I drive a minivan without any storage in between the seats. It drives me crazy. I've been using an old shipping box that was convenient to grab before a road trip, but I knew I had to class it up a little. Enter Jeni Baker's great new line, Color Me Retro.
- 6 Fat Quarters (2) outside (2) lining (1) for the divider (1) for the garbage bin
- 2.5 yards Shape Flex (SF-101) fusible interfacing
- basic sewing tools - sewing machine, thread, scissors
A few notes before we start. All seams are 1/4" unless otherwise specified. Also, in some of the pictures I have used red lines to indicate where to sew, or where your stitching lines are, so that they are clear to you.
1. Start by cutting your fabric. From outside fabric cut (2) pieces 16" x 21" From lining fabric cut (2) pieces 16" x 21.5" From divider fabric cut (2) pieces 10" x 10" From garbage bin fabric cut (4) pieces 12" x 10" Cut a coordinating piece of interfacing for each piece of fabric
3. Sew the divider together. Line the two pieces up,right sides facing. Sew along two opposite edges (shown with red lines). Turn it right side out and topstitch along the edges you just sewed. Set aside.
5. Now we're going to cut the lining piece down the center to let us put the divider in.Take it to your cutting mat and make one vertical cut 11.5" from one side. (It's off center, I know, but I did this so a tissue box will fit snugly inside and not wobble around.) The red lines in the picture indicate the sides you've sewn together.
6. Grab one half of the lining you just cut. Open up the lining so the bottom seam is laying flat and make a mark 4.75" from the center seam, close to the cut edge. Make a mark 4.75" on the other side of center seam.
7. Now grab your divider and line up one of the finished edges with that mark, letting the raw edge overhang your lining piece by 1/2 inch. Sew the divider to the lining along the cut edge, 1/4" away from the cut edge of your lining.
8. Grab the other half of your cut lining piece. Right sides facing, line up the bottom seam of both pieces, match the tops, and pin (or clip) in place. Sew the two halves together along the edge you cut, with your divider piece sandwiched between.
9. Now it's time to box the corners. Form a triangle with one corner of your lining piece by pinching the sides together and matching the side seam with the bottom seam. Grab a ruler and draw a line 9" long (this will be 4.5" up from the corner point). Keeping your corner lined up this way, sew over the line you just drew. Repeat for the other corner of the lining. Then grab the outside piece you set aside earlier and do the same thing with the bottom two corners. Cut away the excess fabric between the line you have just sewn and the corner, 1/4" away from the sewn line.
(Not pictured, but I used those scraps I cut off the corners to make two tabs for the top of my bucket. If you want tabs, just grab one of those corners, separate the two pieces, fold each piece in half, then fold the edges in to meet the center line, sew along the edge, and use it as a tab.)
10. Grab your seam ripper and remove about 4" from the bottom seam in your outside piece. (Some people prefer to leave this open at the beginning, but I think it's easier to box the corners when the seam is completely finished.) With your outside piece inside out, match the right sides of your outside and lining pieces, making sure the side seams line up. Pin or clip all around the top edge. Just shove as much of the outside piece into the lining piece as you can. It won't go all the way down because of your divider, but trust me, you've got plenty of room to sew it up. Sew all around the top using a 1/2" seam allowance.
11. Turn the bucket right side out through the hole in the bottom of the outside piece. Sew the hole closed by hand. (It'll look best sewn by hand, but I'm super lazy and I just did it with my machine, since it's the bottom of a bucket for my car, and nobody's ever going to see it. Just keeping it real.) Topstitch around the top of your bucket.
12. We're nearing the end now. We're going to add pin-tucks to the corners to square it up nicely and help it stand up on its own. Grab a ruler and measure 4.5" from the side seams along the top edge of your bucket. Using an erasable pen, make a mark on each side of both seams. Pinch the fabric together with that mark between your fingers. Grab the bottom corner of your bucket and make a crease along the line between these two points. Sew 1/8" from the edge, creating a pin-tuck and catching the lining fabric.
You could be done here, but I wanted a separate garbage bin. This is so easy now that you've made a big bucket. You're going to follow all the steps for assembling the large bucket, without the fussy divider.
Grab your four pieces you cut and start with step 4 above, only this time sew the two long edges and only one short edge. Skip to step 9, and when you make the corner gussets, your line will be 4.5" long. Then you just finish with steps 10-12 as written.
There you have it! On one side of the divider you can keep the garbage bin and a tissue box nice and handy. The other side can contain all those little things that end up in the car and have nowhere to go. Or, this makes a nice size bucket for sitting on a bookshelf to hide away necessary but unsightly items (like all those controllers for video games).
Thanks for having me AGF! If you want to win your own stack of Color Me Retro fat quarters, head on over to my blog and leave a comment on the Color Me Retro post. Giveaway will be open until Friday, March 1st.
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Til next time.. Happy Sewing
Colleen & The Fat Quarter Gang