My dear friend has become a grandmother to a baby girl recently and naturally I wanted to give a gift. I quite expect the little lady in question has a wardrobe of clothes already, bedding and such has been carefully chosen, I know that “new mum” has planned, decorated and perfected the nursery, so I decided to make some thing… this is what I came up with, fairly simple, quite cute and beautiful fabric… Interested? keep reading! I’ll start with the fabric, cutest range from a young English designer “Lewis and Irene” this particular fabric story is called “Town and Country” and is available in two colour ways. I have used the soft pastel shades.
This is the other jolly colour way, same design just a different collection of colour shades… clever eh!
Close up of the information on the selvage edge.
I bought two fat 1/4 pieces (50cm x 55cm) from my local P&Q fabric shop. They were £2.70 each. The white cotton piping cord was 60p per metre, I needed 2.5mtr for this project. I had a reel of pink cotton thread in my work box. Also had pure white cotton fabric in my stash for the lining, I used 50cm full width. I had scraps of craft felt too, but do know it is in-expensive to buy, a piece about 25cm x 25cm is approx 50p.
Cut a stripe from each of the fat 1/4 approx 4-5 cm and put on one side for later.
These are the colours I chose for the felt part of the project.
I decided the lettering of the baby’s name would be easiest to work using capital letters. Planned it on simple graph paper.
I used an iron-on Vilene to trace over the letters. Here you will have to think a little about “mirror image” of certain letters. If you have the shiny side up – facing you, when you iron and cut the letters will be around the correct way when you apply them to the fabric.
Trace all letters onto Vilene. Have your piece of felt slightly larger than your Vilene letter and press with a warm iron. Not too hot or you will scald either the Vilene or the felt, especially if the felt is a cotton polyester mix.
Cut our letters.
Look at your sewing machines selection of stitches. I decided on a teeny weeny blanket stitch which looked like this on my machine… you may want to have a little play with stitches and sizes to find one suitable. Satin stitch, blind hem, appliqué, or fancy?
To hold the letters in place while I stitched I dabbed a little glue on the underside, couldn’t face pins or tacking! I suggest sewing any appliqué onto your fabric before making up what ever you are making where possible. It is much easier to turn-sew a piece of fabric rather than a bag, cushion, clothing.
Okay lets sew! On the very edge of the felt letters, lower needle so it catches the edge of the felt. I advise to go quite slow and watch carefully, stopping, (needle down position) a few stitches before turning, to check, turn and continue.
Photo upside down to show detail!
This bit takes a bit of time, but I quite enjoy seeing it come together.
When finished, pull thread through on the under side and tie ends together securely. Now you need to make two bags, one from the design fabric – outer, and another from the white fabric – inner/lining. Stitch sides and bottom, leaving a gap of approx 15cm open on one side of the inner – lining bag. However, make each bag EXACTLY the same size. With right sided together put one bag inside the other.
Take time making sure that the corners of each bag is snugly in place and the side seams line up.
In this photo I have shown the lining fabric showing so you can see, I did have the top edges of the bag level before I started to sew. bags are inside out, sew continuously around the top.
Push the lining back in on it’s self into the main bag. I like to tweak the lining fabric back so a tiny edge of design fabric is showing, which, on the right side actually means no lining is showing at all on the top edges. Your can do this by “rolling” the fabric between your finger and thumb. Give the whole piece a good press to ensure the seams are flat.
If using co-ordinating fabric as I have, place/pin the different binding onto a each side to add a little interest.
At the seam, carefully turn in the edge of the binding so it forms an opening to each binding end over the seam. Pin into place. You may feel you would prefer to tack at this stage to avoid fabric slipping out of place as you sew.
At the seams, back stitch over the seam to add a little strength.
With a safely pin or large bodkin, thread the piping cord through the opening binding – seam. I like to thread the piping one way and then another length the opposite way, this creates a super drawer string closure, and also hangs nicely on a hook, door handle… Tie ends tougher in a strong firm knot.
…and, I think it makes a really pretty frilly top!
Tease out tassel ends with pair of needle craft scissors.
Ready now to give!
Best wishes, Jay x
My little extra snippet for you from Snoo “… to see a rainbow you must have your back to the sun…’