Thursday, 8 October 2015

Bowls and rugs from scraps

In a departure from my usual sewing of clothes, I've had a brief foray into homeware. I saw these rope bowls popping up here and there and thought I'd give one a go. Rather than using plain or dyed rope, I raided my remnant bin and found some bits I liked. I tore or cut the scraps into strips about an inch wide and wrapped them around the rope as I sewed. The rope is 100% cotton, approximately 7mm in diameter, from Bunnings.

I used a zig-zag stitch for the sewing, the longest and widest on my machine. I began sewing a spiral and just shaped the size of the base and the shape of the bowl as I went. As I came to the end of a wrapped strip of fabric, I just overlapped the next one slightly and carried on. The stitches hold the wrapping in place.

I like how the torn and frayed edges add texture to the bowl and I also like the bits and pieces of sparkly fabric I included as they catch the light.

I have this sitting near my computer and currently use it to store all the ear phones that used to disappear up the vacuum cleaner. I find myself gazing at it often. It's not perfect, but it makes me happy.

The other things I've been making are patchwork throw rugs.

Look at those jewel colours and lovely fabrics. 'They must have cost a fortune', I hear you exclaim! Well no they didn't because look!

All free upholstery samples that are no longer needed by the fancy shops. What's more, they are already grouped in coordinating colours and like fabrics and cut into rectangles ready to stitch together! I got these samples from Remida creative reuse centre in Perth.

I'm no quilter and this is supposed to look rustic (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it). I just arranged the colours in a pleasing way and sewed them together, first by sewing strips and then sewing the strips to each other.

The larger pieces in the sample packs tended to be darker colours and I used these for the back of the rug, just piecing, then trimming, until I had the right size. Next I did stitch-in-the-ditch quilting along the front stitching lines to hold the front and back pieces together. Finally, I cut wide bias strips from burgundy corduroy and used that to bind the edges.

This throw rug, my second and better attempt, was tied up with a bow to form part of the present I gave my parents for their recent golden wedding anniversary.

Here is the first rug I made:

This one looks lovely in my house and feels very nice to sit on.

It goes well with my bowl too!


Anonymous said...

I've made one of these bowls but mine is quite misshapen - I use it to transport bits and bobs in the car and I love it! I've also been playing with the fabric samples, but you have managed to make two beautiful rugs. I might be stealing this idea!

Andrea F said...

I love your fabric sample quilts. What a great idea! I have a huge reel of this soft wide rope stuff that you're supposed to make bowls or rugs or something from. I'm not sure that it would cope with being machine sewn together though. Dare I try?

Bronwyn said...

Gosh you are clever. Again. Both projects turned out wonderfully. I love that throw with the splash of pink in it.

Megan O said...

Your bowl was my main inspiration and yes, make rugs!

Megan O said...

It is super easy to sew on the machine. My Bernina pushes through anything, but this was a breeze. Give it a try!

Megan O said...

Thanks Bronwyn. More a case of trying to declutter while still sewing than being clever!!

Lucy Legget said...

I brought some rope to make some bowls too but my machine did not like it at all and just did big knots on the bobbin side. I think my old vintage machine might cope better but yet to try as got a bit dispondant! I love it with the scraps wrapped around it looks really cheerful. Might try again!

Sew, Jean Margaret said...

These look fabulous. You are so creative. Love how you have used the fabric samples to make the rugs.

Megan O said...

Oh no! Maybe a different needle would help. I used a leather needle. Give it a try on the vintage machine for sure x

Megan O said...

Thank you. It feels good to turn trash into treasure!

Gail said...

The bowl is very cool. Please post more 'how to' details.

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