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Friday, June 21, 2013

Cute Little Zip Case- hand sewing project


This little zipper case may seem a little complicated, but it's really, really not. Best part of it is that it's made from scraps and recycled materials, and it's good hand sewing practice. Unfortunately, I didn't take photos while making it because I made it a few months ago after getting proofs of some of my Spoonflower fabrics. I didn't really plan to post the project, but TG asked "Why not? It's cute!" This case is inspired by Japanese macaron purses, but instead of using a domed plastic shape for the sides, it uses milk jug plastic with felt to soften the top.

So you will need:

  • fabric- 4 pieces, they can be different patterns, but at least 6x6 inches if you are using a 7 inch zipper. 
  • zipper- this can be recycled if you pick out the stitches from the tape carefully and the tape is intact
  • clean empty plastic milk jug- I love milk jug plastic
  • ribbon- a 1/4- 3/8th inch satin ribbon is a good choice, just a few inches
  • needle
  • thread to match the zipper
  • a 6 inch piece of craft felt (if you are using a 7 inch zipper)
  • glue- tacky glue works well.
  • scissors- one pair for plastic, one pair to cut fabric. Please don't use your fabric scissors on plastic.
To start, overlap the ends of the closed zipper, and stitch them together. Stitch across the top bar of the zipper where it separates to close it securely at the top. Knot off thread on the right side of the zipper. It's going to get covered with ribbon so the knot doesn't show.

Make a small loop with part of the ribbon and sew it on so it goes the same direction as the zipper pull.

Now take another piece of ribbon and wrap the overlap with and sew it into place keeping the zipper flat. Don't let it gather or bunch up!

See how it's sewn? Also the open photo will hopefully help make the following instructions clearer.
So now that you've got your zipper loop, cut out 2 pieces of plastic in a circle that's about 1/2 inch smaller than the zipper loop. Which would be about a 1/4 inch all the way around.

Set the plastic pieces aside for a minute. Now it's time to gather up the zipper. Close to the edge, make basting stitches on one side and leave ends to pull. Repeat on the other side. Then pull to gather.
Now you'll make the inside. For that, cut 2 circles of fabric that are twice as big as the plastic. Stitch a running basting stitch all the way around, put the plastic in the middle on the wrong side of the fabric. Pull stitches tight around the plastic and knot off.
So now the insides are ready to be stitched to the inside of the case. Since the whole thing is going to be covered, you do want your stitches to be strong, but don't worry about how the knots look. Open the zipper, which should have a clamshell look with the gathering. Set one fabric covered plastic piece inside one side of the "clam shell" with the gathered sides together. Stitch it into place. Repeat on the other side.

Now it's time to make the top. For this side, you want it just the same size as the zipper loop. Cut 2 circles from the milk jug plastic the same size as the zipper loop, then 2 pieces of felt that are 1/4 inch bigger all the way around. Glue the felt to the plastic pieces. 
Cut 2 pieces of fabric in circles twice the diameter of the plastic circle. Do a basting stitch all the way around, then set the plastic circles on the wrong side of the fabric with the felt sandwiched between the fabric and plastic. Pull to gather the stitches. Knot securely.

Now all you have to do is stitch the outsides to the rest of the case, and it's done! 

These are so easy to make, and are super cute. Because the inside is very flat, it won't hold a lot of change, but it will hold a couple small treasures or keepsakes. 

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