A long time ago, in a sewing room far, far away…
Hi everyone! I’ve been working hard on this blog post and am happy to finally be sharing it with you all. Now, I realize we have plenty of readers that can’t sew, and that’s quite alright!! I just happen to really enjoy it and am happy to share with all our crafty readers that can. But have no fear if you don’t happen to sew because I’ll be doing a random giveaway for this actual Star Wars organizer!! Simply like, share our fb link to this post, and comment “shared” on our fb link for a chance to win!! We’ll choose the winner using random.org and announce the winner in Friday’s news post. This fun little organizer would make a fun gift to give a child right before heading out to Walt Disney World and help keep them entertained during the long ride. You can customize the fabrics and coloring books to fit each child’s interests and doesn’t take much fabric or time. Now, let’s get started!
Note: This tutorial is really meant for your personal use. However, if you do decide to sell them, please give credit where credit is due and link back to this post on your seller’s page.
•Fun coordinating fabrics. I bought 1/2yd of each and it was more than enough.
•Snaps, buttons, or hook and loop closure
•11″ of woven elastic
•Scissors and rotary cutter (not really needed but it is so much easier with it!)
•Mark-B-Gone fabric marker
•coupons for your store!!
To start, cut your pocket pieces. The large pocket piece (for coloring books) should be 11″x14″ and the smaller pocket piece (for crayons) should be 11″x7.5″. Be mindful of how the fabric is oriented when you cut it because you’ll be folding the fabric in half so that only the bottom half of the pocket piece will actually show. Furthermore, some fabrics only work in one direction, like the text-based, yellow and black Star Wars fabric I’m using here.
Once you get your pockets cut, you can cut your main body pieces. Again, think about what will be showing. You can move your large folded pocket piece around on top of the coordinating main body fabric to get an idea of what will be showing. Or you could, like me, just cut from the corner of your fabric. The main body pieces (2) should measure 11×13. You’ll also need to cut a strap piece(s). If you want a wide strap, you’ll cut two pieces measuring 3.25″x9.75″. If you prefer a narrow strap, you can just cut one and fold it in half when it comes time to sew it. For this project, I chose the wider because I wanted the strap to have the full Star Wars comic page showing instead of only half the text.
Begin sewing by creating the pockets first. Fold each pocket piece in half and iron it for a crisp edge. You can top-stitch them along the top edge at this point for a clean, professional look, but you don’t have to. If you plan on using Velcro closure, then you’ll need to attach your Velcro piece in the center of the folded pocket facing outward at this time as well. If you plan to use snaps like I did, simply skip this step.
Place the crayon pocket on top of the coloring book pocket and pin around. Then sew around the edges with a 3/8″ seam going from just above the small pocket down and across the bottom, then back up the other side to the top of the small pocket.
Next, create your crayon pockets by marking with your washable fabric marker lines approximately 2″ apart. Honestly, I didn’t measure, I just eye-balled it. You can make your pockets larger or smaller depending on your preference. Mine are around 2″ and will hold about 3 crayons or 2 large markers. Sew along your marked lines and trim your thread ends.
Once you have your crayon pockets made, place your pockets on top of your main body piece and sew around from the top of the large pocket down, across, and back up to the top of the large pocket.
Now it’s time to sew on your back piece. Up until this point, you’ve been working with the right sides showing, but this time you’ll place the right sides facing each other and the fabric backs out. Pin around the entire piece and again sew from the top of the right edge down, across, and back up the other side with a 1/2″ seam to ensure that your other seams don’t show when you turn it.
At this point, I also use a stitch to secure the edges much like a serger would, only I don’t have a serger. Instead, I use stitch #15 on my machine. If you don’t have one exactly like this one, a regular zig-zag stitch will work too.
Turn your piece right sides out and iron your whole piece so that the outer seams are nice and flat. Now, you’ll fold the top opening down and in and iron that as well.
Measure your full piece from side to side and top to bottom (be sure to measure once you’ve folded that top edge down!) so that you can cut a piece of cardboard to go inside for support. Leave about a 1/2″ at the top because you still have to sew along that edge and you won’t want to sew into the cardboard. Cut out your cardboard and slide it into your piece. You could also use heavy interfacing by sewing it onto the back piece before turning, but it’s expensive and I didn’t have any on-hand. Cardboard works just as good and it so much cheaper!
Now it’s time to make the strap. Depending on which width you chose, either fold and pin or just pin the two pieces together (wrong sides out!) and sew around the edges. If you’ll be using hook and loop closures, you’ll want to sew the corresponding piece to what will become the backside of the strap before you sew the two strap pieces together.
Turn your strap and run a top-stitch around the seam edges after you iron it flat. Lay your strap on your organizer piece and decide how long you want the strap to come down. I chose a little longer because I wanted the Star Wars text in the fabric to show, but you can decide for yourself how long or short. Fold your strap back and down at the top where the edge of the organizer piece is and iron it down, then slide the extra (the folded top portion of the strap) inside and behind the piece of cardboard.
Center your strap and run a top-stitch across the top closing the organizer up and securing the strap to the organizer.
You’re almost done!! Now, we’ll attach snaps. I’ve used babyville snaps which can be purchased from Hobby Lobby or Joann Fabrics. The kit itself was $20 but I used a $50% coupon and got it for $10! And it’s so worth it because I’ve used these snaps on so many projects. If you don’t want to do snaps, you can always use buttons or hook and loop closures. Just be sure to sew them on at the appropriate times before assembling the whole piece!
To begin attaching the snaps, you’ll want to decide where they should go (again, I just eye-balled it) and poke the awl through both the strap and large pocket pieces so that your snaps will line up correctly. Place the snap back facing out on the strap and inside on the pocket so that the snappy parts face each other. Attach using the special pliers.
Now, fold your elastic ends over and run a few stitches back and forth to give the ends a finished look and prevent fraying. I like to attach the female part of the snap to the elastic.
Measure about 2″ out from a small strap or 1″ out from a wide strap (depending on which you chose) and poke holes for your top elastic strap pieces.
Attach the coordinating snap closure ensuring that the back of the snap faces outward and the actual snappy part faces the back.
I’ve used snaps and elastic because it will make installation on most vehicles quite easy. Just raise your headrest a bit, pull the elastic around the headrest bars, and snap closed. And that’s it, you’re done!! Add a fun coloring book and crayons, and this will be sure to make a kiddo’s car ride much more fun and keep your car much cleaner.
Well, that’s it! Be sure to like, share, and comment on our fb link for your chance to win this actual Star Wars organizer!! I’ll be including the Avengers coloring book with the giveaway! (I won’t be including the crayons because I’ll be shipping from Alabama, and I wouldn’t want your fun new organizer to arrive with melty crayons). You’ll have until 9 a.m. on Friday. Like I mentioned earlier, I’ll announce the winner in Friday’s news post. Thanks for reading and please come back tomorrow for an important Walt Disney World Public Service Announcement from your friends at the Mouse and the Monorail! ~M °o°