Monday, December 26, 2011

I mustache you to read this

Would you like to make a weighted mustache bookmark?  They are great for shaving your place. hehe.  I have been wanting a bookmark that will help weigh down the pages of some of my instructional books.  I couldn't find what I wanted and remembered a bookmark I had seen a long time ago that was shaped like the number eight.  Inspiration struck me and I decided a mustache shape would be much more fun.  Right?  

This is a quick tutorial which means no pattern, but I know you can draw at least half a mustache and that's really all you need to be able to do.  What you will need for this project is a non fraying, medium weight fabric.  I used a faux leather I found in the clearance section of my local fabric store.  Faux suede, vinyl, anything similar to that will work really well for this project.  You also need weights.  I used 1.5" washers I found at the hardware store for 20 cents each.  You don't want too big of a washer or you will have a ginormous bookmark. But you don't want small ones either. If you end up with smaller washers, then you can stack two on top of each other for a better weighted bookmark. I tried using the plastic beads that people use to stuff bean bags with. Those work for weight but you end up with a bumpy stache. Which isn't cool.

I would prefer this tutorial to be used for personal use only.  If you feel like sharing, I would appreciate a link back or credit to this site.  I am happy to link you back.  I don't mind if people want to make these for profit, I would just like some credit.  It did take me a full day to do this. :) 

List of items needed:

  • Medium weight, non fraying fabric like faux suede, pleather or vinyl.
  • 2 to 4 weights like metal washers found at the hardware store. Approximately 1.5" in size.
  • sewing machine and matching thread in bobbin
  • a pencil or marker
  • scissors
First, trace your pattern.  I used a piece of card stock, laid the washer down for a general size reference and then folded it in half and traced one half of the pattern.  Then I proceeded to cut the folded paper so I would have a full sized mustache pattern.

Make sure the washers will fit with a nice amount of room.  It's nice to have some room for them to slide around a bit which helps distribute the weight on pages that do not want to stay open.

Then cut out your pieces.  You will need two.  It's easier to fold the piece in half and cut. That way you can make sure the sides are even and it takes less time.

Then lay your two matching pieces together right sides facing out.  You will not be turning and topstitching.  Just stitching along the outside of the fabric.  If you do not own a sewing machine, hand sewing could certainly be an option.

Make sure you have matching thread in your bobbin, and start sewing the two pieces together starting at the bottom of the left curl of the stache.  I did not use pins because they leave holes in this type of fabric.  The pieces are small enough to keep under control when sewing, but if you are worried about them slipping, then you can use a touch of water based stick glue on the inside between the two pieces. Just make sure you do not put any where you will be stitching or you risk gumming up the needle.  Go slow and take your time. You want to make sure you catch both pieces in your stitching.

Once you have reached the other side of the mustache, you can slip one (or two if you are stacking two) washers in between the two pieces on the right side. (see diagram 1)

Do not pick up the needle.  Just slide the weights in between and push them toward the top of the curve so you will have plenty of room to sew.  Then continue sewing until you reach the middle of the bottom left curve. Stop your machine again and slide the other weight (or weights) in and push to the top of the curve to allow more room to sew.  (see diagram 2)

Then continue to where you started and backstitch.  You should have a cute mustache with weights inside.  Trim around stitching to even it all out. 

Here it is being used to weigh down a cookbook.  Also works great on textbooks and magazines. You can adjust the size and amount of weights for your needs. In the picture below, I cut a smaller one out and glued it to some stiff cardboard to use as a regular bookmark.  That one is on top, then the middle one has two small weights in it, and the bottom one has four.

Thank you! Happy sewing.



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