Small things

I have a month-long break from study, so I hope to find a bit of time on the weekends to complete a few sewing or knitting projects. To celebrate the freedom, I allowed myself to make a couple of little things just for fun, without guilt about the unfinished projects that are still waiting for attention.

I made a simple bag from a pattern in a library book, Sew-licious Little Things by Kate Haxell. The bag needs a lot of fabric for not much carrying capacity, but it is so quick and easy to make that any novice could make one. The only modification I made to the pattern was to trim a little off the bottom of the lining so it does not bunch up inside the bag.

Tied up bag from Sew-licious Little Things by Kate Haxell

It might make a good knitting bag. What would you use it for?

The hardest part was finding two coordinating pieces of fabric large enough in my stash. A 60-centimetre piece is huge in my scrappy stash of fat quarters and 30-centimetre cuts.

I have another little project from Sew-licious Little Things to make this week before I have to return the book to the library.

I also made two more small open-wide zipper pouches as quick gifts. I bought the turtle fabric specifically for this purpose. I used half of what I bought, and now I must decide whether to make another pouch or save the rest for fussy cuts. The floral fabric was bought as a scrap, and the pouch used up all that I had.

Open-wide zippered pouches

You can never have too many pouches for emergency gifts.

Finally, I decided to prove my theory that my ‘Australia’ map pattern could be reduced to create a 4-inch block. Yes, it can!

Australia quilt block made small

Yes, the pieces are tiny!

I used linen for the background and raided my scrap box for the map. Many of the scraps were given to me by Susan, and I had such fun choosing which to use. I sorted the scrap box into piles, chose a state and started sewing. I did not plan too much until the last one or two states.

For this version of the map, I tried to favour blended colours, such as mustard-yellow, rather than pure colours, such as yellow. This was not always possible because of what I had in my scrap box, but I think the complex colours add an interesting richness.

The finished pincushion is 4 inches square and 1½ inches deep, and it is filled with crushed walnut shells. I fused a lightweight interfacing to all the linen pieces to help contain the walnut within the loose-weave fabric. I also fused some lightweight fleece to the underside of the map before assembling the pincushion.

The fabric pieces needed were so small that I was often cutting a scrap from a scrap and then putting the rest of the scrap back in my scrap box. It really made a negligible dent in the scrap pile, but I had fun on a rainy afternoon.


10 thoughts on “Small things

  1. I love the bag, but I think I’d love almost anything made of that fabric. The sides are rather low to hold anything that might roll out, but it would make a good knitting bag so long as your yarn was secure. And that little pincushion is adorable; it would have been perfect for ScrapHappy, as you said. If I remember, I can link back to it next time, if you like?

  2. Your pincushion is SO cute! I’m amazed to think it is only 4″! And one can never have too many zipper pouches! Enjoy your study break- it sounds wonderful!

  3. Love your bag. I just searched my local library on-line and they have it in, so I put a hold on it and collect during the coming week. Thanks for the tip… and your pincushion is cute too 🙂

  4. Giving yourself time to enjoy and sew without constraint during your time off is a wonderful gift. The pin cushion is fantastic; the linen contrasts the rich colors you chose for the states so nicely. I look forward to seeing what else you make from Sew-licious and during your break from study.

  5. I love all your small things! I’ve been a huge fan of your map in the past, so I’m pleased to see another, smaller iteration. It’s charming. Your zip bags will make great gifts. I appreciate a bag that opens wide at the top. It makes so much sense.

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