Tuesday, August 23, 2011

First, You Take an Old Tablecloth...

Here's another project I wrapped up recently.  It was pretty fun and I learned a few things along the way!

I started with an old tablecloth of my grandmother's.  My mother has sent me a bunch of old family textiles - hankies, doilies, tablecloths, etc.  They're all really cool; I have quilty plans for the fancier ones and "small" pieces that will go to my nieces.  Some of the tablecloths are really more "every day" type of linens, so ... what to do?  Naturally, a bag came to mind.  Right?

I intended to follow the tute at this link - the DIY Dish Basic Handbag.  Apparently watching the video once and jotting down some illegible notes isn't quite the way to go if you want to exactly follow their plan.  Close enough, though ~ and I have a cool bag for my sister.

DSCN2261 "Market Tote"

It looks at home on my dining room table, doesn't it? Getting back to its tablecloth roots, no doubt. I think it covered a larger table surface in its previous life.

I'm calling this ... the Market Tote!

DSCN2262 Market Tote

I can see my sister carrying home a bunch of fresh produce from the farmer's market in this baby! There is a ton of room in there!

Check out the back:

DSCN2263 Market Tote

That's right - pleats. Along the whole top - inside and out. Are you impressed? I've never done pleats before!!! That was one of the things I learned!

Here's the inside:

DSCN2264 Market Tote, interior

I added a nice, roomy pocket. To my sister - in case I forget to tell you - there's a gravy stain on the inside of the pocket. I left it there, thinking it was kind of a cool reminder of dinner at Grandma's. :)

I did a lot of the sewing on the bag on my Pfaff!!! Shocking, isn't it? After I made Mati's Memory Quilt, I gave my Bernina a good cleaning and oiling.  It needed it badly.  So then I went to test it ... and it was SLOW!!!  I mean, pedal to the metal and I wasn't getting anywhere in a hurry!  I did everything the trouble-shooting guide in my manual said to and... nothing.  I knew it was over-due for a servicing... so I waited out the weekend, then made a call to a shop in Topeka to set up a time for me to drop it off.  I had a LOVELY chat with a very helpful person who ... ahem ... asked me if I'd inadvertently hit the speed toggle switch on the front of the machine.  The wh....

Oops.  Well, at least I hadn't killed my Bernina.  I still need to take it in for servicing, but at least it's not an emergency now.  And it was nice to give the Pfaff a good run!  So ... pleats conquered AND I've been reminded about the speed toggle switch.  Two great lessons.  :)

Where was I? Oh, yeah. I did do the handles the way the DIY Dish girls said to:

DSCN2265 Market Tote, strap detail

I think it looks really cute like that! I'll have to do that again. Perhaps with something that isn't quite as thick as Grandma's tablecloth.

Oh - check the texture:

DSCN2266 Market Tote, Texture shot

Don't you love it? I hope my sister does. She's coming to visit in a week and a half (!!!) and I'll get to give it to her in person! I think Grandma would like us re-purposing her tablecloth!

Thanks for reading!


  1. I love it! Especially that bright green button. Nice touch.

  2. Karen,
    Have you always been "crafty"? :)

  3. Patty - I think you were in on the decision about that button! :) It's a great fit!
    Lynn - No. Definitely not!

  4. What a pretty bag and we love that you left the gravy stain!

    Love ya lots,
    Maggie and Mitch

  5. Grandma would approve. Your sister will approve. We all approve!

    Also: I cannot believe you have two sewing machines. Oh wait, yes I can.

  6. Hey, I AM your sister!!! How cool!!!! Can't wait. Very pretty.

  7. What a great way to use that tablecloth and bring new use to something so special! I love that tote!

    I have an old quilt that my mom gave me and I wish I could sew so I could fix some holes in it and turn it into something lovely too.


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