Spring Time Birdie Bag Project
When intern Mandy Murray from Blessington sent us her gorgeous, nature-inspired Birdie Bag project, we just had to share it with you. It features all of this year’s Spring/Summer colours and is a real eye-catcher! She has used the Accuquilt fabric cutter and dies to cut out the design shapes.
Last year Blessington launched a Designer Diva Competition calling for crafty people between 17 and 30 years of age, with the prize being a 12 month internship opportunity with this market leading company. A talented young Home Ec/Hospitality teacher from Queensland named Mandy Murray was selected and made the big move to Sydney with her partner and her enormous craft collection!
In a recent chat with Mandy we discovered one of her main inspirations is Nancy Judd, an artist and environmental educator who creates couture fashion designs from recycled materials. Mandy derives much inspiration from nature, incorporating the colours and textures of her surroundings in her art as well as using marine litter like plastic bags, bubble wrap and aluminium.
We hope you enjoy making her beautiful Birdie Bag by following these steps and look out for more of them here at Into Craft.
You will need:
- 45cm x 90cm white waffle weave fabric
- 45cm x 90cm Pellon
- 45cm x 90cm pre-quilted lining fabric
- 45cm × 90cm Tearaway
- Four 15cm co-ordinating fabrics for birds
- 20cm × 25cm rectangle of fabric for internal pocket
- 15cm Vliesofix
- One brown felt square
- 3 to 5 different coloured felt squares for flowers
- Seven 20mm wooden buttons
- Three 10mm white buttons
- One 8mm white button
- Large pre-purchased sew-on handles
- Variegated thread for birds and leaves
- Contrasting thread for embroidery on flowers
- Heavy weight thread
- Fabric paint for leaves
- Sewing machine, open-toe foot, free motion foot and sew-on button foot
- Accuquilt GO! or GO! Baby
- 6×6″ 55137 cutting mat
- 6×12″ 55112 cutting mat
- 55324 birds
- 55331 stems & leaves
- 55334 fun flower
- 55326 crazy petals
- hand sewing needle
- Size 90 universal machine needles
- Iron Vliesofix onto the reverse side of the four 15cm fabrics for the birds.
- Position the fabric onto the Birdies Die and cut four birds and wings using either the GO! Baby or the Go! Fabric Cutter.
- Cut branches out of the brown felt square using the Stems & Leaves Die.
- Using the Fun Flower Die, cut three different coloured flowers out of the coloured felt. There are two die cut shapes per flower.
- Using the Crazy Petals Die, cut 20 of the large individual petals from two different coloured felt squares.
- Cut the waffle weave fabric, Pellon and lining into two 45cm × 45cm squares.
- Iron the Pellon squares to the wrong side of the waffle weave fabric.
While she is busily immersed in learning about the Blessington products – Pfaff, Husqvarna Viking, Singer, Handi Quilter and Accuquilt – Mandy’s absolutely favourite part is sewing and creating new samples and projects. Here’s a look at some of her other work:
|Wall hanging created using recycled products, designed to encourage people to consider their environmental foot print. It also embraces recycling with materials such as; bubble wrap, aluminium cans, plastic bag and cork.||This wall hanging has a fully beaded 3D echidna. Using a variety of different shaped and coloured beads to represent the diversity of our land and its people. The piece mixes both natural and synthetic materials.|
|The bird was hand drawn with fabric pens and then the technique of thread painting was applied. The bag was made using a variety of recycled materials such as zippers, buttons, doilies, lace and recycled handles covered with pages from an old book.||Who’s a Pretty Boy? Group Project, created with my mum, Leanne Murray and Friend, Vicki Leverton. Created for the Bundaberg Quilters 25 Years of Quilting Calender.|
Mandy’s five favourite handy sewing tips:
- Always use the right presser foot for the job.
- Test your stitch before you sew.
- Always start each major project with a new needle in your machine.
- Try using the wrong side of some fabrics to increase your choice of fabric.
- Don’t be afraid to break the rules, try incorporating unique materials or recycled products into your projects.