Project, Threads, Tools of the Trade

Trick or Treat Bag

Whip together this glow-the-dark spider web bag just in time for Hal2017-10-20 01.57.36loween. The trick is to find just the right fabric waiting in your stash. The treat is to have just the right tools to turn your ideas into reality in a couple of hours.

The project started as a way to show off the TL 2200 QVP Mini on our 6-foot Machine Quilter frame. I found this spider web canvas fabric in my stash and decided to trace the spider webs with glow-in-the-dark thread. We loaded the fabric on the frame and used a rusty orange fleece to serve as wadding and backing.

The quilting was fast and fun just following the lines already on the fabric. I moved the needle in much the same way as a spider would, beginning by throwing out the anchoring crossover lines. Then starting in the centre and winding my way around and around, sometimes hopping to the next layer and then moving on to start another web. I was using a quilting frame but the project is small enough to use a regular sit down machine comfortably.

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The glow-in-the-dark thread is called NiteLite Extra Glow by Superior Threads. We’ve got it here in the UK at our Machine Quilter shop in white, blue and pink. NiteLite Extra Glow comes in cross-wound mini cones designed for long arm quilting machines. It’s happy to go at high speeds without shredding or breaking and works great in regular domestic machines too. It’s the perfect thread for adding a bit of fun to your projects as the dark winter night begin to close in.

Here are some basic directions for putting the bag together. We put our Trick or Treat bag together by eye, using a piece of fabric that we’d already quilted and making it up as we went along. For more detailed easy-to-follow instructions follow this link to Cindy’s Skip to My Lou blog post.  We think Cindy’s reversible tote bag instructions are brilliant.

We began with a piece of canvas fabric quilted using fleece as wadding and backing. The combination of canvas and fleece gave the bag good structure so it would stand up by itself. We added some contrasting stripy fabric to the base and cut the fabric into two matching rectangles. Then cut out, folded and stitched some handles.

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Then we added a slice of this cut cat fabric. Top-stitching it down with the glow-in-the-dark thread using the Juki DX7.

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We made the lining, by cutting two rectangles from some spotty canvas the same size as the original rectangles, stitched down the handles and sewed the lining to the bag along the top seam, leaving a gap to pull it through. Then we boxed the corners for the bag and the lining.

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Finally we turned it inside out by pulling it through the gap and then top stitched the gap at the base of the lining closed.

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We tucked the lining inside the bag and admired our handiwork.  All the seams met up so nicely. we were delighted.

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The final test was to turn out the lights and see the glow-in-the-dark thread working it’s magic.

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