A stash-busting cozy for a plain vanilla tape measure.
You push the translucent pink flower button on top and the tape retracts.
Personalized on the back for a favorite 19-year-old who likes to sew...
The little plastic pull tab didn't match the funky colors, so off it came. I replaced it with ribbon and a button from my stash. (The dark part on the end of the ribbon is the fray check, not yet dried. Sorry!)
Here you can see the tape measure pulled out.
NOTE: The top design is based on a patch I saw somewhere, maybe here or FLIKR...I'm sorry I can't give credit. I have to start taking note of that kind of thing!
Question: How important do you think it is to the overall attractiveness to have the stitching on the sides lined up? I notice that I did a reaaaally bad job of making them match. Does it matter?
Other Ideas? Comments? Suggestions?
All together in one place:
Here's all you need, measurements obtained from whatever tape measure you buy: Step 1: Make a pattern for the case, then cut it out.
a. Begin by measuring your tape measure's plastic casing. Mine was 2 1/8", and I used Publisher to draw a perfect circle as a pattern. You might trace yours or use a compass.
b. Next, measure the circumference and the thickeness of the tape measure casing. Mine was 6" around by 1/2" deep exactly. Again, I used Publisher to draw this shape. You can use a ruler. Trim these pieces, then cut them out of your base color felt.Step 2: Embellish the felt.Step 3: Construct the cozy.
a. Decide where you want the tape to come out. I chose to have the tape poke out at the bottom right of the design, since all the people I've made them for are right handed and the user should be able to see the design as they pull the tape measure out.
b. Sew the top to the side strip. I used the blanket stitch , in short, even stitches. Your thread could coordinate or contrast with your base felt color, but if you're not very practiced at the stitch, go with thread that matches your felt to hide a multitude of goofs!
c. Begin sewing the bottom to the side strip. When you're about halfway through, slip the tape measure case inside and line up the end of the tape measure with the slit in the side. Finish stitching. Tie off neatly and poke your knot back inside the cozy.Step 4: Dress it up.
If the little plastic piece at the end of your tape measure doesn't match, cover it! Here's how, copied from my sheepish cover elsewhere on Craftster.
a. Pull out several inches of the tape measure. Clip a big honking office clip tightly about 3" from the end of the tape measure. (WHY? Ha. The first one I tried rolled up right on itself inside, even though it had been stuck on a "click" when I let it go as gently as I knew how! I pried the case open and tried to rewind, but nothing I did returned it to a useable condition. I ended up cutting the tape measure off and gluing it along the edge of my sewing table. I threw the spring and case away. *Sigh.*)
b. CAREFULLY remove the little plastic end that came on the tape measure, using a blade if you need to. Be sure to leave enough room for the button to be sewn on so it doesn't cover the numbers, even if it means the ends are ugly. You'll be covering them up, anyway
c. Cut two pieces of ribbon: a 3/4" long strip and another, longer strip about 1 1/2".
d. Make a V from the longer piece of ribbon. Use a little dot of quick-tack glue to hold the V next to the end of the tape measure, being careful not to get too close to the Zero measurement.
e. Wrap the 3/4" strip around the whole thing, both the V and tape measure. Let the raw edge end up where your button will cover it. Again, use a dot of quick-tack glue to hold all this together.
f. Sew the button through all layers using double thread. Hide your knot under your button and the back will look clean.
Et voila...you're done!
(A finished picture of the latest coming soon.)