Tuesday, December 22, 2015

First of the "Fresh" Padfolios

Wispy Swirls Padfolios
I decided I'd share this latest batch of padfolios a few at a time, especially since that is how I am finishing them up. These first two feature a new wrinkle on the elastic band closures. The wider braid-type elastic can be stitched in place, raw ends covered with a button on the flap like here. But this narrow elastic cord that I was so excited to find (see the colors that caught my eye here) cannot be sewn that way. I wasn't happy with what I worked out on this padfolio, and spent several nights as I dropped off to sleep thinking about how to attach it.

It may seem obvious to the rest of you, but the solution has been alluding me for quite some time even though it is quite simple. Really, the only way to secure the ends is to knot them and although I get overly concerned about neatness and hiding things like knots, placing one between the pockets on the inside is unobtrusive. 

I used a large needle to poke two starter holes before drawing the ends through from outside to inside for knotting - two holes because that would be easier than making one big enough for both strands to travel through and because then the elastic loop could never accidentally get pulled all the way through. Make sense? I think it also keeps things less bumpy spreading them out like that - neat and tidy. The other thing I like is that it keeps the elastic out of the way when the padfolio is open. Something about it hanging off the flap seemed more in the way and more prone to catching on things.

Here are the insides of them - the top one for the "Grass Green" padfolio, the bottom one for the "Teal/Green" one. If you're wondering about those colorful junior legal pads, I buy them at Staples when they go on sale.

Rich Rust Oak Leaves Padfolio - front

The other two I want to share today have velcro closures. I'm not that keen on the velcro for myself, but in this case it seemed the best closure for the fabrics involved. I'm calling these Oak Leaves because they are the ones I stitched with oak leaf motifs. This first one is "Rich Rust". I had fun shaping the flap around the oak leaf stitching.

Rich Rust Oak Leaves Padfolio - back

Here's the back. This fabric is so fabulous with that classic hand-dye depth.

The lining fabric has been hanging out in my stash since the mid-'90s I think. I always loved it but never quite figured out how to use the two fat quarters I had. I think it came from a collection of "marbled" prints from Keepsake Quilting. At any rate, it had all the colors in that hand-dye, and it was time to put it to use!

Green/Mahogany Oak Leaves Padfolio - front

The second Oak Leaves padfolio is a highly textured hand-dye of greens and mahoganies. A little angling of the flap edge revealed part of a stitched oak leaf.

Green/Mahogany Oak Leaves Padfolio - back

All that texturing did make it difficult to know how to add stitch. I'm glad I settled on the large oak leaves.

I had enough left of the hand-dye to make the pockets, and found this commercial fabric that matched the green in it.
I've added these four to the Padfolio page on the blog - click on the tab above or here if you are interested in purchasing one. At present, the "Buy Now" Paypal links are only set up for shipping to US addresses, and in fact, it will take a bit of arm twisting to talk me into international shipping. :-)


Felicity Grace said...

These are really lovely - and so neat! They look like a lot of fun to make.

The Inside Stori said...

Brilliant!!! Thanks so much for sharing not only the closure details but the closeup photos of these VERY professionally constructed items.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thanks to you both. Yes, I do have a thing about neatness. And a fear of them falling apart under use if I don't construct them with care and sturdiness! This particular batch has been a lot of fun, but I've also managed to make some that felt like pure drudgery. There are a lot of non-creative steps and I suppose it partly depends on how I'm feeling in general as to whether the production line assembling parts are drudgery or soothing.

Living to work - working to live said...

These are just stunning. As everyone else has said, so neat!!!

I'm looking forward to a few days off. Things have been quiet on the creative front, but I've got lots to do. I hope you too have a lovely break.

Hilary xxx

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thank you Hilary! Oh DO enjoy your break from the day job. Perhaps the creative front will activate? However you choose to spend your time, may it nurture and bring you peace.

Michele Matucheski said...

Beautiful! You do such a nice job on these -- listening to the fabrics and how they want to be shaped for the world (ex : leaves stitched in). I see beautiful landscapes in some of them, too. Makes me want to collect a pile of this new snow and head to the basement for some snow dyeing! Glad you figured out a solution for the elastic closure -- Often the most elegant solution is the simplest. Nicely done!

Charlton Stitcher said...

These are lovely.
Thanks for your recent comments on my blog. It is always good to hear. I've just added you to my list of blogs I follow - I don't know why you weren't there!