Sunday, October 31, 2010

Pattern Weights and Storage Bag

I am still working on the shoulder pads for the 1952 dress.  Of course, I used the rotary cutter when I cut them out which made me realize that I could use some small, flexible, low-height pattern weights.  My first thought was to make weights about the size of a roll of pennies.  I cut the fabric (the leftovers from my jean jacket) 3” wide and 6” long; folded the fabric in half and sewed ¼” seams, leaving one end open.  A chopstick was handy to help turn the fabric.
Filling the fabric tubes with BBs was easy.  I couldn’t find my kitchen funnel, which was probably too big anyway.  I ended up borrowing a silicone mini-muffin cup from my bento supplies.  It worked great and had I located my funnel, I would have still used the little muffin cup. By the way, it took 4 ounces of BBs to fill the fabric tubes. I didn’t fill them to the top as I wanted the finished weights to have flexibility; also, it left room to sew them closed without the machine needle hitting a BB.
I made some larger weights, too.  For those, I cut the fabric 4” by 11”, using ½” seam allowances.  They were filled with 12 ounces of BBs.
As always, storing my sewing items in this little house is a challenge.  So, while I am sewing them I am already planning where they are going to go. None of my available boxes or tins were the right shape or size. However, there was a large piece of the fabric left so I thought I could make some type of pouch for the weights.  For a pattern, I chose view C of Simplicity 9949 as it was about the right size.  I have had this pattern for years but it is still on the Simplicity website.  I modified the pattern by adding five inches to the bag.  The outer fabric was block fused with heavy interfacing and handles were attached once the bag was finished.
Because I didn’t know where I was heading when I started this project, I was happy to use scraps.  The bag is sturdy enough for the weights, but when making the next one, I will give it more structure by using some Timtex, template plastic, or something similar.
I think the weights would be wonderful made up using embroidered ribbons (reinforced with fusible interfacing) instead of fabric.  Wouldn’t they be a pleasure to use?  Also, the bag could be embellished with some of the same ribbon and/or quilted.  Leather for both the weights and the bag is appealing, too.

Well, I’m not placing an online order for leather scraps or embroidered ribbons anytime soon.  I want to see how well these work and what other changes, if any, need to be made. Prototype. Yep. That’s it.


  1. Love your weights and storage bag. I've made similar weights but don't have a nice bag like that to keep them in. Great idea!

  2. What a great idea! Way prettier than my weights. I love the matching bag as well.
    :)Deb M.

  3. This is such a great idea. I've got to make me some.
    Thank you for leaving a nice comment on my blog .