Category Archives: Sewing

Pebble Wash Bag pdf Sewing Pattern

Welcome to the Pebble Wash Bag pdf sewing pattern!

The Pebble Wash Bag is a sleek and simple design that is roomy enough to fit in all of your wash bag essentials. It features piping, pull tabs and a nice long zip to give you easy access to your contents.

Pebble Wash Bag pdf sewing pattern

You can make the Pebble Wash Bag all in one colour or add a contrast by changing the colour of the piping or matching your tabs with your lining fabric.

Sewing Level

The Pebble Wash Bag pattern is suitable for someone with Intermediate sewing skills. As with all sewing there is a need for accuracy with cutting out and assembling your Pebble Wash Bag. It can be a bit tricky when attaching the gusset to the main/sides of the bag so I would not suggest this pattern for a complete beginner.

Approximate Finished Size of Pebble Wash Bag

  • 17cm high x 29cm wide x 8cm deep

Pebble Wash Bag Side View

 

Pattern Features

  • All of the pattern pieces have been digitally drawn
  • Pattern pages have been tiled and can be printed on A4 or US letter paper
  • There are 4 rectangular pieces that can be printed out or cut directly from the measurements provided
  • Step by step digitally drawn illustrated instructions

If you would like guidance on assembling your Pebble Wash Bag pdf pattern then have a read of my blog post How to Assemble pdf Sewing Patterns.

My testers did a really fabulous job and I really appreciate all of the help and feedback. Some of their pictures are featured in the pdf pattern instructions and some of them will feature in the Pebble Wash Bag gallery which will be live soon on the blog.

Heron Print Pebble Wash Bag Lining Detail by Susan Hewitt

by Susan Hewitt

Where to Buy

The Pebble Wash Bag pdf sewing pattern is available from my Etsy store, on Craftsy and from my own online store

Blue Floral Pebble Wash Bag by Ilse Lemmens

by Ilse Lemmens

Share Your Makes of the Pebble Wash Bag

If you are sharing your makes on social media use #pebblewashbag so that we can see how you have got on!

You can also share your makes in the facebook group Little Black Duck :: In the Sewing Room

Thank You!

Thank you for all of your support, I really do appreciate every sale, I love seeing your makes and I love your feedback and comments!

Feature :: Giant Pom-Pom trimmed Cushion, Sew Now issue 5

I designed this cushion with giant Pom-Pom trim for Sew Now issue 5. I love changing the look of a room with some new cushions and even more so when they have big fat pom-poms on them! That’s the great thing about having sewing skills, you can change the look of your home so easily and to your own exacting requirements!

Giant Pom-Pom Cushion Sew Now issue 5

When I was shopping for a zip for the pom-pom cushion I happened to see the birdy/floral fabric in Dunelm and couldn’t resist it! I thought the colours worked so well with the giant pom-pom cushion fabric and trim.

I therefore decided to make a complimentary cushion with jumbo piping. Why have one cushion when you can have two!

If you fancy trying out jumbo piping check out my tutorial for making your own piping!

Giant Pom-pom cushion

You can pick up a copy of Sew Now at major newsagents or you can buy a copy online at moremags

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Tutorial :: How to Make Your Own Piping

Adding piping to a project can really set off what you are making. It’s great for defining the edges on cushions and bags and can add a nice touch when dressmaking.

You can of course using pre-made bias binding, but it’s so much nicer to make your own to either completely blend in, or even better to totally contrast the what you are making.

Make Your Own Piping Tutorial

You may also want to use a really fine or really chunky piping cord and the difference in circumference will have an impact on how much of the pre-bought bias binding is left for the seam allowance. It can be too much when using thin piping cord and not enough when using jumbo cord, either way it can be a bit of a pain when figuring out where to place the piping on your project.

So the best option is to make your own piping. I have written this step-by-step tutorial so that you can make your own!

Tools Required

Tool for making your own piping

You will need the following to make your own piping:

– chosen width of piping cord (pre-washed or steamed to pre-shrink)
– approx 1FQ of your chosen fabric
– scissors
– a marking tool
– pins
– a measuring tool
– zipper foot

Step 1 – Measure Piping Cord

Take a strip of your chosen fabric and wrap it around the piping cord. Secure with a pin as close to the cord as ‘comfortable’, don’t wrap it too tightly.

Wrap strip and pin

Step 2 – Mark the Seam Allowance

Take your measuring tool and mark the strip with your desired seam allowance. In this instance I am using a 5/8″ seam allowance as this piping was being used on a cushion where I was inserting a lapped zip and I like to use a larger than ‘standard’ seam allowance. You may only want to use a 1/2″ seam allowance.

Mark the Seam Allowance

Step 3 – Trim to Size

Snip off the excess fabric along the line.

Trim Strip

Step 4 – Measure the Fabric Strip

Remove the pin and lay the fabric strip flat and measure. This will give you the width you need for cutting your fabric strips.

Measure the Fabric Strip

Step 5 – Cut the Bias Strips

Work out how much piping you will need and cut out enough strips on the bias to make up this length, plus approximately 10″. This will allow you plenty extra for joining the strips. Cutting on the bias makes it possible to get around curves and corners.

Step 6 – Join the Bias Strips

Overlap two strips with right sides together, leaving 1/4″ extending on each short edge. Mark a 45 degree line between the points where the strips meet. Sew and trim the seam allowance to 1/4″. Press seam open.

Make Bias Strips

Step 7 – Wrap the bias strips around the piping cord so that the raw edges meet and secure with pins.

Wrap bias around piping cord

Step 8 – Put your zipper foot on your sewing machine and baste in place along the length of the piping as close to the cord as possible, without pulling the fabric too tight. Don’t pull or stretch the piping cord as you sew as it will only spring back and twist once you are done basting.

Baste bias around cord

So there you have it, beautiful, self-made piping, perfect for using on all sorts of projects. I’ve used the jumbo piping in this tutorial on the cushion below.

Cushion with jumbo piping

Piping also looks great on clothing. I used it on this fox dress that I designed for Crafty magazine a few years back.

Fox Pocket on Orange Dress

Piping also looks great to define shapes on bags like on my Oval Wash Bag (pdf pattern coming soon!)

Oval Wash Bag Piping Detail

So, give it a go, make some piping and transform your next project. Let me know how you get on…

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Feature :: Fold Over Clutch for Bag Making Essentials 4

I love bag designing so I was delighted when the editor of Bag Making Essentials asked me to come up with something  for a forthcoming issue. I love cross body bags as they are just so convenient so I set to work designing something that I thought everyone might like.

Cross Body Fold Over Clutch Portrait

I spent some time looking around online for some suitable materials and found this fabulous Feathers on Sand print by Lewis and Irene from their To Catch a Dream range. The rest of the bag is made with some faux leather from Fabric-Online. I used it when I made the crossbody rucksack that I designed for Love Sewing, so I knew it was perfect for the job.

Fold Over Cross Body Clutch photo from BME4

The bag has an internal slip pocket and under that flap is a zip to keep your contents nice and secure. I used a pre-made bag strap from Bag-Clasps, they come in a great range of colours…check out the purple!

Let me know, what do you think of my cross body fold over clutch? Think you might try making one?

Bag Making Essentials issue 4 Front Cover

Pick up a copy of Bag Making Essentials from larger newsagents or through the More Mags website

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Inaugural Sit & Sew

This week saw the very first Sit & Sew session held at my house. The best news was that I didn’t attend it on my own! People actually booked on and actually turned up!

Sit and Sew with Victoria Peat

I had three rather lovely ladies turn up for some social sewing, chat, tea and biscuits. I even managed to get some sewing done (but not much).

Sit & Sew Feb 2017

One lady did some hand sewing, another was working on a Tilly and The Buttons Cleo Pinafore dress (from some gorgeous needle cord) and the other was making some cushions…..her second ever sewing project!


I’ve decided that I will use the Sit & Sew sessions to work on the Alder Shirtdress from Grainline Studios. I’ve gone for view A as being a pear shape I’m not sure I can withstand too much extra bulk around the lower half!

Alder Shirtdress
I had a really great time and the others seemed to as well. I’ve got a lot on my plate over the next few weeks, but I’ll be planning another session for the not too distant future. Keep your eyes on the facebook page for the next date.

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Come and join the facebook group Little Black Duck: In the Sewing Room
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Feature :: Geometric Coasters for Love Sewing issue 36

I got the chance to work with some fab prints for my latest project for Love Sewing Magazine, what a treat!

Geometric Pieced Coasters for Love Sewing issue 36

There were so many prints to choose from, I was like a child in a sweet shop! This is a great project for using up scraps as it only needs small amounts for each section.

Pieced Fabric Coaster for Love Sewing issue 36

These geometric coasters are also a great project for practicing your precise stitching skills. Sew super straight and stop in the right place for perfect results!

To give a nice firm result I used an extra thick felt that I sourced from the Wool Felt Company

Love Sewing issue 36

If you are looking for a copy of Love Sewing you can pick it up in most news outlets or you can order a copy through the More Mags website

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Sew Before Social :: start your day creating, not consuming

I read an article on The Craft Industry Alliance Blog a while back about starting your day with creating rather than consuming. That is, spend time creating something (anything) before you spend time consuming social media.

I realised that I do indeed spend half an hour every morning whilst lying in bed/waking up scrolling through facebook, instagram and email. Seriously, that’s nearly 3 hours a week totally wasted!

So I have started my own initiative called

Sew Before Social

Every day without fail* I have decided to get myself out of bed when the alarm goes off and go down into my studio and get on with some making.

Sew Before Social

My aim initially is to focus on some of the abandoned projects I unearthed when I tidied my studio over the Christmas break. I figure little by little I will get through all sorts of projects on my list, projects that run the risk of never being finished, all in the time I would normally waste looking at ‘stuff’ online!

I am sharing some of my progress in my facebook group  Little Black Duck: In the Sewing Room and on instagram using #sewbeforesocial

What do you think? Fancy joining me with Sew Before Social?

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*ok, as many mornings as I can, I’m only human

Feature :: Glitter Heart Purse for Love Sewing issue 35

Issue 35 of Love Sewing features a little glittery clutch bag designed by me! Have you seen it?

Heart Glitter Clutch for Love Sewing

As bags go it’s quite a quick make and you can let your creative side run free and play about with the colour and placement of the hearts. Wouldn’t it look great with loads and loads of hearts in a whole rainbow of colours?

 

To make this bag however I used a selection of pink vinyl from a Rainbow of Stitches. They were really great to work with, it was like sewing through butter!

A Rainbow of stitches sells this glittery vinyl in loads of different fab colours, of which I particularly like their Black and Silver collection!

Let me know if you make a glittery heart clutch, it would be great to see it !Love Sewing issue 35 front cover

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New Pattern :: Facets of the Heart a foundation paper piecing pattern

Facets of the Heart FPP pattern

I’m so pleased to announce the launch of my newest Foundation Paper Piecing Pattern,
‘Facets of the Heart’

I was looking around for a heart fpp pattern but couldn’t find one that was nicely rounded and took my fancy, so I got to work on designing a pattern of my own! I’ve come up with a design that is indeed nicely rounded and allows you to play with colour.

Facets of the Heart Mini Quilt

I’ve made my heart in a rainbow of colours, but I think it would also look great in several shades of the same colour, or in just two colours. What do you think?

Facets of the Heart FPP Colour Suggestions

The ‘Facets of the Heart’ Foundation Paper Piecing pattern makes a 10″ block. The sample I made up was transformed into a mini quilt that is currently hanging up in my studio, trying to cheer up gloomy days.

There aren’t any really tiny pieces so I would recommend this pattern to those who are at an intermediate or confident beginner level when it comes to paper piecing. The trickiest part is planning your colours and getting them in the right order!

Facets of the Heart Mini Quilt

The pdf pattern is presented over 7 pages, 3 of which are the pattern pieces. It features a full colour image of the design, a colouring diagram, a diagram on how to assemble your block as well as tips on how to print your pattern correctly first time around.

All of the pattern pieces have been drafted digitally and have been reversed so that you can more accurately plan and sew up your colours in the right order. I’ve also included a 1/4″ seam allowance around each of the sections to make things as easy as possible for you.

Here’s a flavour of what the pages are like…

Facets of the Heart Sample Pages

Use #facetsoftheheart when you’re uploading pictures of your work on social media so we can all see your great work.

You can also join Little Black Duck :: In the Sewing Room on facebook and share your pictures there, or ask questions if you are stuck!

If you would like to buy a copy of the ‘Facets of the Heart’ FPP pdf pattern you can get a copy from my shop, my Etsy store or Craftsy for around £3.50-£4.

I hope you love my Facets of the Heart pattern and enjoy making one of your own!

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Tilda Bumblebee Blog Hop :: A Little Bunny in a Tilda Dress

Have you seen the new Bumblebee range from Tilda? It’s a really lovely range with a fresh Spring like feel to them. As the name suggest there are even bumblebees on some of the prints!

Image result for tilda bumblebee

The team at Sew and So asked me to take part in the blog hop and kindly sent me some fabric to have a look at.

As I am hoping for Spring to get a wriggle on I thought I would design a Bunny in a Dress!

I drafted a simple bunny pattern and made her from some chambray/denim that I had in the stash (I wish I knew where it came from as it was good to work with). I then decided to line her ears in the Pink Flower Nest as surely every bunny girl would love floral ears, don’t you think?

 

Tilda Bunny Ears

She of course needed a little dress as I didn’t want a bear bunny on my website! I decided to go for the Teal version of Rosa Mollis as it has little bees on it, in amongst the flowers.

Tilda Rosa Mollis

Cute and small sewing of course requires the use of the small rotary cutter. A smaller rotary cutting blade really does make it a lot easier to cut around the little curves.

 

If you’re making a cute little dress and need to trim the seam allowances, then ordinary pinking shears will just not do the job….scalloped edges every time!

scalloped edges on mini tilda dress

So, what do you think, does she look ok in her little Tilda dress?

Tilda Bunny in a Dress

Why, yes, I did fussy cut so I she got a little bee on her shoulder. Thank you for noticing!

Tilda Bunny Bee on Shoulder

I was only kidding myself, Spring is not nearly here so I knitted her a little scarf too!

Little Knitted Scarf

3.25mm needles and ggh Soft Kid in stocking stitch if you are interested. Lots and lots of rows.

Tilda Bunny in knitted scarf

Hope you like my little bunny and are inspired to make something for yourself. If you fancy making something from the new range then check out the Tilda Bumblebee fabrics at Sew and SoTilda

You can also have a look at what else has been created on the Tilda Bumblebee blog hop….
Monday 9th January – SewandSo
Tuesday 10th January – Helen Philipps (wow, what a busy lady!)
Wednesday 11th January – Charlotte Newland (winner of the Great British Sewing Bee 2016, no less)
Friday 13th January – SewandSo – Free Pattern! (of a dolly mermaid tail – so cute!)
Tuesday 17th January – Lucie the Happy Quilter
Wednesday 18th January – Little Black Duck
Thursday 19th January – Very Berry Handmade
Friday 20th January – Sew Sweet Violet

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