Do you remember that part in You’ve Got Mail when Meg Ryan writes to Tom Hanks, “Don’t you just love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.” I feel the same. But since I can’t possibly send out bouquets of pencils to everyone, how about I show you how to make your own little pencil case. Inspired by Anthropologie’s lovely back-to-school essential here, I thought I’d set out to design my own version. Here it is. Enjoy!
Materials needed for this particular DIY are fairly slim. You will need
1. thick fabric (canvas or other preferred kind)
2. piping (available at JoAnn or any fabric store)
3. short zipper 3-3 1/2 inches long
Tools needed are:
3. sewing machine.
And, Canoe Pencil Case Template pattern to prepare fabric for sewing.
Step One: This will be the trickiest part of the entire process. You will be sandwiching the piping and one of 2 center pieces to each side of the canoe. We will start with one side first. Here you see the piping in place (make sure the circular pipe is furthest away from the cut edge of the fabric, and that the entire line of pipe is flush with the right-side, or side of the fabric you would like to be seen) On top of the piping will be placed one of the 2 center pieces you have cut out. The tricky part will be to follow the curve of this piece as you pin. If you are pinning it properly you will see the fabric begin to curl.
To make sure that you have pinned everything properly, turn the fabric over to see that the piping is peeking out between the fabric you have just pinned. Check to see that the right-sides of the fabric are facing you. If you can answer yes to both of these, you are ready to sew. It is important to sew along the very edge of the pipe. Whatever isn’t stitched will be seen, so if your sewing doesn’t follow a straight line, or you sew too far from the pipe, it will be evident. Not to worry, however, if you get it wrong the first time. You can always pick the seam and try again.
Now that you have sewn each side with piping, you will sew the zipper into place. Again, with the zipper, make sure that the pull of the zipper is facing the right direction. I recommend pinning it to the fabric and turning it right-side-out to see if you have done it correctly. Once in place, sew as closely to the zipper as possible. The next step will be to sew the other half of the zipper to the neighboring side. Make sure the zipper, in this instance, is opened. It makes for easier sewing. Pin in place and sew closely to the zipper as you did before.
Now finished, pin the sides of the canoe in place and sew until you reach the end. Turn the pencil case in-side-out and inspect. If needed, hand-stitch difficult edges closed from the inside. And that’s it!