Do more? Do more what? What makes you happy?
What makes you happy? And what is happiness really? Years ago I heard a phrase that has stuck with me, “Happiness is for our soul, pleasure is for our body, and joy is for our spirit.” I don’t have a clue who said this originally.
Garage sales make me happy, especially if I find a treasure or two or ten. Sewing makes me happy and sharing my talents and skills brings me joy.
Which reminds me of something I want to share with you. My online sewing class is almost finished. It is SEW SO close to being ready.
So, here is the way that combo garage sales and sewing worked for me this time.
My friend and her family recently had a FABULOUS garage sale. She had 2 small 9 inch pillows. I thought these are just the perfect size for a pocket on a tote bag.
Here is the other pillow. This one will be next and I think it is pretty appropriate for our time right now.
She even had a piece of crochet trim with buttons dangling. And they just happened to be the perfect color to coordinate with the pillow.
Here is a little tutorial about how I upcycled that garage sale find that says, “Do More of What Makes You Happy”.
- Use your seam ripper and carefully remove the stitches. The bottom of the pillow was closed with hand stitching that was pretty easy to remove.
- Remove the stuffing.
- Find the center of the front of your bag. Mark with pins or water erasable marker.
- At the middle of the pillow, position the center of the pillow/pocket to the center of the bag.
8. Pin the pocket in place. Be sure to turn the bottom edges (the opened seam) under to catch both of the edges when the pocket is stitched in place.
- 6. Choose what color thread you want to use. I used black because I wanted the stitches to show. Decide the stitching method – a single, edge stitch, or what I did, which was multiple messy rows. You can see that in image #7
- 7. Place the trim close to the bottom edge of the pocket and pin in place.
- 8. I found that it was easier to stitch the trim with the tote bag turned inside out
- 9. Use a small zigzag stitch to sew the trim close to the top and bottom edges.
10. In doing more of what makes me happy, I added a cute little flower embellishment to the top of the pocket. This flower was another garage sale treasure that I just happened to have on hand. I hand-stitched the tip of each petal to hold it in place.
11. The flower needed a button. When I started making SCRUB CAPS with buttons for the COVID crisis, I wound up using almost all of my big buttons from my STASH OF BUTTONS. My crafty friends came to the rescue and donated buttons for the cause. This one was an oddball and was just the right color, of course.
This step is totally optional. BUT splattering paint is one “more of what makes you happy”. Splattering makes me happy.
I headed to the studio and grabbed some paint and an old toothbrush. I don’t know if you noticed this but in the pillow design, there are splatters. That would be an easy addition to this upcycled tote.
Be sure to protect the pillow. Cover it with a couple of layers of paper towels.
Thinned black acrylic paint works well for this splatter technique. Practice on a piece of paper before splattering your tote.
Rub your thumb over the end of the bristles to create drops and splatters.
What do you think? I think it turned out to be a pretty cute upcycled project. This project made me happy. But what brings me JOY is sharing with you.
After the release of the SCRUB CAP patterns, I received so many, many emails from my readers. They/you shared stories of the pattern being an answer to prayer. You shared about dusting off your sewing machines or learning to sew and you made caps for friends and family serving on the frontlines. That, dear friends, brought me great JOY!!! I would sit at my computer and smile, laugh out loud, cry, and pray. My heart overflowed at being able to be at home and meet your needs in my small way. JOY!!! JOY!! JOY!!!
Because of so many comments and questions I have created “Sew So Simple Beginners Sewing Classes”. It will be released very, very soon. Be sure and subscribe to the newsletter, because subscribers will be the first ones to receive the news of the release.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13
’til next time,