Cheats Patchwork….Tutorial….Part One

This summer I have made several zipped tote bags for family and friends, each time I make one I end up with 8 small 6 cm squares, and you know me I have to use them somehow.


The school lunch totes for the girls .


Tote for my daughter – in – law to use in her new job.


A tote sent to Korea to my lovely friend Li-anne.


A bit of indulgence, well a girl can never have too many bags.

I thought I would share with you this tutorial for using up odd bits of fabric, and as you will see they can be any type, just fairly regular in size.

All of the little squares were bonded to a muslin backing fabric.




These were then stitched down using a large zig zag stitch.


Don’t worry about neatness, this is quick and rustic.



Lay the fabric on a surface and cut up through the whole patches.


Taking every other strip, turn them 180′, creating smaller, narrow patches.


Machine zig zag again these new smaller patches.


Doing the same again, cut up the width of the patch and turn every other one 180′.


Creating tiny square patches.

Zig Zag again.


Next bond the whole of this fabric to a piece of bondable wadding.


Change your machine foot to a free machine embroidery foot or darning foot, dropping the feed dogs, lift the needle tension. And away you go. Using the needle as a pen and lots of smooth movements, create swirls in a couple of different coloured threads.


This strengthens the fabric and quilts at the same time.

And there you have made yourself a piece of usable fabric that you can use to make all sorts of things.

Part 2 we will make a small make up type pocket …watch this space…



Filed under Textiles

13 responses to “Cheats Patchwork….Tutorial….Part One

  1. Your tutorial reminds of years and years and years ago watching my grandmother do the same thing to make quilts. Thanks for the memory.


  2. Do you reckon there is any way of making the bags waterproof?


  3. diversifolius

    I don’t know why but I can’t see the images you uploaded, just the names of the files (img…)


    • Nobody else has said anything ….but when I posted these last 2 posts they usually go to my F/B page as well but they didn’t. I have refreshed the F/B button. It’s a mystery… 🙂
      Can you see them by clicking on each photo ?


      • diversifolius

        I can see only a few of them and the rest show IMG and the number of your image and if I click on it I get a 404 Error – but don’t worry I got the explanations 🙂


  4. Loved seeing all those pretty fabrics, Sue – but now having a very small granddaughter I have another use for off cuts (well, perhaps not 6x8cms!) at the moment

    Liked by 1 person

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