Handmade Christmas Gifts – Drawing Carry Bag

Now having a toddler and older kids means that some days a week little man has to wait around with me while the girls are in clubs. This results sometimes in a bored little person 😦
So I decided it would be nice for him to take some pencils and paper/colouring books with him. Now I could just put them in the baby bag, but wouldn’t it be nice if he had it in something he could take himself? I opted for a more elaborate take on a pencil role and made a fold up bag with space for pencils and paper/colouring books. This is it 🙂

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So to make a drawing carry bag you will need:
a few pieces of coordinating material
A piece of plain fabric
cotton
sewing machine
30mm Bias binding
Pins

Firstly you need to cut your fabric. So you need for your bag 3 pieces 67cm by 32cm 2 of these should be your coordinating material and 1 should be plain fabric which you won’t see. This will be the main body of the bag. Then you need a coordinating piece and plain piece 26cm by 32cm, this will be for the large pocket. And then a coordinating piece and plain piece 28cm by 32cm, this is for the pencils and the smaller pocket.
Cut some bias and pin to one of the longer edges of the large pocket and both of the long edges of the small/pencil pocket. Sew on the binding.

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Once you have done this you need to place your pockets onto the internal piece of the main fabric. Lay the large pocket on first lining the bottom up with the centre of the main fabric. Then lay the other pocket over this having around 10cmon the side for the pencils and the rest on the side with the large pocket. Pin it all together.

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Sew a line through the centre to hold all of the pocket bottoms closed. Now you need to sew the lines for the pencil pockets. Starting at the centre of the bag mark 2cm intervals along the line you have just sewn then sew up to the top of the pencil pocket creating long thin pockets.
On the outside main piece sew on a piece of Velcro. Then take your bias binding and sew 2 pieces together back yo back so you end up with straps. Cut the bias into 3, you need to make handles (however long you would like them) and a piece around 8cm long. The smaller piece needs a piece of Velcro sewn on.
Now take all of your pieces and lay them as follows:
Main lining piece
Outer main piece – right side facing you
Handles at each end
Velcro tab at opposite end to the sewn on Velcro on the main piece
Inner main piece with sewn on pockets – wrong side facing you.
(Make sure the handles and Velcro strap are facing into the middle with a cm or 2 poking out the seam so your handles are in the right place when turned around)

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Pin this all together and then sew around the edge leaving a gap to turn it the right way round. Once sewn clip the corners and turn it the right way round. I gave mine a quick press with the iron at this point to get all my edges straight etc. Now top stitch all the way round ensuring you close up the opening.

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And that’s it done! All you need to do now is fill it with pencils and paper/colouring books.

I can’t wait to give it to Eli I think he will love it 🙂

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Handmade Christmas Gifts – Pencil Roll

My next handmade Christmas gift is a pencil roll. These are so easy to make, you just need to be able to cut fabric and sew straight!

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So you need to make a template first. I just used an empty cereal box. You need 2 pieces the large piece is 30 cm by 23 cm. The smaller piece is 30 cm by 10 cm. once drawn and cut out you need to cut out your fabric. Now my fabric wasn’t overly thick so I added an extra piece between my layers, if your fabric has a good weight don’t use the lining piece. You need to cut 2 patterned and 1 lining if the large template and 1 patterned and 1 lining of the small template.

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Take the 2 smaller pieces and edge along the top with bias binding. Then you need the sew this piece onto one of the large patterned pieces. To do this pin it at the bottom and sew vertical lines at 2cm intervals.

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Once you have gone all the way along it should look like this.

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Now layer all your pieces together as follows…large lining piece, then the sewn piece facing up and then the remaining large patterned piece face down. Also at this point you need to add the ribbon which needs to be between the 2 patterned pieces in the middle, one end needs to be hanging out so it is sewn in. It should be like this.

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Pin together and sew together, leaving a hole to turn it the right way.

When it is turned the right way straighten it out and pin the hole closed and top stitch all the way around.

And you are done!

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Happy sewing 🙂

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Handmade Christmas Gifts – Apron

This year I have really gotten into sewing things for the family. So, it only felt right to make some of the Christmas gifts myself.

I have quite a few things to make…with not a huge amount of time left before the big day!

Today I have been making aprons.

This is the finished set of 3 and I am so happy with them 🙂

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This is how I made the girls ones. Eli’s is slightly different as I edged his with bias binding.

First gather the things you will need, which are:

Fabric for the front and backing

Bias Binding

Scissors

Paper (roll or large sheet)

Long ruler (I used my spirit level)

Pencil

Tape Measure

Iron and ironing board

Pins

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Now to draw the pattern! Basically I measured my kids (secretly of course!) using the guide below for measurements.

measurment guid for apron

Once you have these measurements take your paper, pencil, ruler and tape measure, now draw a line the length of your apron. At the bottom of this line draw a line half the width of your apron measurement and the same at the top for the top measurement. From your length measurement take off the top to waist length and then draw the line opposite your full length line. The final part of drawing the pattern is to free hand draw a curve in the gap.

It should end up looking something like this. Cut it out.

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Take your 2 fabrics to your ironing board and give them an iron. Fold the fabric so that the pattern will fit on,then place the pattern on the fabric with the longest edge on the fold of the fabric. Pin in place and cut out. Do this for both pieces of fabric.

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Now depending on the width of your bias binding will depend on how you do this next bit. You either need to cut 8 pieces and sew 2 pieces back to back to get 4 straps. Or you cut 4 pieces and fold in half to get the 4 straps. This does just depend on how thick you want the straps to be. The length again depends on your child.

I had thin ish binding (18mm) so I cut 8 pieces, 4 for the neck tie are 20 inches and 4 for the waist tie and 24 inches.

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So now you should have a front, a back and 4 straps.

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To put together take one of the pieces of fabric and the straps. Place the fabric right side facing you and pin the straps for the neck ties at the top of the apron, making sure the straps face down the apron. Place the waist straps at the side where the curve meets the body, again with the fabric facing into the midle of the apron. Ensure there is about an inch hanging over. It should look something like this.

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Place the other piece of fabric ontop of the first and pin around the edges.

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Sew around the edge with your sewing machine making sure you leave a hole at the bottom so you can turn it the right way round. Also where the straps are make sure you do a complete edge across them and not put a corner on them as they will not hang right if this happens (I had to unpick one).

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Turn the whole thing the right way round then top stitch in a coordinating cotton, making sure to close up the gap you left.

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Now, I would advise you do this step before you put it all together (but I didn’t!) So, sew your bias binding together, which ever way you are doing it.

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So just to add a bit of detail I added on the girls ones their initial using the bias binding.

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I hope you have enjoyed my tutorial 🙂