My friend Kerry Goulder has a new book I want to share with you today. It's packed full of fun ideas, easy to follow instructions and scrumptious photos of creative goodness. Kerry is a sewing pattern designer and this book highlights some absolutely fun projects. Even if you aren't a regular sewist (seamstress/sewer), you can find inspiration in Kerry's creativity. The projects in Sew Tales to Stitch and Love focus on not only the DIY of these adorable sewing projects, but also the story telling and make believe we have to share when we create.
Kerry sent me a big goodie box full of sewing supplies along with the book so I could check it out. I absolutely love all the different projects she has created. She also invited a whole pile of awesome creative people to join in a week of sewing fun to review her book and try some of the patterns. I am posting today along with 3 other talented ladies. Make sure to take a look at the links at the end of this article to see what others are saying and making.
Browsing through the book I fell in love with a little “Adventure Pack”. It's a doll sized backpack, perfect for storing small treasures. So I decided to try to make it. I'm the girl that doesn't read directions and just wings it. I learn from my mistakes… and there are many. Luck for me, Kerry has included tons of photos along with the written instructions for every project. I would love to try to make the dolls, but I'm not THAT great a “sewist” yet… I know enough to fake it. Which also means, when following sewing directions, I don't always know the terminology – so again, pictures really help.
I'm not going to walk you through the step by step of making this mini backpack… that's what the book is for. But I will show you some of the details I love.
One of the coolest things about this mini backpack, I made it entirely from recycled clothing my daughter has outgrown. I save clothes that have details I love or stains that make it unwearable for someone else so I can repurpose the fabric. So I gathered up a pile of fun kid colors and started cutting. The book also comes with the actual patterns. I have never used a pattern from a book, so I didn't really have a plan for enlarging to the proper scale. Here's what I suggest you do.. not what I did.
TIP: To enlarge a pattern from this book:
- Make a copy of the page/s with the pattern at regular size.
- Cut out the individual pieces
- Copy and enlarge each piece as appropriate
I won't go through what I actually did… 12 copies later, ha!
The marking pen came in really handy. I've never used a fabric pen like this, I'm excited to own one now. Dritz is awesome! See the crazy scissors back there? Thanks to Fiskars, I have a new pair of mom only scissors, but I had to protect them.
Because I used a jersey fabric for much of this project, there are some things I learned along the way that I would do different next time.
- Use a stiffening layer or webbing between the top flap fabric pieces so the flap is not so flimsy.
- Know what a “top stitch” is.
- Definitely sew the button on BEFORE you sew the inside of the pack to the outside.
- Make sure you have the right sized eyelets. The jersey fabric stretches a ton, so I used a little bit of fabric glue around the edges of the eyelet holes to keep them from fraying.
I decided this little pack would make a fantastic Mini Creative Kit. I remember being a 6 year old with a love for teeny tiny colored pencils, stickers and notebooks. So I created a little mini book (I'll share that another day), and filled the pack with tiny creative fun. I'm saving it for a Christmas gift for my daughter.
(I'll show you how to make the mini book later AND I have a printable for you to use.)
Find more creative from the others talking about Sewing Tales to Stitch and Love by Kerry Goulder:
Special thanks to all the companies that sponsored this week long event: