Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Back to School- Quick and Easy Projects

I think the stores around me here in Western New York started with their "Back to School" advertising around July 5th...right after the red, white and blue stuff went on sale.  Really?  It just seemed a bit too early for me.  I know that many of you out there in blog land are on year round school schedules but these little projects today can be made at anytime and might just get the kiddies excited about returning to the classroom.
The first is a cute crayon roll-up that I found over at The Pleated Poppy.

I have made these roll-ups in the past for crayons and colored pencils without a pattern but I loved this tutorial.  Those of you who are new to sewing will find the directions easy to follow with lots of pictures.  Get the directions HERE.
How about an insulated lunch bag?  I am not sure if kids carry lunch boxes or bags but when I was a teacher, I would have loved one of these bags.  There are lots of lunch bag patterns and tutorials out there but my favorite is Ruthann Stilwell's pattern, Lucy's Lunch Bunch for Susan Rooney Patterns.
This pattern has excellent directions and diagrams and includes a reusable snack sack, napkin and utensil wrap.  These would make really nice gifts for teachers or anyone who likes to "brown bag" it with style.

Everyone could use an easy to sew pencil case, don't you think?  This little triangle case is one of my favorites.
The tutorial from A Spoonful of Sugar is excellent with lots of photos and easy to follow directions. Get the directions for this scrap friendly project HERE.  
These little goodies are easy enough to complete in no time.  I am planning to make some up to have on hand for last minute gifts....the holidays are just around the corner!
Enjoy these last few weeks of summer!


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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Knot Handle Reversible Tote- A great project for beginners

A while back, I was contacted and asked about using one of my patterns for a class of young sewing students.  The pattern was and continues to be one of my best sellers. I think that the popularity of  The Knot Handle Reversible Tote lies in the fact that it is appealing to those who are sewing beginners and those who are experienced alike.


The tote has no zippers or complicated seams and can be made in a short period of time.  Best of all?  It looks great...not at all like some homemade bags.  It is roomy but not so large that it weighs you down.

I have made these using decorator fabrics, denims and cottons and have taught this tote to girls as young as 10 years old with no sewing experience.  It really is that easy!  Wouldn't these make great gifts for that college freshman heading off to campus?

This pattern even went to Ethiopia as part of a mission project.  The missionaries teach the women to sew and then bring their products back to the US to sell.  The money earned from the sales is then returned to the women.  Their goal is to earn enough to buy a truck so that they can get their farm products to market for sale.  I am thrilled to be part of this worthy project.


I wanted to write about this pattern because I was so excited to receive a photo of the finished totes made by the young ladies that I mentioned at the beginning of this post.  I think that they did a fantastic job!  I am looking forward to seeing what they make next!

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