Body image and women – a complex area. So many factors influence how we feel about our body shape, dependent upon which continent you live in, how your are brought up, self esteem, I could go on and on. I am conscious that my relationship with energy and sugar in the last couple of years has not been healthy. For over a year I have been thinking about joining some form of diet club. There are lots of schools of thoughts about healthy relationship with food, with many believing that diet clubs do not work in the long term. Personally I respond well to the accountability of weighing into someone. The focus helps me address my desire for sugar based snacks.
At Easter I bought a bikini as motivation and joined slimming world. I am loving the discipline it brings – I have always enjoyed vegetables but tend to get stuck in a rut. The variety of food, the new recipes, meeting new people are all great, however lunch times are not so good, I have to be super organised to make a pack up salad. Then there is the cutlery issue (if you are still with me this is where the sewing comes in!). There are occasions I need to take cutlery with my plastic tub of salad.
Tada, I thought – how lovely would it be to have a pencil case shape cutlery bag, with a beautiful print of a knife and fork. Lined with shower curtain fabric, just in case there is no where to wash up the used cutlery.
I have experimented with several ways to gain my image of a knife and fork on fabric, not that hard one would think?! First up I painted cutlery with fabric paint and tried to print onto the fabric, not that easy as cutlery is generally curved. I tried to curve the fabric round the cutlery but the print was far from precise.
Next up I created a stencil from an old plastic wallet and sponge painted through – as you can see the paint spread.
My favored option, printing onto freezer paper. If you would like to make your own you can find the templates here.
To make you will need:
Freezer paper (yes you can get it in the UK!)
Two pieces of fabric 8 1/2″ by 11″ (I used old curtains)
Two pieces of shower curtain fabric 5″ by 10 1/2″
Iron your fabric. Cut out two pieces of freezer paper, approximately 8 1/2″ by 11″, place it shiny side facing towards the fabric and iron to adhere.
Trim you fabric as close as you can to the freezer paper. Place in your printer, fabric side up for taking the printing ink. Photocopy your template onto the fabric. Peel the freezer paper away from the back of your fabric.
To make the bag:
Trim your cutlery bag pieces to 5″ by 10 1/2″ (you may wish to make this smaller or larger dependent upon your cutlery size).
Place one side right side up. Lay zip along long edge right side down, followed by shower curtain lining. Pin in place. Sew the three layers together.
Turn the fabrics over to reveal the zip. Pin and then top stitch to prevent any fabric becoming caught in the zip.
Repeat for the second side of the bag.
Unzip the zip by three quarters. Fold out so the right sides of the lining face each other, and the right sides of the bag face each other. Ensure the zip lies towards the lining.
Stitch round leaving a turning gap along the long edge of the lining.
Turn right sides out, then slip stitch the turning gap on the lining.
This DIY cutlery bag is perfect for days out and about. The shower curtain lining makes it easy to wipe clean, or throw it in a low temperature wash. It could also make a nifty gift. Will you use the template to print the simple outline of cutlery or to create a stencil for printing through?
I love mismatched chalk painted, applique covered dining room chairs. Upcycle dining room chairs to add personality to your dining room. You may remember I made some for our dining room a couple of years ago. Unfortunately with young children and messy eating the seats have become stained, despite the stain resistant spray I applied. This time I am using a wax – I first saw this technique at Radiant Home . The plan is the waxed seats will prevent staining, a great idea when you have young children. Plus a handy handle means you can hang spare seats on the wall when not in use.
Dining room chair
Handle and screws
Upholstery fabric scraps (look in charity shops)
Greenland wax or similar for rewaxing clothes
Sizzix Big shot machine with 4” square die or quilters ruler, rotary cutter, cutting mat
Start by preparing your chair, remove the seat for reupholstering. The chair may have hidden grease stains so thoroughly wash down with sugar soap to remove ingrained dirt. If necessary for example peeling varnish sand the chair.
Paint the chair with chalk paint. I suggest following the grain of the wood with your paint brush. Allow to dry and then apply a second coat. Watch out for drips, chalk paint dries quickly!
Using a brawdl mark on the back of the chair the position of the screws for the handle. Drill small holes. Screw handle to the chair.
Wash and dry your upholstery fabrics, if they are preloved they will benefit from a freshen up, if they are new they may shrink in the wash.
Cut out 4” square of fabric using a Big Shot sizzix machine or a quilter’s ruler, rotary cutter and cutting mat. You will need approximately 25 squares, dependent upon the size of the seat of the chair.
Lay out the different fabrics into a pleasing random design. Place right sides together and stitch two squares together, add another until you have a chain of five squares. Repeat for a further 5 lines. Press with an iron. Place the right long sides together and stitch to create one large square of fabric.
Lay your fabric on a flat surface, wrong side facing you. Place the seat cover on top, with the stitch lines parallel to the seat. Starting from the center of the sides staple gun the fabric taught over the seat cushion.
Apply the Greenland wax to the seat cover. Patiently rub over the fabric, I suggest following the grain of the fabric.
Iron the wax coating, ensuring you thoroughly clean the iron afterwards. Alternatively use a hairdryer to heat the wax, you will see it melt and absorb into the fabric.
Use natural strong cotton fabrics for your seats, you don’t want a man made fiber falling apart in three months time!
When sourcing chairs for recovering carefully check them to ensure they are strong, with no splits in the joints (ahem, may have bought a chair with several none repairable splits!).
The handle brings this project on trend…
What so you use for stain resistance? I am curious to see how the waxed seats will hold up over time.
Do you have endless piles of fabric scraps?? I know I do … over the years I have had a variety of storage solutions ranging from cute denim baskets, clear plastic bags and even plastic shoe boxes.
I have to admit my stash of scraps can become overwhelming. Regular readers will know that I hate waste, I have a strong preference for recycling or upcycling. There are so many ideas for using fabric scraps its hard to throw them away!! Today I am going to share you with you a fabric scrap clutch tutorial.
What’s not to love about a clutch, great for day or evening why not make one with your precious scraps of your favourite fabrics?
Place fabric scraps onto your base fabric. Once you are pleased with the layout pin or using your glue stick hold in place.
Machine stitch the scraps – I have used an applique stitch on my sewing machine. Alternatively you could use a zig zag machine. Test your tension first on a fabric sample (I would hate you to ruin your scraps with an uneven tension).
Cut your scrap fabric piece to measure 14 by 10″. On the reverse mark 4 3/4″ up on the left hand side, 1 3/4″ up on the right hand side. Along the bottom mark 6 3/4″ in on the left hand side 2 1/2″ in on the right hand side.
Use these marks as your cutting line to create the triangle front design of the bag.
Iron interfacing to your front panel piece. Place this right sides together along the short straight edge of the scrap fabric. Stitch the seam with a 1/4″ seam allowance then press.
Iron the fusible fleece to the reverse of the lining fabric. Using your fabric scrap piece as a guide cut out the front flap triangular shape.
Place the lining and the main bag right sides together. Stitch the short side and the triangular shape. Trim the seam allowance around the point of the triangular shape being careful not to cut into the seam stitching.
Turn right side out and press.
Fold and press as your finished clutch. Sew your button hole in the v shape, ensuring the top of the button hole is parallel or shorter than the start of the straight edge (on the left hand side as you look at it)
Turn inside out so right sides are touching. Fold the bag in as per the picture.
Stitch the side seams allowing a turning gap on the closing flap.
Turn right side out, press in the side seam.
Top stitch round the v flap. Finally add your button.
No time for making a scrap fabrics clutch today?? Why not pin it for later?
Today I am taking part in a blog hop all about fabric scraps which is hosted by Jen of Faith and Fabric. Fabric scraps can be a great source of inspiration, they are free and worth far more to you than sending to landfill in your bin!! Please do check out all the creative ideas being shared today as part of this blog hop: