Now that you’ve done a few easy sewing projects you’re probably chomping at the bit to do some more. That’s understandable; sewing is so much fun! If you’re a beginner to sewing you might not be aware of the fact that you can often turn some things into other things just by taking a few stitches with your machine. Such is the case with place mats and potholders. They can be made into other useful things, and even if you don’t sew, you can still do some of these projects.
Turn a potholder into a case for your eyeglasses or sunglasses by first folding it in half. Fold it so that the small loop – the hanger – is at the top, right corner. Sew from that corner, just below the loop, down the side, and across the bottom. If you don’t sew simply use fabric glue or even hot glue to secure the folded potholder. If you use fabric glue the eyeglass case is washable.
Another fun craft to make from a potholder takes only a minute or two. Cut strips of magnetic sheeting, peel away the adhesive strip, then position the magnet on the backside of the potholder. Attach the magnets to the bottom and the two sides but not across the top. Stick the potholder to the fridge and use it to hold notes, shopping lists, photos and similar things.
Make a quick purse when you start with a fabric place mat. The best one to use is a rectanglar one. Lay the place mat so that one short side is facing you. Fold this short end up about two-thirds of the way then pin the sides. Sew down the two sides to create the side seams for the purse. Cut a strap of ribbon or cloth and sew the ends to the inside, at the top, with one end of the strap at each side seam. Fold the remainder of the place mat down to form the flap for the purse. Do a button and button hole, a snap or even a set of Velcro dots to create a closure.
Instead of a purse make a carrier that can hold all sorts of things. This time, don’t sew side seams. Instead, sew lengths of elastic across two-thirds of the purse. Cut lengths of elastic that will go from one long side of the place mat to the other. Leave a few inches of space then sew in another elastic piece. Across the width of the place mat, sew down the elastic, here and there, to make compartments. So, you’ll end up with two or three elastic pieces, across the bottom two-thirds of the place mat, and each piece will be sewn in several different places across the mat. Fold the two-thirds upwards, then fold the flap over, and secure it with button, snap or Velcro. As with the purse, cut a piece to use as a strap, then sew it to the top corners. The finished organizer can hold baby’s needs, makeup, art supplies and more!