Sunday, June 7, 2009

Needle Book

I've been keeping my three needles (the same three needles I've had since college, and before college, these needles were owned by my mother) stuck in a shoulder pad.  This shoulder pad is usually stored in my "sewing kit" which is really just an old chinese tea canister.  It's served me well over the years, but I realized recently that it might be time to get some new needles.  I picked up a little pack at Joann's but there was no case for them.  Today I decided to sew my own little needle book.  I saw a couple of examples online, and came up with my own "pattern."  I think in retrospect I could have thought it through a bit more, but I'm happy with how it came out and my needles are all happy now.

Here is a picture of it closed:

Here is a picture of it open with needles inside:

I topstitched the felt on the inside before closing up the top.  Unfortunately, I had to topstitch the top closed so it looks a bit off.  Next time, I would add a tab or button of some kind to hold it closed.  I would also sew something decorative to the outside, it looks a bit plain.  I'm really fond of how the red felt looks against the blue fabric though.  This is the same fabric I used for my bag lining.  I'd like to make a skirt or dress from this too.  The color is so pretty.

Patchwork City Bag

A few weeks ago, four animals made their way back to the suburbs for some Arby's and shopping. Our first stop after lunch was Joann's and R and I went to town. Or really, I went to town, with R helping me along. She already had a lot of the stuff I wanted so she was able to offer great advice. During the visit, a little pattern for a bag caught my eye. I convinced R to make one with me and we spent a happy time choosing appropriate fabric. I got three fat quarters and some blue fabric for the lining and straps. The pattern calls for 36 5"x5" squares, assembled in a 4x9 rectangle. Cutting was very slow for me because it took me a while to get used to the rotary cutter and more time to try to measure them with some degree of accuracy. Here are my squares laid out on my bed (I'm sure Jess will take issue with the quality of my shot):

Bag sewing took several days. I was worried that the interfacing we had chosen was too heavy for the bag, but now that it is finished my happy with it. It's a large (enormous) bag and I tend to cram it with a bunch of stuff plus groceries so I'm quite happy with the heavier lining. I only wish I had interfaced the straps too. Overall, I'm very pleased with it and will get a lot of use from it this summer. Here is a picture of the finished version, hanging on tony's cat tree:

I made a little pocket and sewed it to the lining before sewing the lining to the bag. Next time, I would make the pocket larger. As it is, I can fit my keys and chapstick in there. I cram my wallet there also, but it doesn't really fit. Here is a bad picture of the pocket, sadly you can see the can of tomatoes I bought and a tissue, oh well:

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