Posts by Jennie

Bags for Quilters: Sew-In Magnets

snaps-1If you’ve ever made one of our bags, you’ll likely have seen the requirement for sew-in magnetic snaps. These are my very favorite bag closure. I love them because they’re easy to use, both when it comes to putting together the bag, and when using the bag itself.

snaps-2There are two kinds readily available: the ones pictured at the top I bought from Tantalizing Stitches {my favorite hardware shop in the US}, they come in a variety of sizes. I generally use the smaller ones for wallets and notebook covers, and the larger for bags. The one in the photo directly above is from JoAnn Fabrics and comes at a much higher price {I typically buy them when the notions are on sale, or I need one right away}, however, if you are just making one bag, it isn’t much different than paying shipping for a less expensive magnet.

snaps-3When using them at the top of a bag {which is where I most often use them}, I sew the magnet into a piece of flannel {interfacing or a scrap of fabric would work too} to keep it secure. And, if you don’t have a magnetic snap made for bag making, you could use this method to sew a regular magnet into a bag as well, just make sure you choose something strong enough to hold through a couple layers of fabric!

snaps-4Here’s a picture of a magnet on the outside of the bag {this is the Louisa bag} to show you where I position them, then I just slip this piece between the body and the lining and it is held in place by the seam. Slip one of these on each side of the top of your bag and you have an instant closure, this is a great addition to a simple tote, like the Pepper tote {a free pattern!}.

snaps-5 If the magnet is not at the top of the bag outside {like the Felicity bag}I just sew through it on the lining side to keep it in place, as you can see here. You can sew the bag only to the interfacing and flannel, to make it truly invisible, or, use a coordinating thread like I’ve done here.

snaps-6Finally, if a pattern calls for a Sew-In snap, it can also be replaced with a regular Magnetic Snap like these. Personally, I just love the ease of the sew-in type and worry that the metal might rip my fabric or rust if washed too often {yes…I’ve had hardware rust on my bags before, guess that’s the result of too much washing – such is life with little kids!}.

I’ve got one more planned bags for quilters post, but if there’s anything else you’d like to know, please leave a comment so I can cover it before I wrap up the series! I hope you’ve learned a little something and, if you’ve never made a bag before, are encourage to try! I really love getting to use all the amazing fabric out there for more than just household items. I think bags are a great spot between garments and quilts. Have a happy weekend!

P.S. Lydia colored on my usual linen board with a red, non-washable crayon…and I haven’t taken the time to make a new one. So, I hope you enjoy the Anna Maria Horner Folk Song that I used for my backgrounds. It was sitting on my cutting table and is so pretty I couldn’t help but grab it when I was taking these photos. I’ll have it made into something fun soon {sneak peek on Instagram!}.

Simple Scrappy Sampler :: Quick & Easy Block Tool by C&T Publishing

Simple-Scrappy-Sampler-16-blocksAs things start winding up in the spring {we’re no longer trapped in our house by cold and snow, yay!}, I’ve decided it’s time to take a little break from the Simple Scrappy Sampler. I may make up a block or two here and there, but I have some other projects that have been pushed to the back burner and need to get completed. However, if you would like to keep up your block making, I have a fabulous resource to share with you, the Quick & Easy Block Tool by C&T Publishing.

While I’ve been using Electric Quilt 7 for most of my blocks, I recently discovered this app through friends on Instagram and it is great for any block that is divisible by 4. It includes 5 sizes for each block. Blocks divisible by 4 have 4″, 6″, 8″, 10″ and 12″. Blocks divisible by 3 have 3″, 6″, 9″, 12″ and 15″ {which don’t work for this 8″ quilt, so I am still running those blocks through EQ7}.

IMG_1153Here’s a screen shot I took of the app from my iPad, this is for the Broken Dishes block we did a couple weeks ago. Now, I don’t always assemble my blocks the same way, but it is still useful to find blocks and not have to run back and forth to the computer, I can just have the iPad at my sewing table.


I’ve been hesitant to share this tool because I know not everyone who reads blogs uses a smart phone or tablet. However, when I looked it up this morning, I was delighted to find that this is available as an e-book and paper book too! So, it really is a handy and affordable resource for nearly everyone.

I think this is one of my new favorite resources! Have you had a quilting resource or tool find recently that you’d like to share? I’m always looking for amazing new things!

Stash-Busting Blog Hop :: Retro Mama Scrap Happy Sewing

stash-busting blog hopHello and welcome to our stop on the Stash-Busting Blog Hop to celebrate Kim of Retro Mama’s new books Scrap Happy Sewing  {also on Amazon} and 50 Fat Quarter Makes {also on Amazon}. Since I love sewing with scraps, I was really excited to look through the book and find some adorable projects! The first one that caught my mind was the Scrap Patch Pincushion, which I could not help but make in rainbow colors:


I really thought the pleated side was a special touch too! I used a low volume text instead of the linen from the book, just because I thought it would be fun to show something a little different while using the same technique.

Pincushion-2But, then, when I went to write up my blog post, I noticed that there were already two of these pincushions in the blog hop {no wonder, it’s super adorable!}…so, since my parents are in town and helped entertain my kids, I quickly whipped up a matching rainbow Simply Strippy Sewing Kit:

Pincushion-&-Sewing-Kit-2I added one extra strip to my sewing kit and cut it 1/2″ wider than the pattern, because I wanted to fit a pair of sewing scissors inside. I loved how in the book Kim shows several options for the inside of the sewing kit and encourages the reader to be imaginative with theirs too. Here’s my inside:

Pincushion-&-Sewing-KitFor the scissor holder I just cut two additional wedges from the pincushion, but extended them about 1/2″, sewed right sides together, turned, and sewed it on top of one of the pockets! I used bright plastic snaps on my kit too, because I had them handy.

Pincushion-&-Sewing-Kit-1I’m glad I can send these two goodies home with my mom as a thank you for all her help while visiting this week! Having three little kids and living far from family can be rough sometimes, so it was a really nice treat to have my  mom around for so many reasons!

scrap happy sewing cover

Scrap Happy Sewing photo by Kim Kruzich

I’ve really enjoyed browsing through Scrap Happy Sewing too, the book is beautifully laid out, photographed, and the projects seem eye catching with easy to follow directions. I was given an ebook of both of Kim’s books and the patterns were so easy to print and I’ve enjoyed scrolling through them on my iPad. I’m thinking there are more projects in my future too, I’m thinking the On-a-Roll Crochet Hook Holder may be next, as I have a friend I know loves crochet!

Here’s the rest of the blog hop schedule, and visit Stitch, Craft, Create to enter to win a bundle of books and fabric here.


Thu 2nd  – Retro Mama

Tue 7th  – SCC

Wed 8th  – S.O.T.A.K Handmade

Thu 9th  – Fabricworm

Fri 10th  – Clover & Violet

Mon 13th  – Robot Mom Sews

Tue 14th  – Vivid Felicity

Wed 15th  – Cut To Pieces

Thu 16th  – Straight Grain

Fri 17th  – Sew Take A Hike

Mon 20th  – Vintage Grey

Tue 21st  – Miss Print

Wed 22nd  – Pink Penguin

Thu 23rd  – Sew Creative Blog

Fri 24th  – Follow the White Bunny

Mon 27th  – A Bright Corner

Tue 28th  – Sew Justine Sew

Wed 29th  – LRstitched

Thu 30th  – Pieced Brain

The Penelope Purse :: Pattern Refresh

penelope purseOver the past couple of weeks some friends have been sewing up new versions of the Penelope purse and sharing their progress on Instagram {you can use the hashtag #penelopepurse to see them, or if you don’t use Instagram, click here}. We’ve been doing a casual sew along, so the pattern is currently on sale in our shop, and will be through the weekend {sale ends Sunday, April 12, 2015, 11:59 EST}.

Here are some of the fun versions that our friends have sewn:

penelope purse katieKelleigh :: @kelleighz

penelope-purse-debDeb :: @onaw1ngandaprayer

penelope-purse-jacyJacy :: @jrmagers

penelope-purse-danielleDanielle :: @paisleyavenue

penelope-purse-nelaNela :: @tifosew

These are just a few of the versions of the Penelope purse, the ones I received pictures for via e-mail. Since my mom is visiting this week {hooray!}, I haven’t had a chance to go through and pull other photos from Instagram, so I hope you’ll take a moment to hop over and check them out! And, if you’ve made one, be sure to share it with us either using the hashtag, leaving a link in the comments here, or sending us an e-mail! Hope you’re having a great week!

We’re working on refreshing some of our older patterns that newer readers might not have seen, do you have any preference for which is next? You can see them all in our shop here. We’d love to hear from you!

Tutorial & Free Pattern Updates

Fullscreen capture 472015 70545 AM.bmpIt’s hard to believe that last marked the 6th year of blogging here at Clover & Violet! When I started those first few posts I really had no idea what to write in this space {and I tried a variety of things}. During all the trial and error, tutorials and free patterns have always stood out as a favorite of readers! And they’ve sure built up over the last six years too!

Recently, I consolidated all the pages into one place: Free Patterns. At the top you’ll find all the free PDF pattern downloads available. These are styled just like the patterns in the shop, so if you’re curious what our patterns are like, this is a great place to start.

The center photos all link to the individual tutorials we’ve done over the years, with some of the newer ones at the top and the older at the bottom!

Fullscreen capture 472015 72836 AM.bmpAt the bottom you’ll find our three embroidery quilt alongs and other series we’ve done over the years! So, if you haven’t seen the freebies we’ve shared over the years, hop over and take a peek! And, if you’ve made a pattern from one of our tutorials, we’d love to see it! Tag us on Instagram @cloverandviolet #cloverandviolet or send an e-mail here.

As I plan the tutorials for the rest of the year, I’d love to know if there’s a little something you’d like to learn to make. We’re enjoying some extra family time with my mom visiting this week, and I might even sneak in some extra sewing! Hope you’re having a lovely spring {our snow is finally melted!}.