Studio 5 Contributor, Kiersten Blanchard, demonstrates a simple, but useful way to create anything from trick-or-treat bags, to your family’s Christmas stockings.
100% cotton tea towels (washed without fabric softener)
1/3 yard fabric (for large appliqué design pieces)
1/8 yard (or scraps for the small design pieces)
Fusible web (we used Steam-A-Seam2 Fusible Web)
Buttons or ribbon as desired for embellishments
Black permanent marker for marking faces
Iron and sewing machine
* I used the patterns found at www.arttoheart.com. The trick-or-treat bag patterns can be found in the Acorn Hollow book ($18) under the “Books”. You can also find patterns out of coloring books or printable Halloween pages from the internet. Remember to keep them simple.
Pattern for Vampire Bag (see below)
Important Reminder: If you choose to do letters, print them backwards (flipped horizontally). They will be backwards when you trace them onto the fusible web and when you adhere them onto the wrong side of the fabric. Once they are cut out, you turn them the correct way to adhere them to the bag.
1. Remember, all of the fusible appliqué designs will face in the opposite direction when ironed onto your project. Following directions from the package, trace all pieces of the design to the paper side of the fusible web. Roughly cut around, leaving some space around the edges of your pattern. You may want to number your pieces and your pattern. Don’t peel the paper backing until you are ready to iron them on. Put adhesive on wrong side of fabric, paper side up. (I ironed for a few seconds to keep it in place.) Cut out shapes/letters directly on lines. Peel paper backing from adhesive and place onto towel, positioning background pieces first, to match pattern or in desired location. Press in place with iron for 10-15 seconds. Optional: finish edges with a machine blanket stitch or a hand running stitch.
2. Fold the towel in half, with right sides (and the appliquéd pieces) together, placing the short sides together. Using a ½” seam to enclose the towel existing hem, sew down the open side and across the bottom to form the bag.
3. Optional: to create bottom corners to the bag, turn the bag inside out. Pull the fabric so that the side and bottom seams match, forming a point. Measure and mark 1-½” from the point and sew across the point at your marking. Repeat for the other corner.
4. To form handles, cut a piece of fabric 4″ x 18″.
Single handle option: Fold the fabric lengthwise with right sides together. Sew, leaving one opening to turn. Clip corners, turn and press. Fold the unfinished edge of the handle under to create a finished edge. Pin the handles onto the bag about 5-1/2″ from the side (on the front and back) and 1″ overlapping the top edge of the bag. Sew a small rectangle around the 1″ overlap to secure the handle to each side of the bag.
Two handle option: Fold the fabric lengthwise with right sides together. Sew, leaving one opening to turn. Clip corners, turn and press. Fold the handle in half again, and mark 4″ from each end. Stitch near to the outside edge between the marks. Fold the unfinished edge of the handle under to create a finished edge. Pin the handles onto the bag 3-1/2″ in from the sides and 1″ overlapping the top edge of the bag. Sew a small rectangle around the 1″ overlap to secure the handle to the bag. Repeat with other handle on the opposite side of the bag.
5. Finish by sewing on any embellishments.
The patterns for Frankenstein, the ghost and Jack-o-lantern come in the Acorn Hollow book. The witch is also in the book for a different project and simply needs to be enlarged to the desired size. The Vampire pattern was created by Paula Rose and can be found by clicking on the patterns.
The Christmas Stocking patterns are sold in packages of two ($6/package) and can be found under the “Patterns” menu at www.arttoheart.com. (“By the Chimney with Care” patterns 117P, 120P, 121P) The patterns also contain detailed directions for each stocking.