Friday, 19 August 2016

Reversible Bowl Covers - Foil those Flies!

When I started this blog, I vowed that I would do it regularly and not apologise like mad every time I missed one. Well THAT'S out of the window because I have just seen how long it has been since I posted for you. I am going to blame work which has been a bit hectic with two books coming out this year and 23 magazine articles for June/July alone. Must learn to say no. Will be practising a bit.
So let me begin by saying....sorry....will try to do better! Okay, that over with, when have I got for you this time?

I don't like flies very much. In fact, after having lived in Australia for forty years, most flies are personally on my hit list. I had hoped that moving to England would be better and it is, at least we don't have blowies here! Translation: blowies are blow flies. The sort of charming insect that will blow (lay maggots) on a woollen jumper if the weather is right. They cause havoc on sheep farms too, laying maggots in the skin of sheep and killing the sheep in a lot of cases. 

But let's not dwell. Here in um...sunny England, we just have the annoying small variety and I don't like them either. They sit on our food and god only knows what else. Surprisingly enough I was in Germany last week for a lovely visit with my family and we saw only one fly all week! It was well behaved too, it knew to stay out of the kitchen!

I was going to say cue British summer time but I didn't want you to cause yourself an injury laughing and to be honest, looking outside my window it doesn't look very summery at all. No flies either so this is a bit of a pointless post!

Well no matter, we know that we will have flies again one day and they will be looking to sit on our food and my mission is to stop them! So let's get making anyway and wait for the deluge. 
Perhaps I had better let you all know what I am talking about! These little bowl covers pop up from time to time on Pinterest and similar places and they are soooo handy and easy to make too. They are great for craft fairs and gifts. Best of all, they stop FLIES!!! And that makes them great in my book.

Although we will be measuring a bowl and making the pattern to fit it, there is some leeway to fit other bowls too so you can fairly safely make one for someone else and they will find/have a bowl to fit it. I also provide you with the maths so that you can cover everything: cue rather mad laughter.

And the best news is that we don't need too much stuff to make this Fat Quarter friendly project. You actually need far less that a fat quarter but for ease and so that everyone knows what is going on, I am using FQs. Either make a couple of covers or save the rest for later. 

The way it is lined makes it reversible too so if you get sick of one side, flip it over. Happy days.

You will need
-FQ of main fabric I have used some gorgeous fabrics from my big fabric crush - Art Gallery Fabrics.
-FQ of a second fabric for lining (yes pretty much everything that I make has to be lined. Don't worry, it's easy).
-FQ of a contrast for the edge/ elastic casing
-narrow flat elastic
-paper - this is to make the pattern
-your usual sewing needs

To begin with, choose a bowl and turn it upside down on your paper. Draw around the top edge....

Measure out about 2.5 cm (1") from the first ring and draw a second....

The easiest way to do this is to make a series of dots....

and then just join them up.
Now this measurement includes the seam allowance so you don't have to bother with that. Cut the circle out. Cut one from your main outer fabric....

Cut one from lining too and then with the wrong sides together, use a half normal seam to join the disks...

This is the top of the bowl. Step two is to cut the border. To do this, cut bias strips (like making bias binding) from your chosen fabric 6 cm (2 1/2") wide and iron in half lengthways.....

They have to be cut on the bias so that they will curve around the circle. You will need enough border to fit around the circle (maths to follow...). Join them to make a long strip.

I know that this sounds a lot but the circumference of a circle is a long way actually. For you nerds out there (and anyone wanting to make these covers for any other bowls and get the measurement right) you need to use the following formula multiply the diameter (in centimetres)by Pi. Easy as that. The diameter of my circle is 21 cm and so I have 21 x 3.14 (Pi). This means that I need 66 cm worth of border. No seam allowance is needed because we have the benefit of the bias which will move and stretch a bit.

Please don't be put off by the maths. It is very easy and it means that you can make covers for any of your bowls - not just mine!

Take this strip and pin it to the edge of the first circle using as many pins as necessary...

Sew the edge around.

Go slow and match beautifully and then press so that you have a bound edge. The binding is just extra wide to make a nice edge and admit the elastic.

Talking about the elastic, when you put the binding strip on, fold it over a bit and sew....

This takes the raw edge away when you are finished and makes it easy to sew up.
And by the way, his WON'T sit flat so don't waste your life trying to make it - trust me it's four hours you won't get back! This is actually what it looks like when it is pinned...

So if yours looks like this, you are on the right track so far.
Fold the binding over and hand sew it to the back to form a casing. I am not going to pretend that this isn't fiddly. Just stick at it and go slow. 

Now it is time to insert the elastic! I know...exciting right?! There is a gap where the binding begins and finishes...

use this gap to feed the elastic in and then hand stitch it closed.

Feed the elastic into the gap and around the edge, checking for a nice snug and gathered fit on the bowl. Trim the end of the elastic and sew securely. allow the elastic to hide inside the cover and close the gap by hand.

And there we go! I did say that it was easy didn't I. And it's reversible so if you get sick of one side or you fancy a change of mood....

Now all I have to do is to wait for summer to come - actually, I don't because these are great for keeping dust and bits out of the food too at any time of the year. I'm off to make more...maybe one for the Dogs' bowls....

I think that Daisy would approve!

See you next time and thank you for stopping by!