My best friend's mother recently died. About a month after, she came by and brought some sewing items of her mom's. One of them was a cross-stitcher organizer. It was a fabric three-ring notebook with floss organizers, pockets, a zipper closure, and handles to carry like a tote bag. She asked me if I could use it. I don't cross-stitch, so was sort of befuddled as to what to say.
Then I looked at it closely. Hmmmm....if I take the three-ring part out and take the pockets off, I could make a tote bag. The pockets would make a great potholder or oven mitt. Hmmmmm. So, that's just what I did. The fabric is quilted, so it's nice and sturdy. I removed the binding and took out the zipper, I discarded the three-ring thing and the pages that were in it. Yes, I do discard things from time to time, rare though it may be.
I folded down the top of the remaining binder fabric and stitched it down, catching the handles in the seam to provide stabilization. Then I sewed the sides together, starting at the top to make sure the top lines matched up. I double stitched this and then turned it inside out. Here's how it looks:
Next to use those pockets. I found an oven mitt pattern on line and put it together. Ooops, the pattern required enlarging and I didn't do that, so the oven mitt was a) too small to turn properly and b) too small to put my hand in it! What now? Potholder! I cut the forlorn mitt into an almost square, rescuing what I could of the fabric. I found some matching bias tape in my stash, made a hanger with a piece of fabric that I "unquilted" from leftovers, and done.
I'll be giving these to my friend on Thursday. They're her memories now, and mine because I made them.