From Hair Bows to Makeup Bags…The On-Call Project Mom

I might easily be able to pay for college if I had a nickel for each time I heard “Mommy, can you make me a (fill in the blank)?” When my girls were young, it was Easter dresses, fancy hair bows, and Halloween costumes. Then, in the blink of an eye, we moved on to prom and bridesmaid dresses. There always seems to be a last-minute project…and I do mean last minute. The requests often come with little or no warning, and always with great urgency. Tonight the request was for a makeup-brush organizer. Surely these can’t be too expensive, but–of course–Mom can whip one up easily, so why consider any other alternative? Have I spoiled them?

So, because I’m a good Mom ;) I’ll show you a photo of the project I made tonight. It took about 20 minutes from start to finish. I was surprised and pleased at how quickly it went together. I might even make a few more to give as gifts.

I used some leftover scraps of vinyl-covered cotton fabrics. The edges won’t fray so it isn’t necessary to turn under the edges. To prevent creating holes with pins, try painter’s-type tape to hold the pieces in place. You can stitch right over the tape and then easily remove it without leaving any residue. (You can even press over the tape if you’re using it on cotton fabric.) For best results, use vinyl-covered cotton fabric, your sewing machine’s walking foot, polyester thread, and Microtex needles.

You can customize the holder to accommodate the sizes of the brushes (or pens, pencils, …even art or sewing/quilting supplies). I sewed a ribbon to one side by stitching just between the tape marks shown in the photo above. I added a band of fabric to the opposite side, which I  stitched in place with a variety of “pocket” sections to hold the brushes.

To finish, fold the entire piece in half and stitch all the way around the edges through both thicknesses. Insert the brushes, roll up, and tie with a loose knot or bow.

Tonight the request was quick and easy. I’m just holding my breath for the big one… “Mom, will you make my wedding dress?” Ahhh, the plight of the Mom who sews. Honestly, I wouldn’t change it for anything, and I’m sure someday I’ll miss hearing all these pleas.

In the meantime, I’ll keep on sewing and creating and hope you will do the same.


Click Here to download the Free Pattern or visit our Free Pattern page

ps- Call it serendipity! Just learned that our friend, Lilo Bowman, over at The Quilt Show (Alex Anderson & Ricky Tims) has posted a wonderful article on working with vinyl-covered cotton fabrics today (June 29). Be sure to check it out here.

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13 Responses to From Hair Bows to Makeup Bags…The On-Call Project Mom

  1. Michelle says:

    I miss making the Halloween costumes, but with boys I didn’t do a lot of sewing for them once they were past the toddler stage.

  2. Anita says:

    Love your projects. Where do you get your vinyl covered cotton? I can’t find it.


    • Laura Nownes says:

      Hi Anita – so glad you like the project. I purchased the fabric at my local shop, The Cotton Patch. They have a really nice selection. Their website is I’m sure they will be happy to help you. Please send photos of any projects. We would love to include them in our new Gallery.

  3. coolquilting says:

    love this- will have to try it this weekend. I have some laminated cotton around somewhere…

    • Laura Nownes says:

      So glad you like the project. It’s a great way to start using up the scraps. Thanks for visiting.

  4. LOVE THIS!!!!! I am feeling kind of crafty – Thanks Laura -

    • Laura Nownes says:

      ALEX – Thanks for ALL you and Lilo have done for us this week. it’s been exciting. Thanks too for paying us a visit. We appreciate you!

  5. Nancy says:

    Love the makeup brush holder. I can’t wait to make some for my girls. Thanks for all the wonderful ideas. :)

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Thanks Nancy. Yes, I could see your girls enjoying one of these. Now several of my daughter’s friends want me to make them. Guess I am the extended “On-Call” Mom.
      Although, honestly it has always been this way….. and I LOVE it.

  6. elaine says:

    thanks for the easy technique. i had a similar last minute request from my grandson to make a pencil case for his school backpack. i didn’t have the pretty vinyl, so i dragged out my serger.

    • Laura Nownes says:

      Perfect idea. I too could see many variations on this theme. Thanks for sharing and visiting us.

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