Monday, August 31, 2015

The Seoul handbag

This is bag number six from 'The Better Bag Maker' that I have made. The skill level listed in the book for this bag is intermediate.
My thoughts on making this bag- the front pockets are fiddly. However the zipper gusset for the bag closure is so easy. For a hand bag it is roomy almost too big for me.
Only one week left before for back to school.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Simple Cushion Tutorial

Buying ready made cushions are expensive. They come is standard sizes of 14 x14, 16 x 16, 18 x18, 26 x 26, 12 x 16 or 14 x 28. Fortunately making your own cushions  is easy, inexpensive and you are free to make the cushion in any size, shape, or colour you wish.
In this tutorial I am making a cushion insert  that when finished will measure 11 x 22in. Why that size? well because I want cushions that will sit on each end of my sofa.
plain and simple cushion

To Make Cushions you will Need the Following
Fabric- I used muslin (calico) that I found in the remnant bin. For a cushion insert any plain fabric will do because it will be covered with prettier fabric when you make  a cushion cover.
Matching thread
Polyester stuffing (Poly-fil)

fabric pencil
cutting tools (scissors or rotary cutter)
tape measure
sewing machine


1 Wash and iron fabric
2 Decide on the size of the finished cushion and add 1'' for seam allowance. my finished cushion will be 11 x 22in. My cut pieces will measure 12 x 23in.
3 Cut one front and one back piece on the straight grain. To save time you can fold the fabric in half and cut both pieces at the same time.

4 On one long side measure and mark a 5 in opening for turning on the wrong side.
5 With right sides together start at one opening mark stitch around the perimeter with a 1/2 in  seam allowance, stop at the other marked spot backstitch to secure stitches.

6 Trim the corners about 1 1/2 down the seam allowance.

7  On the side with opening, open and press seam back towards cushion. The seam will be neatly folded inside the cushion when you turn it right side out.
8 Turn right side out and stuff with Poly-fil. Take extra care to fully stuff the corners and smooth out any lumps.
9 Stitch opening closed using a ladder or whip stitch.

The next step will be to find some lovely fabric to make a cushion cover with.
Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

One More Bag

The Avignon Traveler from "The Better Bag Maker"
I finished another bag from the book 'The Better Bag Maker' this week. Its a real wonder that this bag turned out so well considering all the mistakes I made cutting and stitching the wrong pieces.
I think this will make a good bag for overnight trips. I especially like that it has a zipper closure on the top.
The rings and purse feet are in Antique Brass which I purchased from

Friday, August 7, 2015

How to Prevent Messy and Tangled Stitches at the Start.

For neat  first stitches remember to:-
1. have the take up lever in the up position every time you start stitching. The take up lever can be manually raised by turning the hand wheel.
2. hold both top and bottom tail threads for the first 3 to 5 stitches.

Breaking the Pattern- Review

I was excited to see a new sewing book at my local library last week. Without much thought I checked it out. The book is 'Breaking ...