Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Gifts for Men: Chisel Sleeve Tutorial

I have a tough time coming up with gifts to make for men.

However, my dad had seen the felt car mat I made my little boy and suggested that the idea could be adapted to store chisels.

So I purchased some canvas, did a little freezer paper stenciling, and cut up an old t-shirt to make the binding. (Every project seems to somehow include an old t-shirt.)

I made two of these chisel sleeves. Each has eight pockets. The top folds over the chisels. 

Each rolls up and ties to secure all the chisels inside. 

I started out this project by freezer-paper stenciling my dad’s initials onto the front of the chisel sleeve.
I cut two pieces of fabric. I wanted to make eight pockets. I wanted three of them to be 3”, three of them to be 2.5” and the last two at 2”. I added an extra 1” on each side to account for the binding seam allowance.

So I cut my two pieces 22 1/2” wide. The shorter piece is 10” high and the longer piece is 25” in height.
Next, I cut up an old t-shirt for the binding. I cut each piece 2” wide. I needed 22 1/2” for the binding for the pockets and 95” for the perimeter.
I sewed the binding together to make a 95” strip, pressed each of the seams open, and then pressed the binding in half.

I drew chalk lines on the the smaller piece for the pockets.
I pinned the binding onto the top of the pockets.
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I sewed the binding on with two rows of stitching.
I lined up the corners of the two fabric pieces to the opposite side and opposite end with freezer paper stenciling. Then I sewed down each chalk line to create narrow pockets. I backstitched a few times at the top of each pocket.

Then, starting at the right hand side, I started pinning the binding around the perimeter. (My thought process for starting on the right hand side is that people tend to look at the top left corner of something first. So I wanted the seam to be in an un-noticeable place.)
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Then I sewed the binding into place. I sewed a second line of stitching to catch the binding as close to the edge as possible.
While sewing, I had to stop every few inches and smooth out the binding. It seemed to bubble up a bit. So I would  lift the presser foot,
smooth the fabric, and then put it back down.
I finished the binding by simply overlapping it over the starting point.

I added a tie using t-shirt yarn. I just attached it using a small square of stitching. I had placed it on the front of the first chisel sleeve, so that when rolled up, the initials show. However, my dad mentioned it would be more functional on the back of the chisel sleeve.
There is how you can make a great gift for a woodworker.


  1. Neat idea! I agree, guys are so hard to find gifts for. I've given up by now and just go with a good old gift card and some food! lol

  2. Fabulous tutorial! Great for a guy. Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!


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