Sunday, 16 December 2012

Quick and Easy Quilted Latte Jacket Tutorial - Handmade Christmas

Whilst a major coffee chain may be avoiding paying taxes in this country, why not craft your own Latte experience by making these sweet little Latte Jackets as Christmas presents?

There are some wonderful seasonal fabrics out there and these jackets take very little yardage - I managed to get 6 jackets sewn together out of 4 contrasting FQs, some wadding and a handful of buttons so it's all quite economical. I bought this fabric from the wonderful Ray Stitch in Angel, a great fabric shopping experience - take a friend and enjoy their wonderful food and coffee served as the fabric is cut and wrapped (beautifully) for you.
I bought the glasses from my local Wilko at £1.75 each but it could be worth scouring the charity shops for similar kinds.

First make a paper pattern from your glass, this can be fiddly - also not all latte glasses are created equal, I made an earlier prototype for a glass that was slightly bigger with the handle more central. It's all trial and error ... so Make It Up.

Use a basic quilting technique of sandwiching wadding between a backing fabric and contrasting top fabric using the paper pattern as your guide. You don't need to worry about adding a seam allowance as the raw edges on the jacket will be finished with 'tape' cut from fabric - or bias binding if you prefer.

I transfered a simple sunburst design onto the top fabric with tailor's chalk as a guide for my quilting - you can of course use a freehand technique which would be great on patterned fabrics following the design - see my phone case tutorial here for inspiration.

I followed the chalk design on my fabric sandwich, this holds the jacket pieces together. 

I cut a length  of contrasting fabric 1 inch wide for edging. I could have cut the fabric on the bias in order to make own bias binding - this makes edging curves a little easier, but the jacket design isn't that intricate and straight tape worked fine.

Sew the tape to the edges of the jacket, right sides together on the top piece - in four strips, don't try and edge the whole quilt with one strip turning corners, it's easier to do it in stages. Fold the edging over to the back side of the quilted jacket and hand sew in place with invisible stitches. Tuck the corners in neatly as you go to finish off.

Choose a couple of buttons and make an elastic loop with some round cord elastic. I simply hooked the elastic loop round the buttons to keep the jacket on the glass.

Now fill the glass with Christmas goodies and parcel up with packet of good coffee for the caffeine addict in your life - or hot chocolate for the younger less wired members of your family!

Monday, 3 December 2012

November Round-Up - OR - I can't stop making handcrafted crochet card boxes!

November has turned into a bit of a making frenzy as I've road-tested a few things as possible Christmas makes.
There was my Big Sister’s birthday crochet card box, I started with some vintage birthday postcards and whipped them into shape.

It's touching that these cards had a series of messages on the reverse inscribed from the past - one beau sent his lover a card regularly over the war years from 1939 onwards, I do hope they got together in the end. 

And if the inside of your box doesn't hold secrets from the past, you can add a touch of vintage interest by recycling old newspapers as I did for this lovely ...

Note picot edging on the lid, my crochet skills are growing. Instructions on how to create these beauties can be found in a post I did a few years back here and guess what, it's my most visited page - people love crochet boxes.

Box made, there was the annual trip to Derbyshire for Big Sister's November 5th birthday bash at Darwin Forest Country Park at Darley Moor. They stage the most amazing bonfire and firework display every year in a beautiful pine forest setting and it does make a change from the old East End.

Door to the Wishing Tree
Wishes tied to the wishing tree

Bib Big Sis carved this beauty
And yes - the trip always ends with a Domino Tournament.

Next up is an idea I've brewing for Latte Jackets, with inspiration from Thimbleanna's beautiful embroidered mug cozy that she blogged about here.

I turned my hand to a Poinsettia corsage as it's one of my favourite plants - a bit of a knit, felt and some beading. Great to pin to a dark winter coat or I may wear it in my hair.

Finally I had to have a go at making a Pom Pom Angel as seen here on Laura's blog SheDraws. Laura's dancing dolly pegs are decently clothed my D pointed out to me - my angel is *naked* up top. I need to draw some boobs or add a corset I think.

Laura has made some lovely wooden decorations this year - check them out on her blog

I'm currently gathering together Xmas tat from charity shops with the idea of creating another retro wreath to add to the Pink Flamingos that will be the centrepiece for my garden tub display!
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