Friday, May 25, 2012 12:29 PM EST
Want to do something creative without working too
hard, and in the process add a splash of playful colour to your space? Beanbag bookends
are fun, fast and simple to create. Better still, they are functional pieces that provide you with creative freedom to bring a little je ne sais quoi
to any room. Beanbag bookends — home-made, and made for home. All photos by Sami Wall.
I don’t have a sewing machine of my own so I executed this project at my local sewing lounge, Vancouver’s Spool of Thread
. I’m kind of glad that I needed to go there: It’s a cute, inspiring environment filled with beautiful fabrics (and kind staff), and I’m sure my patterns ended up looking better as a result. Materials
DIY STEP 1
- Beans (I chose yellow lentils — I liked the size and feel of them, and they were pretty cheap)
- Sewing machine (option: visit a social sewing emporium)
Choose your fabric — never an easy choice, there are just too many amazing options! I found a soft and lovely design that will complement the patterns and colours in my daughter Poppy’s bedroom. I purchased a half-yard of this fabric and had it cut. STEP 2
Decide on the size. Feel free to make your beanbag any size that you desire. I chose to make my rectangle of fabric 20" x 14" (again, if you do this in a social sewing emporium, feel free to ask for advice
/assistance). Measure each side
. Use chalk to draw lines on the fabric, so that you have an easy time making straight, precise cuts. STEP 3
Fold your rectangle in half so that the good side
is facing in. You will now have a 10" x 14" rectangle. Pin the inseam. I chose to pin a 3/8" inseam on the short side
and a 1" inseam on the long side
. STEP 4
Get sewing! Note 1: Choose a colour of thread that complements your fabric. Note 2: Leave an opening on one end, so that you can pour your beans into the bag. (I placed my opening in the middle, because I prefer a symmetrical look.) Note 3: Cut off the corners, to avoid unnecessary visual/tactile bulk. STEP 5
Turn your fabric right-side
in, and pour in the beans. I do recommend that you get help from a friend for this step: One person can steady the funnel and the beanbag while the other slowly and carefully adds the beans. Now, a final bit of sewing, to seal in the beans; you can do this by hand or (slightly awkward, but doable) with your machine. ALL DONE!
Here are my beanbag bookends "in action." (For a wider, in-the-environment perspective, see the image at the top of this post.) I think they suit Poppy’s room and hope they will be useful with her ever-growing book collection. Tell us about your own DIY bookend projects, beanbag or other, in the Comments!