Saturday, 2 February 2013

Busy week. Sorry, long post.

This week seems to have been one of those where you find yourself rushing around but don't seem to have done much at the end of it!
There have been plenty of orders coming through from outr facebook page, also called A Couple of Crafters, which is good, but means time has been taken up with that rather than with playing ;)

However I have now sewn some of the filmstrip together. At one point it seemed like I was cutting my entire stash into little squares!

This is just the first strip. I stitched 3 brown and 2 cream 2" squares together to make a strip, then pressed them and added cream 2" x 8" strips either side. Then I sewed 8"squares to these units, 6 squares in total, each with one of these units either side. I have 5 more of these to do now!!

Then a friend (thanks Sue) introduced us to japanese folded patchwork, and she fetched in a fabulous bag, which I just have to have a go at! Its dead easy, fairly quick, and completely hand stitched and quilted as you go (although no doubt it could be machine sewn to a point).

To make the bag I will need 22 of these little blocks.

First draw round a suitable circle. I used a small plate, could easily have been an old cd, or drawn with a compass. I found it easiest to then make a template from card but if I'd used a cd I might not have bothered, although it did made it easier to remove template when I was finished with it. (read on, you'll see what I mean!)

Once you have your template, if you are using one, or your flat circular object, you need to draw round it onto the wrong side of the fabric, then cut out the circle, leaving a border of about half an inch.

Please ignore the seam down the middle of this one, I ran out of the fabric I wanted to use so ended up with 2 of the circles with joins down the middle. I'm hoping it won't make a difference (I'll let you know!).

Once you've done this you need to run around the outside edge with a running stitch. Make sure the thread you use is fairly strong as you are going to be pulling on it to gather it up.

Slip the cardboard circle, or whatever you are using, into the middle of the wrong side of the circle, and pull the gathering stitches so that the circle is enclosed. . If you have used card, or something flexible to make your circle you can then tie/stitch off the ends, if you've used something rigid like a cd you'll need to leave the end loose for the next step.
Iron the circle flat. Iron both sides, making sure you have a nice flat edge. Now you can take out the template. If you have used card you can bend it to get it out, if you have used something rigid you'll need to slightly undo the gathering stitches to take it out then re-tighten them and finish off the threads.
Give it another iron just to make sure its all nice and flat once you have taken out your template.

The next step is to cut out your contrasting squares. You need a square which will just fit into the circle, like this.

In my case this was a 5 1/4" square. I'm fairly sure I remember there is a mathematical way of working out the size you will need, something to do with radius of the circle and diagonal measurement of the square. However I just fiddled with my square ruler till I found what fitted! Its been a long time since I had maths lessons at school! 

You will need one of these, and a square of wadding the same size for each circle.. one down 21 to go!

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