Thursday, February 25, 2010

Storage Cube TUTORIAL part one -- Assembly!

I tried to squeeze all my photos and instructions into one post, but since I like to be extremely thorough with my photos and instructions, I think it will be easier to handle if it's split in two!

So, here we go!

Finished storage cube = approx. 6 1/2" inside measurement
Use 1/4" seam allowances throughout

NOTE: I tried to come up with a version that didn't involve binding, since I know that is scary to some people, BUT -- trust me when I say it's actually EASIER to do it with a binding! My non-binding attempt was very tricky to put together, and was a HUGE pain to finish. Don't give up on me, though -- read all the instructions. I really think you can do it!


Here's what you need to cut:

from main fabric:
2 - 7 1/4" squares
1 - 7 1/4" x 20 3/4" rectangle
(NOTE: If your fabric has a definite "right side up" pattern like mine, instead of the rectangle you will cut two more 7 1/4" squares plus another 7 1/4" square that will be the bottom. I used my lining fabric for the bottom of my cube, since it's not going to be seen much anyway! You will then piece these three squares together with 1/4" seam allowances to create a rectangle, with the "top" edges on the ends.)

from lining fabric:
2 - 7 1/4" squares
1 - 7 1/4" x 20 3/4" rectangle
2 - 3" x 7" squares for handles
2 - 2" x 44" strips for binding

stiff inserts:
(I used plastic canvas for my inserts, but you could certainly use cardboard, super stiff interfacing, or whatever else you think might work!)
2 - 6 5/8" squares
4 - 6 5/8" x 3 1/4"


STEP ONE: Create your handles! Lay a rectangle wrong side up on your ironing board. Turn the two short ends in 3/4" and press. Fold with long edges together, press. Open and press two long edges in to touch center fold, press. Fold center line again, press. You will then topstitch the two long sides.


STEP TWO: Prepare your binding. Fold your fabric strip wrong sides together as shown and press.


Here's what you should have!


STEP TWO: On your main fabric rectangle, mark where your handles will go. I placed the top edge of my handles 2" down from the raw edge, and the sides 1 5/8" from the sides of the rectangle.


STEP THREE: Attach your handles! Start with one end and sew a square with an X in the middle. Repeat on the other end.
(If you wanted to add a clear pocket for a label, you would do it at this point as well. I would recycle a small square of that clear plastic packaging from a sheet set or comforter!. Just sew a little pocket to slip a square of paper or cardstock into!)


STEP FOUR: You now need to create the "pockets" for your stiff inserts. Layer your rectangles wrong sides together. If yours looks like mine, you will be sewing a line directly between your squares. If not, you will mark 7" from either end with a disappearing ink marker and sew on your line. (I pinned mine to prevent shifting.) This line of sewing will prevent your stiff inserts from sliding down into the bottom of your cube.


STEP FIVE: Mark a line down the center of your two squares. Layer each square with a lining square, wrong sides together, and sew along your line. (I pinned again to help prevent shifting.)


STEP SIX: Look at your layered rectangles: There are four spots you need to clip just barely under 1/4", as shown -- at the ends of each line of stitching you sewed in Step Four.

All your prep work is now done -- You're ready to assemble your cube!


STEP SEVEN: Layer one of your squares lining sides together on top of one end of your rectangle. Pin.


Remember to backstitch! Sew, using 1/4" seam allowances, stopping 1/4" before the end of your square. Backstitch. (Yes, I sew right over my pins!)


STEP EIGHT: Rotate your square so that the bottom edge lines up with the edge of your rectangle.


Here is a view of the back, showing why you clipped that seam allowance in Step Six. It's a little bit hard to see, but you have a 1/4" square missing there on the corner.


Be sure to pull the excess fabric out of the way, as shown, so it doesn't end up sewn into your seam. Pin and sew, stopping 1/4" before the end of your square again. Repeat Step Eight for the third side of your square.


You will then repeat Steps Seven and Eight with your other square until you have a floppy little cube! Hooray, you're almost done!

(Find Part Two of this tutorial HERE!)

18 comments:

Pattygloria said...

This is a great idea. I'm going to try it. The best thing is the many different colour possibilities within a low budget. Thanks for sharing!

Lynette said...

I am so excited! I love these things, but their SO expensive in stores! I'll have to try this...someday!

banuca said...

Fabric boxes are so useful for organizing, I like these plastik tiles idea, are they plastic canvas or what????

Adventures in Dressmaking said...

I think it's so cool that you are doing these--the fabric cubes are cute but the ones at Target, Dollar Tree, etc. and SO cheap the nylon is hardly fabric at all... And this way you can customize them for the exact size you need!

CraftCrave said...

Thank you! This blog post will be advertised on CraftCrave in the Handcraft category today (look for timestamp: [25 Feb 01:00pm GMT]).

Lexie said...

I'm in Love!! Thanks for sharing. I can always duplicate others ideas but never come up with them. Now those boxes from Target or other places with be off the list of 'want to buy' since I can get my hands on this lovely tutorial and much cuter material!!

Southern Creek Designs said...

ahhhhhhh saweet!!!!

I have been looking for a tutorial on this forever!!!

Peach Rainbow said...

Thank You!

6 Berries said...

Duh, why did I never think to just sew my own? You rock! finding the size, color and price I want has been impossible. Thank you so much for taking the time to put this tutorial together, it's awesome!

kermiefrg said...

This is great! Thanks! I've tried a few similar designs in the past, but they were too flimsy. It looks like this one might work better, so I'll have to try it on day.

Carrie said...

I love this! Do you think the method you did will hold up if I made one about twice the size? We have one of those cubby bookshelves they sell at Target and their storage cubes get expensive! Let me know what you think. I'm excited!
carriericks@gmail.com

. imom249 said...

add me to the list, I love it too! I am wondering the same thing as Carrie above; do you think they will be strong/sturdy if enlarged? like say doubled or made into more of a rectangular shape??
love to hear your thoughts!
imom249@gmail.com

Whimsical Road said...

These storage boxes are super cute, and thank you for the tutorial.. BUT what really caught my eye was the fabric you used. It's from a sheet set that I had when I was a little girl that matched a Holly Hobbie comforter, which I still own. Thanks for making my day :)

Jen said...

This is awesome...Thank you!

Roberta said...

oh my goodness...is that vintage Holly Hobbie bedding?! I had that set when I was a little girl. Wish I still had it so I could make my girls darling little boxes to store all of their treasures! :) Thanks for the tutorial and bringing back memories.

barefootbeadshawaii said...

these are fantastic. here is me thinking boxes for yarn, boxes for fabric, boxes for boxes... i can't wait to make a dozen or two. :) you can never have just one! just waiting for that day off...

Kim @ The Educators' Spin On It said...

Thank you so much for sharing! I love using these containers around the house to store toys and books for the kids and was just getting ready to write a post about it. I'm linking up your post!

Kim @ The Educators' Spin On It said...

Just shared your idea on how to Create and Make Toy Stations for your Baby, Toddlers and Preschoolers. Hope you get a chance to check it out. http://theeducatorsspinonit.blogspot.com/2012/02/baby-time-ideas-for-creating-and.html