Surprise! I had another little pinterest project in my back pocket that I'd been working on for several weeks. I didn't want to blog about it in case I didn't have the time to get it done by Wednesday, but I did! It's not actually completely done because I messed up on the trim and need to fix it, but it's good enough done, which is good enough for me!
When I first saw Ashley's tutorial on making your own fabric boxes I got SO excited. I knew it was exactly what the nursery needed and was confident that I had plenty of left over fabric to make it happen. What I didn't expect was that Ashley's sewing skills are far superior to my own. I really should have known, given the Halloween costume.
Even after reading through the entire tutorial, I decided I could handle it. I cut out the fabric that I'd need and left it on a shelf in the nursery for about 4 weeks. This weekend I had a few extra minutes and decided to pick up the supplies that I'd need for this project:
3 sheets of 12"x18" plastic canvas
1/2" double fold bias tape - if you are unfamiliar with bias tape, it's in the notions section of the fabric store and comes in a variety of colors.
Fabric in coordinating colors cut in pieces:
2 8.5"x3" pieces for handles
2 40"x14 1/4" pieces, one for the lining and one for the outside
Scissors, measuring tape or ruler, pencil or chalk, pins, iron, sewing machine, and hot glue gun and fusible interfacing
Because Ashley's tutorial has such awesome pictures, I neglected to take many of my box until I knew it was really coming together as a box...The first few steps are relatively easy and make you think that this box will come together without any trouble at all. Maintain this confidence! Before doing anything else, iron your fusible interfacing to the wrong side of each of the larger pieces of fabric. I didn't use the right kind of interfacing so mine didn't work out perfectly, but it should make your fabric a little stiffer. This will make the box more substantial.
Then take your long fabric rectangles and sew each one short side together, wrong side facing out. You should be left with two tubes with the wrong side facing out. Use a 1/2" seam allowance. You can then either zigzag and trim the edges or serge them. I opted to serge, but Ashley zigzagged.
Flip the fabric you'll use for the outside of your box so that it is right side out. Iron the seam flat and lay the tube down with the seam on one side. Place a pin in the very top of the other side, essentially the middle of the box. The seam will be the center of the back of the box and the pin will mark the center of the front of the box.
Flip the box again, matching the pin and the seam so that you mark the other two corners. Essentially splitting the box into 4 corners. Place pins in the new sides.
The next step involves attaching the handles. First you'll sew along the long side of each of the smaller pieces of fabric wrong side out with a 1/4" seam allowance. You are creating two long and skinny tubes. Once you've sewed the tubes, turn them right side out. (Check out Ashley's genius help for turning them right side out!) Once they are turned right side out, iron them flat with the seam centered in the back. Fold each end over about 3/4" and pin in place. Be sure that both handles are about the same size.
Pin the handles in place about 2" from the top in the center of the sides of the box (not the seam side or the opposite side to the seam side, but the other two). Stitch them down with a box and an 'X'.
I decided against the next step of creating vinyl tag-holders for the outside of the box. If you're interested in labeling your box, please follow Ashley's steps for creating these cute label holders.
The next step is where it starts to come together. You'll put the lining "tube" inside the outside tube. Line up the seams on one side and the raw edges on the top and bottom.
Place the back of the box facing up with the seam directly in the middle. Because the box will be 11" wide, place a ruler on the box with 5 1/2" right on the seam. Mark at 0" and 11" with pins. You will want to do this down the width of the box so that you can draw a straight line for sewing later. You can connect the pin dots with chalk or a very light pencil line.
Do the same on the front of the box. This is a little more challenging because you don't have the seam to measure from. Use the center pin to mark the middle of the front and line that pin up with 5 1/2" on the ruler. Draw a chalk line or pencil line down the sides marking where you will sew.
Sew down all four lines. Be sure that you are only sewing through the outer and inner fabric and not the entire box. You have now created 4 pockets for your box!
Measure up 4 3/4" from the bottom of your box and mark with pins. Draw a line connecting these pins all the way around your box. Sew this line through only one layer of outer and inner fabric all the way around.
This next step I found to be challenging to understand, but once I figured it out, execution was easy. First you'll turn your tube inside out. Sew along the bottom of the tube, through all 4 layers with a 1/2" seam allowance. Serge or zigzag and trim the edges. You'll wan this to be a clean edge because it will be the bottom of the box.
like this. Sew the long bottom side of the triangle closed so that line intersections to a perfect corner with the 4 3/4" seam for the bottom of the box.
Cut off this corner leaving a 1/4" of fabric past the seam. Serge or zigzag. Follow the last few steps for the other side as well.
Now measure and cut your stiff plastic canvas to fit within each pocket. Make sure to trim it short so that there is room to sew along the top edge. You should have about 1/2" across the top.
Now it's time to finish up the box! Sew your bias tape along the top of the box. You will need to stop every once and a while to make sure that you are sewing through the outer and inner fabric as well as both sides of the bias tape. I struggled with this and will need to redo the top of the box eventually. The thread and bias tape should coordinate with the other fabrics in your box.
nightstand/rocker table in the nursery. I'm sure you could easily adjust the measurements to make a larger or smaller box to better fit your space. I have no idea what will go in this box once baby comes, but I'm glad we have it and think it looks really nice in the nursery.