Color Pencil/Crayon Roll | Week 6 | #52wonderfilledweeks




Week 6! Can you believe it! Every time I think "oh crap what am I going to make this week" something comes up and a project presents itself. And this week's project is, in fact, a present! It's such an easy sew.  Straight lines only! And as a parent I find it to be a very useful gift.  I made one two years ago for my nephew but this time I actually wrote down what I did and I'm ready to lay it all out for you here!  



What you will need:

- Pack of color pencils, markers, or crayons
- Sewing machine
- Gross grain ribbon
- Fabric,  I used a waterproof oxford, but a duck cloth would also work well.  Think durability.  This will hopefully be used by little balls of energy for a while and you want it to hold up.  I get my waterproof oxford from Sahara Fabrics.  Check out their oxford selection here!



The first thing I did was test out how much space I needed for my color pencil in the roll.  I wanted the pencil to be snug but easy to  taken in and out and if the receiver eventually wanted to use a different brand I wanted those to work easily as well.  I came up with 1 inch needed for each pencil slot.  Then I folded the fabric over the pencil to determine how much of a flap I wanted to have to cover the pencils.  On my previous pencil roll I made the flap come all the way down and it was too much fabric and bunched up too much when rolled.  This time I made it much shorter, it still bunches a bit when rolled (but I have a plan to fix this in the future!).  I added in my requisite seam allowances and drew up the plan.



You will cut your fabric to be 13.5" wide by 17.5" tall. Now comes the fun part...you want to fold your edges under twice by 1/4".  So fold under 1/4" (quarter inch) once and then again so you have a nice finished edge.  You can't really iron waterproof oxford and it likes to unroll so I used a ton of wonder clips. 


 When it comes to the corners you have two options.  You can just fold the corners over following the line from the sides and you end up with a square of fabric at each corner OR you can follow any basic tutorial for clipping and folding the corner at an angle to make a mitered corner. Black Walnut Stitch has an excellent tutorial on the various options, I highly recommend checking them out here


Now that we have all of our edges folded over and clipped it's time to sew.  Again to reduce a little bulk and sewing extra lines that may not line up I actually opted to start sewing one inch before the corner on one of the longer sides.  I then continued to sew across the short end and around the second corner ending about one inch past.  This little flap will be the part inside the roll that our pencils will go up against.  It's optional to even sew this down since when we sew our pencil channels that will keep the hem in place but since the oxford REALLY liked to unroll I thought it was best to just go ahead and sew across it real quick.  


Next up we fold up the bottom edge. I had originally only wanted a 4" deep channel but when I was dry fitting the pencil in the roll I realized that 5" would be better. I measured up the same distance on both sides and moved my clips to hold in place.


You'll want to attach your closing mechanism at this point as well.  I opted for some gross grain ribbon.  You could also attach an elastic band, or velcro.  I made sure my ribbon was twice as long as the roll (you can always cut off any extra) and then folded in half and placed in my side seam.  NOTE: I should have thought more carefully about my placement.  It's a little high on this roll and I should have placed it mathematically center of the roll based on when the roll is closed.  Oh well, it totally works.  Just a little pet-peeve of mine.


Now start at one corner near the fold and sew the three edges of the roll. Once that is complete it is time to mark our channels.  I remeasured our space across just to double check that I still had 12" of space to divide up! 

I marked 1" intervals across the top (about 1/2" above the channel pockets, in the black) so I would know where to stop when sewing my channels.  And I marked about 1/2" from the bottom.  I lined up the top and bottom marks and using my trusty white marking pencil made my sewing lines.  It was a little hard to see but I managed! TIP* start by sewing the middle channels and moving outwards, alternating sides.  I find this helps to distribute the fabric more evenly.  Also remember to back stitch at the beginning and end of the channels. 


I dabbed a little Fray Check on the ends of the channel seams since they will see quite a bit of stress! I also dabbed some on the ends of the ribbon after I knotted the ends. You can see where I added the Fray Check in the above picture but it dries clear and I buy it in bulk, HA!


That's it! We're done with our pencil/crayon roll.  If you wanted to make this for markers or those really fat pencils from IKEA just do the math and adjust the pattern.  


I love how these turn out and as a parent of a VERY artist 4 year old who likes to bring her coloring with her everywhere I find it to be extremely useful.


Remember how I said there's one thing I'd fix for the future? I think on my next one I am going to taper in the flap, almost like an envelope.  I find that when you roll up the pencils the top flap shifts over and is fairly bulky.  I think if I tapered the flap starting a few inches about where the channel pocket is I would reduce that bulk...however turning the edges under might be more of a challenge...it's certainly something to think about!


It's this lovely? I could look at this all day.  I'm sure that is partially due to this beautiful fabric.  I have a ton of this oxford left and I have some of this print, FRACTURED LIGHT, in a cotton lycra I've been hoarding...I't may be time to get the courage to cut into it!

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