As part of my quest to show you what it’s like putting the How-To’s into practice, here is how Feburary’s DIY tablet cover went down (seen at the bottom of the post).
I got the lovely purple and green tartan cotton fabric from the remnants bin at Truro Fabrics (a palace of textiles in Cornwall), which are cheaper leftovers. I also got some bits from the textiles stall in pannier market, I have to say staff at both places were very helpful, don’t be afraid to chat or ask advice from your local textiles emporiums.
Having all the lines in the tartan design definitely made it easier to cut and sew in straight lines, so if your a sewing newbie I’d recommend you choose one like this. Fabric shops will have a minimum size to cut from their reels of pattern so bear that in mind you may have to buy more than you need. When cutting the material to size I used a piece of chalk, as it can be washed away easily, and light chalk shows up well on dark fabric. Iron all the pieces well before you begin sewing to make sure its flat enough, and pin it in place before you sew.
I sewed the cover by hand to see how long it would take people without the luxury of a machine…it is a bit time consuming but the cost was quite reasonable. Also, really pay attention to the instructions, and don’t sew it the wrong way round to begin with as I did! Sew it with the felt showing on the outside.
I used a backstitch to sew the fabric together, which is stronger than a running stitch. You can find instructions for this at the lovely sublime stitching. When sewing the bias tape to the fabrics, start 1cm in and finnish 1 cm before the end. Then when you trim off the edges you won’t accidentally cut through the stitching and cause it to unravel.
All in all, it’s not a bad price and it looks quite impressive. I had ample material leftover, so I could probably make a couple more, and it makes a good pressie for loved ones who don’t mind wonkily stitched heartfelt gifts. See if you can cadge some free leftover materials from a crafty friend and some needles and you may not have to spend anything!
Cost: £6.75 fabrics + £0.30 bias tape + £0.80 pack of needles + £1.oo black cotton reel= £8.85
Time: It took me about 2 hours
Easyness rating: It’s going to be tricky if you’ve never sewn before, so I’d rate it an intermediate project