Wednesday December 29, 2010

As I mentioned early, I didn’t make very many Christmas presents this year.  I had plans, good intentions, great ideas, lots of inspiration, and no time.  I did chose a few simple projects that I managed to finish amidst all the Christmas rush.  I made my niece a sweet little play pinafore, but I forgot to take a picture of it before I wrapped it.  Maybe I will try to borrow it from Alli and take a few pictures.

So here they are~

I made fabric totes for my Mom and Mother-in-law.

For Mom W. I made two large sized totes out of recycled burlap coffee bean bags.  I really like the way they turned out (am I allowed to say that?!).   I reinforced them with heavy duty interfacing and lined them with cream muslin.

For my Mom I made the whole set of nesting totes, the largest all the way down to the tiny tote.  I love this material and I knew with would go with my mom’s natural, woodsy, earthy decor.

The totes nest down inside of each other.  You can buy this fabulous pattern here.  I know, I know!  I’ve been a little tote crazy lately, but they’re delightful, and useful,  and yes; easy to make… I promise (cross my heart).

Lastly, a little peek at my previously-mentioned “perfectly wrapped, beautifully coordinated” presents .  This year I went with a “brown paper packages tied up with string” look.  I used lace, burlap, twine, cream colored trim, and recycled poetry… the little bird tag was cut out of an old book of poetry that was falling apart.

I already have a stack of projects piled up on my sewing desk and a pages of notes and sketches so… stay tuned… it’s going to be fun!

10 thoughts on “Wednesday December 29, 2010

  1. georgene

    Oh April! I bet your mother LOVED her nesting totes! I looked at the link. How does the pattern work if they send it email? Do you have to enlarge it on graph paper? I’ve love to make a few of those totes for next Christmas. I’ll be staying tune to see what you’re up to. I’m going to need some inexpensive (and hopefully cute) ideas for gifts this coming year. 

  2. inanorchard

    @georgene - The pattern is emailed in PDF form, you download it, and then print the directions from your printer.  No need to enlarge or use graph paper, regular printer paper is fine.  This particular pattern comes with step by step, photographed instructions and the all the measurements needed to cut and assemble the tote.  The totes are basically different sized rectangles that are sewn and cut into the box shape.  I thought it was a good pattern, lots of possibilities for bathrooms, kids rooms, even pantry storage.

  3. georgene

    @inanorchard - Thanks so much for the info April. I hope to make these in the coming months. What kind of material did you use? Was it a canvas? Did you happen to cost it out? Do you remember how much it cost you for all 4 totes? 

  4. inanorchard

    @georgene - Unfortunately I didn’t price out the total cost.  I was using batting and material that was either given to me or bought on the clearance table at The Home Fabric store.  I bought a yard of designer length, home interior weight fabric for $4.99/ yard.  I was able to make all the totes out of that yard.  I’ve also made them out of colored burlap which I bought at Joanne’s for $3.99 a yard.  You want to either use heavier fabrics or line them with heavy weight interfacing to give them body.  There is a layer of thin batting sewn in between the lining and the outer layer, that gives the tote some thickness and stability.  I lined all of my totes with cream muslin (my mom gave me a bolt of it). 

    These are the finished dimensions for the totes:
    Extra small~ 4x4x4 inches
    Small~ 5 x 5.5 x 6 inches
    Medium~ 6 x 6.5 x 7 inches
    Large~ 8 x 9.5 x 9 inches

    Hope that helps!

  5. georgene

    So do you think it’s reasonable that you could make the set for $10.00 or under?

    I hope to make some of those adorable fabric wallets with a zipper, too. So cute!

  6. Shaniqua777

    WOW~ You really should open a store ;) so then when I come home for trips I can just come to your store!! ;) These are beautiful and I agree…your photographing skills are great!!

  7. inanorchard

    @georgene -  I think that making all of the totes for under $10.00 would be a stretch.  Not impossible but difficult.  On the other hand, if you used a coupon for the batting and got your material off a sale table… you might be able to come in under the $10.00 mark.  If anyone can do it Georgene,  it’s you 

  8. grace_to_be

    you are one crafty chick!! those are awesome totes.

    i saw your footprints passing by today and remembered we’d talked before about kelle’s blog. :)

    hope you have a great new year!



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