Saturday, 19 April 2014

Obi Belt How-To. The Easy Easter Tutorial

After introducing my new obi belts, I thought to share a basic tutorial I came up with so that everyone can create his/her own. This is a simple version, which I believe it's great for beginners!

You'll need:
  • 8 cotton squares, each about 15 x 15 cm. You can buy the squares OR make them yourself using your own fabric leftovers.
  • Felt, any color. Here again you can use any soft leftovers, from old jumpers to whatever.
  • 2.5 m cotton bias, or strips of cloth, possibly of a nice matching color. The bias must be at least 3 cm wide if you want to sew on it the belt loop, but this is optional.
  • Matching-color thread.
  • Scissors.


Well, I start making the patchwork out of the 8 squares, placing them like this:


Then I fold the patchwork with the right side of the fabric inside, like this: 
...and sew together the *long* open sides. I now have a funny tube, and I turn it inside out. This is going to be the patchwork cover of my padded obi. 

So...your patchwork cover should look like this, on one side:

....and like that, on the other, right?! Let's go ahead!

I cut a piece of felt slightly smaller than the patchwork cover, and make it slip inside, like this:

...and - surprise! - I make slip through also the cotton bias (or strip of cloth)! Yes, exactly the same way I did with the felt. Easy-easy, I told you so!
Now I fold inside the patchwork loose ends for a flawless finish, and pin all together, having great care to grasp the felt and the bias within.

Last but not least, I sew a straight seam where I pinned.
And that's it, the patchwork padded obi is now ready!

....Now, if you want to add a belt loop, just use your sewing machine eyelet program, and make a button hole on the side you prefer. It will look and work like this:
I totally prefer to add the eyelet, so that when you fasten the belt, the two strings do not overlap on the back.

...Ok, this tutorial was kind of a clumsy attempt, but know, first times are always messy!

Have a nice week end, and Easter!


Friday, 11 April 2014

Padded Obi Belts, More Pictures!

....Hello! I thought to post more pictures of the new obi belts as I list them.
This is ecru...and actually my favorite!

I like the way the cotton squares work together...and I especially love the square in the back left corner, with the small purple flowers! I wish I had infinite supply of that fabric!

...but I must admit the square with the little, coloured houses puts me in a good mood!

Above, you can see both sides, which to me is indispensable to get the true personality of this cheerful accessory...Did I mention my belts are double-face?

Ok, I've said enough! I hope you enjoyed the pictures!

Have a nice week end,


Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Padded Obi Belt!

....And here we are, as promised, with a post about my new obi belts!

I like to think about them as a curious accessory, carefree and serious at once! These obi belts were actually born from a weird idea of mine: putting together a traditional texture (they are padded with felt) and a lighthearted, whimsical look (the patchwork fantasy). IMMO, this combination makes them unique, and irresistible!

I bought the patchwork squares in a super-cute shop here in the neighbourhood. My four years old nephew chose them for me, and I couldn't agree more! Recurrent themes are the city, with rows of funny houses, maps, words, and numbers...
I padded the patchwork with felt, as it is the most soft material ever. I thought a little about it, but a proper filling (i.e. the one for quilting) would have been too much, while the fusible interlining wasn't soft nor thick enough.
The strings -  actually is one only, passing between the cotton layers - are made out of pure black cotton lint, which is a exceptionally elastic and strong fabric.

Some more details: this kind of obi is double-face, and thought to be fasten on the back or side with a bow. Nonetheless, the strings are long enough to be knotted on the front. They all have a belt loop - the eyelet you see on the right - so that the strings do not overlap behind the back, and they can easily fit every size (XXS, XS, S, M, L, XL).

So...what do you think?!

Have a nice day,