Wednesday, January 21, 2015
I made this drawstring bag using two practise blocks I made during the patchwork course I'm taking. We had an Amish patchwork theme for some lessons and were asked to bring several fabrics: some favourite colours, a neutral colour (I wanted solid black to go with the traditional Amish vibe I had in mind, but didn't have any so the text print was a great stand-in) and a colour we're not particularly fond of.
We all had huge fun guessing at which colour was the others' "least favourite" and realizing that a little bit of something out of one's comfort zone can add quite a bit of flair and contrast. Above is the first block I made and my not-so-favourite colour is the orange. Yes, you might think the same as my coursemates (and in fact myself now) that the orange actually "makes" this block. Another fun thing to notice was to see how the same colour can look very different according to which other colours are next to it. For instance the pink looks a lot darker in the small squares than in the bigger squares next to the black.
In my second block I moved the colours around a bit. It really looks different, but I can't decide which one I like better ... It really was a fun exercise and the more I sew the less colours there are I don't like all. It's all just a question of the right amount and context, I guess.
I've been wanting to make a drawstring bag for myself for some time now to store WIPs and other sewing stuff in and this was the perfect project to use up those blocks! I lined it and added a tunnel of pink with an opening on one side. I made a two-toned lining since I didn't have enough of either colour for the whole lining. I really like it and I think it goes really well with the look and "using stuff up"-theme here. I'm happy I got some use out of those blocks (and that string and closure had been in my crafting stash for years ...!), plus it makes me happy to see them on a regular basis.
Thursday, January 8, 2015
Now that the swap is completed, I thought I'd share a bit more information on the tote I made and of course show you what I got in return! :-)
My partner left me quite a lot of freedom for creating something for her, so I tried to figure out where to start from looking at her inspirational mosaic. Then I mainly used this, this and this picture to work from. So, there was the washi tape fabric which I had in my stash as well, then there was improv piecing and geometric forms plus a combination of bright colours and neutral backgrounds. The idea of trying to recreate the layout of the washi fabric in patchwork emerged and I started to work from there.
Since I wanted to make things a bit easier for myself I took the dimensions and general construction of the tote from the book Zakka Style (be sure to look at the errata before making the Zig Zag Tote from that book!!).
I decided to add a (nearly) solid panel on the bottom of the tote using the same fabric I used for the handles to pull it all together and make the tote less prone to stains if placed on the floor.
The inner pocket is made from the inspirational fabric.
I quilted some individual panels in dense straight lines on one side of the tote, which I think looks really nice. On the other side I quilted in the ditch of the "tapes".
I'm really happy I took part in this swap again. Seeing all the others make such an effort to create something original really pushed me to come up with something of my own and get out of my comfort zone a bit! I think that's the most fun in a swap, you never know who you're getting to sew for and you'll have to come up with something that both pleases them and yourself. :-)
And now to the beautiful bag I recieved:
Isn't it stunning?! I am so happy with it and as you can see in the pic couldn't wait to fill it up with my stuff and use it! It was made by Monika, be sure to check out her blog and her flickr account, she makes some amazing stuff!
Monika really listened to my wishes when it came to colours and patterns and she put so much work in the bag, adding such beautiful details!
An especially lovely touch is my name embroidered on the other side of the tote! Such a great idea!
Thank you so much again, Monika!!! :-)