What a wonderful response to my giveaway. I got so many thoughtful comments. I loved to hear about all the things people were planning/hoping/wishing to make for the holidays (so many quilts - guess that is to be expected from readers of SewMamaSew - but a lot of mug rugs... what are those?!?!).
I added the comment of the winner to the bottom of the giveaway blog entry - and sent off her pencil case yesterday!
I particularly appreciated all the feedback I got on my question about sewing tight circles. Lots of helpful words. It made me realize that I did pretty well and that it is a hard thing to do, even for an experienced sewist. Some of the most helpful suggestions...
- using an awl to guide the fabric (I actually used a seam ripper on one of the bags and thought that helped - at least I didn't feel like I was going to accidentally stitch through my finger!)
- using fabric glue to baste the seams (I gotta try that one - I was doing hand basting first)
- hand-basting the seams before machine sewing
- use a walking foot when sewing multiple layers
- go slow with stitching
- sew on the circle end, not the main body side
- use a fine tip glue baste to hold the pieces of fabric together
- use a serger on the seams (sadly, I don't have one of these, but I would sure love to try this!)
Some additional ideas I had uncovered after further research that may help me:
- be sure to clip/cut the curve (not sure why I didn't remember to think of this myself!)
- use small binder clips or Clover clips to hold the fabric together instead of trying to pin it
I would have liked to have replied to everyone who posted. I'm rooting for each and every one of you who is hoping to squeeze in your projects before Christmas. I'm totally a last-minute crafter, and have really been able to pull some things out of my hat, so I know it is possible.
I had such fun with this giveaway, I think I'll need to participate in another one. So keep coming back!
And then there is the tutorial for the pencil case. I may be biting off more than I can chew to post a tutorial here BEFORE Christmas, but who knows. Otherwise, I promise to post it soon. Very soon. Please come back to have a look at it. I'll try to make notes of all my tips/suggestions to make the process of sewing the bags as easy as possible.