Sunday, May 8, 2011

A fun sewing project

About a month ago when I was on a local bus I saw someone tuck the book they had been reading into a kind of over sized fabric pouch before putting that into their bag.  I thought it was a great idea to help protect a book that you are carrying around a lot.  It made me think of a friend of mine who reads a lot and spends a bit of time travelling - commuting on a bus and travelling interstate to see her boyfriend.  Her birthday was coming up, so I thought of how to create a book pouch for her.  Now that her birthday has passed and she has opened her gift, I can show it off - so here it is!

It was also my first attempt at quilting of sorts.

I loved it so much, and thought my mum would also love one, that I made one for her too!

I made it so it would be big enough to fit a large hardcover novel, but because it is fabric, it can also be folded over if a smaller book is inside.

My mum loved hers so much that she is putting in Christmas orders for more!  They don't have to be just for books either - I'm going to make one for myself so I can carry my current knitting project in my bag without having to worry about the knitting needles poking holes in things!

If you'd like to make your own - here are some instructions:
1. Chose some fabric in your favourite colour - I used a plain colour for the lining and 3 different prints for the outside. 
2. Cut the fabric to your preferred size (these are 61cm x 35cm).
3. Place the right sides of the fabric together and stitch the layers together around 3 of the sides, leaving one short side open, turn the fabric right side out.  It will look kind of like a pillowcase.
4.  Insert some batting - I used a very thin batting so there wasn't too much bulk, but so there was added padding.
4. Stitch the layers together so the batting stays in place (I didn't stitch the batting into the side seams as this would have created too much bulk).  I did a simple cross pattern with the stitch lines 10cm apart.
5.  Fold over the closed short end to create an envelope.  Stitch this in place by using a decorative top stitch - reinforce stitching where the ends of the pouch are.
6.  Stitch the open short end closed, tucking the seams inside and adding a ribbon.  Rather than using a button or other fixed closure, using ribbon means the pouch can be secured shut, but there is no restriction on how big the item inside the pouch is.

Happy sewing!

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