WEEK 4: #PopcornPouchSAL

This is it! These are final few days of the Popcorn Pouch Sew-A-Long. You should be finished with your pouches now, but if not you can use these last few days to put on the final touches and enter the giveaway below!

View previous weeks: IntroWeek 1Week 2Week 3


Enter Giveaway!

Complete the mandatory entry options to be eligible to win. There are also non-mandatory entry options than you can complete for extra points!

Ends March 24th at Midnight EST

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thank You!

Thanks so much to everyone who participated this sew-a-long and made it a huge success. I have loved seeing everyones Popcorn Pouches! Maybe we will do this again in the future with another pattern ;)

I will be sharing some finished pouches on my Instagram stories @amistabaker this week!

WEEK 3: #popcornpouchsal

Welcome to Week 3 of the #PopcornPouchSAL! Now that we've cut and prepped all of our fabrics and supplies, we'll move on to sewing.

If you're just joining us, it's not too late! Checkout Week 1 and Week 2 on my blog or sign up here.


Week Three

This week we'll talk about sewing with zippers, top stitching, binding, and adding key rings!

All of your fabrics should be cut and interfaced (if necessary) and you should have your zippers, key rings, etc ready to go. Grab some complimentary threads and get ready to stitch!

Fons and Porter fabric glue pen

Sewing With Zippers

My #1 tip for sewing with zippers isn't using a lot of pins or clips... its a fabric glue pen!!

I have a Fons and Porter fabric glue pen.. but I refill it with Sue Daley glue sticks. Why? I didn't see the need in replacing the pen when any of the glue stick refill brands will work with it, and my favorite glue is definitely Sue Daley! So I started buying lots of Sue Daley glue for my pen. I typically get pink or blue glue but have also bought it in yellow.

  • Use the edge of your glue pen to place a thin strip of glue along the very outer edge of your zipper tape on the front and back sides. Make sure you keep the glue under the ¼" seam allowance and you won't ever be able to see it.
  • Follow Step 2 in the pattern, pressing the fabrics firmly onto the zipper tape to adhere to the glue. Sew as directed.

Still need zippers? Click here to order a complete set for the Popcorn Pouch pattern.
Use a fabric glue pen to stick fabric to zipper tape edge. No pens or clips needed!

You can also use the glue pen to secure the edge of exterior and interior layers so they don't slip or wrinkle near seams.

Topstitching

Once your panel pieces are attached to the first side of the zipper, it's time to flip and topstitch -- follow directions on step 2A of the pattern for this step.

  • Use a zipper 1" to 2" longer than recommended if you're still having trouble topstitching that second side of your pouch. Place your fabric directly in the middle of the zipper length. The extra length on each end gives you more room to work!

When topstitching I use a Schmetz Chrome topstitch needle, 50, 40 or 28 wt. Aurifil thread and a 3.5 stitch length. This combo gives me a nice visible top stitch as shown below.

Example of how I topstitch the second side of the pouch.

Topstitch in contrasting yellow Aurifil 28 wt. thread, 3.5 stitch length.


My favorite top stitch settings. 3.5 inch stitch length and lower tension.

Key Rings and Binding

These are the most frequent questions I get - How do I attach a key ring to the mini pouch? How do I fold the binding?

Well, it's super duper simple!

  1. Attach one raw edge of binding down to *front" of your pouch with a ¼" seam allowance.
  2. Fold your  key ring tab in half by bringing the short sides together. Clip to the center of the *back* of the top of your pouch.
  3. Stitch loop down with a ⅛" seam allowance.
  4. Follow Step 8 on the pattern to finish attaching the binding as usual. (use visuals below). 
**This is another great time to use a glue pen to hold that binding in place!

Back of pouch with key ring loop added and hand stitched binding


I hope this visual helps you with binding and adding a key ring! This is definitely the thing I get asked on a near daily basis, and I always try to help as much as I can. This photo set is the best way I know how to show you the pouch finishing process.

Finishing The Binding.. Hand or Machine?

My preference for finishing most of the Popcorn Pouch sizes is to do so by hand. However, if I'm making a pouch for a child or one that will get lots of use I will machine stitch instead.

Below is an example of how I finish my pouch binding by hand, including the way the edges are finished.

One last thought....

We're well on our way to finishing up this SAL!! You have from now until March 24th at Midnight EST to finish and share your creations and enter the giveaway!

Check back here on my blog next week when the Rafflecopter Giveaway opens!!

Anna Maria Horner Showcase with Aurifil Threads



Welcome! I am Amista Baker, a sewing obsessed pattern designer and fabric lover from Ohio and today we're going to talk about some really beautiful fabric and threads!

I am currently an Aurifil Artisan, which allows me these awesome opportunities to work with brands and designers. Today I'm showcasing a Anna Maria Horner line for Free Spirit Fabrics, Passionflower, and matching Aurifil Thread in Pewter.

Aurifil 40 weight thread in 2630 Pewter

Three fat quarters from the Passionflower line by AMH for FreeSpirit Fabrics

The good stuff...

Have you ever tried Free Spirit Fabrics and Aurifil Thread? They are both luscious. The fabrics are silky smooth and of the absolute best quality. Anna's designs are rich and vibrant and so unique!

Aurifil Threads have essentially no lint, they come in hundreds of colors, and a few different thread weights. I have thoroughly enjoyed using them over the last few years. For this collaboration, Aurifil has sent me 2630 Pewter in 40 weight.


The project...

I chose to make a simple matching pouch and key fob set with the fabrics and thread sent to me and mixed them with a beautiful Essex linen and antique bronze hardware.



This pouch measures approximately 6" tall, 8.5" wide, 4" deep and features a metal zipper, tab for attaching a key fob or wristlet, and a suede tassel from my shop. I had no real "plan" or pattern when making this pouch. I decided to cut a strip of the AMH butterflies first... which inspired me to grab some coordinating Essex linen and piece together a panel.


Aurifil 40 wt. is one of my favorite topstitching threads. It has a beautiful sheen and a great definition. This particular shade is a very pretty deep grey that went well with the Passionflower line.


One thing you can always say about AMH fabrics: they're rich in detail and color. The Passionflower line is vibrant and includes intricate illustrations by Anna that include butterflies, insects, vines, lace, and bold geometrics she says are inspired by Tennessee wildflowers.

Key fob made using my Fast & Easy Key Fob tutorial

Modified Popcorn Pouch - fits two large Aurifil thread spools!

I also made a matching key fob using my Fast & Easy Key Fobs tutorial and a modified version of my Popcorn Pouch Pattern for this set. Its a sweet little expanding pouch that lies totally flat or expands to hold all your stuff! This size easily held two large Aurifil thread spools but would also be good for small toiletries, ear pods, and more.

I hope you've enjoyed these little projects I've made for the Aurifil and Anna Maria Horner Showcase! What would you make with these fabrics?

Please follow along with Aurifil to checkout the other makers who will be sharing their projects over the next few weeks!

I'm a Riley Blake Designs Influencer!!

Hello and welcome to my blog! If you're new here, I'm Amista Baker, a quilting and bag making enthusiast from Ohio, and I'm a brand new Riley Blake Designs Influencer!

Keep reading to find out more about me and see some of my makes!


About Me

First, because I get asked this a lot, my name is pronounced uh-missed-uh 😊. I'm a wife and stay-at-home mom running my own small online business called Hilltop Custom Designs, where I design PDF sewing patterns and sell handmade goods.

I am currently also an Aurifil Artisan and have partnered with Olfa, multiple fabric designers, and done years of bag and embroidery pattern testing for Aneela Hoey, PLUS multiple blogger and social media collaborations. I love working with brands and sharing my passion for fabric 💕

What I Make

I primarily make quilts and zipper pouches, but I also occasionally make key fobs, drawstring bags, crossbody bags and other purses, totes, pincushions and more! 

Here are a few of my makes, you can see a lot more by finding me on Instagram @amistabaker

Popcorn Pouches from my own pattern.

Heather Ross Hexie Pouch

Simple patchwork quilt

Eventide Quilt, a free pattern from my blog. 
Rainbow Notions Pouch, from my own pattern.

My rainbow Tula Pink City Sampler Quilt, read more here.


Deluxe Pincushions

Thanks for stopping by!

I hope you'll join me on this journey as a Riley Blake Designs Influencer and I can't wait to show you all of their amazing products and fabrics. Stick around and follow me on Instagram @amistabaker to be notified of new creations and upcoming free projects!

Huge thanks to the Riley Blake team for my Influencer package! xoxo


WEEK 2: #popcornpouchsal

It's Week 2 of the Popcorn Pouch Sew-A-Long and this is when things really start to get fun! I hope you've all gathered your fabrics and supplies and are ready to jump into the pattern!

Just now joining us? You won't want to miss what's coming up... sign up here.



Week Two

It's time to cut and prep all of your fabrics for the pouches. We'll talk about interfacing, making your own binding, and more! If you have questions at any point feel free to leave a comment here!

Share your progress shots for Week 2 on social media using #popcornpouchSAL and #popcornpouch


Cutting

Cut your fabrics as directed in the pattern. Keep in mind that the *shortest* side of each cut will attach to the zipper tape, so if you're using directional fabric you'll want to keep that in mind.

Pellon SF101 woven interfacing by the 10 yd. bolt

Interfacing

I personally prefer to use Pellon SF101 woven interfacing on my cotton pouches, and I buy it by the bolt. It gives them great durability and makes them "pop up" even more! Make sure you read the manufacturer instructions for fusing your specific interfacing to your pouches carefully and follow them!

Alternately, you can use fusible fleece and/or batting to quilt it and give it nice puffy texture!

Using vinyl? No interfacing or lining needed. Just one cut of vinyl in the measurement listed for your preferred pouch size in the pattern is all you need.


Rainbow zipper assortment from ZipIt
A seam roller is a great alternative to pressing your zipper seams!

Choosing Zippers

I always choose zippers that bring out a pop of color from my fabrics. You don't have to be matchy-matchy. Sometimes mixing it up works great too! My favorite shop for zippers is ZipIt on Etsy.


  • ZipIt and I have teamed up to bring you a special listing for the Popcorn Pouch Zipper Set, so you can get all the zippers you need in your choice of 60 colors PLUS a key ring for the mini pouch! Just click the link above to shop!


You likely noticed that the pattern requires you to have a zipper at least 2" longer than the *shortest* sides of your fabric (the sides that attach to the zipper). This will allow you to top stitch the fabrics MUCH easier.


Premade bias binding from SoBiased



Making Binding

Not experienced in making double fold binding? No problem! I've got a little written / photo tutorial for you below on how to make your own straight grain binding for these pouches.

  1. Fold your binding fabric in half length wise with wrong sides together and press.
  2. Bring the raw edges of the *long sides* of your binding inward toward the fold. Press.
  3. Fold the entire length of binding in half (at the original pressed fold) and press again. You should now only have raw edges showing on the short ends.


*Image from Popcorn Pouch pattern.

WEEK 1: #PopcornPouchSAL

Welcome to Week 1 of the Popcorn Pouch Sew-a-Long!

If you haven't heard about the SAL yet, checkout my introductory post here or sign up here. This week is all about getting the Popcorn Pouch pattern and gathering supplies. Today we'll talk about what you need for each pouch size and a few other notions / tools I personally use when making these pouches, so keep reading!


Week One:

Take this week to purchase the pattern and look over it, read it carefully if you've never made a Popcorn Pouch before and make sure you've got all the supplies you need to make your pouches. 

Purchase fabrics and other supplies if necessary and get ready for next week when we cut and prep all of our pouches!

What You Need:

  • Popcorn Pouch PDF: You can purchase directly from my shop using PayPal, or from Fat Quarter Shop using other various payment methods. Both sites offer instant downloads.
  • Optional Bauble Pod Hack for $1: Make an alternate style of Popcorn Pouch by using this neat hack that finished the pouch bottoms in a different way. Available only in my shop.
  • Supplies listed in the pattern for the size(s) of pouch you're making (see below...)
  • I always use a zipper that is at least 2" longer than the *shortest* measurements for the pouch panels. Why? It gives me extra wiggle room when turning the pouch for top stitching and I get much better results, keep that in mind if you're buying zippers specifically for this pattern.

My Favorite Supplies:

  • A fabric glue pen is super handy - you'll see why next week! It makes sewing with zippers much easier. My preference is Sue Daley brand.
  • I buy colorful zippers in bulk from ZipIt on Etsy, she ships ridiculously fast and you can get an entire set especially for the Popcorn Pouch pattern!
  • Suede Tassels are a pouch accessory I almost always use to finish off a pouch. They add such a nice touch. I sell them in 21 colors in my handmade shop!
  • Personalized tags aren't a must, but they are great if you plan on selling your pouches. I usually buy my cotton labels in bulk from dutchlableshop
  • You can also use vinyl instead of fabric, SewHungryHippie on Etsy has amazing vinyl choices!
  • A new topstitching needle and some matching thread for your fabrics is never a bad idea either. My preference is Aurifil.
  • If you prefer hand stitching your binding, I LOVE Lori Holt's binding needles.
  • I buy premade rolls of bias binding online.. but you can totally make your own too! (Another topic we'll cover in depth next week).
  • Another bulk purchase I make is metal key rings for the Mini Popcorn Pouch size and the Bauble Pod. You can never have too many!

Pre-made bias tape rolls from SoBiased

Get planning!

Now that you have some ideas of what I use when making my pouches, the pattern, and the requirements for all of the different sizes, get planning! Mix and match your fabrics and zippers to come up with something awesome and we'll cut & prep them for sewing next week!

Post on social media using #popcornpouchsal AND #popcornpouch this week with your fabric pull to earn extra entry points for the giveaway!

Get a set of zippers especially for the Popcorn Pouch pattern at ZipIt on Etsy!


Announcing the Popcorn Pouch Sew-A-Long!

Hello and welcome! I'm popping in today to announce the Popcorn Pouch Sew-A-Long!

I'm Amista Baker, the Popcorn Pouch designer, and I'll be your host for the next couple weeks while we make some of these easy pouches! I'll help you along the way with posts here on my blog and you'll have a chance to win prizes at the end of the month!


Why are we having a SAL?

I get many questions on a weekly basis about zippers, how to finish off the Popcorn Pouch binding, or add a key ring loop to the Mini sizes. We'll talk about these things over the coming days as well as general tips for getting better results when sewing with zippers and more.

FIRST: You'll need the Popcorn Pouch Pattern to participate.



When:

The SAL will last from May 1st through 24th, 2019 and will take place here on my blog.

We'll take the weekends off - no sewing on Saturdays and Sundays. Those can be catch-up days if you need them, and we'll use the weekdays to follow the SAL progress.





Week 1: From May 1-3. Getting started, choosing supplies.
Week 2: From May 6-10. Cutting and prepping.
Week 3: From May 13-17. Assembly, attaching binding and key ring loops, etc.
Week 4: From May 20-24. Show-off your finished pouches and enter to win prizes

*You have four days (May 20 through 24) to share your pouches. The cut off date for entering prizes is May 24 at Midnight EST. Enter by completing the Rafflecopter form at the bottom of this post on the dates mentioned. 



Where can I participate?

The full details for each week will be posted here on the Hilltop Custom Designs blog. Please sign up here to be notified via email when the swap commences and there are new blog posts.

Alternately, we'll be following along on Instagram @amistabaker. But you'll need to visit the blog to get all the details each week.

What do I need?

You'll need to click here & purchase the Popcorn Pouch Pattern to participate if you don't already have it.

OPTIONAL: Bauble Pod, $1 hack (you'll get extra entries for making one!)

All fabric requirements and other supplies needed are listed in the pattern details. For Week 1 you'll simply want to grab the pattern and look over / gather supplies needed.


Rules and Info:

  • You'll get credit for posting EACH WEEK and following the actual stitch-a-long progress. You're more than welcome to sew ahead, but please remember to hold off on posting finished pouches until the appropriate times so you're eligible to win the prizes! 
  • Previously made pouches will not qualify for the giveaway prizes. You must participate in the actual stitch-a-long and make new pouches.
  • Use #popcornpouchsal and #popcornpouch on your social media posts.
  • Open internationally. Anyone who participates and follows these rules is eligible to win.
  • Cut off date for entering to win prizes is May 24th, 2019 at midnight. To enter, please check back here on Week 4 of the SAL to enter yourself at the bottom of this post on the Rafflecopter form.

I hope you'll join us!

These pouches are incredibly fast to make, you won't have any problem whipping right through this pattern! But for those that need help, I'll be here for you! Each week I'll provide helpful tips and tricks right here on my blog!

Enter to Win

After completing the sew-a-long you may enter to win a prize pack using the Rafflecopter box below.

Entries will be open from May 20th until May 24th at Midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Rifle Paper Co. Redwood Tote


I'm popping in today to talk about my new Redwood Tote! 

I have been dreaming up a new tote for myself for quite some time now, had a few fabrics picked out, changed my mind, and so on. But, when I saw the new Redwood Tote by Noodlehead I knew I had to make it with these Wildwood fabrics by Rifle Paper Co. for Cotton & Steel.


This tote has a zipper pocket on the front, a slip pocket on the back and some on the interior, plus a zip top closure. I used one of my new custom cork labels from ByPiera on the back as well, which I REALLY love!

The handles are made from natural cotton strapping and I up-cycled the crossbody strap from a previous purse I had made for myself last year.


One really unique thing about this tote pattern is the reinforced bottom. I had never made a bag of any size this way and it totally makes perfect sense! The construction method for this part of the bag is genius!

If you haven't checked out the new Redwood Tote pattern by Noodlehead you really should. Its a quick project for an experienced bag maker (it took me a few hours) and the results are really beautiful. (PS: Do yourself a favor and use canvas on the exterior, it makes it that much more beautiful and professional looking!).

FREE Big Patchwork Crib Quilt Pattern



I recently finished this patchwork quilt using 7" squares and provided the free instructions to our local quilting club, Perry Co. Sewcial Club, for any beginners or members who may want to try an easy quilt.

This top came together in one day and I sent it off to my long arm quilter the next day, but its easy enough and small enough that you could quilt it yourself on your domestic machine too!


If you're interested in trying this pattern as well, feel free to download it below at no cost. If you want to share the pattern with others, please direct them to this page to download the pattern for themselves instead of emailing it to them privately.

Click to get the FREE pdf pattern!


Thanks so much for reading! Please tag me @amistabaker on social media if you make this quilt :)