Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Scrappy Drawstring Bag Tutorial

Hello! Hello! Hello!

It's been forever.  Again.  I really need to be better on updating my blog.  I keep saying that but it seems to always get put on the back burner.  I promise I don't intend it to go that way and I always have fun things to share, it's just finding the time to sit down and share it.  

So today I have a really fun and cute tutorial!!  I could make a million of these!! 

One reason I love this bag is because you can use them for so many things!! Need a gift bag? Whip one up.. Need a knitting bag like I did, whip one up!!  

That actually is what inspired this project.  I have began knitting again *YAY* and I really needed a smaller bag to put my sock knitting in.  My main focus was keeping the yarn away from the kitties so having a drawstring bag allows me to keep my yarn inside the bag and just pull as I go.  No rolling balls of yarn! 

Ready?  Here we go! 

I am using my Sizzix Big Shot along with the 2 1/2" Squares Bigz Die to help this process go faster! It cuts 4 at a time and up to 8 layers.  

What you need:
88 squares that measure 2.5" x 2.5"
2 pieces of batting that is 15" x 17"
2 pieces of lining fabric 12.5" x 14.5"
2 strips 2.25" x 40" for ties

Let's Begin:
Start by laying out two panels of your 2.5" squares so they are in a grid of 6 across and 7 down.  That is 42 squares per side. You will have 4 left over.  Set those aside. 

Sew the squares into rows pressing seams in opposite directions in each row.  Meaning Row 1 you will press to the right, and row 2 you will press to the left and so on.  Once you have all rows sewn, sew the rows together and press seams to one direction. 

Next you will lay your panel on a piece of batting.  I did not put anything behind the batting because I didn't want it to be too thick and the bag is lined so I didn't feel the need.  You should have your panel on top of a piece of batting.  That is it.  Now quilt it as desired.  If you don't want a quilty look or for it to be a bit thicker, you can skip the batting and the quilting. It will all go tougher the same way regardless. 

Once you are done quilting both panels, trim off the extra batting and square up your panels. They should be 12.5" x 14.5". 

Next we need to add "tabs"  in the openings of where the drawstring will be fed through.  These are added so the fabric doesn't fray when opening and closing the bag.  This will make more sense when you see it. :)

Take one of the extra squares and figure out where you want your drawstring to lay.  I lined up the 4" mark on my ruler with the second seam of the panel and then centered the square.  Make sure right sides are facing.  

Now you need to sew this down.  Sew it using about an 1/8th of an inch seam.  Backstitch at the beginning and the end to secure it.  We only want to sew 1/8" in because we want to hid this in our seam and we don't want the stitching to show. 

Now fold it to the back and press it in place.  Repeat for the opposite side of this panel and also for the other panel.  Make sure you put them in the same place on all 4 sides. 

We want to make an opening that is 1" for the drawstring.  Measure in 1.25" from the edge of the square and place a pin.  Repeat on the other side and place another pin.  Repeat for a total of 4 "tabs" on both panels. 

Note:  In the below photo, the sewn edge is on the bottom so you will measure in from the sides.  The distance between the pins should be 1". 

Time to sew the front panels together!! 

Place the panels right sides together.  You will sew 1/4" around each edge except for the top.  You will also need to skip the sections between the pins.  Backstitch when you get to a pin, then skip over the gap, backstitch and continue sewing.  When you are done you will have three openings.  The top, and the two 1" sections where the drawstring will go.  Be sure you backstitch on either side of those pins as there will be lots of strain in those spots. 

You will also need to sew the lining pieces together.  Place right sides together and sew around each side (taller side = 14.5") , around the bottom (12.5"), and up the other side (14.5").  Be sure to leave about a 3" opening at the bottom for turning. Backstitch at the beginning and end of this gap as well.  

On to boxing the corners!  If you don't want to box the corners, you can skip this step.  The bag will be a bit longer/wider if you don't box it.  

To box the bottom corners, take the bottom seam and the side seam and match them up to make a triangle.  If you push the seams in opposite directions you can get them to nest.  

Lay your ruler down so the tip of the triangle is at the 1.5" mark on the ruler.  Take a Pen and draw a line.  Sew on the line and then trim 1/4" away from the sewn line. 

Repeat this for the other corner of the outer panels and also on the inside lining. 

Turn the outer panels right sides out and place it inside the lining piece that is still inside out.  Sew 1/4" around the edge, matching side seams. 

Time to birth the bag!!! From the opening in the bottom of the lining, carefully pull the outside of the bag through the hole. 

It should look like this. 

Sew up the hole in the bottom of the lining using your favorite method and then push the lining into the bag.  press the top seam so that the lining is rolled to the inside.  Then sew 1/8" around the top edge to secure the lining. 

Now we need to make the channel for the drawstring to flow through.  

Put a pin in place at the top and bottom of the 1" hole we left. Do this on the left and right sides of the bag. 

Using a fabric safe marking tool, draw a line between the top two pins and then the bottom two pins.  Make sure you use a marking tool that will be easily removed. 

Flip the bag over and repeat drawing the marked lines. 

Sew on each line going all the way around the bag, backstitching at the beginning and the end.  

You can see now where the "tabs" were placed created a finished edge. No fraying!!! Yay! 

Alright.. we are almost done!! 

Take the drawstring strips and fold in each of the ends about 1/2" and press. 

Fold each strip in half and press. This creates a center fold line to use as a guide. 

Open up the strip and bring the raw edges of the strip to the center crease you just made.  Do this for both sides. 

Fold the strip in half enclosing the raw edges and then sew down the edge about 1/16 to an 1/8th away from edge.  

Using a safety pin, pin it to the end of your drawstring.  Begin by feeding it in one of the channel openings, pass by the other opening and back out through the same hole you began in.  Even out the drawstring and tie a knot at the end.  

Repeat for the other channel opening. 

Pull on each of the strings in opposite directions and watch your new bag pucker up!!!! 

That's it!! You're done!! Pat yourself on the back!! Super easy!! 

You can also use this same tutorial for a plain panel.  You don't have to use the scrappy square look.  You can also add a decorative top to your bags too.  Here are a couple of examples in different sizes (super easy to adapt to whatever size you want). 

If you make these bags, please share them with me!!! I'd love to see your creations!!!! 

Much Love!!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Face Cloth Tutorial - Softest Ever!!

We all love to pamper ourselves, right? Even if it's something little that makes us feel better, every little bit of pampering is accepted and enjoyed! 

I've seen a few of these floating around so I wanted to give mine a different spin. I like easy.  I like quick so I altered mine a bit.  

I don't know about you, but i hate turning small things right sides out, and then trying to stitch that opening together.  Mine never look very good so if I can eliminate that step, boy I am gonna do it!! 

So here is what I did...

I did use my Sizzix for this project for a few reasons.  Mostly because of the same reasons above.  It's easy and its quick.  No fuss about it.  :)  I am sure if you don't have these Sizzix items you can amend the tutorial to fit your needs, but let me tell you, with this baby I did 22 of these Face Cloths in an evening! Boom! 

Sizzix Big Shot or Big Shot Pro is the machine I used.
Sizzix Bigz L Die - Circle, 5" is the die you will need to cut out the circle.
6.5" x 6.5" squares of cotton fabric for each Face Cloth
Cotton Batting like Warm and Natural - 6.5" x 6.5" square per Face Cloth
Sherpa - I got mine from Nature's Fabric - 6.5" x 6.5" square per Face Cloth
Pinking Shears or Pinking Rotary Cutter (recommended)

Begin by deciding how many you want to make.  I made 22 so my daughter and I could each have 11.   That is enough for one cloth each morning and night for 5 days and 1 to have while you are washing the dirty ones.  I do plan on making more, but for now I started with 22.  

Once you have that "magic number" cut that many squares of your top fabric 6.5" x 6.5".  Using the circle die above, center that on your squares (remember you can cut multiple layers, up to 8), and run it through the machine to cut out the "peek hole".  

Next cut strips of fabrics 2" x 6.5".  You will need 4 of these strips for each face cloth.  Next, sew these 4 strips together and press to one direction.  Repeat for all face cloths.  

Now you need the guts! 

From each of the batting and the Sherpa, cut a 6.5" x 6.5" piece for each Face Cloth. 

Layer the Sherpa (soft side face down), the batting, and the strip pieced element. This is where you will need to decide if you want extra quilting. I quilted on either side of the strip pieced seams about 1/4" away to give it some stability.  You may choose to skip this or quilt it entirely different.  

Now lay down the top "peek hole" fabric. Don't worry if this stuff doesn't line up perfectly.  The Sherpa can distort easily but we are going to trim the edges later so no worries.  

Sew a 1/4" away from the raw edge of the circle making sure to backstitch at the start and end as this is a raw edge.  You don't want those stitches coming out!! 

Then Sew about 3/8" around all 4 edges.  Again be sure to backstitch at the beginning and the end!

Now comes the fun part!! 

Grab that pinking rotary cutter or a pinking shear and start trimming around each side.  I highly recommend the rotary cutter with the pinking blade because it is super fast and your hand won't feel like you just put it through the pasta maker when you are done ;)

I  stacked mine and took lots of pretty pictures because i just love the look of pinked edges!! 

Just to let you know too, if you have never done raw edge appliqué, when these are washed the circle will get "fuzzy" and you may need to trim some loose threads that let go and the same for the outer edges.  But once you have washed them once or twice, you really shouldn't have to do it anymore.  

See how easy that was? 

I love raw edge sewing when I can get away with it!! I personally like the fuzzy look plus there is no turning and trying to do that thing called the ladder stitch, or something??? LOL! 

Now that you have your cloths completed, go wash your face.  Seriously, these feel divine! 

They are also not limited to using them on your face.  You can use them on your baby/children.  Use them in the shower.  Stick one in your purse for emergencies.  What a pretty decoration ;) 

I am off to make more!


Much Love!!! 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Oh Dear Me Pillow Cover

Oh hello lovlies!! How is everyone this fine fall day?? 

It's been a bit since I posted and boy do I have a doozie for you today!!

I did another tutorial over on the Sizzix blog today and I am so in love with this pillow cover.  I may have to make a ton more!!!! 

It's crazy easy and the best part, besides it being adorable, it has no waste except for the trimmings to square up your fabric!!! 

It uses the actual die cut piece and the negative space so you don't have to throw anything away!!! 

If you want to make one of your own using the same Reindeer Die or even a different one, head on over to my post on the Sizzix blog and you will see just how easy it is!!!

Much Love!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Happy Birthday To Me Sale

Hello and happy weekend!!!

So today is my birthday. I don't really make a big deal about it because it just means I am another year older. Eeks! ;)

 But, I do like to celebrate in other ways, like doing a sale for all of YOU!!

Today and tomorrow I am running a birthday sale where you can get 38% off your entire order.  Can you guess why 38%? Yeep... that is how young I am turning today -- 38!

If you'd like to take part in this sale, just go to my SHOP and add items to your cart.  At checkout use the discount code BIRTHDAY 38 to apply the discount.  This applies to paper or PDF patterns and there is no limit.

Enjoy and have a wonderful day!!!

Much Love!!!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Sizzix Hotpad Tutorial

Hello lovelies! 

Today I am bringing you a quick tutorial using Sizzix dies and the Sizzix Big Shot.  

I love this piece because even though I say its a hot pad tutorial, it can be more than that! You can use them as wall decor, mini quilts, placemats, trivets for hot pans...etc.  

To get started you will need two Sizzix dies.  The drunkards path quarter circle and the 4" finished square

For each piece you will need 5 of the squares and 4 of the quarter circles.  Be sure when cutting to use a cutting plate, then the die blade side up, your fabric, and then another cutting plate then run it through the machine. 

Lay out the pieces so the squares make a "+" and the quarter circles in each corner.  

Then sew them together into rows, and then sew the rows together. 

You will notice that the squares will overhang because they are larger.  This is the time we can trim them with a square ruler.  If you have one that is large enough to cut two sides at once, use that, if not, you can just use a straight edge.  Trim all 4 sides. 

Next layer with the backing and batting in-between.  If you are making potholders, hot pads, or trivets, you may want a layer of insul-bright as an added heat barrier. 

Then comes the fun part!! Quilting!  This is a great time to practice on your free motion quilting.  They are quick to make and are perfect for practicing or using your favorite free motion quoting motifs that you are already good at.  Straight line quilting is good to practice with too. 

Once your quilting is done just make sure to use bias binding so you can easily make it around those curves. 

Voila! Easy peasy gifts to make for friends and family or even for your self! 

Please be sure to sure if you make these cute versatile hot pads! I would love to see what you make. 


Much Love!!!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Coffee Koozie with Fat Quarter Shop

Hello everyone!!

Guess what?! Fat Quarter Shop is at it again with one of their oh so cute tutorials!  This time it is for a "Coffee Koozie"! Let me just tell you, it's WAY cuter than those brown ones that you get at a coffee shop or gas station!! ;)

I chose to use fabric from Kate Spain's line, Daydream.  The instructions advise to choose 12 squares that are 2.5" x 2.5"... that proved to be a bit difficult since I LOVED every piece in this line!  

But, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do... so here is my Coffee Koozie! 

As you can see, my only dilemma was not just the fabric.. choosing just the right Aurfil thread was just as difficult.... 

I finally decided to go with the teal.  You can never go wrong with teal, right? ;)

And here it is completed and on the cup of my favorite drink... White Chocolate Peppermint Mocha!!! Mmmmmm... So so cute, don't you think?

If you want to make your own, you can click here for the pattern.... 


You can watch this video tutorial! I suggest both. ;)

Enjoy making this!! It's a great gift and you can make them really quick!! 

Much Love!!!

Friday, August 22, 2014

One Million Pillowcase Blog Hop

Hello my friends!!! 

Today I am here to tell you about the One Million Pillow Case Challenge!! I am sure you have heard of it before and if you haven't, let me tell you a bit about it!

All People Quilt is heading up this challenge for all of us to make One Million Pillowcases and donate them to charities that need them! We all love pretty things, right? So lets share our creativity and our pretty things with those that need them more than we do! 

Please head on over to All People Quilts post about this challenge! Not sure how to make a pillow case?? They have that covered too! They have FREE Patterns you can use as a guide or to follow! 

I hope you will join us all in reaching this goal! It is so important to give back and to bring cheer into someones life! 

I used the basic pillowcase pattern and adjusted it a bit so I could use my Sizzix Tumbler die for the border! I also used the delicious Cotton and Steel fabric from Melody Miller plus a few basics.  The pattern called for a strip 10" x 41" and my tumbler die measured in at 5" before piecing.  So to make it 10" I cut a piece of matching solid fabric 6" x 41" and sewed the pieces together.   Cutting it at 6" allowed for a bit of trim to peek through. I love the effect!

I also highly encourage you to go check out these other bloggers that are participating in the blog hop to see what they created!! Inspiration is invaluable and this group of quilters have some amazing talent!!!

Alison Glass
American Patchwork & Quilting
Barb and Mary of Me and My Sister Designs
The Benartex Design Team: Sew in Love with Fabric
Debby Kratovil
Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts
Heidi Pridemore
How To Sew
Jennifer Paganelli of Sis Boom
Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts
Kelle Boyd of Ann Kelle
Linda Carlson
Lori Mason
Modern Quilt Studio
Nicole Daksiewicz of Modern Handcraft
Northcott: Patti’s Patchwork
Shannon Fabrics: My Cuddle Corner
Tammy Silvers
Timeless Treasures: Sew Timeless
Valori Wells
Verna Mosquera of The Vintage Spool
Wendy Sheppard of Ivory Spring

Before you go, check out this video too!! Its a 24 hour sew in! Check with your local quilt shops to see if they are participating!

Much Love!!!
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