern and sewing scissors. The fabrics above are just coordinating scraps I had left.
Using your ruler & blade cut out 4 equal size sqaures from each of the four fabrics. My sizes were 3 x3 inches (5cm x 5cm). If you are using a ruler for the first time, make sure your fabric is lined up straight down the left hand side then move your ruler to your chosen measurement with excess fabric on the left and cut. Turn the cut fabric strip around and trim the off the excess

If you are making a set of 4 coasters you will need 16 little bitty bits of fun to piece together & play around with until you have your desired Feng Shui
Once you have decided on your layout, fold two pieces right side to right side (pin) and sew together.

Do that for all 16 pieces. Iron out your seams (these are the little flaps that are left once you have finished sewing and your article looks far prettier when they have been ironed flat, but not an essential if you are in a hurry!)
Place two sets together, right side to right side, and sew once more

And now you should have something like this

To make things simpler, measure out your square now and cut a backing piece & a piece of lining to go in between I used a medium weight lining and my square measured 5.25 inches (13.5cm)

Place the patterned piece face up, the lining on top (face down if necessary) and the backing on top of that

Now pin and sew turning your corners as you go around (by leaving your needle down and lifting your presser foot up), you may find it easier to have your lining on top or the other way around, just try it and see which works best. Leave a small opening about 4cm wide.

Turn it inside out and push the corners out as much as you can using a rounded tip ( I have an embellishing tool which works perfectly!) And now you will have this.

Now take your co-ordinating thread and sew as close as you can to the edge (Tucking in the opening) and turning your corners as mentioned above.
Then once you have completed a full squares move your presser foot so that the right hand side is lined up against your previously sewed line and sew around once more. Repeat that for the third time. You can keep on going around, but I quite like the look of 3 lines and it get's quite tricky near the middle!

Trim off all those little bits of thread and ta daa! You have your amazing set of designer coasters!
Time for a cuppa!

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