I said a few posts back that if there was any interest in a tutorial for the strip-pieced glasses cases I made for our work Bushfire Fundraiser, I'd do a tutorial. Well ... here it is! I may have gone a bit overboard with the photos of steps, but thought it better to be safe than sorry, especially since English isn't the first language for many of you.
I'll start by prefacing this by saying I'm not a traditional quilter or patchworker - I've never attended any classes, just picked up bits and pieces as I've gone along and taught myself to do things to get a result I was after, so those who know the rules - don't stress when I break them! Tee! Hee! Hee! I also tend to develop (as I'm sure most of us do!) little shortcuts that I like to use. So, here we go!!
GLASSES CASE TUTORIAL
Step 1. Cut a rectangle of 100% cotton quilt wadding 15"x4 1/2" (38cmx12cm).
Step 2. Raid your small scraps stash to cut 10 strips measuring 4 1/2"x2" (12cmx5cm). You can cut your strips any width you wish, or that your scraps allow - it will just mean you need more or less strips to get the length needed for the case once they're joined. You could even do different widths if you don't mind whether they match at the side seams. Iron all strips.
This is my pile of 4 1/2" strips ready to be ironed.
Step 3. Lay your first strip on one short end of your wadding, face up & lining up with the edge.
Step 4. Lay your next strip face down on the first & pin in place.
Step 5. Using a 1/4" seam stitch through all three layers - two fabric strips & wadding. (had to show this photo for Stina ... lots of good things come from Sweden, including my sewing machine!! OH! And Stina, of course! Tee! Hee! Hee!)
Step 6. Fold the top strip back along the wadding & press flat. Repeat this with further strips until wadding is completely covered. (If you end up with a very small amount of wadding showing at the end, just trim it off in the next step.)
Step 7. Using a cutting mat, rotary cutter & quilter's ruler, trim your strip pieced rectangle back to approximately 14 1/2"x4 1/4" (37cmx11cm). Don't stress too much if yours is a little different, just make sure edges are straight & parallel to their opposite.
Step 8. Fold your pieced rectangle in half, short ends together & pin side seams, matching strips is possible. Stitch both side seams using a 1/4" seam, trim bottom corners being careful not to snip stitching & turn right side out so that it looks like ...
Be sure you push the bottom corners through fully.
Step 9. LINING: Cut a rectangle of lining fabric 14 1/4"x4" (36.5cmx10cm) & press flat.
Step 10. With right sides together, fold lining in half with short ends together. Pin side seams, leaving a 2" (5cm) gap to turn the case through later. If you're like me & sometimes forget, put a pin a different direction in the gap to make you stop stitching. (see above) Leave lining inside-out & trim bottom corners as for the case.
Step 11. STRAP (optional): If you just want to pop your glasses into the case on a desk or in your handbag, you may not need a strap, but it can be handy. I have a similar case hanging just inside the back door & when I come into the house, I slip my sunglasses into it so I don't waste a lot of time searching for them when I need to go out again! It also makes a handy mobile phone or MP3 player pouch if you want to go walking. Cut a length of ribbon (your choice of width) aprox. 50" (128cm) long. Pin one end of the ribbon to each side seam so the cut edge points up & the loop of ribbon hangs down, as in the photo above.
Step 12. Making sure the strap is pushed down out of the way, slip the glasses case inside the inside-out lining, matching side seams & pinning around the rim.
Step 13. Carefully machine stitch around the rim of the case using a 1/4" seam. I found this easiest to do by sewing from the inside & working slowly. This will also stitch the strap ends in place.
Step 14. Using the gap in the lining you left open earlier, turn the glasses case AND lining right-side-out so it looks like the photo above. Make sure the bottom corners of the lining come through properly. Slipstitch turning gap closed.
Step 15. Push the lining inside the glasses case, making sure the strap is out where it needs to be. Work the rim between your fingers to get it to sit flat & straight. Pin & top stitch around the rim with thread to match your strips, being careful to keep the strap stretched out so it doesn't get tucked under & sewn in by accident.
Step 16. Gently press glasses case. The case is ready to use as it is, but if you want, you can sew a press clip on the inside of the case at the top to keep glasses from tipping out & decorate the front with a pretty button, as I've done with this version.
Ta da!! Your finished glasses case! Handy and pretty, this is a quick gift idea that will also help use up some of those little pieces of fabric that aren't big enough to be very useful, but are too pretty to throw away. If you wanted to get creative, you could incorporate lace, rick-rack, embroidery, beads ... whatever embellishments you have on hand ... to make your glasses case even more individual.
I hope you enjoy making your own versions of my strip pieced glasses case and if you do make one ... or some! ... I'd love you to send me a photo to admire! For now ... I'm off to do a bit of Secret Squirrel stitching - in between answering emails from OPAM participants who are sending their End Of Month reports to me. I always try to send little replies back to anyone who emails or leaves a comment on my blog. The only ones who won't hear back from me are the "No Reply" commenters - cos I can't find you!! If you've set your blogging comments as "No Reply" and really don't want to change it, but would like a reply, make sure you include your email address in your comment so I can get back to you. Or if you don't know HOW to change your "No Reply" status, pop over and see Chookyblue, as she has some handy blogging hints including how to deal with this issue. (I usually just yell for my beloved Geek Boy! Tee! Hee! Hee!) Hope you're having a great weekend and sneaking in some stitching - Bear Hugs!