The following is a post from contributing writer Jasmine.
We homeschool year round at our house, but usually around mid-summer I get the itch to start planning for the next school year. I think about how things worked out the previous year, and if there are any changes that I would like to make for the upcoming year.
One of the things that has been on my mind is the accessibility of my stuff. I usually keep all of our current books in a large basket on the bookshelf. But once I sit down to start reading to the kids, I have to either bring several books with me or get up between books to get the next one. I don’t mind getting up and getting the next book, but I have noticed that when mama gets up, even for a second, the kids scatter like ants. And their focus is completely gone.
To remedy the situation, I decided to place several books in a magazine holder at the side of my seat. I can now keep my books, worksheets, maps, and pens all at my fingertips as we move from one lesson to the next.
And because I didn’t like the look of black plastic, I came up with a cute magazine holder cozy to jazz it up a bit. I was so pleased with the results!
- (2) 1/2 yard pieces of fabric (one for the outside, one for the inside and the binding)
- (1) 1/2 yard piece of batting
- large piece of paper (15 inch x 36 inch) – parchment paper works great
- Draw the pattern onto the paper
- Lay paper flat and place magazine holder top center – trace with sharpie.
- Lay magazine holder on it’s right side, keeping the edge lined up on the previous tracing – trace with sharpie.
- Flip over once more so that the front is facing down on the paper, again keeping the edge lined up on the previous tracing – trace with sharpie.
- Move magazine holder back to center and lay it on it’s left side, repeating the previous steps.
- Note: When you are finished tracing, you will have traced the back once, each side once, and the front side twice.
- Sandwich fabric
- Lay down “inside” fabric, face down.
- Lay down batting.
- Lay down “outside” fabric, face up.
- Lay down pattern on top.
- Note: Make sure the fabric and batting are smoothed out and that there are no wrinkles in them. Also, make sure the pattern fits nicely over the fabric with a bit of room on all edges.
- Cut out fabric
- Pin pattern to all three layers of fabric.
- Cut out fabric along the *top* of the pattern – DO NOT CUT the bottom of the pattern.
- Quilt as desired
- This can be as fancy or as simple as you would like.
- Practice your freehand quilting skills or simply sew lines up and down the length of the fabric (I suggest every one inch).
- Bind top edge
- Sew side and bottom seams
- Turn fabric inside out and wrap around the magazine holder (the edges should meet in the front).
- Making sure the edges of the fabric line up, pull fabric taut, and pin fabric together where it meets.
- Gently slide off of magazine holder, then sew across using the pins as a guide (if you would like, you could use chalk to mark where the pins are, then sew).
- Once sewn, slide cozy back onto magazine holder and repeat the steps above for the bottom seam.
- Square corners
- Slide cozy back onto magazine holder.
- Lay bottom seam to one side, then grasp corner flap.
- Pin (and mark if desired) at the corner edge.
- Sew across corner seam line.
- Repeat on second corner.
- Trim corners
- Trim corners leaving 1/4 inch seam allowance.
- Turn inside out, pushing out corners.
- Insert magazine holder in cozy.