Here's another project I let myself do as a reward for having finished the girls' costumes. I've been wanting to make a pouch for the girls' coloring implements that they can use in church. We've tried various things in the past - marker rolls (like crayon rolls, but for markers), pencil rolls, regular zippered pencil cases, pencil boxes and even plain old ziploc bags. None of these worked - either they were noisy or the kids had to dig in them for what they wanted or there was too much fiddling, or pens fell out and rolled under the pew in front or all of the above. Saw one of these zippered pouches somewhere that was closest to what I wanted and kept it on pinterest so I would remember to make it at first opportunity.
First opportunity, it turned out, was a long time in coming.
But last night, after three summer birthday parties, one wedding, three halloween costumes, some skirts and who knows what else, I finally had an evening without a deadline to put this together.
This is much fatter than the original, obviously, because it is meant to contain a lot of markers and not just cosmetics or skinny pencils.
It opens from the bottom to expose a partial wall
and when fully unzipped
sits squarely to allow easy access to its contents.
The top half of the back wall folds down
to allow easy access to the contents, much like a pencil cup.
We managed to squeeze in at least 16 markers and still zip it up. However, while open, it held quite a few more - we counted at least 25 (see first photo) before we ran out of markers to fill it with.
The front wall flattens out to keep the cup open because there's thin plastic in the bottom half of the back wall that provides a slight spring-loaded action. I used template plastic and batting for structure, along with homedec fabric for the outside and ripstop nylon for the lining. It's not as robust as it would've been if I'd added a layer of 600D nylon packcloth to stabilize it. But I wanted to see if it would work with just regular fabric in this prototype. Well, yes, but... no. Packcloth would've sealed the deal.
Now that little front pocket looks very handy but, honestly, it was introduced purely to hide the base's seam allowance.
Here's the view from the bottom, showing the base when there are 16 markers in there. The actual shape of the base is a dome with straight sides (sorry, forgot to take a photo).
And here is the pouch again, all zipped up.
Go ahead and point out the hideous edgestitching if you want to. I don't mind. This was my "muslin", afterall. I didn't even bother to use the zipper foot when I was supposed to, or the best thread color or the correct thread tension after the last project (four layers of vinyl). I was only interested in testing the dimensions, the sequence of construction and the way the pieces fit together.
It came together very quickly - a couple of hours at the most. And it's structurally very simple because it has only a few pieces to assemble. But the way it comes together is awkward and several times I found myself thinking, "Seriously? You have to do this before that? Oh, that's crude." And then I wasn't happy with the finish - it isn't a project for beginners who like sewing straight lines on flat layouts; there's a fair bit of 3D manipulation involved. I'm not planning to make a second one, or (therefore) do a tutorial anytime soon. Which is why I took so many photos from various angles and let you know all the materials I used, so you could try making it yourself without having to experiment from scratch. I'm disappointed at the irony - I was initially interested in deconstructing it for you guys because it had such a simple structure, but the process turned out to be quite the contortion act. It isn't often that a whip-up type project is simultaneously a mental (and presser-foot) workout. Sorry :(