Little Bag Giveaway!

I am excited to be participating in my second Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day. I am offering a simple “Passport Bag” based on a design from “Simple Bags, Japanese Style” by Akiyo Kajiwara. I had a stash of Asian inspired fat quarters from Andover fabrics that I thought would pair perfectly with this pattern.

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I always like to add some of my hand-dyed fabrics to my projects. The appliqué circle is made with some tie-dyed fabrics and the lining is an over-dyed fabric from the Andover collection.
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The back is one piece of fabric.

The back is one piece of fabric.

The strap is 1 1/4" x 50".  The dimensions are 7 1/2" x 10".

The strap is 1 1/4″ x 50″. The dimensions are 7 1/2″ x 10″.

ANYONE can enter the giveaway! To enter just tell me your favorite summer drink in the “comments” section. If you are unable to leave a comment, you can email me your answer at loribeilby@gmail.com. If you want to enter TWICE, “like” Modern Home Ec on Facebook (just let me know you have done so in your comment.) The giveaway is open through May 16, 2014. The winner will be notified by May 18th. You can enter more giveaways at Sew Mama Sew!

I also have a few of these bags for sale in my Etsy shop.

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!

Tie dye for the mature woman

Both my mom and my aunt appreciate my creativity and always enjoy getting handmade gifts from me. This year I decided to dye some t-shirts for them. They are both lovely older women and not “old hippies”, so I fashioned their shirts in their favorite colors palette and used nice 3/4 sleeve, crew necks from Jones New York. I used one of my favorite dye techniques (actually no “tyeing” involved), low-water immersion dyeing from Color by Accident by Ann Johnston.

Here’s the results.
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The one with the gold is for my aunt. She attends a lot of University of Washington footballs games. Maybe she could wear this shirt. I left the gold out of my mom’s, even though she a Huskie fan too. She now restricts her color palette to colors that compliment her beautiful grey hair.
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Now let’s hope they don’t see this post, at least until after Christmas!

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.