Sewing with Seat Belts – one of my new favorite things!

It has been observed that I’ll try to sew almost anything if it sits still long enough…

I get a kick out of trying new things, whether it’s new-to-me fabrics, or more unusual materials such Tyvek, used dryer sheets, specialty papers, or even very thin sheets of metal. One of my most recent discoveries is seat belts – yes, seat belts! The kind that you buckle up in the car – only in fabulous colors.

Sarah of Cozy Nest Design has developed a terrific series of patterns for stylish totes, bags, pouches, and even a wallet using seat belts. She also sells seat belt webbing by the yard or in customizable kits that correlate with her pattern line. She even has hardware!

I should note that in addition to Sarah’s ingenious seat belt patterns and supplies, Cozy Nest Design offers an inviting  selection of inventive and creative sewing patterns for fabric, too. 

One of the first things I did was order a set of seat belt swatches.

Continue Reading…

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Book Review

Bags, the Modern ClassicsBags – The Modern Classics: Clutches, Hobos, Satchels & More by Sue Kim

From C&T Publishing:

The bag makes the outfit!

• Make your own fashion statement with these sophisticated, runway-worthy bag designs
• Each of the 19 projects has multiple variations for more than 75 different stylish ways to carry it all
• Create perfectly polished bags in no time with easy construction techniques

Turn your favorite fabrics into a fashion statement! From chic wristlets to functional carryalls (and everything in between), each project includes a full-sized pattern, easy-to-follow instructions, and inspirational photos. All the sewing basics you need are here, and you will learn some more ambitious techniques such as stitching hook-and-loop tapes, making darts and pleats, and attaching magnetic snaps or zippers.

I have a fairly large collection of books and patterns for bags, purses and totes; but I’m always on the lookout for fresh approaches, new techniques or innovative styles and shapes. However, newest isn’t always best, and this book from 2011 is one of the books I most often recommend for beginners. Although these projects don’t feature a lot of bells and whistles (complicated hardware, multiple pockets, etc.), the clean, classic lines provide great jumping-off points for more advanced sewists to customize to their heart’s content. Continue Reading…

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