Sewchet

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Tutorial: How To Make A Faux Sheepskin Bag / Tote

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No, your eyes don’t deceive you, this IS yet another post featuring the lilac faux sheepskin fabric I bought last month. It really has been the fabric that keeps on giving as I have made not only a full length coat and two pairs of mittens, but also TWO tote bags!

If you would like to make your own, either from similar fabric or from a thick fleecy fabric, here’s a quick tutorial on how I did it.

Materials: Approx. 3/4yd of 45″ wide Faux Sheepskin or fleece

2 Magnetic Snaps

Cut pieces from your fabric following the diagram below (which is NOT to scale). If your fabric has a nap or a directional pattern, be sure to take this into account when cutting out.

You may have to adjust the size of the pocket to suit your particular ‘phone – this pocket is the perfect size for a normal (not ‘plus’) iPhone and you may well have to make it larger for a Samsung Galaxy or similar.

Sheepskin Tote Pattern

This photo shows the main pieces; front and back, gusset and interior mobile ‘phone pocket.

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Seam allowances are 1/4″ throughout.

All raw edges are left unfinished and the seams are constructed with WRONG sides together, making a feature of them.

If you have your own labels, sew them to all pieces before any construction takes place. This avoids any fiddly sewing later on.

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Sew your pocket to the inside of the BACK section of the bag around three sides only, leaving the top open.

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Apply the magnetic tabs according to the manufacturer’s instructions, using the photos as a guideline for placement.

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Pin a tab to the top centre of the front and back sections.

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Sew in place.

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Pin the gusset to the back section with WRONG sides together. There will be surplus fabric to cut off later.

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Stitch with 1/4″ seam allowance, being careful not to get any puckers as you sew around the corners.

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Pin the front to the remaining long edge of the gusset and stitch as before.

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Trim the corners off the front and back sections to give a rounded finish.

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Onto the handles.

Fold in half lengthways with WRONG sides facing in.

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Stitch close to the raw edges.

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Pin handles about 3″ in from the sides of the bag, on the INSIDE.

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BASTE loosely in place if necessary, although I just pinned them.

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Take your 4 little squares – these will cover the ends of the handles to lend a neat finish on the inside of the bag.

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You will need to remove as much of the pile on the reverse side of the fabric as possible. This will reduce the bulk and leave a flatter surface.

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Pin each square over the raw edge of a handle and stitch in place, crossing your stitching to strengthen the base of the handles as shown below.

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And that’s all there is to it!

This is the first one I made.

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I even managed to make a second one using the rest of the scraps. There wasn’t enough to cut the main sections out in one piece, so I had to make a seam for the centre front and back, and I actually prefer this version.

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I added my label in a slightly different position and it looks just as good.

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The inside is nice and roomy with the all-important interior pocket to keep your ‘phone easily accessible.

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The magnetic tabs give an element of security and stop the bag falling open.

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As always, your own label adds a professional touch both inside and out.

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The handles are short enough not to have the bag dragging on the floor (if you’re around the 5″ mark like me!), but also long enough for you to carry over your shoulder if that is your preference.

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One of these is to be a Christmas gift for family and the other one may well end up in my Stitching Santa parcel, depending on who I get in the draw.

Which is your favourite?


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Faux Fur Gilet

  
My Minerva Crafts sponsored make for February is this luxurious faux fur gilet. If you want to read the full article, things have changed slightly and you need to click on the link below which will take you directly to it on the Bloggers Network: –

https://www.minervacrafts.com/blogger-network/post/faux-fur-gilet

Let me know if it works and don’t forget to come back here and tell me what you think of it:)

(By the way – WordPress has just informed me that this is my 200th post!)


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Sunday Sevens #74

In the West Country the weather was awful this week and both the Saturday and Sunday football matches were cancelled. The dogs refused to set foot outside the front door and No. 2 Son didn’t want to go to the stables either which meant we had a rare weekend with both of The Boys and Mr H-L at home. This gave us the opportunity to do indoor ‘stuff’ (which doesn’t include technology) and I didn’t even turn my computer on – a reasonable excuse for my Sunday Sevens being late!

Hop over to Threads & Bobbins to see what Sunday Sevens is all about and how you can join in if you want to.

  1. Daughter paid us a brief visit to collect her bobble hat, much needed in this weather.

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2. Mr H-L and No.1 Son worked from home a couple of days this week and this is what I rustled up for them at lunchtime. No wonder they’d rather not go into the office!

champagne lunch

3. I spotted these beautiful crocuses (not ‘croci’ as it’s not derived from Latin!) on a dog walk at the beginning of the week before the dogs vetoed any further walks.crocuses

4. The dogs hate the wind and rain so much and this photo says it all really. Fifi climbed up onto the hearth and stared at us until Mr H-L obliged her by lighting the fire!Fire dog

5. I managed to finish this month’s project for the Minerva Craft Blogger Network -a fur gilet with gold Paisley lining. A full blog post will follow next week.fur gilet

6. I adapted the bobble hat pattern to make a beanie for No.1 Son in his requested colour, Olive Green. One row of cables was dispensed with so the hat was less pointed and more rounded like a beanie should be.green bobble hat

7. I was given this set of notebooks for Christmas, but they are so lovely I can’t bear to use them! They each feature a different vintage McCall’s pattern envelope on the front and back covers.sewing pattern notebooks

8. The inside pages are all different, too, some printed with paper pattern excerpts.pattern books inside

9. Yet another bobble hat was cast on, this time in navy blue for a birthday present for a good friend. Navy is NOT a great colour to knit with in the evening.

navy bobble hat WIP

10. How do you get from a skein of wool to a yarn cake?skein and cake

11. With a swift and yarn winder, of course! I treated myself to this quality wooden swift a couple of weeks ago to give Mr. H-L’s arms a break. swift

12. The yarn winder was a Christmas present and, between them, they make short work of a previously tedious job.yarn winder

13. I’m still managing to squeeze in a few rows here and there on the scarf to match my pink bobble hat which I made to match my Raspberry Pink boots:)cable scarf

pink boots

That’s all folks! Are you more productive in the Winter because of the enforced staying-in?


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Cable Knit Bobble Hat With Alpaca Fur Pom Pom

I’m not sure when I first noticed the trend for hand-knitted bobble hats with a fur pom pom, last Winter I think, but I know I was grateful for its return.

As any child of the Seventies will attest, the bobble hat was a staple of our Winter wardrobe and was invariably knitted by Grandma whilst we made the pom pom ourselves the traditional way – with two polo-shaped cardboard circles.

70s bobble hat pattern

Looking back at this vintage 70s pattern (above), why do I think the models look embarrassingly outmoded compared to the same style today (below)? I mean, the yellow cable hat is virtually identical in both photos and yet, somehow, the models look ‘cool’ in the modern photograph.

Debbie Bliss Bobble Hat

No doubt we’ll look back in another forty years and laugh but, for now, I embrace the return of the bobble hat.

The hat I had in mind had to be cable, which meant it had to be a knitting pattern rather than crochet, and it had to be written for Aran weight yarn because I had a huge ball left over from a jumper project.

So, having Googled and Pinterest-ed my way through hundreds of bobble hat patterns, I decided on the one above which is a free pattern on the Debbie Bliss website.

Sometimes I work straight from the digital pattern on my iPad but, in this case, I printed it out as it was only one A4 page long.

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The tweedy yarn was Stylecraft Special Aran With 20% Wool in ‘Oatmeal’ which is a neutral, goes-with-anything shade of beige.

I chose an Alpaca fur pom pom from Toft in ‘Stone’ to match, rather than contrast with, the hat. It’s the lightest, softest pom pom you could ever imagine!

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I gave you a sneak preview in my #sundaysevens post, but here it is again under construction.

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The pattern called for straight 5mm needles which meant a seam would be necessary – I remembered to reverse the seam for the part of the ribbing that would fold back and be on show!

Can you knit cable in the round on a pair of circulars? I don’t know.

Anyway, before seaming I would normally block my knitting but this time I hesitated as I like the raised texture of the cables and thought blocking might flatten them to a degree.

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I asked No.2 Son to model it for me so I could see what it looked like on the head without having been blocked.

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I like it – so it’s staying unblocked:)

Ready for some photos?

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Just look at the size of that pom pom!

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I love the band of wide 2×2 ribbing.

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The cables are suitably reminiscent of the 70s when they were the height of fashion and the fur pom pom brings it bang up to date.

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A quick ruffle through with the fingers and all signs of hat-hair are banished!

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Yup, this is a new favourite and I can see myself making several more in different colours to go with different outfits.

Has anyone else succumbed to the lure of the pom pom bobble hat recently?