Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Martha Stewart Loot

Today was another one of those days when I was loving living in nyc. This morning Sacha, Joan and I went to see the Martha Stewart Show! It was her first ever all craft show, and Rosie O'Donnell was her guest - which you know means lots of free stuff! Martha just published her new Encyclopedia of Crafts, which has loads of ideas, pictures, and instructions for all of you crafty people out there. Enough inspiration to last a very long time. Other fun give-aways included a hot glue gun (oh, the possibilities!), glitter, and a Michael's gift card!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A little inspiration...

For the past year, every time I've wanted to sew, I've had to drag my sewing machine and supplies out to our dining table and then drag them back when I was done. Didn't help much with motivating me to sew. So I finally found myself a little corner in our 1 bedroom apartment and set up a table and all of my supplies. I get so excited when I walk by it now. My sewing machine is always staring at me, inspiring me to sit down and start sewing!

I got so inspired over the past few days that I made 3 fun projects.
I modified this Amy Butler Swing Bag Pattern to make this cute reversible bag. I love the fabric that I got at Brooklyn Mercantile, which is conveniently one block from my house.

My ipod has been getting all scratched up in the bottom of my bag, so I wanted to make a cover for it. I found this great ipod tutorial on Made by Petchy, which is very easy to follow. I replaced the ribbon with some velcro and also changed the dimensions of the fabric I cut to 12" x 4" because I have a larger ipod. My sister-in-law Nina got me this beautiful fabric from Japan.

Finally, this makeup bag project had been sitting in my sewing pile for a while because the zipper had broken while I was sewing it the first time. I ripped out the old zipper and put in a new one. I also used a tutorial I found searching through sewing blogs - such an obsession with sewing blogs.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Clutch Tutorial

After a little thinking, some technical difficulties with missing button parts, and a lot of seam ripping and re-sewing, I figured out how to make a simple clutch. And it's just that - very simple. Well, of course, after a lot of trial and error I can say it was simple! Here's a tutorial that hopefully clears up any confusion:

What you'll need:
2 fat quarters
1 magnetic snap (including the top and bottom of the snap, and 2 washers)
A scrap piece of paper
Basic sewing supplies

1. Start by creating a pattern for the clutch. I used a scrap piece of paper and a quilting ruler to draw mine. For the main part of the clutch, I drew a pattern that was 11" long on the bottom, and 10" long on the top.

2. To create a pattern for the top flap, start by drawing a 10" line. Go to the middle of the line and measure about 3" above that spot. Then freely draw a curve hitting the top of the perpendicular line.

3. Use the rectangular part of the pattern to cut out four pieces of fabric (two lining pieces, and two outer pieces) and 4 pieces of interfacing.

4. For the flap, cut out one piece of lining fabric, one piece of outer fabric, and two pieces of interfacing.

5. Iron on the interfacing to the fabric. The shiny side of the interfacing should be touching the fabric so it sticks when it gets hot (interfacing usually comes with directions).

6. Insert a magnetic snap into one piece of the outer fabric and the inner lining of the flap (this is where it got really tricky for me!). I found two tutorials that helped me figure this out. First is one on how to insert a magnetic snap. Another skill I tried to learn, but failed, was how to make a button hole. Combine these two skills, and you have yourself a fancy button! I skipped the whole button hole step, and it still turned out just as sturdy.

7. For the outer fabric, make a sandwich with the right sides together and sew around the sides and bottom edge (leave the top edge open). Turn inside out.

8. For the flap, pin the right sides facing each other and sew around the round edge. Turn inside out.

9. Pin the flap to the back of the outer fabric and sew the flap onto one side (where the pins are placed).

10. Make a sandwich out of the lining, with the right sides together. Sew only the two sides, leaving open the top and bottom.

11. Keep the lining inside-out and pin to the top of the outer fabric and flap. Sew around the top edge.

12. Turn the lining fabric inside out like so.

13. Fold in the opening in the fabric about 1/2 an inch, press, and sew. Stuff the lining into the clutch.

14. Done!