Here's a fast and inexpensive way to create a wonderfully calming gift - your own soothing spa-style eye pillows. Each one uses just small amounts of pretty fabrics plus a bit of trim. We opted for fun, colorful combinations, pulling our prints from a Jolly Bar bundle from Fat Quarter Shop - a perfectly sized precut for this project at 5" x 10". You could certainly also go with luxury fabrics such as satin and silk. A lightly scented filling of rice and flax seeds gives them the perfect weight and aroma.
I've worn glasses since I was about eight years old, which means I have absolutely no memory of what it is like to wake up and be able to see across the room. It also means, I'm a big fan of eyeglass cases because it's the best way I've found to keep track of my eyeglasses or sunglasses. Plus, it protects them when I need to toss a pair of into my bag. This fast and easy project would also make a perfect gift or a craft fair/boutique item to sell. I say this since everyone I showed my sample to wanted to keep it!
It's time to bust out some scraps! This super cute project targets some of the smaller pieces in your bag of favorite fabric bits. Our project takes an ordinary washcloth to the next level by adding a very pretty patchwork bound edge. We created a standard single fold bias binding and attached it in the traditional two-step method to a soft terry cloth center. There are links within the article below to full tutorials on both making and attaching bias binding. The extra-special part is how the binding is created from a patchworked panel. Pull out some of your favorite skinny scraps, piece them together side by side, then cut the bias strips from this assembled fabric panel.
A "pouf" is a marshmallow-like ottoman. They've been the rage in decorating for a few years now, bringing unexpected color, shape, texture, and fun into a room. We have a full-size, extra cushy square pouf project you can try for your own trendy decorating statement, but in the meantime, we miniaturized one as a clever pincushion. Ours uses Layer Cake squares as an easy way to gather a wonderful mixture of perfectly coordinating color and pattern, but the pieces needed are quite tiny – so bring out your scrap bag and dive in for all your favorites!
The pencil. Do you think it has nightmares about being chased by digital keyboards? There are so many convenient electronic ways to jot a quick note, send a message, or write down your innermost thoughts. But I still love my pencils. And, recent studies have shown the act of handwriting, instead of typing on a keyboard, is actually better for your brain. It activates a unique neural circuit, which makes learning easier. So, if you needed an excuse other than “extreme cuteness” to give our Triangle Pencil Case a try, you can now put it down as a brain booster.
This cute round zippered case falls neatly under our ScrapBusters heading since you need just a few bits of fabric and batting plus a zipper. It also qualifies for our You Asked 4 It category because quite a few of you spotted the full-circle zippered case we made for our original zipper-in-the-round tutorial, and you wanted to know how to put the whole thing together – with a lining. You asked. We answered.
The bedroom dresser top. In catalog and magazine photos, it's always so clean – a single rose in a vase adorning one pristine corner. In reality, this is one of the most cluttered, easy-to-lose-things-on surfaces in the house! Scatterings of coins, broken jewelry, forgotten notes, safety pins, missing buttons, dusty photos, watches in need of batteries... you name it, it's likely to end up on the dresser top. We've come up with a beautiful way to help you organize at least some of it. We're not promising miracles; you are still going to have to take those watches in for batteries one of these days, but at least you'll have a place to collect a few things. We call our cute fabric basket a Coin Catcher & Jewelry Minder, but you're welcome to let it catch and mind whatever you'd like.
The cloth napkin; you simply can't ask for an easier home décor project. If you are just getting started in sewing or teaching someone new, napkins are an instant-gratification winner. If you're already a pro, they're a fast and fun project. And this time of year, when the holidays are almost upon us, they're a perfect host/hostess gift to whip out in an afternoon before your evening festivities. We kick ours up a notch with beautiful decorative stitching all around the edge and a coordinating fabric napkin ring that "ties" them altogether.
One easy way to use up odd-sized scraps of pretty fabric is to patchwork them together into an interesting pillow. This pretty pillow is an example of one made using a grid. The design is the same on both the front and back, however, we turned one grid panel 90º to create an interesting effect when the pillow is viewed from the side. We originally dove into our scrap stash and pulled out a Kate Spain layer cake bundle from her old Central Park collection for Moda Fabrics, because we loved the huge variety of bright colors and bold graphics, but the concept will work with any pile of scraps you think look good together. Just goes to show there is almost no cute little scrap without a future in one of your creations.
Wide, tie-front belts – sometimes called obi belts, add a touch of bohemian style to your wardrobe. We used long quilting stitches to accent our fabric's design motifs, then placed a few pretty seed beads at focal points. Faux suede end caps provide the background for the wooden buttons that combine with long suede ties to create the belt's closure. We've packed a huge amount of interest in a very small space.