Denim Pouch Workshop Finishes


By Judith on February 1, 2021
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Last Saturday afternoon I had my Denim Pouch Workshop, hosted via Zoom by Crafty Monkies.


16 ladies (some in different time zones!) got chopping and repurposing as they used their denim finds to create Denim Zippy Pouches.


The class was following my 9.5″ x 5.5″ samples, using the Quilt-As-You-Go technique to piece and quilt the denim onto interfacing, adding in those all important loops, seams and special features that are unique to denim.



We also learned how to insert a zipper with tabs to give a lovely finish to the pouches, a first for some of the ladies.

And here are a few of the finished pouches.


Aren’t they fab! And feedback from the ladies was that they definitely see more denim pouches and bags in their future!

I always get excited when I see repurposed denim projects. For fun I decided to create a collage of some of my own denim projects!



Lots of bags and pouches there – denim is the perfect hard wearing textile for creating these!

I have several denim patterns available in the shop, but if you’d like to try the Quilt-As-You-Go denim method, check out my Denim Boro Bag pattern here – a larger version of the zippy pouch!


Happy repurposing!

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Blogiversary Giveaway!


By Judith on December 29, 2020
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I’m 10 years old!! Yay!

I started blogging on 20th December 2010, encouraged by of one of my best friends @sewmesarah who had just started her blog a few days previous!

What a lot has happened since then, and oh my, how the time has flown by!

To celebrate, I’m hosting a giveaway!



I recently made a Mixed Textile Clutch as a secret santa gift, and enjoyed the process so much I just had to make another!



Similar to the last clutch, this one includes Italian & British wool, Irish Linen, Liberty cotton, sumptuous Jersey suiting, repurposed denim and vintage sheet lining!



I really enjoyed the slow hand stitching of the boro patches before, and included this same technique in this pouch.



The reused duffle coat button and leather buckle piece are sensitive to the re-loved ethos of this entire pouch.



I love everything about this pouch, and I hope you do too!



I’m also giving away a half yard bundle of selected Art Gallery fabrics and 4 spools of Aurifil 12wt wool threads, perfect for hand embroidery or boro stitching!


So if you fancy getting your hands on these goodies, here are 3 ways you can enter:

  1. leave a comment here telling me something you would like to make in 2021
  2. follow @justjudebelfast on Instagram & leave a comment there
  3. like and leave a comment on the giveaway post on our Facebook page

International entries welcome! 

You have until Tuesday 5th January to enter.  The winner will be announced across all social media accounts on 5th.

Good luck everyone!

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Mixed Textile Clutch


By Judith on December 13, 2020
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My daughter needed a secret Santa gift for a female work colleague so I offered to make her a pouch!

With no information about the likes or dislikes of the recipient, I had free reign to come up with whatever I wanted! Yay! Let the playtime commence!

I had recently been pinning some mixed textile pouches on Pinterest with sashiko and boro stitching, and loved how cohesive they looked, despite the variety of patches and textures!

So I thought I’d have a go and see where this organic process would take me!


You already know I love recycling textiles and I also love mixing my textiles. Here I have used repurposed jeans with lush Italian wool, Irish linen & jersy suiting, ditsy and vintage cottons with sample book tweed.


I didn’t want a particularly ‘quilted’ look to this pouch but knew I needed to stabilise all the different fabrics. So I quilted in the ditches onto wadding and heavy sew-in vilene.


I then boro quilted over 2 bondawebbed patches, giving the pouch a relaxed Japanese feel.


The addition of fusible lightweight stabiliser to the lining enhances the structure and body of the clutch. It feels substantial and very tactile!


I had a lot of fun re-imagining the textiles for this clutch! Even the duffle coat button and leather tab & label are recycled!!



I will definitely make another!

In the meantime, I’ve got everything crossed that the recipient loves her foldover clutch as much as I do!!


Happy sewing!

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Vintage Quilted Cushion


By Judith on December 12, 2020
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I’m often donated fabric bags and offcuts from friends or their creative relatives when they’re having a ‘clear out’, to use or pass on! Most of what I’m given is donated on to sewing charities or Primary Schools for their after schools clubs.

But I can’t resist scavenging for particular vintage prints, and squirrelling them away!

I’ve made many projects from my vintage sheets collection, but I also have some older prints with a more retro vibe!

Vintage Quilted Cushion


During our first lockdown I had a little playtime with a selection of these fabrics, keeping with a pink and green theme, to replace an existing cushion cover which has become ‘tired’!


I made the flimsy and then parked it! Until this week when I was motivated to get it finished!

I love the contradiction of bold chintz linens and graphic floral cottons. My starting point was this cute fella, building up around him the clashing contrasts of ditsy prints and 70s pattern.


My favourite print in the whole cushion is this vintage chintz linen.


I’ve used it in several projects before …..


…but I’ve only a few tiny scraps left now. I’m so glad I could use up the last of the larger pieces in this cushion.


I kept my zipper as a feature in the back, rather than hiding it under a flap. And I quilted the front with a 2″ cross hatch grid, using my beloved quilting bar!


The cushion is now nestled happily on my sofa between 2 other handmade cushions!



It feels good to move this lockdown project from UFO to FO!

Happy sewing!

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Repurposed Textile Gifts


By Judith on November 11, 2020
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A good friend of mine recently moved into a long awaited new home.

This friend is my equal with regards to her love of repurosing textiles, especially vintage sheets and denim!

So I slipped into my happy place and made her a few items for her new home!

 

Denim Coasters:

 

Denim Coasters

 

These are ‘Quilt As You Go’ coasters, quilting each little piece of denim on to wadding before the next is added.

 

Denim Coasters

 

Approximately 5.5″ in diameter (including binding) they are a substantial and durable coaster, plenty of room for any size mug!

 

Denim Coasters

 

I love how robust denim is, for both using and washing, and I wanted to get a patterned bias binding to add a decorative touch!

I deliberated over various coloured and floral bindings in my stash, feeling that none of them were quite right (too floral, too bright, too girly, too light etc.!!!).

 

Denim Coasters

 

So I went to my local haberdashers with navy in mind and was delighted to find a stretch knit bias, subtely patterned and a dream to attach.

 

Denim Coasters

 

Now that the coasters have been received my friend told me they perfectly co-ordinate with the blues in their kitchen! Yay!

 

Vintage Sheets Basket:

My friend entrusted me to ‘look after’ her vintage sheets collection while she was travelling for a year!

 

Vintage Sheets Basket

 

So I felt it was time to return some of her collection to her in the form of a cute storage basket for her craft room.

 

Vintage Sheets Basket

 

I used my Selvedge Basket design and again used a ‘Quilt As You Go’ technique to sew strips onto heavy sew-in interfacing, incorporating some of my own vintage sheets with my friend’s.

 

Vintage Sheets Basket

 

These gifts were delivered by post, so I only included some of my friend’s vintage sheets collection.  But one day I will reunite her with the rest, and I hope they will inspire her to return to sewing when she is settled in!

 

Vintage Sheets Basket

 

There are a few more denim projects on the sewing table at the moment too (shhhh, it’s a secret!)  which I hope I’ll be able to show you soon!

 

Happy sewing!

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Denim Planter


By Judith on June 21, 2020
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Hi everyone,

I hope you are keeping safe and well and keeping the creativity flowing!

 

Yesterday I hosted my first socially distanced afternoon tea party in my garden, to celebrate my cousin’s birthday!

 

Wendys birthday tea party

 

I’m happy to report that the sun shone all afternoon and a wonderful time was had by all!  It was so lovely socialising again and catching up with sewing friends face to face!

 

Denim Planter

 

My ‘make’ for the birthday girl was this denim planter, a multi-functional basket for her sewing or living room.

 

Denim Planter
Lining – Tilda, Bon Voyage Lilit Blue

 

Working with denim is always ‘play time’ for me and I thought I would make a larger version of the selvedge basket I designed and taught at our quilting retreat last year.

 

Selvedge Basket

 

First I sewed the denim strips onto heavy sew-in vilene using the ‘quilt as you go’ method of piecing.  I quickly realised this wasn’t going to be sturdy enough to allow the basket to retain its shape.

 

So I quilted the panel onto flex foam using orange Aurifil 12wt wool thread. Much better!  And just look at that gorgeous texture!

 

Denim Planter

 

The lining was inserted before adding the binding and pinching in the sides to give the boxy shape to the basket.

 

Denim Planter

 

I definitely needed my heavy jeans needle for that part!!

 

Denim Planter

 

And last but not least, some leather handles secured with bronze rivets, to bring a little rustic colour and texture to the basket.

 

Denim Planter

 

At this juncture I didn’t know what I was going to put in the basket, or how to ‘prop’ it for photographing.  I grabbed a couple of my artificial plants and set them in and immediately fell in love with the contrasting greenery and inventive use of the basket!

 

Denim Planter

 

And so my denim planter was born!  I loved making it and will definitely be making one for my own home!

 

Another lovely way to use up denim scraps!

 

Happy sewing!

 

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Denim Hexie Messenger Bag


By Judith on June 10, 2020
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I’ve been working on a few gifts lately, and now that one has been received I can show you it here.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

This bag was made as a special thank you to a lovely lady who enjoys repurposing textiles as much as I do!

 

Denim Hexie Messenger bag

 

I had a few relaxing evenings making up the EPP hexies, but with no other plan in my head than that!

So when I had 2 panels made to a good enough size the old design juices started flowing.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

I got the panels quilted on to Flex Foam which I think really adds some lovely texture to the hexies.

I had a vision of a messenger bag with curved corners this time.  Once the gusset was in, the bag really started to take shape.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

Getting the depth and style of the flap was important.  I didn’t want anything too fussy, so as not to take away from the hexies.  So a few lines of Aurifil 12wt wool thread in contrast gold did the trick, with curved corners to mirror the bottom of the bag.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

When it comes to bag linings, I love the surprise of opening up a bag and getting that ‘wow’ factor from a stunning lining!

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

This lining is Autumn Nectar Honey by Maureen Cracknell for Art Gallery Fabrics and is available here in my shop.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

Doesn’t it just bring a blast of sunny colour to the inside of the bag!  And the purple tones are the perfect match for a cheeky Liberty key fob tab!

No funtional bag is complete without a handy slip pocket.

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

And the adjustable cross body strap means you can get out and about hands free!!

 

Denim Hexie Messenger Bag

 

I’m delighted to report that the new owner loves her bag and says it was a timely gift as her old bag was in need of being replaced! Yay!

 

I love it when my ‘play time’ repurposing textiles brings happy smiles and pleasure to faces!

 

Happy sewing!

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