So, it’s only taken me 2 months since revamping my office to finally get around to actually getting some sewing done!! After being in my office for most of the day, come eveningtime I generally do not want to spend any more time in there even if it’s to sew or stitch or otherwise futz around with hobby stuff. Instead, I’ve been doing lots of reading in the evenings.
But yesterday I woke up and had the itch to sew. We had no away-from-home plans, hubby’s been painting the exterior of our house, and our teen would be busy doing his own thing, so I decided the only thing I would have on my To-Do List would be to sew =D.
Earlier this month we had a get-together with some of my family, including my grandma. Back in 2009 I’d made her a cloth wallet with a velcro closure, which she loved. (I used this Craftster “Easy Peasy Snap Wallet Tutorial”.) At the get-together, she told me she was still using the wallet (five years later!) and loved it and asked if I could make her another one because the velcro tabs on the one she has are coming off. She has macular degeneration so she may not have noticed the entire wallet is looking worn, but I noticed; I told her I’d love to make her a new wallet =).
This bumblebees wallet is NOT for my grandma — this is a trial-run version.
It’d been so long since I last made one of these wallets I figured it’d be smart to run through the tutorial once before making my grandma’s wallet. And it was a good thing I did, because I made a few oopsies along the way, but nothing I couldn’t work with. On the plus side, my cutting and sewing skills are substantially better this time around than they were back in 2009….although I did still find hand-sewing in the velcro tabs was just as frustrating this time around as it was last time (but since Grandma’s vision is not great, velcro tabs are a far better option for her than snaps). I also used the decorative stitches feature of my sewing machine for the first time since purchasing it……in 2007!!
Grandma asked if I could make her new wallet slightly roomier, so I added a bit of length and width to my fabric measurements, and I’m very happy with how that worked out. In the photo below, I have my ID + debit card + a couple bills, which is about how much she’ll be carrying in her wallet at any given time. Plenty of room. (After I took this pic, I stuffed all the cards from my wallet in there and they fit just fine, so I’ll end up using this as my wallet!)
(Not thrilled with the visible stitches around the velcro, but I’m not sure how to avoid that??? Also, you can see one of my oopsies in that picture — I sewed 1 right side against 1 wrong side, instead of right sides together. But for this project it was not a big deal, certainly not big enough to warrant ripping seams!)
Some comments about changes I made to the pattern, or will make in the future:
~ I cut the 2 fabric pieces at 8-3/4″ L x 5-3/4″ W, to allow for 3/8″ seams all around.
~ I cut the 1 interfacing piece at 8-1/2″ L x 5-1/2″ W, to be just slightly smaller than the fabric pieces, so there’d be less bulk to sew through.
~ I only applied interfacing to 1 of the fabric pieces this time. I think for my Grandma’s wallet I will apply interfacing to both pieces of fabric.
~ I used a midweight interfacing.
~ I used a decorative stitch to sew closed the hole I’d left for turning the fabric. My machine has a loop-de-loop stitch that would be super cute on this fabric, but I don’t have black thread and didn’t want to make a trip to the store, so I opted for a stitch that would show up better with the light-colored fabric. I love the option of using a decorative stitch in that area of the wallet since the stitching shows when the wallet is closed.
~ I folded the bottom up 3″, to create a 3″ deep pocket.
~ When I use velcro tabs again, I need to move them up just a smidge higher (not so near the bottom edge of the top flap) — particularly important if the wallet will be holding lots of things and thus will be fatter.
This coming week I’ll work on getting my grandma’s wallet made — I love the fabric I found for it, and am excited to get it made for her.
~~~ This past Thursday and Friday I watched chunks of Diane Gilleland‘s T-Shirt Quilting class on Creative Live. It was an AWESOME class, and I ended up buying it so I can go back and watch it from start to finish. (I purchased while the class was airing live and got a sweet price break as a result. Not sure if that’s how they typically do it, but it definitely made buying the class much more affordable for me!) From just the parts I was able to watch live, I picked up soooo many tips and nuggets of useful info…..not just about quilting, but about sewing in general. I can’t wait to dive in and watch the entire class, and then have a go at making something. I’m thinking I’ll start with thrift store t-shirts made into a dogbed-sized blanket, and if that goes well then I’ll brave using some of my teen’s saved t-shirts to make him a quilt.
~~~ That Creative Live class was such a good experience that I signed up to watch Malka Dubrawsky’s 10 Ways to Love Improvisational Quilting class, which will air live on October 8th & 9th.
~~~ I borrowed “First Steps to Free-Motion Quilting” by Christina Cameli from the library and like it so much I’ll end up buying a copy. In addition to FMQ how-to’s, there are also projects which appeal to me and which I feel like are beginner-friendly enough that I can be successful if I attempt them.
~~~ For hobbies which are new to me, I’m a big fan of kits. Last month I signed up for Wendi Gratz’s “Cuddle Club”, and this weekend I received my first kit. I don’t think Wendi’s revealed yet on her website which critter is in this month’s kit, so I’m gonna keep mum about that, but I will say that I was giddy when I opened my package and saw what it was =D. This month’s cuddle critter will definitely be one I keep for myself!! The fleece is sooooo soft and feels good against the fingertips. The Cuddle Club kits come every other month, there’s no sign-up fee, and you can discontinue being in the club at any time. Click that link above to get to Wendi’s Cuddle Club page if you want more info. I’ll post pictures once I get this month’s critter made! (which will be after I finish my Grandma’s wallet).