The first time I went to New York was a disaster, especially as I arrived there in a pair of BA pajamas (the stewardess decided I would look better wearing my red wine...), the car that was picking me up was booked for the wrong time (note to self, not everyone can cope with a 24 hour clock) but it would have been much worse if I had not checked the bag I picked up off the carousel which had to be mine... except where did those rather scuzzy Y fronts come from? That is the moment that I realised you need something to mark out your luggage from the herd... and I am not talking about sticky multi-coloured tape on your case but something a little more sophisticated, your very own luggage label to chime in with where you are going.
So let's get our kit together, you will need:
A fat quarter
A piece of mega, heavy duty inter-facing (it should be stiffer than a cornflake packet)
Pins, needle, thread and scissors
Pen and paper
Iron and ironing board, an if you have one an applique iron is really helpful
Draw a square 8" long by 4.5" wide, mark it at 6" on both sides and 1.25" from the edge on both sides on the top, draw a line from these marks. Cut four from the fabric.
Now repeat this but an inch smaller, so a 7" long x 3.5" wide square, mark at 5" on both sides and 1.25 from the edge on both sides on the top, draw a line from these marks. Cut two from the interfacing.
Pin two pieces of fabric, with right sides facing. Now place one piece of interfacing on top of the fabric, 1/2" away from every raw edge. Sew it into place as close to the edge of the interfacing as you can but leaving an opening at the base of the label of 2". Trim away the excess as close to the seam and you dare, then turn the label inside out and press it into place, tuck the opening in. This is where your irons will start to come into themselves, take your time and manipulate it into place.
Now cut out a square in the middle of the other piece of interfacing - half an from each of the three straight sides and join up to complete the square.
Pin the fabric right sides together and pin the interfacing on top, sew around the inside of the square as close to the edge as possible. Cut out the inside square of fabric, you will find it easiest to do this by cutting from corner to corner. Roll the seam between between your fingers as it will be bulky and need persuasion from you and the iron to lie flat. Now sew around it close to the edge yet again, take it slow and steady to get a straight neat result.
Now fold the top fabric of the frame over the interfacing and iron, then repeat this with the reverse side, do this slowly with the aid of your iron, you may need to manipulate it very firmly. On the two slanted sides, put in a pin 1.5 down from the top on each side and sew into place.
Now place your frame on top of the covered back and sew it together from the pins, which will leave the top open. Slip stitch across the top.
Cut out a piece of fabric, 22" long by 2.5" wide. Fold it in half lengthwise, sew across the top and down the length of the seam using a quarter of an inch seam allowance. Trim the seam and use a knitting needle to turn the strip inside out. Press the tie flat, tuck in the raw edge and slip stitch it into place. Thread the tie through the opening in the luggage tag.
Now what I would dearly love to do is embroider my name and address and insert it into the tag... but until I save my pennies or get sponsored by a major sewing machine maker (all offers seriously considered!), we will make do with a piece of paper to make sure I don't lose my luggage.
And now it time to pop over and take a look at Handmade Monday where Wendy has some exciting news to share!