Wednesday, January 30, 2008

It started with a daisy stitch

I was clearing my unused bedroom/storeroom when I came across a baby bonnet given to my son when he was born. It was handmade by my one-eyed aunt-in-law who's from a bonnet wearing era. Okay, she really has two eyes but only one eye moves. And needless to say, my son has never won the bonnet a day of his life. It is now proudly owned by my girl's big headed doll.

Who wears bonnet in Singapore?



What struck me about the bonnet were the daisy stitches and the stem stitches my aunt-in-law had sewn on it. It gave me a nostalgic feeling for something old.

Somebody help me. I made another drawstring bag. I wanted a quaint drawstring bag which makes one think of the old days. So I kept the embroidery simple, just a few daisy stitches and plenty of stem stitches. For the fabric, I chose a simple white cotton and lilac lining. I didn't want another casing again so I bravely sewed 8 scallops to contain the drawstrings. Just 2 vertical lines (one above and one below the fabric) followed by several blanket stitches. Finally for the drawstrings, I brought out the big guns. A four string round braid consisting of 2 lilac, 1 green and 1 grey lily yarn.



Monday, January 28, 2008

Bias Tape Tote

I'm on a bias binding binge. Much to my delight I found this bias tape tote tutorial at belle epoque. This tutorial is so great it actually comes with a printable pattern! For the "embroidery", I liked the idea of cutting out a complicated shape (some tribal tattoo) from the outside fabric and outlining it onto a contrasting fabric. I can't remember what the technique is called. I used 10g white cotton perle for the outline because it has such a nice sheen and it wears well. The bias binding bit was a little nightmarish. I really didn't get the hang of using my 3/4" bias tape maker. I kept scrunching up the fabric. Sewing the bias binding to the bag was rather smooth but when I had to sew the bias binding (the handle bit) alone, the feed dog kept trying to eat up my binding. Adjusting the presser foot pressure didn't really help. For the closure, I toyed with the idea of using two strings to tie in a bow. But it felt too impractical. I ended up using gripper stud. Yes, I used a hammer today.

My first bias tape tote


Here's a view of the lining

Friday, January 18, 2008

The Embroidery Killed The Bag

It's all coming slowly to me now. How it all started. 3 zippered pouches and I thought I knew it all. I had seen this pouch in a departmental store and the zipper was sewn on a separate fabric which is joined to the top of the pouch, creating volume, like a fake gusset. Of course I had to go all creative sewing strips of fabric in rows. And I simply couldn't resist sewing feather stitches on the seams of the strips. Resistance is futile! To cover the raw seams I sewed bias binding. Ha. It seems there's something else to learn about bias binding. I think I didn't handle the curves so well. I'd thought the bias would take care of the curves. Guess I was wrong. My seams were rather uneven and it affected the bias binding. Certainly no yata! this round. I showed the pouch to my husband and he said the embroidery killed the bag.

Darn those feather stitches


Yep. I got the volume I wanted

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Yata! Perfect Bias Binding

I needed to do something challenging to take my attention away from my muscle aches. So I seized on the one thing I can mess up. Bias binding. Once more, I returned to littlelizzie and this time I did it! I followed every step and made sure I read everything before I started. I don't even remember how I did it. It was like a dream.

Me and my gingham


I hid the handle in the binding

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Something Old Something New

December 2007 was a bagless month for me. Plagued by muscle pain on my shoulders I simply could not muster up the energy. 4 GPs and no result, I finally succumbed to mom's advice of TCM physician who diagnosed me with good ole stress. Her tonic? 8 needles on my arms and legs and some foul drink (20cc 3X a day!). Feeling looser now, I'm making an effort to make something to celebrate the new year. I had forgotten how therapeutic bag making is! So I returned to my old love - drawstring bags. I went back to happythings super-easy way of making drawstring bags. But for something new, I modified the pattern to include a different coloured casing.

"The Pattern "


Ta Da!

This tiny little bag was made for my girl's Big-Headed Doll. (dolls need bags too) It was a prototype for "the pattern". I was surprised it turned out so well. So I made 2 more.

I went a little crazy here



I'm not proud of this one


My New Year resolution is to be more easy going and to "laugh it off" whenever I'm agitated/faced with imperfection/irritated.... So I'm gonna laugh off the horrid rooster bag. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Ha.
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