I hope Jo enjoys her new tote as much as I enjoyed making it!
I made a document wallet out of Burlap, lined with a printed cotton with little chickens on it – perfect for farm business files! I love this document wallet so I am going to make the pattern available in my online store soon.
I also sent her two heart shaped felt pocket warmers. You just pop them in the microwave 30 seconds and then put them in your pockets to keep you hands warm, perfect for this time of year.
And then finally I made her a modern take on the old crochet tea towels. The hanging crochet tea towels are so practical (especially with a 1 year old in my house who pulls down the tea towel at least 6 times a day!), but I don’t know how to crochet. So this was my fabric interpretation of the crocheted tea towel. I think it turned out quite well, so I will also add the pattern for this soon.
I sent the items off about 2 weeks ago and yesterday received a lovely letter in the mail from Mary telling me how much she loved them all! Now I can’t wait for the next swap!
So with lots of patterns to get ready, it’s back to the studio for me!
This small bag, opens out and inverts into a stand up doll cradle!
I would like to claim credit for the ingenious design behind this cradle, but I can’t. A friend of mine recently showed me a knitted version that she had been given as a child. It was one of her favourite toys as a child and she had not seen anything like it since.
So I took it upon myself to create a Burlap Version. The great thing about sewing and crafting with Burlap is that you can use it to give your projects real structure and form. If you were to make this out of cotton, it would collapse when turned into the cradle position. But using Burlap, it stands really well.
I hope the judges at the show appreciate the dual functionality of this cradle. The Ekka starts next week, so I’ll let you know how I go.
It is a bit complicated to explain how to make, so I will work on a proper sewing pattern and put it in my pattern store soon.
This cradle got me to thinking about my favourite toys as a child. Most of the really memorable favourites were handmade. The timber crib for my dolls and washing line that my Uncle Dave made me, Maxi and Mini dolls that Uncle Dave’s Mum made me. What were your favourite handmade toys as a child? Have you made them for your kids? Let me know. I think we should restart the handmade toy movement! I’d love to hear about your handmade toys as I think my boys could do with some Handmade love!
I just love this Chevron design Printed Burlap, and thought it had great impact and would make a perfect statement piece. So it seemed the natural choice for the Funky Fashion Wearable Art category.
Last year I made a Burlap Cape with Free Motion embroidery for this category and managed to take out 2nd place. So this year I have my sights set on 1st place, but we’ll see!
I didn’t follow a pattern for the skirt, I just winged it as I went. If you are interested in making something similar I will give you the brief run down on what I did as a starting point.
Basically I measured waist to knee and cut a long strip of Burlap that width. I hemmed the bottom, sewed on two strips of ribbon. I then gathered the top and added two layer of tulle underneath (attached at the waistline) to give the skirt some structure. Then sewed the side seam together.
I then measured around my waist and cut another strip of Burlap that length by about 6 inches wide. I folded this in half long ways, wrong sides together. Stitch the ends together, then folded right side out. I then attached this to the top of the skirt, starting and ending at the side seam. I then inserted a zipper into the side seam from the waistband down about 5cm into the side seam.
I know that is a very rough guide, but that is pretty much all there is to it. If you don’t feel comfortable winging it, then probably best to purchase a pattern. Just make sure you allow for the skirt plus the tulle to give the skirt structure.
It’s not an everyday skirt as I think constant washing would ruin the stiffness of the skirt, but it is a fun special occasion skirt, perhaps for my next cocktail party….
Next week I’ll show you my last entry for the Agricultural Show.
In the meantime, I love to hear about anything you’ve made that would constitute Funky Fashion or Wearable Art! Let me know, I need inspiration for next year!
It will only be open to Australian members to minimise postage costs.
So lets share the handmade love!
|Easter Egg Burlap Lavender Sachets|
Burlap Lavender Sachets are the perfect gift when you don’t want to give chocolate for Easter. These sweet little sachets can be hung in the wardrobe to keep your clothes smelling fresh and bug free all year round – and best of all not a calorie to be seen!
To create your lavender sachets cut two Egg shaped ovals (mines about 12cm high) of Burlap.
|Two Egg Ovals|
On one of the ovals of Burlap stitch rows of ribbon in complimentary shades and patterns.
Place Burlap Eggs right side together and insert a 15cm length of satin ribbon, folded in half, inside the top of the egg to form the hanger. Pin in place. Stitch around the circumference of the egg leaving a 5cm gap on the side.
|Stitch around the circumference leaving an opening|
Roll an A4 sheet of paper into a funnel and insert in gap in Burlap, fill egg with Lavender. Stitch opening closed.
|Fill with Lavender|
Fray the edges back to the stitching line. Your Lavender Easter Egg Sachets are now complete.
So quick, so affordable and so easy! The perfect Easter gift.
One of the questions I most frequently get asked is how to wash Burlap and prevent shedding and fading of the print. So I thought I would do a little case study to explain the process.
Firstly, I never wash my Burlap sacks prior to sewing with them. Often they have been cut open and the loose threads will shed and go everywhere. If you are a clean freak, and just can’t possibly stand the thought of ‘dirty Burlap sacks’ in your craft room, then I recommend hand washing only. Put some detergent and warm water in a tub and then dunk each sack into the water. Swish it around and then rinse it under a tap to remove the detergent, and hang it on the line. If you wring it out, be prepared to iron, iron, iron to get it flat again. The great thing about Burlap is the loose weave so even if you don’t wring it out and just hang it on the line it should still dry in a couple of hours.
That said, let’s now assume you take my advice and don’t wash prior to sewing. Move straight on to making up your item and ensuring you secure all loose edges.
So I have taken the example of this cushion cover I made from a Burlap Sack. I sewed it up and then went ahead and washed it.
Next step was to heat set the ink. The branding on the sacks is not designed to be permanent, and that is the roulette of sewing with Burlap. Some inks will bind really well to the Burlap and will be there forever, others will wash out. You need to accept this.
However, to give you ink the best chance of surviving the washing process, it is nest to heat set teh ink first. To this I covered the printed area with a sheet of baking paper and then using a hot iron, iron over the top of the baking paper for about 10 seconds on each spot.
Once you have heat set the inks, place the item into an old pillow case and secure the top with a rubber band. Put it in the washing machine on a cold cycle with detergent (no bleach).
When the wash is complete undo the rubber band and pull out your Burlap item. All it to dry flat and then iron it again to get it flat.
I found that my pillow case actual had no shedding. This is because all the raw edges were secured prior to washing. As you can see there are no loose fibres inside the pillow slip when I removed the Burlap.
|The inside of the pillow case once I removed mu cushion cover|
The ink did fade a bit, but I think that just adds to the worn vintage feel, see the before and after photos below (a bit more iron ing required for the after photo!).
So I hope this has helped ‘shed’ (excuse the pun) some more light on the process of washing Burlap!
I would love to hear any tips or experiences you have had washing Burlap.