ZIPPERS!

Last week I ordered zippers from Zipperstop, https://www.zipperstop.com . They are the Authorized Distributor of YKK Zippers. OMG my heart jumped a beat when I went to the site. Crap it skipped another beat when I made a order. I almost needed to have mouth to mouth when I realized I ordered 140 zippers. 911 was almost called when I saw the total cost of those 140 zippers.

I sat there and paid 1.69 for over 3 dozen zippers at the store I work at, when I could have gone to Zipperstop! 140 zippers ran me UNDER 35 bucks!

I was having a conversation with one of my followers and it was indicated I might have to wait a month for them to come in and that is when I freaked. I quickly called the distributor up in New York. I was easily calmed when he mentioned that the order was received, unfortunately on a holiday, but my shipment should be out by the following week. Whew, wiped my brow. I can handle a week.

Saturday I get home late from work and what is sitting on the table?

Z I P P E R S

Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! I opened that bag and I was like omg look at the colors. Now to decipher which ones are which. You’d think I would have ordered a couple here and couple there in each color so I could figure out which were which, but noooooooo. I had to order like 4 or 6 of each. Their color chart stinks on their website and well they don’t give “true color” names.

After going through my shipping list 3 times I think I finally got it but I’d still like to know the grey or slate color, what name was that and I don’t think I ordered them, however I’m not going to complain because I can use them. Wish I could have gotten a “true red”, but I’ll contact them and see if they can send me a color chart for my next order.

Ever see 140 zippers?

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They will get used up and after all, zippers are my best friend now!

Purse Clutch

After making all those triangle pouches I ran out of zippers. I have 2 days off of work what am I going to do now!

I ran into this easy and quick purse clutch several years ago. I’ve kept the pattern and have it on a brown paper bag. I’ve even made it a tad larger to make the clutch a nicer size. I have made the smaller version and might go back to making more of them. They were the perfect size to put a check book, pens and other important papers in my purse. I even used it for throwing make up and other essentials in it so I wasn’t searching at the bottom of my purse.

When I have googled youTube items and it says make this or that in 30 minutes, I sit there and say yeah right. But yes you can figure 30 minutes for these, but again, that is just sewing time. All you need is lining, main fabric, heavy weight fusible interfacing and this go round I used velcro.

I find myself googling and checking ETSY to see if certain items are being made to see their end products as well as prices they are charging. This particular clutch, no where in site. Lucky me! So when I get down time, I’ll be getting my ETSY site back on board. I’m pricing these at $ 9.00 and smaller ones probably around $ 7.00.

Last night I finally posted these on my Facebook. I like to let my friends see what I am doing because they are my inspiration and backbone. They love the items I am making and well I get comments like; you’ll have no problem selling them, being an inspiration, loving my fabric choices as well as where did I get the pattern. I probably posted the original a long time ago.

So check these out and eventually I will be doing more. Another project using remnants! I’ve got about 9 more of these to do. I cut doubles this time around!

 

More Triangle Pouches

Since I didn’t use up all my zippers I continued last Wednesday in making more triangle pouches. Even though I like these a lot, I figured I would finish up what I had cut and wait to see what customers prefer the most over the pouches I have been making. I have been receiving feedback from personal friends and well Facebook people.

I noticed as I scouted around ETSY that this is a popular item, however again its the preference of the person.

Here are my remaining triangle pouches and I’ll see shortly if I should continue them. I did run across another form of pouch, however I have to study it to see how it is constructed.

These triangle pouches run around $ 8.50 a piece and I’ve seen people charging much more. From my stand point if you pay more than nine bucks, you’ve paid too much. Also when you look at pictures of handmade sewn items, you know you can zoom in to see the construction really close.

One nice feature of the triangle pouches… they fold up nicely. Heck I just keep my filled with my overnight items.

Finishing Old Projects – Lining Beach Totes

Isn’t it always true that we have a project laying around that needs to be finished. Oh I have lots of them. I get started on one thing and the next thing you know, I am pushing it aside and moving to something new. Well heck look at my blog, I’ve been posting a bunch of stuff lately.

Being bored and not wanting to watch tv with my spouse, I finally got up off the couch and wondered what to do. I couldn’t make any more of those pouches/bags from the other days because I need more batting and interfacing. Tomorrow a trip to JoAnn’s, they have interfacing on sale, plus a few other items.

I was going through my treasures last week and remembered the beach totes. I am planning on setting them up for sale and I better get them done. They only need to have the lining and handles put on. Shouldn’t take long. Remember – “shouldn’t”!

I look for that dang plastic container I put them in and almost ditched the idea, but I stuck to my guns. 3 containers later, found! I had started these totes a bit ago and they will definitely make great beach totes or even weekend traveler totes. These are comparatively small, in my eyes, as I’ve made even bigger ones.

So lets get to the lining. No matter what type of fabric purse or tote I make, I like to have pockets in them. Planning on just putting two on either side of the tote. These pockets are generic and easy. I don’t know if I have posted construction of pockets in the past, but I am going to anyways do it again. I will be posting another one in the near future as I have one more lining to complete and I want to cover how I do pockets in that one.

I cut my fabric for the lining 21 x 34. I don’t plan to have a seam at the bottom, just a box end. I cut a piece of fabric that was 9 inches in length, 44 width. I then cut the fabric in two. I folded them in half. Before doing anything else, I ironed and used some craft interfacing on one side of the pockets. To the sewing machine. I sewed the side and top of the pocket. Cutting the corners carefully, turning right side out, pinning, then ironing. The reason I pinned after the sewing, I want to make sure my seams are clean. I then quickly sew two lines of top stitch. Now ready to place on the lining.

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I find my middle on the lining fabric.  I then have to figure where the placement of the pocket will be. When I do my bags/totes I take and fold over the main fabric into the inside to give it a more clean finish. There is about 3 inches. I don’t want to go down too far, but then again, I don’t want it to be too high. I figured I will go 4 inches down from the raw edge of the top of the lining.I am figuring I have 6-7 inches from the top of the pocket and the height of the bag is around 17, the height of the pocket is 8, figuring the top seam and the bottom, so thats perfect. Hope I haven’t lost you yet, but if your a sewer you can visual.

Laying my ruler on the raw edge of the fabric, in the middle, I then place the pocket in line with the ruler. I still have that raw edge on the bottom of the pocket that I didn’t stitch up because I always like to take 1/2 inch and fold it up. What I do is I take that “1/2 tail” and sew it on the lining to form the bottom of the pocket, I previously ironed that edge. That closes up the pocket and keeps it straight. First I did a straight stitch, following behind that I then stitched a stitched zig-zag stitch. Now the pocket is secure to the lining.

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Now you fold the bottom of the pocket up pin on the top and bottom of each side of the pocket. When ready to sew, sew from the bottom to the top to ensure that it lays flat and there is no little gathering from extra fabric sewing from the top to the bottom. I used a two top stitches on both sides of the pocket. Eyeball the distance from the sides of the pockets. I can’t give you my dimensions because all machines are different.

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Here you see the top of the pocket with two lines of top stitching, the folded bottom and then the top stitching on the left side. Usually when I make pockets, I like to have the top of the pocket seamless and the bottom of the pocket <raw edge> turned over. The only noticeable seams would be on each side. I was not thinking when I cut the fabric. I like my purses to have clean edges. It looks more professional. Oh well I’m not perfect.

Now when I cut my lining I cut it to the width of the bag. the height was the whole length of the fabric, so I cut off some of the top because I was not planning on making a bottom seam in the lining. Does that create a problem when sewing the lining to the bag? No. But now I am ready to stitch both side seams and create my box side. Since the bags or totes have been sitting, I wasn’t sure what size the box corner was, so I merely measured the tote. It was 5 inches for depth. I ironed my lining to make sure I had a line to line up my side seam to the bottom crease (fake seam). Taking a ruler, I measured 5 inches from side to side and then marked with a marker that eventually disappears. Then I stitched down the line using a stretch stitch because it stitches the seam with 3 threads. This will hold the seam well. I then also did a stitched zig-zag next to the seam. I just have a thing about making sure particular seams are sewn securely.

Yes, I could have folded the seam in the middle however I didn’t. I have no reason to give. I then cut the extra fabric from the corner. Then I placed both pieces together. The outside of the tote to the inside of the lining (pockets to the main fabric). Stitched the top, leaving enough room to turn. The open area of the lining to main fabric, I stitched closely together and did not hand stitch closed, my preference as long as I do it closely and its not noticeable. I then measured the main fabric around the top, giving the dimension I want for the main fabric to be inside the tote. Ironed the top to from a crease, then did two top stitches. Ready to put the straps on. I didn’t measure how long the straps were. I had them pre-cut when I first started these 3 tote bags.

NOTE: Did you know when using binding trim for handles on tote bags, you use a lighter to melt the fibers together so they don’t fray. This is for the strapping trim that is not cotton!  And if you are ironing out creases make sure you use the lowest setting on your iron. Dang stuff melts to your iron, yeah I did it.

When I put the straps on I measured 4 inches from the side seams. I eyeballed how far I wanted them to be from the top of the tote. I had 3 tote bags to do. As I grabbed the green striped one, to check where I had calculated placement of the straps, I looked and again – – SURPRISE – it was already lined. Now why couldn’t the blue and white striped one have been done too. I would have had only the white and yellow stripe to do. Always something. So here are the two finished beach tote bags (the green one just needed straps, go figure). And these totes were ironed nicely, prior to putting on the straps, who’d of thunk they would get all wrinkled after I put them on. I was tired and just wanted to get snaps of them both. You will see the yellow one is a longer tote, so more room to stuff more stuff! I like both of them. When I do the blue one.. I’ll do the lining similar to the green one and post it. The green one actually has a zipper pocket, omg how did I do that – I HATE ZIPPERS!

Triangle Pouches

Saturday’s project was to make a different type of bag for traveling, overnight or even make-up. This particular bag is related to the previous post Sewing Day – Make up pouches. One of the differences is you don’t sew a box style bottom and you only sew the ends across, but opposite from the other.

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I actually received one of these from a older lady years ago when I was a moderator of a yahoo group. Do they have those anymore, laughing. I would do different type of swaps with women throughout the United States. She got involved with all my swaps and she thought she would send me something special. I still use it today. I LOVE IT! And I wanted to copy it not knowing it had a name as well as the easy process – triangle pouch.

This is an excellent item to make with all those remnants you have laying around the house. Even if you don’t have any remnants at home, you can always check the fabric stores to see what they have in order to make them. All you need is 10 inches, even 16 inches and you can make 4 of them. This could be a good project for a young girl to learn how to make. I was uneasy about zippers, but not anymore. A good way for a younger child to learn. When I have customers coming in for daughters and granddaughters learning to sew, this will definitely be on my list of items to learn. I can just see these 9-13 year olds making these for all their friends.

The other neat thing about these, their great for presents. You could whip up a bunch of them and use them for Christmas, sorry I’m late. Presents for teachers, church members, relatives, friends, the list goes on. Another thing, it doesn’t have to be for the teen or adult woman, it could be great for younger girls to put hair products or even their own private nail polish and other items. Another thing, why is this geared only for the females, this could be a cute item for smaller boys. Using a boys fabric, they could put their small cars in it and zip it up and be on the way to their friends, grand parents or even to carry with them when being in the car for a lengthly drive. Its very compact.Very versatile.

How did I stumbled on this bag or pouch? When I was googling youtube for pouches with zippers. The video I was watching was very informational. The thing is, the video I was viewing was for smaller pouches, for things you use in your craft room for example. You used a piece of fabric that was 5 x 10 whereas mine were 16 x 10. So no matter what size you make all you need is fabric, batting or interfacing and you need a zipper that is 10 inches or longer. You can view the video here  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXZ6BTEnPE4 Vanessa great job in explaining how to create this fun and easy item. I plan on looking at more of your videos!

After dinner I had 7 bags to make and I figured I would time how long it would take to complete them. Even though there were breaks or interruptions, I was able to get them all completed within 3 hours. Not bad at all, however, I did cut all the fabric and batting early in the morning so a step avoided. Heck you could take a bunch of fabric and just cut it up and store in a zip lock bag for the future, you know that unexpected gift!

I had a lot of fun making these up and I am planning on selling them. And I feel the price will be just right. I am also going to be using them for different grab bags that I will have throughout the year down at my booth. If your interested in purchasing one of them, as you are not a sewer and you could use a few pouches/bags, just give me a jingle!

Thank you for viewing my post – Triangle pouches. Please come back for more ideas. Check out a closer look of the ones I did. They fold up really nice too when not in use!

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Sewing Day – Make up Pouches

I’m catching up on past projects that needed to be posted, however I still have some items I haven’t done.

Since I only had one day off of work this week I decided to focus on sewing. I’ve been meaning to make more make-up clutch bags, but I wanted to try something new. I have this overnight bag that I received as a gift and I wanted to recreate it, however…. it has a “ZIPPER”. Oh that dreaded zipper. You don’t know how I hate zippers and just cringe at the thought of putting one on something of mine. I mean I don’t even put them in my purses I make. HOWEVER, after today… I can see me using zippers more! Squeals softly, YAY!

I actually went to work to buy “zippers”. Cringe. How many. Cringe. 38. Cringe. I better learn right. I bought 24 the other day, the rest today. Thank gawd for employee discounts. My boss is aware that I started my own business, seen my stuff and when he saw just “zippers”, cringe. He just looked at me and said, okay, so what are you making now? I said make-up bags, or whatever you want to call them. He said nice. I said not. Why he replied. “ZIPPERS”. I hate “zippers”. But I’m going to make them my best friend now. Twenty dollars later I’m on my way home.

The last few days before I had to go to work or in the evening while watching some of my tv shows, I’ve been youtube ‘g and looking at Lazy Girl Designs. Joan Hawley has some amazing pouch bags that really intrigue me. The Sweetpea pods and Becca bags. She has a new technique One-Zip. Look at these things, they are AWESOME!

I so definitely have to get these patterns and learn how to do the One-Zip technique. As soon as I get more comfortable with zippers, you can see me moving on to these and putting them in my booth! But for now I am learning the basics to get up to speed.

So after viewing a few youtube videos on making make-up bags and triangle pouches, I was ready to dive in, yes shaking, whispers… “zippers”. I ended up viewing a DIY video on a triangle pouch because that is the one that I have. The video I viewed is a smaller one than I have, but you start out with a 10 x 10 piece of fabric and cut it in half. You actually can make two pouches with one 10 x 10. I was all ready to go with that one, however making it bigger, but then, my mind changed. I saw a video on how to make a make-up bag, travel bag, or overnight bag, which ever you want to call it. It was another DIY youtube, however it was brief and the person narrating it would just say now sew this and this and you didn’t actually see that. That sort of bummed me out, however on the triangle pouch viewing the whole video she filled in the missing links. Since both the items are similar went with the bigger item. Oh also on the make-up bag, she states the dimension are on the bottom of the video, I didn’t see any. I ended up seeing a overseas video and took the cm dimensions.

I started out with 2 different pieces of fabric, lining and main, heavy weight stabilizer, 14 inch zipper. Fabric is suppose to be 10 x 15, I went 10 x 16. Basics, lay fabric back to back, lay zipper on the 10 inch side with the zipper pull down. Sew the zipper on both fabrics, open, lay flat, press, top stitch. Repeat process on other side. I don’t know if I am doing it right, but the video shows it simple, but I felt I was doing something wrong because I was having difficulty but I got it to work. I had to open the zipper to top stitch. Oh the other thing, I was using zippers that were 12 and 14 inch, not 10 inch. You see with plastic teeth you can actually cut the zipper after it has been sewn, down to the fabric, so it doesn’t have to be flush with the sides of the fabric. Then you make sure the lining is on the outside when you sew the sides and make sure the zipper is pulled open slightly. Center the zipper in the middle of the fabric. I sewed one side then did a zig-zag stitch on the seam, you can use a surger instead, but well uhm, I have a surger but never used it. Sorry mom. Trim the seam. On each corner you do a box corner. Zig-zag close to the edge, cut off. Then you do the same to the other side. Then open the pouch and turn right side out. I struggled with the last one I made because… I didn’t bring the zipper down far enough. I made sure when I opened it I pushed all the corners out. In the video I viewed which I am not supplying the link, they should have included a tab at the bottom of the zipper so the person has something to grasp to open more easier. So I will be hand sewing tabs on the few I made. Will be putting thin ribbon in the zipper tab.

These things are snap to make. Including time cutting, ironing on iron on stabilizer and sewing all, one hour. ONE HOUR. How cool is that. Tonight I was suppose to cut more fabric to make more, however I will do that on Saturday so on Sunday I can make more make-up bags and maybe some large triangle bags. I know I only have 30 something zippers, but 15 of each kind will be fine, but I plan on having a bunch of these made so I can go to Lazy Girl designs and learn that technique. I’ll eventually go to the place that Joan talks about for zippers, even tho I haven’t looked at the price yet. Where I work I can get them for 1.69 a piece and if I can get them cheaper, I’ll go there. AND OMG… colors, go with the amazing colors they carry.

Here we go my first set of make-up bags including my prototype flowers, not the roses).

12715767_10206064173982909_6898845216531035203_nMy husband is being more supportive lately and not complaining about no dinners. But I sent him a picture of my prototype and he sent a text back, “are you at work?” I returned the text with I’m off today. But when he came home he looked at them and loved them. My daughter who usually doesn’t say anything, saw them and chimed in, I like them a lot. I think the material also makes it. The underwear fabric I bought years ago just to be in my stash. But now that fabric fits a purpose!

Thank you for reading my post and hope you enjoyed. If you want to see videos, google youtube make-up pouches or triangle pouches with “zippers” <cringe>.

Who says aprons can’t be for little girls?

Well I didn’t but I couldn’t think of a title, looks at the time on her watch.

Little girls love to be like mommies, so why can’t they have an apron. After all when mommy is preparing dinner or baking, who always wants to help. Little ones. So why not give your little girl her very own apron for those days you have a special mother daughter day. But it can also be used at play or when crafting.

I have some “special” aprons I want to create but I’ve been pulling myself in all different directions to get “other” items done for my booth. As I looked at my to do pile, I was like okay lets do these little girl aprons because those “other” ones I have to create myself and will be more time consuming. Last week was dedicated to embroidery, I can’t sew and embroider at the same time, I get frazzled if I do both at the same time. I like to “focus”.

A surprise. I pulled out a pile of aprons earlier that week. All of the little girl aprons were rolled up nicely, indicating that I had washed them for possible shrinkage. I had a design set up in my machine and just finished the thread colors, now to unroll them. As I start to unroll them and lay them on the sewing table when I got to the 3rd apron and as I opened it up, I see a cupcake design. No this can’t be so. I open the next one, ballet shoes. What, I remember embroidering those and I remember there were more. I remember there was just one that I gave as a Christmas gift, now how many more of these are done. I start to quickly open the rest of them. In total I have 5 aprons done and 5 blanks to do.

Yeah I knew I had stitched them up but forgot where I stashed them. You know we all do that. You buy something to make, you put it away and it completely slips your mind where it is and you end up buying it again and a day later you find the original one but used the one you just bought. I’ve been finding all these little surprise a lot lately. Just like the little totes I made for small children and embroidered, sorry no pictures and they are in my booth, but, whispers, I have more of those little totes. I just wanted to see how they looked stitched up. You know there is a method to our madness. You see I had plans long ago and had started to sew up an inventory, but things happened and ….. the rest is history.

I felt good knowing I only had 5 to do and most of my day was spent running errands so this helped in finishing them. The end results are great and I have more little girl aprons in my big storage organizer so I can put other designs on them.

I have a little joke to share. Well its not a joke but, my son works in the electrical field and one year he told his dad that they had these big metal boxes from the job he just finished and they don’t know what they were going to do with them. These boxes stored all the tools and other items needed to do all the work on the building and they had like 5 of them. His dad said cool that would be great if you could get a couple of them. We could put them in our yard and I could store all our jeep parts in them. They would be safe and the weather wouldn’t ruin any of the pieces. When I heard the conversation, I said hey get me one for all my fabric and stuff, lol. Gawd I wish he got them cause it would have been perfect to store all my stuff, however it would have been a pain to “find” something. You’ve heard how women have used sheds and storage units to have their stash, I’d have my metal box! Okay pictures!