January 22, 2015

On a Roll + A Few New Sewing Hacks

Recently I stumbled across a tiny remnant of fabric in a bin at Joann's. It was missing any kind of price label but I just had to have it.  After a bit of time trying to locate and negotiate a price (the piece also had a dirty spot) I brought it home for $3.00!!

From that little piece I made these:
After making these and putting them up for sale in my Etsy shop (CherylThimbleFingers)they immediately started getting a lot of views and favorites. If you aren't familiar with Etsy, this is a good thing.

So I started looking around to buy more.  The gray color is very classy in my opinion.  After searching the web awhile I identified it as Waves by Waverly. Dots seems more fitting but the dots are in a lovely wavy pattern. Also an advantage of this fabric is the reverse. It is just as nice as the face for this kind of use.

But even better than finding several sources is that this stuff comes in several other colorways.


Now I do try to be savvy about sales. Often, I feel, the item probably never was truly meant to sell at full price.  I saw it on another site at the same price as the sale with no mention of it being a deal. But I bought some from Joann's online because I qualified for free shipping.

The online site also showed me which stores were carrying which colors. Yesterday I picked it up in a lovely cocoa brown and I know there exists an orange and a yellow.

 But let's not get carried away yet.  It may come back to bite me. For the first time, I offered to make these in multiples to buyers and  I immediately had an order for NINE of the jewelry  rolls as bridesmaid gifts and just as I completed that order I sold another. Today I made up one in the aqua and champagne (I didn't know what to call this color), listed them on Etsy and they are getting views and favorites already.

Here are the 9 ready for sending off.

Now for the things I learned while making these.

#1. You don't always have to use a zipper foot to put in a zipper!

Changing feet drives me nuts. The one that came with my machine and snaps on quickly never lets me get close to an edge anyway.
My old one has to be screwed on and off which is a big time eater.

I have found that I can set the left edge of my regular foot against the coil and sewing very nicely down that line on the zipper.  When I get to the slider, I raise the presser foot and zip it closes and continue on.

Even if I sew it from the other side, the foot glides over the coil.  Now I know this will not work at all with a metal zipper.  Also this leaves a fair amount of zipper tape showing , but I like that.
          Here I am sewing the topstitching along the edge . See how nicely the coil guides my needle.

#2. That little metal stopper at the lower end of the zipper CAN be removed.  When sewing on this jewelry roll, that little bit of metal was getting hidden inside and was easily hit with the needle. BANG! Another broken needle!  I used a seam ripper to get in under it and discovered just three tiny teeth on each side are holding it on.

 Remove one side and roll it to the side and the other side pulls out fairly easily. Voila!
 This is the inside of the roll where all the work is.  The great fabric on the outside barely gets handled.

                   Now let's get rolling!  Another color will join these as soon as I find the perfect              fabric for the inside.  I can't find anything in my enormous stash of fabric.

On another note, are any of you gett ing crazy irrelevant comments. I am getting a lot that are like someone has copied and pasted from an encyclopedia!! I keep marking them as spam.  Wish I got REAL comments.


  1. These are really nice! Next time I get married, I'll ordere some for sure!

  2. Those jewelry rolls are lovely! Thanks so much for the (no) zipper foot tip. I am probably too timid when it comes to seeing what I can ask my machine to do.