Sunday, January 29, 2012

January is National Craft Month!

I love knitting, but I started cheating this month. I bought my mom a sewing machine for Christmas, and figured I would test it out by teaching myself to sew a small project. I had absolutely no idea how to even make a straight stitch, but I forged ahead anyway.

My project of choice is the E-reader cover from Urban Threads .  It was the perfect solution for my Nook Cover search, mostly because they used the same Nook model in their example.  Overall, the project had a few frustrating parts to it.  However, for a more experienced sewist, i know it would be easy as pie.  Some of my frustration occcured when I either made the speed of the machine go too fast, or I forgot to hold the thread at the beginning of a stitch, and it quickly disappeared and the needle became unthreaded.  I tried unsuccessfully to use the automatic needle threader, so I just did it the old fashioned way by manually putting the thread through the teeny tiny hole.  I remember when I was 5, my grandmother used to ask me to thread her needles because she couldn't see it.  Luckily, I still have 20/20 vision, so that wasn't a problem.

So, enough of me babbling.  You must be so excited to see the project in action.  Here we go!

Firstly, here is the lovely Sewing machine.  I got a deal on for both a machine and serger for $1 less than the price of the serger on Amazon.  Yaaay me!

Next up, I ordered the fabric from  It is designed by Timeless Treasures, and called Do Ewe Knit.  I thought the motif was fitting, since knitting is my first love.  (I am not a heartless cheater)

I also got thread, elastic and interfacing from there as well. 

I went to Michael's to get Plastic Canvas and a trusty grid ruler.

Lastly, I got these cute sheep buttons from KnitPicks.

So, now that I gathered all of my materials, it was time to begin. I washed the fabric to preshrink it.  But before I washed it, I had to seam the edges.  I started with a zig zag stitch on the red material.  This is where I made my first mistake, but hey I am going to cut it off anyway.  It turns out the bobbin thread got tangled somehow.

So, I then decided to use the serger for the edges instead.  It went by so quickly and worked out even better.  

 My next step was to cut the plastic canvas to the size of the Nook.  I wanted to use plastic instead of cardboard, because I felt that it would be more stable.

Next, I drew out the pattern onto the fabric using tailor's chalk.  There is a 1 inch allowance between the rectangles for the spine.  There is also a 1/2 inch seam allowance around the whole thing. 

Next, I cut the interfacing to the approximate size of the fabric, and ironed it.

Then, I cut the pieces out to the exact measurements to finally prep before sewing.

Here I am seaming the pieces together. I started with the inner pocket, then moved on to the piece of fabric that is behind the Nook, as you can see in this picture.

Once everything was sewn up, it was time to turn the fabric inside out.  How fitting that I used a knitting needle to really get the corners neat.

My seams, aren't perfect, but they are good enough for my first try.  At some point I felt like I ripped out more thread than I actually sewed, but I was determined to finish it.

At this point, I inserted the plastic canvas. 

I also added and an extra layer of fusible fleece to the parts that would be nearest to the screen.

Now, its time for the finishing touches.  I hand stitched the button to the front cover.

Then, I hand stitched the bottom edge, where I inserted the inner stability pieces.

And here is the finished product.  I am so proud of myself.

And to prove to you that I totally didn't give up on knitting.... I finally finished my Fuschia Cabled Earflap Hat.  It fits perfectly when I have curly hair.


And when I have straight hair. 

I actually finished the hat the Friday before Vogue Knitting Live, but just realized that I forgot to post it. 

My next sewing project that I have planned is the Cosmo Bag from Amy Butler's Style Stitches book. It's the beautiful pink one on the cover.  I have read many blog comments about it, stating that it is not well suited for a beginner, and there are a million pieces to cut out, and it takes many hours to complete it. But hey, I really want it.  So, I will forge ahead. Besides, its all a learning experience right?

1 comment:

Necia said...

Beautiful job on your sewing project and your hat! How is that serger? Should I buy one?