Sewing, beans and general recycling craftiness

I’ve been watching the Great British Sewing Bee and marvelling at how skilled everyone is but haven’t had time to do much sewing myself until this week. Two days off work and with E at nursery I was able to do some writing and make her a bean bag.

My mum’s dog has a bean bag which E discovered on a recent visit and she loved throwing herself against it. And as luck would have it, my mum gave me some old clothes of hers recently which are too big for her these days, including a grey corduroy skirt.

I didn’t have a pattern but I’d seen a couple of patterns on the interweb and figured that I’d just wing it. I laid the skirt out (didn’t think to take before and after pictures, sorry) – it was made up in thin panels which made everything a lot easier. I cut the bottom of each panel into a leaf shape, the middle being the pointy bit. I then sewed each leaf to its neighbour so as to pull the material in to make the bottom of the beanbag.

The skirt was ankle length and so, while I had been hoping to be able to use the zip for the filling, I had to cut it all off and make some tucks at the sides, leaving a straight panel on top to sew up once the filling was in. (I also duplicated the pattern with a liner made from cheap calico fabric.)

Finally I  took the legs from a pair of pyjamas I’d recently cut down and made one into a star shape to sew over the bottom, to reinforce the panel, and the other I made into a strap and sewed it into the top panel after the beans had been inserted.

To make it strong, I doubled sewed each seam and zig zagged stitched to reinforce the sides. Here it is:

And from the bottom

And from the bottom

From the top, handle visible

From the top, handle visible

I am reading: Above all Things by Tanis Rideout. This is a Britmums bookclub choice and is the story of Mallory and Irvine’s ill-fated (spoiler alert, sorry) attempt to scale Everest, as well as the tale of Mrs Mallory, waiting at home for her husband. I’m not far in yet but so far the writing is clear and engaging, a strong debut from this Canadian author. Review to follow on my book blog.

E is reading: The Smartest Giant in Town by Julia Donaldson. She likes this one – there’s lots to see and she’s getting very good at pointing out the small details (the tear running George’s nose, for example). I also do all the animals in different voices each time we read it and sing the song to a variety of tunes.

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One Response to Sewing, beans and general recycling craftiness

  1. Mum says:

    So glad you were able to make use of that skirt, I did love it!

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