Thursday, October 25, 2012

Batik-Style Pocket Warmers


The Plan:
  • To have six girls make pocket warmers as a craft for my daughter's birthday party.  
  • To be prepared for the craft by sewing the pockets ahead of time. Then the girls could decorate the cloth, fill the pockets with popcorn, and stitch them shut. 



Materials used:
  • Cloth (I cut up some old shirts)
  • Pinking shears
  • Needle and thread
  • Popcorn kernels (or rice grains)
  • Cotton balls, optional
  • Essential oil, such as lavender, optional
  • Permanent markers or highlighters
  • Isopropyl rubbing alcohol
  • Fusible hem tape (to keep kernels from escaping)

Directions:
  1. Cut out squares of cloth with pinking shears (or zig-zag stitch edges to avoid fraying).  For each pocket warmer you will need 2 squares of cloth that measure about 3 to 4 inches on each side.
  2. Decorate one or both squares with permanent marker.  In a well-ventilated room, dip the cloth with design in a container filled with isopropyl alcohol, about one inch deep.  Remove cloth when ink has faded a little.  Squeeze out excess alcohol.  Rinse cloth with water and blot with a paper towel.  Allow cloth to dry completely.
  3. Pin two squares of cloth together so that the design faces inward.  Stitch around three sides of each square (I used a sewing machine for this, but hand-stitching would work as well).
  4. Turn pocket inside out.  Press flat with an iron and press a folded hem along the top opening.  Fill pocket with popcorn kernels, leaving at least 3/4 of an inch of room so the pocket can be sewn shut.  Before closing, insert half a cotton ball infused with essential oil if desired.
  5. Pin fusible hem tape in between top opening and iron together.  Reinforce the closure with hand stitching.
  6. Before using the pocket warmers, warm them up for 30 seconds in the microwave.  If you do not have a microwave, put them in the pockets of clothing and let them tumble in a warm electric clothes dryer for a few minutes.

The Reality:
The girls had fun decorating the cloth squares, but I did not manage to sew up the pockets beforehand.   What really happened was me struggling with the sewing machine while they watched The Fantastic Mr. Fox.   I finished sewing the pockets together the day after the party.  My daughter delivered the pocket warmers with the thank you notes she wrote.



1 comment:

Jhona O. said...

I love the reality that you posted at the end. I always have such great plans that don't turn out quite like they do in my mind! I'm going to try this out with my daughter. Thanks for inspiring me with your creativity! I left a little gift for you on my blog:)