Monday, March 25, 2013

2Teatowel Bag Tutorial … at last :)

I promised a way to use your pretty tea towels in my last post and here it is. I’ve made lots of 2Teatowel shopping bags for pressies and I’ve been asked by a lot of ladies (you know who you are he he Winking smile) if I would do a tutorial on my blog …. so I’ve finally gotten the time to do it … YAY!!!
Here’s a couple I made for Chrissy presents last year…
Notice the one on the left has a directional print. This was on the bottom of the tea towel so I cut the tea towel in half and stitched the bottom half to the top half so that the print was then on the top. It just means you’ll have a seam in the bottom of the bag – no problem Smile.
So here’s what you’ll need …
2 Tea towels (of course lol); 1 pretty button; about a metre of 1” wide canvas webbing cut into two pieces (for the handles).
Firstly unpick all the stitching around the outside of the tea towels and press them.March 2013 069Next fold your tea towel for the outer of the bag in half top to bottom and trim the left hand side and the top so that you have nice straight edges.March 2013 072Measure about 15” from one side of your teatowel and cut off the excess, put this pieces aside. If your tea towel has a pretty side to it, trim it on the other side to make the most of the design. Cut the other tea towel to the same size as this will be your lining, again keeping the piece you’ve removed. Below is a pic of my bag outer on the left and the lining on the right. They are both the same size.March 2013 075Take the pieces you trimmed off and sew the two strips together with right sides together, press the seam open as it’s less bulky.March 2013 076Trim this piece back so that it’s about 7 1/2” x 15”. Because the size of tea towels generally differ so much these are only approximate measurements … this piece is for the pocket so it really just needs to be ‘pocket sized’ Smile.
Next you’ll need to fold the bottom of this piece up to the top and sew up each side. Turn the pocket right sides out then topstitch about 1/4” from the top (folded edge).  March 2013 080Centre the pocket 2” from the top of the bag outer and mark the bag outer with a dot 1/2” from the bottom raw edge – on both sides of the pocket, with a frixion pen (or one that isn’t permanent). Remove the pocket and draw a line between the two dots.March 2013 081Place the raw edge of the pocket on the drawn line with the right side of the pocket facing the right side of the bag outer. Pin it in place and sew it to the bag with about a 1/4” seam allowance from the raw edge. Zig Zag along the raw edge when your done to prevent fraying.March 2013 082Flip the pocket up and sew along each side about 1/8” from the seam to secure the pocket to the bag front.March 2013 084With right sides together bring the bottom of the bag outer to the top and sew along each side with about 1/4” seam allowance. Press lightly along the bottom fold.March 2013 087To create a base for the bag you’ll need to flatten out each corner of the bag so that the side seam lines up with the pressed crease inside the bag. March 2013 086This will ensure a neat 45 degree angle. Measure 2” from the point and draw a line. Pin in place and sew across this line. Do the same for the other side. You can then cut the points off leaving a 1/4” seam allowance.
March 2013 088March 2013 089
Make the bag lining up the same way … minus the pocket Winking smile. But don’t turn it right side out.
Position the handles on each side of the bag outer as shown below – once the front ones are pinned on you can line up the ones on the back with them. My handles are about 1/2 metre (18”) each as I like to be able to sling my bag over my shoulder. But you can make yours any length you like.March 2013 091Slip the bag outer inside the lining , right sides will be together. March 2013 093Line up the side seams and pin the two pieces together. Pin all the way around the top of the bag. Sew all the way around leaving about 4 or 5 inches open to turn the bag right sides out.March 2013 094Once the bag is turned then you can push the lining into the inside of the bag outer and pin all the way around the top of the bag ready to topstitch it. Do one row of stitching about 1/8” from the top and another about 1/4” below that one.March 2013 097Sew a cute button to the front of the pocket, just to make it pretty …March 2013 099
And you’re done Open-mouthed smile!!!!!
I hope you enjoy making your tea towel bags, I’ve had a blast bringing the tut to you, I love to share fun ideas. Feel free to send me a piccy of your creations, I’d love to see them!!!!
Happy stitching,
Joy Smile

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I'm back :)!!!

It's been a while, I know. I've been super busy over the past few months though. One of my favourite things has been watching this little man grow......

Isn't he adorable?! Aunty Bear thinks so too ;) ... He really is an absolute delight, and he's 7 months old now!! Boy time flies!!
I've been doing loads of stitching, I have a brand new quilt-as-you-go quilt in the making and also here are two of my latest designs - 'Doctor Bag II - A Repeat Prescription'....

And 'Birdies and Bows', the sewing machine mat and matching machine needle wallet (not shown) that I designed for Let's Get Stitched in Adelaide this year ...

I'll be back again very soon because I want to show you how to make something super useful out of these ...

Seeya soon...
Joy :o)