Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Mother's Day 2016

Happy Mother's Day!

I knew I wouldn't get to keep this project when my mum caught a glimpse of it.  So this is what I gave her, a handmade sewing bag.

It's made up of 22 Japanese folded patchwork blocks; I've used three complimentary black fabrics for the outer circles and four different pink fabrics for the inner squares.  I've finished the bag with handles made from one fat quarter which repeats different square patterns.

I love the shape of this bag and it's a great size for carrying some wool or other light sewing bits.  I followed a pattern I bought from the Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate (several years ago now) and it took me over 40 finger numbing hours to complete.  The only machine sewing was in making the handles and securing them to the bag (I've used the big buttons to cover this stitching).  

For a first attempt at this technique I am quite impressed with the end result, and my mum really loves her present.  I learnt some new skills, like how to use rotary cutters, and resurrected some old hand sewing skills.  The reason I picked this project to do now is to practice cutting fabric for a patchwork quilt which is my main soft furnishings project for this year.  And it's already underway!

For anyone wanting to have a go at some Japanese patchwork, I found a good blog here which has a step by step process of how to make these blocks.  You could sew them up however you like, to make whatever it is you want!  I've you're going to make anything that should have some strength then simply use a thin layer of wadding underneath each square like I did here.  And use a good thimble for putting your blocks together!

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