Oooh, I just finished with a trip to the fabric store... and a load of laundry. All pressed and wrinkle-free, this stack of fabric screams, "POSSIBILITIES" to me. I can't wait to dive in and then share what I'm up to.
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.
How many of you out there work best under pressure? I'm sure I see some hands raised. There is a lot of crafting I want to do, but I've found that, unless I have the pressure of a deadline, I don't always get it done.
I thought it would be fun to participate in the Sew Mama, Sew! Giveaway Day (if you don't already know about this, be sure to follow that link and find many other crafty bloggers participating in this day - you might find some other things you'd like to try to win). This was the perfect excuse for me to play around with an idea I've had in the back of my head for a while.
I'm quite fond on pencil cases. Several months ago, I found an on-line pattern to make and shared that with you here already. However, my favorite pencil cases have always been tube shaped. I first encountered these type of pencil cases when I did a study abroad in Germany. That was years ago, and I still have a few precious leather pencil cases from my trips to Germany - all well worn and loved.
While I'm not ready to play around with making one of these in leather (though I think I might try that soon with some leather scraps I've been saving through the years), I thought doing a quilted one might be fun. I find that no one can have enough small bags. In addition to pencils, it could easily hold knitting/sewing supplies or makeup.
I used my favorite leather case for dimensions, and then figured out how to construct it out of fabric. I plan on making a tutorial about this and posting a pattern here. If I get enough traffic for the giveaway, I may try to even do that soon after the giveaway, so people would have time to sew these up as holiday gifts! They are really easy. The hardest part I found was some of the detail work, and that is where I hope you might help me out...
To be entered in the giveaway, I'd like you to either tell me about a crafting project you plan on doing for the holidays (or wish you had time to do. Feel free to post a link related to your project, but if the post is blatantly an advertisement, I'll mark it as spam - please understand) OR give me tips/tricks for machine sewing detailed work!!
In the process of creating the pattern for this bag, my biggest challenge was machine sewing the circle ends of the bag. Maybe it is my machine that is the problem, but it is quite likely me - the bulky fabric doesn't want to stay under the presser foot and my sewing lines get all wonky. I had the same problem when I was sewing the other pencil case and found that the only way to have perfect control is to hand-stitch. Just so you know, I did baste stitch the seams and bias tape before machine sewing it down - that helped a lot but I still had problems.
I will only be giving away ONE of the bags, and it will be the winner's choice. I'd like to give the other two away as holiday gifts for friends. So if you know which of the bags you like best, you can include that in your post. Otherwise, I will ask once the winner is chosen.
I plan on using something like a random number generator to pick the winner (I've never done a giveaway before, so I'm learning). I'm happy to ship this item internationally, so for any international readers, please feel free to enter! There is an option when posting to include your email address (which isn't shared with the public). Please use this so I have a way to contact you if you are the winner!
The giveaway is open until December 13 at 5pm PST, at which time I will close comments. I will email the winner by December 15th and post the name of the winner within this post.
I hope I didn't miss anything. Good luck to you all, happy holidays, and I look forward to hearing your stories!!!
Comments are closed. I'll be picking and announcing a winner tomorrow!!!
The winner is:
I would like to make a few cowls for my sons' preschool teachers:) Thanks for the giveaway! Amy @ gasudimack(at)sbcglobal(dot)net