The Eternal Maker Crafts

Monday, 7 October 2013

Little House Playmat Sew Along - Week One


Welcome to the first instalment of our brand new sew-along series! For the next 5 weeks we will be showing you how to complete this super cool playmat - complete with front-opening panels, window pockets and felt animals to ignite your child's imagination and make playtime extra fun!!



This 100% totally cute play mat measures 80cm X 80cm when closed up, and opens out to approximately 160cm wide! Below you'll find all the requirements you will need for each week. We'll be posting each stage of making every Monday for five whole weeks and you'll have this project finished well in time for Christmas!
Each week be sure to have on hand general sewing tools and thread in a variety of colours. Outlined below I have added a list of materials you'll need each week so you can be prepared!

WEEK ONE - CUTTING OUT
For the first week we will be prepping and cutting out our fabrics ready to sew. This week you will need the following items:
  • One House panel piece Or create your own! (Ours measures 60cm x 80cm approximately.) If you  do create your own you will also need two pieces of fabric for the sky measuring approximately 60cm x 12cm. And don't forget if you are making your own panel you could scale up or down if you wish.
  • 25cm x 110cm dark brown fabric for inside of roof.
  • 90cm x 110cm fabric for backing – we used this brick type fabric but you can use anything, you're not going to see it most of the time it's being played with as it will be facing the floor!
  • 90cm x 110cm fabric for the outside of your door panels – again we used the brick type fabric.
  • 45cm x 110cm of fabric for inside door panels  x 2 – these can match or be different  - it’s up to you.
  • 90cm x 90cm squares x 2 of wadding – we used “insul-fleece” because it makes a nice rustling sound inside the mat but you can use any wadding you like.
General instructions – when sewing pieces together, unless otherwise stated,  always stitch with right sides facing, using a 1cm seam allowance, and then open out and iron seams flat. Keep hold of all your scraps as they will come in handy later on!
OK, let's begin! First of all, cut out your house panel as shown in picture one  – removing the sky pieces from the sides and saving for later.
Picture One
Fold your cut out panel in half vertically and lay out on your cutting surface. Take your 25cm roof fabric and also fold this in half as shown in Picture two.  The folded edges of the panel and of the roof should be on the same side. Now using the top corners of the panel as a guide, cut down diagonally from the top of the folded edge of the roof piece, to the top corners of the panel - making a triangular roof shape when the fabric is opened out again.
Picture Two
Open out your roof piece and your house panel – now sew these together, joining the long bottom edge of the roof piece to the top edge of the house panel.
Now use these joined roof and panel pieces as a template to cut out your backing fabric ( we used the same brick type print that we will use for the front of the house as well.) These two stages are shown in Picture three below.
Picture Three
Take one of your inside door fabrics and lay it out on your cutting surface. Now take your house and roof panel again and fold it in half vertically down the middle from the point of the roof to the centre bottom edge. Lay this onto of your inside door panel fabric. (You will use the folded roof and house panel as a template to cut your inside door panels, and your outside door panels.) Cut your inside door panel following the line of the roof exactly, and the line of the bottom of the house exactly, BUT add  an extra 1cm to the longest vertical seam allowance – as shown with the arrow in Picture Four below – this is necessary so that the doors meet in the middle when the playmat is closed up.
Picture Four
Repeat this process to cut your other inside door panel – REMEMBER this must be the mirror image of the inside door panel you have just cut  – as shown in picture five below. (Remember to keep the scraps of  fabric you have cut off as you will need these next week.)
Picture Five
Now repeat this process again to cut out two mirror image pieces from your front door panel fabric (remembering to again add the extra 1cm to the vertical cut line) – we used the brick pattern fabric.
Now cut out your wadding pieces – you need to cut out one large piece the same size as your roof and house panel and two smaller pieces the same size as you door panels.
Now you are all cut out and ready to go.
To summarise, you should now have cut out......
  • 1 x house and roof panel
  • 2 x mirror image inside door panels
  • 2 x mirror image outside door panels
  • 1 x backing piece (the same size as the house and roof piece)
  • 1 x wadding piece (the same size as the house and roof piece)
  • 2 x wadding pieces (the same size as the door panels)
Make sure you save all your scraps as you will need these to complete your playmat. If you have any questions, please use the comments section or you can tweet us @eternalmaker! See you next  Monday when we begin the appliqué decoration!

Here's what you'll need for the following four weeks:

WEEK TWO and THREE – APPLIQUE DECORATION
You will need:
  • Fusible web “Bondaweb” or “WonderUnder” – approximately 1 metre.
  • Medium iron-on interfacing – approximately 1 metre.
  • Scraps of fabric for door, curtains, boxes in the roof  and other decorative appliqués in a variety of colours. The largest size piece will be for the appliqué door which is 17cm x 25cm.
  • 3 x grey fabric pieces 20cm x 16cm
  • 12mm bias binding in white for the sash windows – approximately 5 metres
  • 25mm bias binding white for the sash windows – approximately 6 metres
  • 12mm bias binding for the door appliqué in a colour of your choice – approximately 2 metres
  • 12mm bias binding in brown for the beams in roof – approximately 1 metre
  • 25mm bias binding in brown for the inside door – approximately 1 metre
  • 25mm bias binding in beige for the boxes in the roof – approximately 2 metres
  • (You will also need the fabric scraps that you saved from cutting your house panel pieces last week)
  • And a removable (either wash or fade away) fabric marker would also be very useful if you have one.
WEEK FOUR - CONSTRUCTION
You will need:
  • Webbing tape - 1 metre
  • Sew on "Velcro" 1/2 metre
WEEK FIVE – INHABITANTS OF YOUR DOLLS HOUSE
You will need:
  • Scraps of woolfelt and embroidery thread
  • Toy stuffing

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