A Bow Pouch and Then Some

I have a nice collection of Japanese craft book, a passion I pursue.  I fall in love with Japanese style crafting over and over with each perusal through one of my books.  My hubby and son moan whenever I get excited about going to San Francisco or Seattle where there's a Kinokuniya Store just waiting for me. heh.

Good news too is having a Japanese book store, Hakubundo, in Hawaii.  The store is in town, a bit away from where we live, any closer and my hubby may tie me to my sewing machine table !

My latest project was out of the latest addition to my collection ~

I fell in love with these bow pouches in the book ~

  I decided to make a bow pouch using a Hello Kitty fabric because Hello Kitty is all about the bows!

My pouch doesn't look like the picture in the book...hmmm, I think something was lost in the translation! I will have to try this pouch again but hopefully I can think of a way to make it my own.

Speaking of making it my own, here's a small project inspired by another craft book.

There was an ad with a picture of these cute little bags ~

Using scrap fabrics I made this version of a mini handbag pincushion.  The style and size were dictated by the size of the scrap fabrics.


happy day ~

I Heart Felt

Today, the outdoors are simply beautiful, although a bit under the weather, I spent time in the yard sitting under our pua kenikeni flower tree.  So peaceful. Perfect for healing. (as long as the bird doesn't drop on a nasty on my head..all is good)

So why the heck am I blogging when in need of rest? ... Beeee-cause, I am anxious to share this posting. I have worked on yet another felt applique bag.  Bethanee suggested on my facebook to share how I do these appliques.

They are rather simple so this is not a tutorial in the sense of showing step by step pics.  But I do want to share the inspirations I find for felt appliques, starting with this Japanese craft book filled with THE most beautiful heart thumping felt designs. 

I love how the designer seems to create a story on her bags using felt.  It is true artistry. 

Speaking of artistry, look at this elegant felt cozy made by Larissa of mmmcrafts. 

Larissa also makes these delightful felt dolls that she sells in her etsy shop.  Damn she's talented. (drool with envy)

Oh well, now I feel silly for showing you my latest felt applique bag. Yes, it's another deer. Am I in a rut or what?  But we're all friends so be kind, please.

my humble bag
I'm no artist so my appliques are from craft books, etc. or in the case of this fellow, he is a sweetie on the FABRIC itself.  Look-y here (*^_^*)

I hope one day to make designs to all my own but I won't sweat over it if I don't.  It's hard to keep going at times when I see the amount of talent out there doing same but more. But what the heck! I'm happy to do what I do and that's all I can do (thanks Popeye). 

happy day

I Count Myself Lucky

I'm immensely enjoying myself today...watching Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince and blogging while the hubby is at lunch with friends.  I love fictional fantasies; the Lord of the Rings, Terry Prachett's disc world series,  the Golden Compass, The Chronicles of Narnia ... I love them for the same reasons I love period stories...sneaking off to places far away from the realities of the day; to  places where  language was an art form; beautifully poetic it seems. 

Blogging plants me in this world, from this tiny island, off to far lands sharing the Pacific Ocean, to countries on the other side of the continent.  In my journey here with you, my life enriched with new friends and yes, even new adventures, creates my very own story.

I count myself lucky. 

At this moment, I want to stay here; surrounded by friends like Yana who lives in Siberia (!),
Kerry of Very Kerry Berry, and Bethanee of Craftiness by Bethanee; bonded by a common love for our sewing machines!

I am encouraged by their presence and yours to keep sewing.  These, my latest wristlets, are now part of my zakka inspire collection.

happy day

A No-Zipper Pouch Tutorial - Another Christmas Gift Project

Hello.  I've been lost this past week but found again, stopping the spin in my mind with my zakka pencil pouch.

I designed this pouch in my head; thinking through ideas, erasing, rethinking, going through each step including how to sew the pieces together.  I think of new designs a lot; in the car (my husband often catches me staring; deep in thought), while watching tv, in bed before the zzz's kick in...  I wish I could say this process always work out, but I have an ever-growing crap-scrap pile to prove otherwise. sigh.

This pouch starts with a basic NO ZIPPER pouch; a method found in Japanese craft books.  I love how this simple pouch transforms to your sense of style with a few tweaks to the shape, different fabrics,  types of interfacing, embellishments, and size.

For my pouch, I changed up the shape of the flap; to mimic a cloud, wanting to add a 'cloud face' but junked that idea.  The hardest part is always picking the right fabric, settling upon linen (my fav) and a pretty fabric I purchased from etsy shop : simbiosis by julia.  You might want to take a peek at her shop and blog...she has the CUTEST pouches and fabric cases!! 

And the Pièce de résistance? ... this kawaii embroidered mouse!!

No-Zipper Pouch Tutorial- The Basics
...the best part is that the basic pouch comes together quickly; perhaps no more than an hour... 

  • Main Fabric : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long
  • Lining Fabric : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long
  • Interfacing : Cut one piece : 8 1/4" wide x 11 1/4" long; apply to main fabric following manufacturer's instrutions (note: I used mid weight interfacing for the zakka pouch and fusible fleece for the tutorial. The fusible fleece gives the piece structure; use either type depending on the look and feel you desire)
  • Cord : 18" long (rick rack, ribbon, leather tie, etc. )
  • Large Button
  • Embellishments (optional) (you could also do this pouch in a patchwork style)
Note : Seams are 1/4" ( I almost always use the pressure foot to sew seams; aligning edge of foot along edge of fabric; a bit more than 1/4"; either way / size is fine)

  •  Step 1 - Pin main fabric and lining, right side together, along one short edge; sew.
  • Step 2 -  Mark 3 1/4" from top on main fabric and lining; this is the flap portion 
  •  Step 3 -  Add embellishments at this time if you like (lace, ribbons, patches, etc).  Find center of main fabric; mark for cord placement.  Place cord and baste to main fabric. 
  • Step 4 - Now for the fun part.  Tuck the bottom of the piece (where the main fabric and lining were sewn together in step 1) in between the main fabric and lining up to the 3 1/4" mark made for the flap.  This step forms the pocket.
  •  Step 5 - Pin all layers together.  Sew along left side; top (back stitch over cord to double secure); and right side (LEAVE A GAP FOR TURNING).  Do not sew the bottom.
  •  Step 7 - Sew on button. Press as needed.  This is another point in the process to add embellishments if you like.

A NO ZIPPER pencil pouch in less than 10 steps.  Change the pattern size to make cozies for your electronic devices (big and small), eye glass cases, make up bags, evening bags, casual bags, travel pouches, "envelope pouches", pencil cases, crochet hook cases,  .... did I start you thinking???

happy day ~ kat