Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Monogrammed Manly Beverage Coozie Tutorial

I have been bitten by the sewing bug lately, not that I don't always have some project in the works, but I've added several new clothing items to my Etsy shop over the last few weeks! Yay! While my shop is  still definitely still dominated by crochet, summer is great inspiration for sewing! 

My Sweet Girls in their Green Fox Farms Summer Essentials! :-)


Along those lines I have created this fun and easy project:
Monogrammed Manly Beverage Coozie Tutorial

This is my first ever sewing tutorial, which is both exciting and unnerving! :-) Hopefully this will serve to be useful to someone during these lovely summer months, even if it is too late for Father's Day! ;-) Unfortunately I decided to make it the day before in the midst of my Giveaway, so this one had to be postponed until I had time to write up the instructions. 

First things first: This Coozie is designed to fit either a standard sized can or bottle. My hubby uses both so I wanted it to be versatile. A standard bottle measures 7.5 inches around and cans are 8.25-8.5 inches around. My finished dimensions were 8 inches x 3.5 inches, not counting the elastic. I opted to use elastic and a button to secure the coozie, but you could easily use velcro, just add about 2 inches in length to your original outer pieces and sew the velcro on to the side without the fusible fleece before you stitch them together.


Materials list:
1. Fabric of choice for outer and inner 2 pieces each 9 inches x 4.5 inches
 (I used home decor fabric, but corduroy, denim, quilting cotton or similar would work as well)
2. Fusible fleece 1 piece measuring 8 x 3.5 inches
(You don't want to catch this in the seam and it will stretch a little as you iron)
3. Fabric of choice for Monogram 1 piece measuring about 3.5 x 5 inches
(I used an old jeans leg I cut off to make hole-in-the-knee pants into shorts, but again any fabric will do and if you choose felt or fleece you can skip the interfacing as they don't fray!)
4. Small piece of fusible interfacing to cover monogram 
(This serves to both stabilize and reduce fraying on your appliqué)
5. Small piece of 1/8 inch elastic about 2.5 inches in length
(If your button is much larger than mine I'd add another 1/2 inch of elastic)
6. Button of choice at least 1/2 inch wide (Mine was 7/8")


Start by assembling your materials and iron your fusible fleece to the wrong side of one of the main fabric pieces according to the manufacturers directions.


Next we are going to create our Monogram Appliqué. You want it to be less than 3 inches tall and no more than about 5 inches wide. I drew my own letter on a scrap of card stock, cut it out and then held it over the fusible interfacing to cut that out. I then ironed the fusible interfacing to the wrong side of my appliqué fabric following the manufacturers instructions and cut out the appliqué along the lines provided by my interfacing. This is NOT necessarily the simplest way to approach this… ;-) 

Instead you could opt to draw your monogram (or print one out if drawing is not your strong suit!) and trace it onto you fusible interfacing using tailor's chalk or a permanent marker (air erasable pen will not last you long enough here!) and then iron that piece onto the fabric and then cut it out just once. But it's up to you if you like to cut 3 times like me or one time like those who plan ahead… :-D


Next you will want to center you letter on the piece of outer fabric on which you have NOT ironed the fusible fleece. Trust me, it is much easier not to sew through that extra layer! I have centered my monogram evenly on the vertical plane, but about one inch over to the left of center to allow space for my button. Well it seems I'm capable of planning ahead sometimes! ;-) Once you have chosen your spot, pin your letter down well (knowing you'll be unpinning as we go to keep them out of the way of our needle) and get ready to sew on your appliqué. 

For stability, I usually appliqué using a zigzag stitch because I am used to appliquéing onto garments. This coozie really has no need to stretch so a simple straight stitch would do just as well, you decide! Anyhow, sew all the way around the outside of your letter (and the inside if you're lucky enough to have selected a letter like A, D, O, etc) making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end.  


Next we are going to place our elastic on the slightly shorter side, with the rough edges lined up with the edge of the fabric and the button loop facing toward the center. You can opt to pin or baste it in place by putting a couple stitches down. I find basting far easier, but pining works too. Then pin your two sides right sides together around the outside, leaving a roughly 2 inch gap on the button side that we will use to turn our coozie right side out. 


Starting at one edge of our 2 inch space, and using a 1/2 inch seam allowance, sew all the way around to the other edge of the gap, being sure to backstitch at the beginning and end. I like to then go back and do a few extra stitches to secure the elastic as you really don't want it come out, rendering your hardwork, well, rather useless… ;-) Then clip the corners to help them look crisp when we turn the coozie right side out.


Turn your coozie right side out, using the tool of your choice (chopstick, point turner, or old clay tools like me, etc.) to poke the corners as nicely as possible. Then turn in the edges of the opening we left to lie flat along the edge. You should be folding in roughly 1/2 inch, the same as your seam allowance. Press well on both sides with a nice hot, steamy iron. Next we will top stitch all the way around the edge of our coozie about 1/8 inch from the edge, effectively closing the aforementioned gap and giving it a nice finished look. You are almost finished! 

Next you want to sew on your button on the opposite side from your elastic. Try to line it up at roughly the same height as your elastic, but if you can tell mine snuck up a little higher and guess what? It still works great and I sincerely doubt my husband noticed! ;-) I used my machine, but hand sewing would be just as effective. Again, just make sure to knot it securely when you're done. That's it!



YOU ARE DONE!!

Now go wrap that gift up and give it away or strap it around the nearest cold beverage if you made if for yourself and go enjoy a hot summer day outside! YOU'VE EARNED IT!! :-)








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Thank you so much for sewing along with me! I hope you enjoyed my first tutorial and that it all made sense! I had a lot of fun making this and will be adding a girly version for myself soon! Maybe with a little crochet involved or some reverse appliquéing… Sure to elicit Ooohs! and Aaahs! either way! 

Please share what you've created or feel free to ask questions. I welcome you to join the fun and share your creations with me on our Facebook page! Let me know if I made any goofs too. See you soon! :-) 



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