HOW TO MAKE… A SASHIKO PENCIL CASE
Two 24 x 13.5cm (9 x 53/ 8") pieces of Merchant & Mills Laundered Linen in Goodnight (Fabric 1) (ours was from www. raystitch.co.uk) Two 24 x 13.5cm (9 x 53/ 8") pieces of Robert Kaufman Essex Linen Mix Chambray in Denim (Fabric 2) 15cm (6") brown faux leather tape 20.5cm (81/ 8") white zip White embroidery thread Tapestry needle Tailor’s chalk September, season of freshly sharpened pencils, is on its way and our stationery-loving hearts have never quite outgrown that annual yearning for a new pencil case. We’d like ours handmade this time please, with sashiko-inspired embroidery on inky blue linen.
Follow the template given to complete this simple sew, or go off piste and dream up your own take on sashiko design.
Cut out the template on page 98 and place it centrally on the right side (RS) of one of the Fabric 1 pieces. Use tailor’s chalk to mark where the dotted lines end.
Use the tailor’s chalk marks as a guide to copy the curved lines from the pattern onto the fabric. Run the lines out past the edges of the template, as shown.
Using all six strands of embroidery thread, sew the pattern onto the fabric with running stitch. To get the Japanese sashiko stitch effect, load the needle with a few stitches at a time, then pull the thread through, referring to the image. For the little dashes and stars, sew one at a time, using the template on page 98 as a guide.
Place one of the Fabric 2 lining pieces RS up, then place the zip RS up at the very top, as shown, so it aligns neatly. Place the embroidered piece RS down on top. Pin all three layers together along the top edge.
Next, using the zipper foot on the sewing machine, sew along the
pinned edge of the zip in a straight line, removing the pins as you work.
To continue when you reach the zip tag, place the needle down into the fabric to hold it in place and unzip the tag away from the foot. Continue sewing along to the end. Repeat Steps 4-6 for the other side of the zip, pinning and sewing together the other Fabric 2 piece, zip and Fabric 1 piece.
Flatten out the fabric pieces on either side of the zip and iron them open so the top edge by the zip is crisp. Sew a line of top stitching on Fabric 1 approximately 0.5cm ( ") down from the zip on both sides.
Open the zip. With the wrong sides ( WS) of the Fabric 2 lining pieces facing, fold the zip so the teeth are together, facing towards the opposite edge of the lining, as shown.
Place both the lining pieces and both the outer fabric pieces RS together, as shown. Pin at the zip edges on both sides, making sure the teeth are still facing towards the lining, then pin all the way around, leaving a gap of around 7.5cm (3") in the long edge of the lining for turning out.
Fold the faux leather ribbon in half along the length to create a loop and tuck it inside the outer fabric pieces on the top right-hand side, close to the zip, so the loop is on the inside and the ends poke out. Pin in place.
Leave a 1.5cm ( 5 /8") seam allowance and sew from one side of the gap in the lining all the way around the outside to the other side of the gap. Using a pair of scissors, trim the fabric corners and ends of the zip.
Turn the pencil case RS out and push out the corners on the outer fabric. Fold the raw edges of the lining at the gap to the WS, then pin and sew to close. Tuck the lining inside the pencil case and give it a final press.
Moira Fuller Lifelong crafter Moira is the founder of Craftiosity, a subscription box of modern craft kits. When she’s not crafting, she loves walking and is lucky to have moorlands, canals and rivers on her Yorkshire doorstep. www.craftiosity.co.uk