Are you ready to get your sewing space in tip-top shape? This 1-yard craft organizer is practically a work of art and will help keep all of your sewing and craft supplies in one place. With our Fill-A-Yard® cheater quilt template, you can transform any collection of designs you love into a hanging craft organizer with pockets for your favorite craft or sewing essentials. See how Spoonflower’s Graphic Designer made the project and then get started on your very own version.
Alexis: Today I’m going to show you how to make a hanging craft supply organizer; from designing and planning all the way through to sewing it all together. The really fun part about this project is that it’s completely customizable! While I’m going to show you how I did it, I encourage you to put your own spin on it. Maybe you’d like all your square pockets to have different size sections for pencils and pens, or maybe you need really tall pockets for crochet hooks and knitting needles. However you plan to use your organizer, you can truly make it your own.
I had an idea for a hanging craft supply organizer that I wanted to be a 1-yard project featuring multiple Spoonflower Marketplace designs so I decided to use the Fill-A-Yard 1-Yard Cheater Quilt template.
Knowing that I was using this template, I reverse-engineered the sizing of the project based on the Fill-A-Yard Cheater Quilt that features 42 6” squares.
Pro tip: This project is the perfect stash buster if you want to mix-and-match fabrics you already have at home.
First, I made a quick sketch to get a general idea and sized the pockets based on what I knew I wanted to put in them (knitting needles, scissors, and other notions).
Then I worked on figuring out the sizes of the pockets based on the size of the backing (the biggest piece that I was going to stitch all the pockets to). These sizes include a ¼” seam allowance on all seams (and the pockets will have a top edge seam allowance of ½”.
|Piece||Size (Width x Height)|
|Backing/base piece||30″ x 30″|
|3 Straps||4.5″ x 6.5″|
|A (2 triangle pockets)||6″ x 6″ x 8″ on the long side|
|B (half circle pocket)||6″ across the top, 3.5″ from top to bottom|
|C||3″ x 8.5″|
|D||6″ x 7″|
|E||5″ x 6″|
|F||4″ x 4″|
|G||13″ x 6″|
Creating a Craft Organizer Mockup
If you’re ordering the same design for your pockets and base or using fabric from your stash, jump ahead to Part 2: How to Make a Fabric Craft Organizer.
Before I created my Fill-A-Yard project I wanted to triple check that my pocket plan was going to work, so using Illustrator I mocked up the template with all the pieces layered on top of it.
To start, I made a 42” x 36” artboard (the size of my 1 yard Petal Signature Cotton™ cheater quilt) in Illustrator, made a 6” square and then duplicated it across and down multiple times until they covered the entire artboard. Next I turned it into a grid by selecting all the squares and going to Window > Guides > Make Guides. This turned all the squares into a grid guide that I used to help map out the placement of my pieces.
Once that was done, I made squares and rectangles at the correct sizes (listed above) and arranged them in the grid so I knew how many 6″ Fill-A-Yard squares needed to be filled with a design for each piece.
After some finessing, my artboard looked like this:
Like I said earlier, this part of the process was just so I could check that my estimated measurements for all the pieces were going to fit in the template I had chosen. If you’re going the route of making your own pockets/arrangement that is different from what I did, I’d encourage you to either sketch this out or mock it up (either on paper or in a design program) before you place your order. If anything, it gave me a roadmap for which designs I should put in which squares once I actually got to filling out the cheater quilt template.
Now that I had everything planned I was ready to start picking out designs!
Designing Your Fill-A-Yard Project
Gather the designs you want to use for your organizer by putting them into a collection. Once you’re happy with your picks it’s time to build out the Fill-A-Yard Cheater Quilt!
Step 1. Create a collection.
Step 2. Choose the Fill-A-Yard Cheater Quilt template.
Step 3. Fill the template with designs.
Here’s the plan compared to final Fill-A-Yard project:
DIY Craft Organizer Materials
Cut Out Your Pockets
Once you’ve gotten your fabric, it’s time to start constructing the organizer. To start, cut out all your pieces. Don’t worry about cutting them to the exact sizes we specified earlier, just cut out each design section as outlined below.
Pro tip: For the fabric straps, I cut into the selvage .5″ to add to the length since each square is only 6″.
Now that everything is roughly cut out, we can go back and cut the pieces to their right sizes based on the measurements we determined earlier.
In addition to the fabric pieces, we’ll also need to cut out interfacing for each of the pockets. For these, cut pieces that are ½” shorter in width and ¾” shorter in height than the pocket size. The backing, pocket pieces and interfacing can be set aside for now.
Pro tip: Stay organized by setting your interfacing and pocket pieces aside together!
Sew the Organizer Straps
Take your 4.5″ x 6.5″ strips and fold them in half widthwise, right-sides together. The straps should now measure 2.25″ x 6.5″. Pin and stitch along the long side of each piece to make a tube
Turn the sewn strap right side out and press. On one of the short edges of the strap, fold in the raw edges ¼”, press and pin it closed.
Next, top stitch around the two long sides and the one pinned short side with a ¼” seam.
Lastly, add a button hole about ½” in from the edge of the side we just closed. Repeat this process for all three straps and then set aside.
Sewing the Backing/Base Piece
Now we’ll move on to sewing the backing of the organizer that we’ll be stitching all the pockets to. This uses the largest piece that is 30″ x 30″.
Take this piece and and fold it in half with right sides together so it measures 15″ wide x 30″ long.
Cut a piece of batting to the same size (15″ x 30″). Alternatively you could use a heavy weight interfacing to add stability.
Before pinning everything together we’ll need to add the straps so they get sewn into place when we sew the backing. Tuck in each of the straps that we just finished sewing at 2″ intervals, layering them between the right sides of the folded backing piece. The straps should be placed along the top of the base, making sure to match up the non-top stitched edge of the strap (the non-button hold end) to the raw edge of the base. Pin each one in place, and then pin the batting and backing together, making sure to leave a 3” opening along the bottom.
Sew all the way around the base, making sure to leave the 3″ section open. Turn the piece right-side out through the 3″ opening, making sure to push out the corners with a point turner or chopstick. Fold in the raw edges from the 3″ opening about ¼” and hand stitch the opening closed.
Interface the Pocket Pieces
Starting with one pocket piece, lay it on an ironing board with the wrong side up. Take its corresponding piece of interfacing and submerge in a bowl of water. Wring out as much water as you can and lay it on top of the pocket piece with the adhesive side down so it’s ¼” in from the sides and the bottom and ½” down from the top.
Pro tip: Dip your interfacing in water before adhering to your fabric for an extra secure grip!
Once it’s in place, start ironing from the center out to fuse the interfacing to the fabric. Repeat this process for each pocket piece.
Hem the Pocket Pieces
Cut a rectangular piece of cardboard that is larger than your pocket pieces and mark it ¼” and ½” in from each edge. We’ll use this template to easily fold the correct seam allowance for our patch pockets.
Take each pocket and fold the top edge down ½” using the cardboard template as a guide. Press into place (pinning if needed) and topstitch at ⅜”. Repeat this process for each square or rectangular pocket.
Take each top stitched pocket and using the seam template, fold the sides in ¼” and press, then fold the bottom edge up ¼” and press. Repeat this process for each square or rectangular pocket.
For the half circle pocket, follow the same process for the top edge, but for the rounded bottom edge use a drawn line guide, then cut into the seam allowance and fold and press into a rounded edge as best you can.
Stitch the Pockets Into Place
With all the pockets top stitched and their sides pressed, it’s time to start arranging them on the backing piece. Play around with the placement and spacing of each pocket and then pin in place once you’ve reached your final layout.
Stitch along the sides and bottom edge of each pocket with a ¼” seam allowance to secure them into place.
Pro tip: If you want your pocket to have multiple compartments, mark vertical lines on the pocket and then stitch from the top of the pocket to the bottom like the example pictured below.
Attach the Buttons
Fold the straps down onto the backing of the fabric and mark a spot in the middle of the buttonhole for the button. Sew all three buttons into place
All done. Now you can hang and fill your organizer with all the craft supplies you need for your next creative session!
Be sure to tag @spoonflower in the pictures of your DIY craft organizer so we can see how you customized yours!