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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I Made this.1920's inspired clothespin bag.

I have been on a clothespin bag kick and now that I have given some away I thought it was time to make one for us. Having a project to work on is nice for me,in the evenings we keep things quiet for homework a project gives me something other than reading to do.

The process was pretty easy.For this bag I wanted  to use a different pattern than I had been using and I found this one that I was happy with. I ended up not printing out the template because the pattern seemed easy enough.
  I used 2 sheets of newspaper taped together for the pattern paper.Once I had drafted the pattern I cut out the pieces from a heavy cotton canvas I had.
 When I started this project I was going to just do some Crayon "Batik" .To do this you simply draw out your design on the pre-washed fabric.For the first drawing I used a pencil lightly knowing the lines would not show later.Once you have your design in place you will want to color in with crayons,the coloring needs to be done thickly and there should be a build up of crayon wax. I should add that when drawing you will need to make the spaces to be colored a size that will work with a crayon tip,fine lines can be tricky. I also recommend using bold colors because once you are done coloring you iron the drawing to set the colors,this washes out the colors a bit.

  When you are finished with the coloring you have a couple of choices to make.One being you could now simply trace around your drawing with a permanent marker,tip size is up to you as well as color.Although black will give your project a more traditional batik look.Or you can, like I did, stitch a simple running stitch  around the edges of your drawing.I used a double ply of thread to make it thick looking.A running stitch is super easy,just in and out spacing as evenly as you can.
Now that you have decided which type of outline you want you will need to set the wax.If you are going to do the stitching you will want to set the wax before you stitch.You will need an iron set on it's highest setting usually the linen one.Be sure there is no water in your iron if you have one that steams. Lay your batik out flat and place some clean paper over the design area, I recycled some printer paper but news paper or any clean paper will work.Now iron over your project,if you colored heavily enough you will start to see the wax bleeding through the paper.You can lift the paper and check on things too.You are done setting the color when the heavy wax build up is not there anymore.Your design should look like a printed fabric.Sometimes you may get a bit of bleeding of color,this is part of the batik look. And you are done or now is the time to work on your stitching.
 You can use this technique on lots of different things.I once made us a set of cloth napkins using this and T-shirts can be fun too.Use where ever your fancy takes you.

  I ended up really liking the look of the stitching.In the 1920's there were printed household textiles that looked very much like my clothespin bag. I am not talking about embroidery printed patterns.These had designs printed on the fabric that people then stitched around. I found this apron, a pillow, a flower and one more pillow much like one I own.If you scroll down on the last link this blogger also has posted a cute clothespin bag as well.
My second photo is a close up showing the vintage child's hanger I found for my bag.I felt darn lucky to find one with chickens as the main cut outs.The hanger also has 123 and ABC cut outs.
  I love it when I can use my skills to make something not only useful but creative for our homestead.Other than that....it's been cold and wet here, unseasonably so,it makes me worry about the seedlings and the seeds that have yet to sprout.Everyone I know locally, who are growing right now ,have the same worries. But our early greens are staying huddled close to the soil trying to hang on. Without sun and warmth it's a tough job for the seedlings,their growth is slow tho' I can't blame them.I really thought we would be eating salads and steamed greens out of our own garden by now.It is early and most of it can be replanted if the need comes up.

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