New Year’s dye makeover

For my first creative act of the new year, I was inspired to take few items whose colors did not thrill me and put them in a vat of dye. The Pantone color for 2014 is Radiant Orchid, so I was inspired to choose a dye in that color family. From my stash, I did a mix of half Periwinkle and half Lilac. More blue than Radiant Orchid, but I just wanted to use what I had on hand.

Here’s what I choose to dye.
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I made the tote bag a few years ago with hopes of selling it in a pop-up boutique that was in conjunction with fundraiser that had an orange (the fruit) theme. It’s a well made, functional, fully lined bag that even has a zippered, padded pocket for an iPad. The t-shirt was part of a series I dyed to sell this holiday season. The grey and blue ones sold, but I had two brick red ones left. I always like to throw in a few more things to take full advantage of the vat, so I put in a yard of cotton trim and a fat quarter of cotton fabric folded and bound with two pool tiles.

There is the results.
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I’m quite happy!
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Piedmont Studio is always available for dyeing sessions! Contact me if you’re interested!

Now trending – cat pouches!

Is it just my imagination, or are cats suddenly super cool? I have been noticing cute cat pictures and videos everywhere on social media, many posted by young, hip, style makers. I think there was a time when only “crazy cat ladies” freely admitted their love for cats. I’ve always loved cats, so I’m glad they are getting the public adoration they deserve.

So I thought now is a good time to use up my cat fabric straps and make some pom pom pouches with them. Maybe some cool cat lover will buy one!
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They are all made with over-dyed cat print fabric and tie-dyed fabric. They are lined with a contrasting print fabric.
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All three of these pouches are for sale in my Etsy shop.

These square bags are not square!

I seem to alternate between using new fabric and fabric from my stash. These two bags were made from fabric from my altered fabric stash. I had a lot of fun piecing together patchwork designs to make these classic square totes.

This varied patchwork is made from fabric that was tie-dyed in several small batches.

This varied patchwork is made from fabric that was tie-dyed in several small batches.

This square patchwork was made from fabric from JoAnn's that I bleached and over-dyed.

This square patchwork is made from fabric from JoAnn’s that was bleached and over-dyed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They are lined with hand-dyed fabric and have two interior pockets. They are have a layer of cotton batting for stability.
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Here are some close ups.

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These bags can be snagged in my Etsy Shop.

Refreshed – new handles for Sandra

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There are few things I love more than knowing that a bag that I have made has been well-loved and well-used. My bags are made of fabric, and while I pride myself on craftsmanship and functionality, it’s just a fact that fabric does not last forever. My dear friend Sandra came to me with a bag that I had given to her probably about eight years ago. The handles were completely broken. The sight of those broken handles distressed me, but I also felt pleased that she had used so much that the handles had worned out.
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Now Sandra lives green, she always looks for ways to save and re-use. I love that instead of tossing the bag out, she brought it back to it’s maker, and said, “The rest of the bag is still in perfectly good shape. Is there any way to replace the handles?” Argh, repairs and alterations, the two things I dislike using my sewing skills for. But because it’s Sandra and one of my bags, of course, I will think of some way to replace the handles.

I went through my hand-dyed fabric stash and was pleased to find a piece that would work perfectly with the purse. I removed the old handles. Instead of sticking the new ones between the layers, I sewed them on the outside.
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Now I’ve been inspired to “refresh” my own bags with worn-out handles!
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Sandra cooking on the left, our friend, Audrey in the middle, and me on the right.

Sandra cooking on the left, our friend, Audrey in the middle, and me on the right.

cool cat bag

I ordered two cat print fabrics online because I wanted to make a tote for my son’s girlfriend who likes cats. I decided I would choose which one I would use for Ryley’s tote once the fabrics arrived, and I would make another bag with the other print. I just finished the other bag and put it in my Etsy shop.
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The fabric was originally grey, black and white with accents of pink. I over-dyed it with deep yellow and bright pink. The bag is fully lined with pink polkadot fabric and it has one interior pocket.
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The dimensions are 8″ x 8″ x 2″. You can throw it in the washer and dryer!
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Here’s the totebag I made for Ryley. She likes purple.
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A true mixed bag

This bag incorporates many things I love. The reverse applique is inspired by the techniques in the Alabama Stitch Book. Every part of this purse is sewn by hand. It’s made from recycled T-shirts. The top layer is hand-dyed, the middle layer is a souvenir T-shirt with a kitchy seaside image and the inside layer is a well-loved sweatshirt.
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I love to knit and felt. The handles and the bottom are made from felted stash yarn.
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Despite the handmade nature of this bag, it is extremely durable and can even be washed!

This bag is for sale on Etsy.