Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Things to do with fat quarters

I have felt a little unsteady on the calendar front today,  having woken up thinking that it was the weekend. It's not such a bad thing if one does that on a Friday, but a Tuesday . . . ?

Bunting from LittleTreeHouse on Etsy
But things looked up when the fog lifted and we actually had a couple of hours of sunshine, so I was able to take some exciting photos. Well, exciting for me, because they are of My Sewing Room - yes, you read aright, all our decorative upheavals have meant that the orange corridor next to the kitchen now has a name and a coat of paint (as does the Head Chef's coat, but we always have a paint accident when he takes to decorating, and there have been worse ones than this [it was the one I gave him for Christmas last year, but I have already told him that it is a waste of time giving him presents as he doesn't really like what I give him (except for this coat) and if he is going to get paint on his presents, well, then, it really is a waste of time, and I had only just said to Princess Bunchy, mind the wet paint, and he was the one who had actually applied the paint . . . ]).

My New Sewing Cupboard and paint accidents in waiting
So this morning I went into My Sewing Room, and pondered on what I could make from some fat quarters that would enable me to tick off another item in the Polka Dot Daze Christmas Challenge (yes, it is Tuesday, time for me to have to account for my week's progress, hence my presence in My Sewing Room [I am sorry, I am so excited about My Very Own Sewing Room that I am impelled to put it in writing]).

(For Christmas Challenge list, read Princess Bunchy's presents for friends list [I never had this trouble with the boys, you know, they never wanted to give presents to anyone], which grows by the day.)

Dear little Robins from SewSweetViolet on Etsy
I suddenly remembered the Basic Wallet pattern that I bought from Keyka Lou a little while ago (there is a sale on, by the way, and everything is reduced, if you are feeling the urge to be crafty), which, although it has rather a mundane name, makes a really pretty little purse - and what's more you can make them from the heaps of fat quarters in your stash. Isn't that thrifty?

Not so basic wallets
I also decided that it was time to step up the pace on the old making front, and go into mass production - well, three purses at a time.

Making nice things from fat quarters in a very methodical way
I was very methodical, and layered together three fat quarters to cut out three pieces of fabric at a time - the Basic Wallet pattern is very economical on fabric - you can cut out two of these purses from a fat quarter, with plenty left over (the Owl Coin Purse pattern is a good way of using up scrap fabric, and I think I am going to try that one next, as these would also make good presents.)

Oh so orderly
I was also able to use small pieces of interfacing left over from larger projects, so that was also very satisfyingly economical. I used Vilene Firm fusible interfacing on the main fabric, and Vilene S13, a thick non-fusible for the lining, and the combination produced a really nice structured purse - but you could use up any interfacing that you have spare as there is plenty of scope for flexibility. I think fusible fleece could also work well. (And a handy hint here - Teflon ironing cloths are wonderful for ironing on interfacing, and save an awful lot of mess on the iron or ironing board.)

Mass production - interfacing three pieces at once
This small-scale mass production was definitely a more efficient way of working - it does not take much more time to cut out three purses at once, and setting it all out in such an orderly fashion and doing each step for all three before moving on to the next made a lot of difference (I am sure you have all worked this one out years ago, but somehow I never got round to thinking it through).

More presents
Using small all-over prints saves time in terms of cutting, as I didn't have to think about placement as I did with the first purse I made (the pink one with the large roses), and it would have been even quicker if I hadn't had to change the thread to pink to topstitch the spotty one.

Pretty linings
So I can now sleep easy tonight, knowing that I have been able to show my face on the Christmas Challenge blog, and I hope that you have enjoyed the glimpses of My Very Own Sewing Room. I will show you more when it is all finished and all traces of paint have been removed from the Head Chef.


amy said...

Oh my goodness your little wallets are so cute! I love the fabrics you used! Doesn't she make the cutest patterns? :)

MelMel said...

I'm sure the girls will be thrilled with the purses!
They are lovely!x

Amy said...

Hey, congrats on the Sewing Room! That's very exciting! I agree that mass production is the way to go on little projects like that. They are adorable and will make great gifts!

millefeuilles said...


Your wallets are adorable... but one would be tempted to have all of them together as those fat quarters constitute one happy fat family.

Congratulations on your Sewing Room! May you spend many joyful, peaceful, undisturbed hours in there. Lucky lady ;-)

Annie said...

Your Very Own Sewing Room eh! Jammy devil ;D And what gorgeous things come from this Very Own Sewing Room of yours x

harmony and rosie said...

Oh yes, a sewing room is a necessity and make no mistake.
Lovely wares!

Mrs. Micawber said...

A triple parenthesis! (I am consumed with parenthetical envy.)

Also Sewing Room envy. A yarn volcano has erupted at my house and spewed fiber over half the living room. How lovely to have a Sewing Room of your very own to contain your crafty belongings.

Those wallets are so bright and cheerful. I especially like the orange-and-pink-flowered one.

**Anne** said...

Your own sewing room, that's fantastic!! I just know you are going to enjoy yourself crafting away. Gorgeous little wallets too, with such pretty colours.
Anne xx

greenrabbitdesigns said...

Lucky you having a sewing room, wish I had a sewing room!!!
Love the little purses especially the one with the yellow and orange flowers, very pretty! :)
Vivienne x

Katy Cameron said...

Lucky Princess Bunchy, my mum made me buy all my friends' presents when I was wee, wasn't she mean? :oD

Love the new sewing room though, it's helping you produce lovely goodies

Cheryl said...

Oh, for a sewing room of my own. The bliss of being able to leave the current project out between sessions. Hmm! Lucky you! I'm now eyeing up the space under the stairs, but it would be too Harry Potterish.

You are inspiring me to make lots of purses. Love the idea of using fat quarters. Your purses are gorgeous.

Frances said...

Bravo to you, clever, organized, creative Pomona.

I had the day off from work today, and at least managed to do my preparatory sketches for what will soon become my individually painted watercolor Christmas cards.

Tomorrow morning I will buy the envelopes and more Arches paper for the cards. And then...the card painting will begin. (Oh yes, I have another day off tomorrow.)

Thank you again for the inspiration. I will try to continue to follow your lead! xo

Jooles said...

Well done you...you inspire me to get organised :o)
and oooooh a sewing room, how wonderful and lets face it you do a lot of sewing so you should have a room.
I spy some little friends of mine ;o)
thank you...and keep up the good work
love jooles x

wendz said...

Such lovely purses - the fabric is wonderful. And yes I agree that sewing a bunch of them as you did is much faster than doing them one by one. I learned that recently too.

Enjoy your sewing room - I love my sewing space and spend many happy hours in it.

Caroline Lovis (Redneedle) said...

Loving the sewing room so far also quite green with envy.

ted and bunny said...

"Things to do with Fat Quarters"...I came rushing over thinking that AT LAST someone had found some TRULY eneremagic knickers!

bellaboo said...

Thank for your sweet comment.How lovely to have a sewing room.Your makes are so pretty.Good luck with the rest of the decorating! :0)

Anonymous said...

blogger just ate my comment, so i'll try again...
a sewing room is most Exciting!
and the sewing cupboard is just lovely. i feel honoured to have my bunting gracing it!
thank you for featuring me in your sidebar too :)

Claire said...

Hey Pomona took me a while before I realised mass production was the way to go and saves soooo much time.

Your wallets look fabulous, love the fabrics you used.

A sewing room of one's own, how wonderful. I remember when I was little all I wanted was a bedroom of my own hehe.........

Great your new sewing cupboard too.

Claire :}

The Weaver of Grass said...

These are very pretty Pomona. I went to an exhibition of craft work yesterday and someone had entered a lovely little wallet made to look like a bed cover - sticking out of the top were 10 little faces, each one was a finger puppet. The whole thing was called 'ten in a bed' and I thought it was a delightful idea - maybe another use for your fat quarters.

Barbara said...

I do like your sewing room furniture. Always nice to have ones own special room to work in. I have one for my card making. One can leave stuff out indefinitely which can be a good or bad thing depending how one looks at it.

elizabethm said...

I do totally get the thing about cutting all the purses out together. Of course I sort of know about how to organise myself, but somehow I never apply it to sewing and knitting. I am impressed you have actually done it and love your purses. And a sewing room? How utterly lovely and yours looks fab. I am still plotting to sneak a bit of a bedroom. My kitchen table approach only works when you don't ever want to eat at the kitchen table.

Beth said...

The purses look lovely, I really like the prints you've chosen and I also have no doubt the girls with be thrilled. Very lovely. Beth/The Linen Cat

grace said...

ooh sewing space envy! looks like such a pretty cupboard with all your bits in

Dinki Dots said...

I've just found your blog and I'm a new follower - what a great blog! I was getting all excited reading through a few of your posts - absolutely love those purses, how cute!!! I'm so glad I've found you!
Maria x


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