A few months ago I had the privilege of meeting an Instagram friend, Kirsty from Song of a Nest.
We first made contact via Instagram, but it turned out we only live up the road from each other!!
Kirsty is multi-talented (just check out her beautiful website), but more than that, she is a passionate and compassionate individual. Kirsty’s heart for school girls in India is infectious, and this is why Shared Threads was created.
“I have started a project called ‘Shared threads’ which makes sanitary kits for girls in India so that they can go to school.
The heart behind the project is to remove the limitations that menstruation puts on women and girls, playing a part in enabling them to live their lives to it’s full potential
So many women and girls around the world have to resort to using leaves or rags or old newspapers to manage their period due to lack of sanitary products. Our pack provides them with a free, washable, sustainable solution to manage their period with dignity, whilst also being kinder to the environment.
Girls all over the world drop out of school due to lack of feminine hygiene products. Our pack enables them to continue with their education all year round.
Our packs and pads are made with recycled fabric.”
(You can read more here about the specific project in India we will be supporting.)
Each girl will receive a drawstring bag (tune in tomorrow for the tutorial) which will contain 2 pad holders and 6 pads.
Everything is made from donated and recycled textiles, except for the PUL (Polyurethane Laminate), a waterproof, breathable and washable liner in the pads.
And here’s how you can get involved:
Come: join in with our get-togethers – even if you can’t sew, there are lots of other jobs we need done (e.g. cutting out, threading the drawstrings, making up the packs etc.). We hope to next meet in July.
Donate: we need towels and brushed cotton/flannel for the pads and cotton fabrics for the holders and bags. We also need shoe-laces and ribbons for the drawstring bags.
Make: tomorrow I will post the tutorial for the drawstring bags, and soon Kirsty will be posting the instructions for the pad holders. Even if you can’t get along to the meet-ups, we would love it if you could make the items at home or why not arrange your own Shared Threads sew-in with friends?
So here’s what to do next:
Hop on over to the Shared Threads page and sign up for the regular updates and info from Kirsty. This will keep you up-to-date with meet-ups, fund-raisers and progress reports.
As I enjoy the wide open windows and the washing on the line, I’m also progressing well with packing up ready for moving house at the end of this month. A small challenge when there’s 15 years worth of ‘stuff’ to thin out ready for our down-size!
I have also packed up my sewing room, but not before I got a class sample finished for classes in the new term.
I’m a great admirer of Anna’s fabulous bag designs and patterns, and her Maker’s Tote is a particular favourite of mine. I’ve had it bookmarked for a while, but am only now getting around to making it!
I thought this would be a good bag pattern to teach in class because of the variety of bag construction elements and skills involved.
But of course I couldn’t just stick to the pattern, could I!
I love using denim for bags, it makes them more durable and useable in my view. And besides, I already had 2 ‘uneven brick’ panels sewn together for another project long forgotten! They were the perfect size, so I got to *quilting them, first in the ditches, and then some feature quilting using Aurifil 12wt wool thread.
*the original pattern uses a foam interfacing like Bosal to give structure and reinforcement to the bag. I wasn’t able to get any in time, so substituted with a layer of wadding and heavy weight sew-in vilene spray basted together.
The front and back of my bag are slightly different. I didn’t think the prescribed front pocket would work on my version of this bag, but I did include the zippered back pocket.
One of the joys of working with recycled denim is thinking of ways to use the loops, tabs and unusual features attached to a pair of jeans.
I decided my Maker’s Tote could be used as my everyday bag, not just a class sample, so I incorporated another one of my favourite textiles, vintage chintz linen.
A few vintage style Lecien prints coordinated beautifully for the internal pockets and facings.
The handles are made from a re-purposed denim belt, reinforced with webbing and lined with more of the chintz linen.
The belt was a little on the wide side, so by cinching in the edges along the top section, they are now the perfect fit for my hands and have lovely structure too!
The bag is finished off with self-made bias binding, another great skill to have under your belt. If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that the first lot of bias binding I made is different to the one on the finished bag!
I decided I didn’t like choice no.1 (after I had attached it!). In my opinion the chintz linen binding works much better, even though it was a little trickier to attach.
So there we have my version of Noodlehead’s Maker’s Tote! A fabulously roomy bag, gorgeous shape, and versatile elements.
And I’ll leave you with an ‘out take’ of the ‘helper’ on my photo-shoot!
I hope you aren’t tired of seeing my denim pouches!
I was woefully late getting a birthday present to my friend, but now that she has it I can show it to you!
This one is a little different from my other denim pouches. I thought I would keep hexies as the dominant theme this time.
My Sizzix cutting machine makes light work cutting through the denim. And because I enjoying EPP-ing hexies so much, there are more hexies on the back, with just a hint of Aurifil Wool thread featuring in the base (couldn’t resist)!
Sometimes denim can feel a little masculine, so I made sure to add some feminine touches with the floral lining and pink zip!
While this pouch has been made from recycled textiles, I haven’t even made a dent in my hoard!
I guess I’ll just have to think up a few more ways to use denim!
In the December issue of Pretty Patches magazine, you might find this cheeky chappie making a song and dance of things!
Many of you will know that my first love in ‘all things fabric’ are recycled textiles. I have a particular obsession fondess for tweed, linen, wool and corduroy.
The only items officially ‘purchased’ in this cushion are the background (Tilda) and the berries!
I love mixing textures and textiles! Here we have sumptuous tweed, soft red wool, tactile cord, a vintage curtain remnant and a few scraps of good old fashioned quilting cotton. Oh what fun I had playing putting these together.
I also love satin stitch applique, but I knew with these thicker fabrics standard thread would disappear into the nap.
So out come the 12wt Aurifil wool threads! These are thick enough to use for hand embroidery, but not too thick to put through the eye of a size 90 machine needle. Win, win! (You can find a great selection here.)
As the design came together, I knew I wanted ‘berries’ in the corners. I scratched my head for a few minutes, and then came up with a plan!
I un-threaded some jumbo pompom trim I had leftover from another project. Then I ‘couched’ or satin stitched 3 thread stems together to create a little cluster of berries. This made it super easy to sew them into the corners of the cushion.
A simple envelope backing and you have the perfect gift for all bird and nature lovers everywhere (not forgetting all the tweed & corduroy lovers too!).
My recycled, chirping Robin may be in the Christmas issue, but like the loyal and territorial real birds, I think he’ll stick around all year long!
So what type of fabrics make your heart skip a beat?