Mar 26

52 zippers #12: peek-a-boo pleats

2017-09-07T20:34:26+00:00 March 26th, 2017|

If you’re new to my 52 zippers project, you can read the backstory, see all the zipper pouches, and download basic zipper pouch instructions here.

For this week’s zipper pouch, I decided I wanted to try some peek-a-boo pleats. I can’t say I’m pleased at all with the results, but because I left making the pouch until the last day of the week I don’t have time to remake it today. So this will be my project next week, too. I am determined to make it right!

The pleats themselves I think look ok, but the pouch came out such an awkward size and shape. I am still trying to think through different ways to change that. It will be a fun experiment this week! 🙂

I used a navy linen on the outside, and the peek-a-boo pleats and lining are from Robert Kaufman’s London Calling lawn. I didn’t use any interfacing as I didn’t want the pleats to be strangely stiff. For the top of the pleats I folded the linen to meet at the center of the lawn strips, and for the bottom of the pleats I tucked the lawn under about 1/8″.

Zipper pouch specs:

  • Outer pieces: Front and back panels pieced together with 1.5″ x 3″ strips, to make 7.5″ w x 3″ h panels before folding. After folding, the top was approximately 4.5″ wide, and the bottom was approximately 5.5″ wide.
  • Lining pieces: Layered front panel on top of lining and cut to match
  • Zipper tabs : none
  • Zipper: 4.5″ cut

See you back here next week with another zip pouch!

Mar 19

52 zippers #11: clear vinyl mini pouches

2017-09-07T20:34:31+00:00 March 19th, 2017|

If you’re new to my 52 zippers project, you can read the backstory, see all the zipper pouches, and download basic zipper pouch instructions here.

For this week’s zipper pouch, I wanted to play with vinyl. I have a bunch of vinyl that isn’t doing anything but being in the way so I want to use most of it up! I also have a bunch of 6″ zippers that I want to use up because they’re too short to do much of anything. (I ordered the 6″ zippers back before I knew better–now I only buy 14″ and cut to size). Anyway, I searched for a small vinyl pouch tutorial and came across this one by Hungry Hippie Sews. The tutorial worked pretty well but I’ve got a couple of tips for you that would have made things a little easier. I also didn’t add the clip-on thing as I didn’t think I needed the clip for these.

I absolutely LOVE these and plan to make many more. A set of these is very likely going to be part of my kids’ teacher’s gifts this year too! They took less than 15 minutes each which is fantastic!

The best thing about these is that they use NO fabric! Such a timesaver as then the zippers didn’t need to match anything!

I wanted to make one of these for each of my kids, so they each chose a zipper. Then I decided to make things more interesting by swapping out the zipper pull on each of them to a contrasting color. This is pretty easy to do: cut off the bottom of the zipper just above the stop and slide the original pull off. Align both ends of the zipper and finesse them through the top of the new pull. It is fiddly and takes a minute, but it’s not too tricky. It helps to put the zipper down on a surface so you can hold down the two zipper ends while you slide the pull upwards. I had a set of extra zipper pulls from the last time I ordered from Zipit zippers that made swapping easy.

So, the tutorial doesn’t specify a weight of vinyl, and I used 16 gauge vinyl thinking the thicker the better. However, 16 gauge is pretty heavy and this was very awkward to turn right side out at the end. I think it took longer to turn right side out than it did to sew the entire pouch! If I were to make these again I’d try 12 gauge to compare. I do really like the heft of the pouch now that it’s done though.

The tutorial didn’t mention using Wonder clips when sewing the zipper to the vinyl, but those were totally necessary. I also lengthened my stitch length to 3mm. A long stitch length makes fewer holes in the vinyl which makes it less prone to ripping.

The other thing is that when I trimmed my zipper ends, they started to fray loose threads into the pouch, which was not going to do at all. So I’d suggest using some fray-stop liquid, burning the ends, or sewing a zigzag stitch over that bit before turning the pouch.

I automatically backstitched a couple of times overtop of the zipper when sewing the side seams, and I’m glad I did because I’m pretty certain the stitches would have ripped while turning if I hadn’t.

My kids plan to fill these with tiny treasures but they would also make fantastic notions pouches! The next ones I make will be with 12 gauge vinyl and I might try making them a wee bit smaller. 🙂

Zipper pouch specs:

  • Outer pieces: one piece of 16 gauge vinyl, cut 4″ x 8″.
  • Lining pieces: none
  • Zipper tabs : none
  • Zipper: 4″ cut

See you back here next week with another zip pouch!

Mar 12

52 zippers #10: Use UFOs or orphan blocks

2017-09-07T20:35:13+00:00 March 12th, 2017|

If you’re new to my 52 zippers project, you can read the backstory, see all the zipper pouches, and download basic zipper pouch instructions here.

For this week’s zipper pouch, I wanted to find a use for a miniature log cabin block I made last week. This was my first attempt at a micro log cabin and I tried not squaring up the block after each round. While the block is charming in it’s wonkiness, it was not the effect I was going for and so I wasn’t going to use it in my project. However, it was still super cute and I wanted to find a purpose for it!

I bordered the block with some lightweight denim to frame it and extend the size a little bit. I didn’t add batting but added some quilting lines for added interest. If I would have not run out of time, I might have hand quilted some lines in different colors. Maybe next time!

I lined it with this cute Heather Ross butterfly print.

This is the perfect size for a coin purse so that is what I’ll be using it for!

Zipper pouch specs:

  • Outer pieces: Orphan block, built up with borders to 4″ x 5.5, plus one plain piece of denim 4″ x 5.5″. Interfaced with Pellon SF-101.
  • Lining pieces (2): 4″ x 5.5″
  • Zipper tabs : none
  • Zipper: 5.5″ cut

See you back here next week with another zip pouch!

Mar 12

52 zippers #9: Cut up a block that isn’t working

2017-09-07T20:35:30+00:00 March 12th, 2017|

If you’re new to my 52 zippers project, you can read the backstory, see all the zipper pouches, and download basic zipper pouch instructions here.

For this week’s zipper pouch, I wanted to make something very quick and easy again. I took a week-long workshop with Gwen Marston on Madeline Island last October and in the past week or so I’ve been working on finishing up the things I started in class. There was one mini that I really didn’t ever like from the start (it was my first one of the week) and I decided that while I loved the little star section, I didn’t like the rest of it at all. It was just too busy and chaotic. So I cut it up (!) and saved the best part to put into a zipper pouch.

I bordered the block with some lightweight denim to frame it a little bit.

I lined it with this cute Cotton and Steel coin purse print.

I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do with this one quite yet, but it has sentimental value so I will probably use it for something special!

Zipper pouch specs:

  • Outer pieces: Orphan block, built up with borders to 6.5″ square, plus one plain piece of denim 6.5″ square. Interfaced with Pellon SF-101.
  • Lining pieces (2): 6.5″ square
  • Zipper tabs : none
  • Zipper: 6.5″ cut

See you back here next week with another zip pouch!