Monday, November 03, 2008

Fabric boxes

On another blog I read regularly I found a post about making fabric containers, and how time consuming it is. I have a different method which I found a lot quicker so I will try to share it with you. Having had a go at doing this in just words, I've taken time to make a sample so I could photograph it. It is easy, but quite hard to describe.

As I hadn't planned on making boxes I have had to improvise. The thickest stabiliser I had was thinner than I would like so I have used two layers. You need to cut pieces for the base and the four sides. I used 6" squares in this sample, but you can make any size you like. I find larger is easier, but see what you can come up with. Also there is no reason for the boxes to be cubes. You can use rectangles, just make sure that sides that join to each other are the same length.

Roughly zigzag the sides to the base. You can see in the picture that I am treating the two layers are one. Had I been being careful with this I would have spray basted the two layers together, but I don't worry for a test piece.

When you have made a cross use it to cut two layers of fabric that are the size of the outer edges of the cross. I actually layered it up and then felt for the edges of the cross to position the ruler. Again if I had been trying to make a great box I would have spray basted the layers together, but pins will do the job.

Now you start to form the box. Pinch two sides together at a corner. You will have a big ear of floppy fabric, this is good, it will strengthen the corner later. You now need to sew down the corner to hold the sides together. Use a straight stitch and a thread that matches the outer fabric. You will find that you have to bend the box quite a lot as you sew the seam but it will bounce back when you have finished.

Sew all four corners then fold the ears flat around the corners. The point of the ear ends up exactly in the corner. If you have an overlocker this is the time to dig it out. It will trim the top and overlock it at the same time. If you don't have an overlocker go around the top with a zigzag, then trim the top flat. Stitch around the top again with the zigzag stitch to make a really firm edge. There you go one box. My sample took me about 30 minutes and I was taking pictures as I went which does slow you down, so hopefully you should find this pretty quick too. I think with a bit pf playing you will be able to come up with lots of interesting shape boxes with this technique.

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