Saturday, February 23, 2013

Pillowcase Shopping Bag

After the successful pillowcase aprons I made for my Sunday School class, I wondered what else I could construct from pillowcases. Several weeks ago, I ran across a shopping tote bag made out of strips of fabric that I was going to make with fabric left over from the projects I am making for my kitchen, until last Saturday, while shopping at our local Salvation Army, I came across this black and white gingham pillowcase. Racing is a big deal in the metro Kansas City area since we have a racetrack now and I figured this pillowcase once had been part of a boy's sheet set, but it came home with me since I could not locate sheets to match in the store.

The pillowcase is 31 inches long by 19 inches wide. I made my own pattern out of a brown paper sack based on the shopping tote idea I saw. It had fabric handles that were part of the bag which I liked, so I imitated the same idea on the paper sack, taping pieces of paper together. I also lined the bag with fabric, which could be another pillowcase.

Based on the size of the paper shopping bag with the handles which I removed, I needed to cut off 6 inches of the pillowcase from the open end. The totebag I saw had curved sides, so I traced around a saucer to get the curves. Measure from side in 4 1/2 inches; mark and 4 1/2 down side; mark; and matching marks with the saucer, trace around edge with a pencil and cut out. Tape the cut off pieces to the middle section for the handle to make it approximately 3 inches longer and 4 inches wide. .

After cutting the pattern out on both pillowcases, I turned the gingham pillowcase inside out and slipped the liner one inside of the gingham one -- right sides together. Pin the fabric together around the curves, then sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance (DO NOT stitch ends of the handle together at the top as you need to turn the gingham pillowcase inside out), and clip curves (DO NOT clip through sewing thread seam). Clipping curves gives the fabric a little give. Turn fabric inside out through the handle openings and iron. I consider the iron as much a part of my sewing equipment as I do the sewing machine as it helps to smooth the fabric and seams.

After pushing the liner fabric down inside the gingham bag, sew the gingham fabric together at the top of the handle--side seam to side seam. Don't forget to backstitch the ends of the seam, then push the seam inside the handle, iron flat and fold the liner fabric inside and whip stitch or blind stitch closed. Finally, topstitch around top of bag and handle. Viola, shopping bag!

Since this shopping tote went together so quickly, I just had to make another one too! This time it was the striped one I had originally wanted! 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Fabric Houses

Hey, Merry, look what you inspired me to do! After I saw your cute houses, I was inspired to go home and make a couple of my own. Thanks for directing me to the directions too! When I got home from the library and my little visit online, I realized I had a little fabric house potholder hanging in my kitchen already that I picked up at some thrift store! It's that top one in the picture!
I didn't have wonder under or linen fabric or jumbo rickrack or stuffing, so I used what I had at home. I'm trying to use up what I have already, so I'll have room for new stuff! The polka dot house was crying out for black jumbo rickrack under the roof, but it got the lace trim same as the first one. I used clear bread sacks to stuff the little houses with. The wonder under would have made the fabric lie crisper and would have stopped some of the fraying, but all in all, I think they came out rather wonderful anyway, don't you?
And Merry, since you also like paper arts, have you seen my little paper troll knoll card? I made a couple for my mother and sister one year for their birthdays! They say the way to tell the difference between men and boys is the price of their toys! I think that goes for women too, cause I'm having way too much fun with my sewing machine! LOL!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Kitchen: Week Two

I've gotten more of the wallpaper off and I had a surprise under the wallpaper -- see the stenciled checks? Do you know how frustrating it is to try to carefully pull off trim, only to have it break into three pieces in your hands? I got most of the trim to come off without breaking, but the piece right by my stove is the piece that broke, sigh! I've been using a kitchen sponge dipped in hot water to moisten the paper as I scrape it off, but one night we decided to run our steam vaporiser in the kitchen until it was postively muggy in there and that seemed to help. Now to get the hubbin up on the step ladder to take off the top bit that I can't reach (I don't want the vertigo that comes with me climbing down the stepladder).

I also stitched up this pair of bag overhalls. A girlfriend had one and I thought hers was so cute, so I decided I had to have one too. It took quite a few trips to several thrift stores before I located a pair of black toddler sized overhalls (my head is swimming with blue, pink and purple *wink*). I cut the overhalls off just above the crotch, measured out a piece of black and white gingham to match (think rectangle) with a seam allowance, cut and stitch up. The elastic in the bottom casing is 7 inches long.  I also glued red and white gingham ribbon to the hanger above.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Show Me MO Creativity

My husband collects tack pins and he bought this pin for me at a thrift store in Eldon because he thought I would like it. It intrigues me and I'd like to find out why and who it was made for, so Missouri gals and guys, if you know, give a shout out! It's metal, about 1 1/2 inches long and 1 inch wide. Missouri's state motto is "The Show-Me-State" and it is represented as a halo above the fellow's head. Inside the, what I assume are binoculars, is Missouri's state outline and MO, the postal abbreviation for Missouri, inside of that. Then on the T-shirt of this fellow is the word "creativity." All the enameled colors are correct except for the outlines, which in the scanned form shows up black for gold.