Nice to Sweet You

Last month I signed up to the Sweet Pouch Swap being hosted by Alyce over at Blossom Heart Quilts. This was the very first swap I signed up for and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. Today was the deadline for posting off our sweet filled pouches to our partners and between holidays and a crazy week with my boys starting kindergarten and day care it has taken me till today to get my pouch in the post. But in the post it is and now on it’s way and hopefully it won’t take too long to get to Australia.

pouchparcelThis was an open swap so when my partner Lynne told me she loved black and white at the moment, I used that information along with what I had gleaned from her blog of her love for vintage books and choose some black cotton coupled with a print from the Nevermore Collection by Michael Miller as the main fabrics for the pouch.

pouchfabricI chose a design based on a recent tutorial I had seen in the German “Patchwork Spezial” magazine although I did alter it a little and added some quilting. When it came to lining the pouch I decided to go a bit daring a choose a Kaffe Fassett Paperweight print from my stash. I do hope that my partner likes this fabric as I know Kaffee Fassett designs can be a love or hate thing for some people.

pouchliningThe pouch is closed with a sewn on magnetic clasp. I’ve found in the past that these clasps can be really difficult to open but that by mounting the top piece upside down it will still close, just not quite as firmly, making the pouch easier to open and greatly reducing the risk of the clasp literally ripping off the fabric.

pouchclasp

I added a covered button on the outer flap of the pouch for decoration (and to cover the stitching from the clasp!).

pouchbuttonThere are plenty of goodies packed into the pouch. I had initially bought a several bars of Cadbury’s when home in Ireland this summer but then discovered that Cadbury’s is also made in Australia. I did a bit of research and discovered a few bars from Ireland that didn’t appear to be available in Australia so packed those in. I also couldn’t resist adding a Tayto chocolate bar. This is someting truly Irish. Tayto are Irish crisps (potato chips). It has long been known (to some) that eating a few of the cheese and onion flavoured crisps along with a piece of chocolate is rather tasty. Tayto have decided to introduce a limited edition chocolate bar with the two already mixed. Like marmite and so many other things it’s a love hate thing. I love it, I wonder will my partner?

taytoGiven that I’m living in Switzerland I also added some of our favourite sweets/chocolates. Amongst the Swiss additions there is a nice piece of Toblerone – yes I know it’s available pretty much world-wide but it’s considered typically Swiss so I coudn’t not include it.

tobleroneThere are several more goodies in there but I’m not going to reveal any more here, nor am I going to reveal a full photo of the finished pouch at this time. You’ll have to come back in a week or two for that because I do want my partner to have a few surprises to look forward to when her post arrives.

All in all this sweet swap has been a great experience and it has encouraged me to sign up for more swaps. A huge thanks to Alyce for organizing this swap and here’s to the next one!

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Elephant Love: A Bag for the Umbrella Prints Trimmings Competition 2013

Last week I introduced my son’s new reversible bucket hat, the first item I had made for the Umbrella Prints Trimmings Competition 2013. Now I have the pleasure of showing you what I made from the first trimming pack that I bought.

With the trimmings I decided early on that I was going to make a bag. In addition to the trimmings I used a nice heavyweight brown cotton that I had picked up recently in Ikea along with some frabric from the Life’s a Hoot line by Adornit that I chose for my lining.

The bag in question is a handbag sized messenger style bag that I designed myself.

I used some of the fabric trimmings to create a decorative band on the front flap. A further trimming was repurposed in the form of a pocket on one end of the bag. In order to make the pocket large enough to use I pleated the base and then gathered the top, which prevents it from gaping and makes the contents easily accessible.

There is plenty of storage within the bag in the form of two internal pockets at the rear, and a further divided pocket at the front of the bag.

Of course the bag itself did not make use of all of the pieces in the trimmings pack and so I put those to good use to fill the bag with the necessary accessories. I first pieced some trimmings together and made a coin purse to collect all of the loose change I seem to constantly gather.

This was followed by a larger pouch. As I am usually out and about with my two boys, one of whom is only 16 months, I sized the pouch so that it can carry all that is needed for one on-the-go nappy change.

Even after making these items I still had several more trimmings left and so I used them to cover a number of buttons. I embroidered two more plain covered buttons with a heart and an elephant that picked up the desings in the trimmings. Using jumprings I then joined all of the buttons onto to a length of chain to make a fun matching keyring.

I really love how my new set works together and can’t wait to use it.

On May 31st all of the Umbrella Prints Trimmings competition entries will be pinned to the Pinterest board on May 31st. Between June 1st-5th (EST) you can vote for you choice of winner by pinning your favourite or favourites. Don’t forget to check it out, if past years are anything to go by there will be no end of wonderful ideas and creations.