‘Snap’ was a local word for packed lunch in Nottingham/ Derbyshire when I was living there many, many years ago. So these lunch bags fastened with Kam snaps had an obvious snappy name.
I used remnants of vinyl from an Amazon job lot which meant cutting front and back panels to use the fabric best. If you have a plasticised tablecloth or even a heavy duty shower curtain to upcycle that would work well.
Because the remnants weren’t squared, one of the sunflower bags has an angled flap which needs three snaps to keep it closed well. But because the colour of the snaps is a positive (there were about 20 sachets of different colour snaps in the beginner set I bought) it makes the end result better in a quirky way.
While the snaps were out I made a small lined bag (angled flap and 3 snaps again) and turned the cuff end of a shirt sleeve (left over from last week’s laundry bag make) into a phone holder to avoid scratches when it is in my bag.
to make: cut vinyl into required shape (back bigger so the flap folds over)
with right sides facing sew round the sides and bottom – use a long stitch length to make as few puncture holes in the vinyl as possible and don’t do too many back stitches at beginning and end or the vinyl will be too holey and might tear when in use.
trim seam allowance and clip the seam really close to the stitches at the corners before turning right sides out – the clipping helps neaten the corners as vinyl is quite bulky.
fold the edges of the flap over and seam these in place, on one of the bags I used zig zag for this to hide a blooper I had made.
position the snaps or you could use Velcro to finish the bag…
Thanks to Edward for finally clearing out his aging shirts. The less lovely patterns will be used to line projects but this shirt is worth using on the outside
I decided to keep the placket (learnt that word from Sewing Bee) so just chopped off the collar and sleeves leaving equal rectangles. (I unpicked a dart on the back but this really wasn’t necessary).
I then cut two matching rectangles from lining material (I am finally making headway into the old duvet cover that is flattering up my fabric stash/jumble).
To make a drawstring tube, I cut two strips of fabric from the remnant about 10 inches by 4, hemmed the short ends and ironed under about an inch on the long sides before stitching the long ends a couple of inches down from the top of the outside of front and then back of the shirt
With right sides facing I hemmed the sides and bottom of both shirt and lining (leaving a gap for turning in the bottom of the lining. I boxed the corners with a 2 inch box cut out but this isn’t necessary.
I then turned the lining right sides out and sat it inside the shirt bag. I pinned the tops of the bags together, matching the seams and smoothing out any wrinkly bits before hemming all the way round.
I pulled the shirt through the gap in the lining, stitched the gap shut and then pushed the lining back inside the bag. I ironed and top stitched around the top hem before threading cord loops through the drawstring.
This is an easy project as the shirt front does all the style work needed. I didn’t even stitch the two sides of the front together, just left them buttoned up. This means the user could tuck things between front and lining if desired. And that’s in addition to the original shirt pocket on the front. I did put fabric tabs over the cord ends to use up some of the little remnants but it’s really not required.
Perhaps this is too good for a laundry bag!
On another version I tried using the sleeves to shape the bag by cutting just inside the shoulder seam. It made the bag slightly wider but a bit more fiddly and saggy when finished.
I am ridiculously proud of this make as it really is better than bought
I couldn’t find pillowcases to go with a bargain duvet cover As I had some dotty fat quarters that would complement my purchase I decided to make a trim for some custom pillowcases.
I recycled a retired duvet cover rather than buy sheeting as this was an experiment, gosh it worked out well as the duvet was good quality cotton. I made the trim by combining strips from fat quarters, the new blade in my Rotary cutter made short work of this stage.
I followed the magic pillowcase aka sausage pillow case aka burrito pillow case technique. This sandwiches a 24″ x 40″ panel and a 12″ x 40″ panel around the 2″ x 40″ trim and encloses all the seams to make it a really nice, clean make.
The folding seems ridiculous but it does work. I watched an old Crafty Gemini video as she explains the steps most clearly to me.
A quick sew which turned out more rustic than planned so will be used for picking up logs and coal.
I cut around the pockets of some old jeans making four pads from one pair and trimmed batting and a fabric remnant to match.
Making a sandwich with the pockets and fabric right sides out around the batting. I then sewed the raw edge of a strip of denim binding made from the same jeans (see previous post) to one side of the sandwich then flipped it over and sewed the folded edge to the other side.
The bulk made this a bumpy sew, so next time I will cut a bigger square around pockets and use traditional binding for a neater finish that can grace the kitchen.
Top tip: Although I have run out of insulbright I have worked out that old ironing board covers do just as good a job with less bulk…
A worn out pair of jeans is repurposed so the bottoms of both legs have become bottle carriers.
This is a quick job suitable for heavy weight fabric, such as denim. Lighter weight material will need lining. With straight leg adult jeans the resulting bag is big enough for champagne or magnums if you are feeling generous.
Cut the bottom of the jeans leg off. I took 15 inches off. Cut up one of the seams so you have a rectangle 15 inches tall and the width is the circumference of your jeans leg. Mine were straight leg jeans so plenty big enough for the next step. (If your jeans are skinny, cut a further 3 inch strip from the remaining jeans leg to make your handle)
Cut a strip about three inches wide from the side of the rectangle. Turn in the raw edges , fold this strip in half and then sew down both sides to make a 15 inch long handle. Set aside.
Turn the remaining fabric so the hem is at the top then fold it right sides facing and seam down the side and across the bottom of the rectangle. This leaves the hemmed edge open so it becomes the neat, finished top of your bag. I boxed the corners of my bag, but it isn’t essential.
Sew the ends of the handle inside opposite edges of the top of the bag. I took care to double stitch the handles in to avoid breakages.
As a finishing touch I added a heat transfer vinyl ‘cheers’.
There has to be a better name for this type of bag than ‘bum bag’ or ‘fanny pack’. It is the type that you thread on your belt as a hands free pouch. I am going to call it a Harvey pouch as it is big enough for my dog (Harvey) lead, treats, poo bags, my phone and more.
Materials: I cut a rectangle around the back pocket of some old jeans and a matching rectangle from the leg material plus two strips each three inches wide and about four inches long (to make the belt loops)
I then cut two rectangles from lining material (old duvet, I am being so economic) and a small rectangle to make an inside pocket, then I found a zip the same length as the width of my rectangles – although I could have chopped a longer one down or made a shorter one longer by adding tabs.
To assemble: make the belt loops by folding in the short ends of a strip, then folding it lengthwise in half and finally folding the long edges into the centre before sewing all the way round the edge of your thin layered strip. Repeat for the other strip then position both on the outer one of the denim rectangles.
I want the jeans pocket with its stud and pattern to be on the front of my bag when it is on the belt so sewed my loops on the plain rectangle that I cut from the leg material. I positioned them nearer the top than the bottom and tried to make them equidistant from the edges, bearing in mind the seam allowance I planned
I then made the pocket for inside by folding under the raw edges of my pocket piece and top stitching the top edge, then seaming the three other sides to one of my lining pieces. I positioned the pocket it slightly lower down the panel to keep it out of the way of the zip I was planning. I also ran a seam down the centre of the pocket to make two compartments, each big enough for credit cards.
The zip was sewn, sandwiched between the right sides of an outer and lining rectangle on each side and top stitched before opening out the pieces with lining right sides facing on the left, outer right sides facing on the right and I sewed all the way around leaving a turning gap (yes I remembered to open the zip 3/4s of the way first). I boxed the corners of lining and outer to give the pouch a bit of shape before turning, finishing the lining then flipping the lining inside.
A neat way to use soaps without getting the shower scummy.
Have you lots of soaps in the house although you use shower gel these days? Here is a quick sew to help use them up…
Cut a strip of towelling (or flannel) that is two inches wider than the soap bars you have to use up and three times longer. I cut my towelling so that one edge was ready hemmed, otherwise sew a rolled hem along one width.
Now fold the towel strip in thirds and then ease the folds out to make an envelope shape just bigger than a soap bar. The hemmed edge should be inside the overlap, ready for sewing
Next cut a length of cord to form a hanging loop. Fold the cord in half with the ends sticking outside one side and pin the loop inside so it doesn’t get caught up in your seam sewing
Sew both open sides with a quarter inch seam allowance, then turn the envelope inside out so the hemmed fold is now outside and the hanging loop is showing and you have a little packet to tuck your soap bar in…
After a few showers when the soap has been dispersed and the towel is nicely soapy you can launder and/or tuck in another soap bar … you might even use up those hotel soaps you keep collecting!