Hi! It's Ebony
, and today I'm going to share this awesome tote-orial for making a Craft Project Carry Along.
The idea for this project came out of a recent flurry of die-cutting videos that I recorded for my YouTube channel
. Whenever I make these videos, I always end up with a ton of die-cut pieces that I store in sandwich bags. Well, these bags go sliding around out of their bins and end up on the floor, and I found myself craving a way to keep these die cuts organized so they stay where I put them.
Also in my experimentations, I generate a fair amount of small scraps, extra blocks, and partial strips of fabrics. I love turning these into useful objects rather than leave them languishing in my scrap boxes. Behold, the Craft Project Carry Along!
I made this project in two sizes; one for gallon sized bags, and the other for quart sized bags. Today's tote-orial will focus on the quart-sized version. If there's interest, I'll post instructions for the gallon size as well.
The quart-sized carry along finishes at approximately 10" wide x 9-1/2" tall, and features a velcro pocket in the back and 8 quart bags for storage.
You can really use any orphan blocks or die cuts for this project; you can use strips and larger pieces to bring your fabric up to the right size to make this project.
Approx. 5/8 yard fabric scraps
Sizzix Bigz XL 25" Die - Strips, 1 1/2" Wide (Die #656680)
Sizzix Bigz XL 25" Die - Strips, 2 1/2" Wide (Die #658328)
Sizzix Bigz XL 25" Die - Strip, 3 1/2" Wide (Die #657898)
8 quart-sized zip bags
8" length of Velcro Fabric Fusion (this is a no-sew, heat-activated hook and loop fastener)
Two large craft buttons
20" length of 1/4" wide ribbon
1" masking tape
Sizzix Bigz Die - Half-Square Triangles, 2 1/2" Finished Square (Die #657611
Cutting and Assembly
The central feature of this carry along is a four-patch pinwheel block, made using the half square triangle dies. Once you have the pinwheel assembled, you want to use a combination of strips and scrap fabric to make a large rectangle that is at least 9-1/2" x 26". You can make this piece taller or wider, but if it's any smaller, the quart bags will not fit inside.
|Fabrics from Fandango by Kate Spain for Moda and Robert Kaufman Kona in Sand.
Layer your pinwheel rectangle with batting and backing and quilt as desired. This is a perfect opportunity for you to practice some freemotion, or just keep it really simple and quilt with your walking foot.
With the inside facing up, fold over the right edge by 6", and mark with a pin.
Position the hook side of the Velcro underneath the leading edge of this flap, about 1/2' from the cut edge. Follow the manufacturer's directions to fuse the velcro to the inside.The loop side will be attached much later.
Fold over the left side of the carry along so that it is even with the pocket fold. Mark this fold with pins.
Take the 20" of ribbon and fold under one raw edge. Locate the center of the pocket flap and pin the ribbon to this position through a single layer of your carry all, and secure the ribbon to the exterior with stitching.
Cut two 2-1/2" x 9-1/2" strips from a contrasting fabric. With right sides together and using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew the strips together along one long edge. Press the seam open, then fold and press raw edges to the center. This will be your inside spine for the quart bags.
|Sorry, forgot to photograph the orange spine for this project!
With raw edges face down, center the seam of your spine over the pins you marked on the left side. Baste the spine at the top and bottom.
At this point, you can treat this piece like any other quilt, and bind the raw edges using your normal method of binding. I use 2-1/2" binding strips, and this was a perfect way to also use up shorter strips that might not get used otherwise.
Finishing the Carry Along
Take the loop side of the Velcro and fuse it to the right edge on the inside of the carry along, following the manufacturer's directions. This should be positioned right next to the binding.
Take four of the quart-sized bags and stagger them so the zipper tabs are next to each other. Use the masking tape to tape the bags together along the bottom edge, on the front and the back. The tape provides stability and strength, and allows you to treat all the bags as a single unit. Repeat for the other four bags.
Insert one set of bags under the left side of the spine, and the other set under the right side of the spine.
Use short strips of masking tape to temporarily secure the bags into the spine. Using a narrow zipper foot or hem stitch foot, lengthen your stitch and sew close to the edge of the spine, making sure that you are stitching on the masking tape, and not the quart bag. Repeat for the other set of bags. Remove the temporary strips of tape.
On the right side, fold up the pocket, matching the Velcro. Stitch up both sides of the pocket, just to the inside of the binding, so you aren't stitching through too many layers. Reinforce the top edge, as this seam will get a lot of stress from opening and closing the velcro.
To position the buttons, fold over the left side and pull up the ribbon so you can see where to place the buttons. Stitch the buttons in place.
To close the carry along, just wrap the buttons with the ribbon in a figure eight. Cut the ribbon to a shorter length if desired.
And there you have it! A wonderful Craft Project Carry Along, with 8 quart-sized bags and a pocket with a Velcro closure.
You can use the pocket to store things like your die pick, a tape measure, or your trusty silver marker (because you ARE marking your dies, right?)
The Sizzix.com quilting page has helpful videos, tips, and project ideas that can help you incorporate die cutting into your quilting and sewing projects. To learn more, visit the Sizzix Quilting page at: http://www.sizzix.com/shop/sizzixquilting.