Friday, 30 March 2012

Thread and Scraps Catcher

The other night, I was ripping out the seams on my very well-loved t-shirt so I could use the pieces as a pattern to make more shirts like it (this t-shirt is at least 4 years old and becoming so threadbare that I really shouldn’t wear it anymore, but it fits so nicely on my body. I have looked for it in stores, but it was probably discontinued years ago). I was lounging in front of the tv, and each time that I wanted to throw out a torn out thread, I would have to sit up to get the to the garbage can. Being the lazy person that I am, I decided to make a little pail that can sit beside me on the couch, so that I no longer have to do a sham sit-up each time I want to toss a piece of thread. This can also be used on your sewing table or in your cutting table.


The base of the catcher will be a circle, so decide the diameter of the circle that you would like to use. This will determine the width of your catcher. I choose to make the width of my bag 3.5”, so the diameter of my circle should be 4.5”, to allow for a ½” seam allowance on all sides. Cut out two pieces of fabric, two pieces of fusible interfacing and, if you would like a more sturdy bottom, 1 piece of heavy weight craft interfacing in your desired diameter. To make your diameter, you can use a compass if there is one in your house. A bowl, glass or pot will also work very well. Just trace on to the fabric and cut it out.

Fuse the interfacing on to the wrong side of your fabric pieces. 

Then, place the craft weight interfacing between your fabric pieces, wrong sides of the fabric against the interfacing. If desired, bast stitch very close to the edge to join the layers together, though this is not necessary, it just makes it easier to pin the sides.

For the walls of the catcher, first determine the circumference of your circle.

Diameter x π (pi, 3.14159265) = Circumference
4.5” x 3.14159265 = 14.13”

Alternately, you can also measure the circumference by wrapping a measuring tape along the outside of your circle.

Next, determine the finished height of your catcher. You may use any height you desire. I choose to make a final height of 5.25”, so that I can fold over some of the top (I personally like how it looks). Cut out 1 piece of fabric and 1 piece of fusible interfacing that measures 15.13” (circumference + two ½” seam allowances) by 11.5” (two x height + two ½” seam allowances).

Fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric rectangle. 

Stitch the edges of the two sides that will be sewn together to make the circumference, to prevent the edges from fraying. You can use a wide zig-zag stitch, an overlay stitch or you can use a serger, which ever you are more comfortable with. I used an overlay stitch, because the overlay foot keeps the fabric from bunching together.

Now, fold the fabric in half, right sides together, with the stitched edges together. Sew the edges together with a ½” seam allowance.

Open up the fabric along the seam and press the edges down flat, like so:

Fold the fabric tube in half, wrong sides together and press the fold.

Using a ½” seam allowance, sew along the fold at the top all the way around. 

Using your seam ripper, rip open the seam that joins the tube together above your last seam.

This is where you can put a string or ribbon in order to close the bag. To add the string or ribbon, pin a safety pin to one end of the ribbon and feed it through one side.

Push the pin through and bunch up the fabric onto the pin. Holding the pin head, pull the gathered fabric over the ribbon. Continue until the ribbon comes out the other side.

If you want to make a ribbon to match your bag, make bias tape (HERE) and sew the two edges together.

Now, pin your bottom circle to the tube. Begin by pinning it into quadrants, then begin to add pins into each quadrant, to make sure that the fabric doesn’t stretch to much (similar pinning technique used HERE).

Sew the bottom to the top, using a ½” seam allowance. Trim the excess. Reinforce the bottom seam with a wide zig-zag, an overlay stitch or by using a serger.

Now, this can be the end of your bag, just turn the bag inside out. You now have a scrap catcher.

No comments:

Post a Comment