An Afternoon of Fabric Play = Five Easy Pieces!

Today I just felt like sewing. Nothing large, or complex. Just something that would let me play with fabric, and that I could start and finish in an hour or so.

Romance_fabric

A summer or two ago, we decided to plant “a few little lavendar plants” in a bed near our front door. Given the sunny location, and the Mediterranean-like micro-climate here east of San Francisco Bay, it wasn’t long before our little lavendar patch was assuming the proportions of a lavendar farm!

Just a small sampling of last year's lavendar crop

Just a small sampling of last year’s lavendar crop

As last summer ended, I brought some of the harvest to dry indoors, enjoying the fragrance all winter long.

One of many lavendar bouquets to grace our home last winter

One of many lavendar bouquets to grace our home last winter

With a new crop well on its way, however, I’ve been getting kinda desperate. Hmmmmm. Dried lavendar. Fabric. Ribbons and trims. Small project. Sachets! Not only a worthy prospect to soothe my yen to sew, but a perfect, quick-and-easy Mother’s Day (or end-of-year-for-teacher) gift, too.

Sashets with Lavendar_2

There are so many ways you can make them. For the basic sashet:

1. Cut two fabric squares to the size you’d like the finished sachet to be, plus about 1/2″ for seam allowance.

2. Place the squares right sides together, and stitch all around the perimeter with a 1/4″ seam, leaving a generous opening on one side for turning and filling.

3. Turn right side out and fill with lavendar (a funnel or folded sheet of paper helps here). Tuck the remaining seam allowance to the inside, and handstitch the opening closed with a blind- or whipstitch.

Ah, the variations! You can tie the basic sachet package-style with decorative ribbon. Add a charm, just for fun.

This little sachet measures approximately 3" square finished, but you can make it any size you'd like.

This little sachet measures approximately 3″ square finished, but you can make it any size you’d like.

You can center and stitch a piece of vintage crochet work (or other vintage tidbit) to the front fabric before assembling the “pillow.” The size of the crochet piece will determine the finished size of the sachet. If you add a little extra to the cut squares, the fabric forms a lovely frame.

My crochet piece measured about 3 1/2" square, so I cut my fabric pieces 5" square--enough for seam allowance and a nice little frame.

My crochet piece measured about 3 1/2″ square, so I cut my fabric pieces 5″ square–enough for seam allowance and a nice little frame.

As an alternative, you can stitch lace, ribbon, or other favorite trims to the front fabric before assembly. (I added the button after the sachet was filled, turned, and stitched closed.)

This sachet is slightly larger than a teabag.

This sachet is slightly larger than a teabag.

If you’d like, add a ribbon loop for hanging. For this variation, I placed the fabrics wrong sides together and took a generous 1/4″ seam. (No turning necessary, but I still needed an opening to add the scent.) Once the sachet was filled, I folded and fused wide ribbon to all four sides, knotted a length of 1/8″-wide satin ribbon, and secured the ribbon with a button.

This sachet finished about 4" square; the ribbon loop makes it hanger ready.

This sachet finished about 4″ square; the ribbon loop makes it hanger ready.

Of course, you can make your sachet a shape other than square (and use fabrics other than cotton). I used scraps of dupioni silk to make this rectangular sachet. Circles and hearts are other options.

Once again, I stitched the ribbon to the front fabric before assembly; finished measurements: appropimately 3" x 4 1/2".

Once again, I stitched the ribbon to the front fabric before assembly; finished measurements: appropimately 3″ x 4 1/2″.

So there you go. I spent a delightful few hours fondling fabric, stretching my creative muscles, making a glorious–but highly satisfying–mess, and in the end, came away with five finished little pieces. (And boy, does my sewing room smell good!)

Not bad for an afternoon's work!

Not bad for an afternoon’s work!

That’s it for now. ‘Til next time, happy stitching!Darra-signature

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11 Responses to An Afternoon of Fabric Play = Five Easy Pieces!

  1. Rosemary says:

    Beautiful sachets and great idea. I just wish I had fresh lavender to use, but I suppose I could check out some craft fairs as they usually sell fresh lavender.

    • Darra Williamson says:

      Craft fairs are a great idea, Rosemary. I suspect the Farmers’ Market would be also. (I love those, don’t you?) Darra

  2. Peggy says:

    How fun!!! And now you have gifts for when you need a little “something” to give.

    • Darra Williamson says:

      I love having a couple of little goodies on hold, don’t you Peggy, especially when they’re things you’ve made yourself.

  3. Shar says:

    I know this is a weird question. But how far down to you harvest your lavender? I have grown it for several year and just trimmed off the spent flowers. But I just don’t think I am cutting down far enough.

    • Darra Williamson says:

      Not a weird question at all, Shar. I typically cut about 10″ – 12″ down the stalk, usually at a point where the stems emerge from a few leaves. That gives me plenty of stem for tying in bundles or placing in jugs and vases (without water) to dry, as you see in the photo. Good luck! Darra

  4. Mary W says:

    The sachets are beautiful.

    • Darra Williamson says:

      Thank you, Mary. I had no plan: just assembled some fabrics, threads, and trims and jumped in!

  5. Linda Stone says:

    How absolutely precious and fun! Sometimes I, too, just want to “play”. Great idea. Thanks.

    • Darra Williamson says:

      Thank you, Linda. It was fun to pull out a bunch of fabrics and goodies with no particular plan and let nature take its course. It was also rewarding to have something pretty, useful, and FINISHED at the end of the day. Darra

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