Denim ProjectsOur local sewing guild president issued a denim challenge. "Make and share an item made with 50% or more denim."
So here are my challenge contributions.
The first thing I did was solicit denim to recycle - son and spouse had many to-be-discarded levis/denim jeans so I started cutting them apart.
My first project would be placemats. I decided to make 12 place mats - 6 blue themed and 6 red themed.
The denim pieces were sewn into placemat sized pieces for the top of the placemat.
Once the denim had been cut apart I ordered interfacing and bandanas for the back side of the placemats.
So with a dozen place mats and napkins completed, I decided to tackle some other projects using the denim that I had collected. The next items were all constructed from recycled denim.
The next project started because I saw a project on Pinterest that was created from pieces of denim woven into a piece of fabric that would be suitable for the bag or purse. The original had folded denim used as the woven fabric. I decided to just use a single layer to avoid the bag from being too heavy.
The first task was to cut the strips and then to weave the strips into a solid unit that could be cut appropriately to make the bag that I had planned. After weaving the strips, I used a scrolling stitch to stabilize the weaving. Once the fabric was stabilized I cut the bag from the large piece of fabric.
To locate additional details regarding how to make a simple bag using an affordable pattern go to the post on this website: "Sewing Hack - Thanks to Margaret Knight" at http://bit.ly/DIYbag101. Exact size does not matter -- adapt to fit your purposes.
Beatrix Potter's characters were represented along with The Ugly Duckling, Little Red Riding Hood, The Three little Pigs, and the Three Bears.
Since when I visit schools and when I plan to use this book bag, I generally do not carry a separate purse so the inside of this bag has pockets, including a key pocket with a clip for keys to be attached. Other pockets are designed for a iPad, ID, money, and any necessary cards.
The next project was a 5 x7 case intended to hold together note cards. I often attend meetings where I want to take notes but the meeting notes does not fill and entire notebook and I am left with a couple of pages filled and then have to search through pages to find the information I want. So instead I take notes on note cards but then ... want to keep the filled cards separate from the blank ones, until I am able to file them with the appropriate organization. This pouch was the perfect thing to keep those cards organized.
Inside is just one cloth divider which is utilized to keep the cards which have been used separated from those that are blank for future use. A pen can be clipped to the cloth divider.
A third project was a simple small purse with a shoulder strap.
A small purse was created with more denim. I experimented with making the flap, that is folded over the top, a little narrower so as not to interfere with the shoulder straps. The inside has a multitude of little pockets to hold keys, wallet, etc. The lining was made from small pieces of blue fabric left over from a previous project.
The next project was one intended to figure out the often pictured bags made from the legs of denim jeans. I had many that I had cut from the denim jeans previously donated.
The pieces were eight inches high which should be high enough for a suitable bag. What I did not factor in was the flare that most legs have -- narrower at the bottom or narrowing to the top. I made one and the flare, even a gentle flare, created a problem as the lining was created and folded. So I recut the fabric making the width standard on the way up and cutting out the heavy seam so as to make the boxing at the bottom more manageable. But in doing so, the width of the pant leg seemed all to small for a bag the size I wanted. These two were created with those recut pant legs and lined and cuffed with fabric and lace. They would be suitable for a small gift, or nursery items (cotton balls, q-tips, etc.).
The final project was to make Christmas stockings. Simply cut around a favorite stocking you own or search, on the Internet, for a pattern the size you want. (I like the pattern linked from this tutorial.) I did not line the denim portion of the sock as it seemed heavy enough without added padding or a lining. The toe accent and the pocket were sewn on before stitching the front and the back together. The cuff was sewn as a separate section much as one would sew a cuff on a pillow case. The cuff can be any width one wishes. The seam is hidden when the cuff is folded down over the stocking body.
I made three of the stockings -- all pretty much the same. However with the pocket it is pretty easy to make some additions to change the focus of the stocking and to individualize the stocking to coordinate with a particular theme, book, or other gift.
For example the stocking on the left has the addition of a fabric rose, and a cardinal locket that is an added gift for a collector of cardinals of all types. The center stocking is intended for a young reader who LOVES penguins. I will add the stocking to a gift that will include:
Those items are the only ones I made for this challenge but there are many more items that can be made from recycled denim: aprons, book covers, iPad covers, all sizes of purses, and hot pads. Check http://www.pinterest.com/barbara0101/make-it-with-denim/ for some other useful ideas. As with the projects we shared here - take the idea and adapt it for yourself. If you have a great project, please share a picture and any description/instructions you would like to share. Thanks.
Visit Greenfroggifts on Etsy for the latest choices.
Order cookie cutters, aprons, and baker's cloths from Green Frog Gifts -- unique gifts -- many $10.00 or under.