Saturday 25 March 2017

Repurpose a Vintage Tin - Apple Farm Tin Tutorial

*I am reposting this Tutorial here as it seems to have gone missing from its original location *

Hi, Sharon here from Lilabelle Lane Creations, today I have a fun Tutorial for you.  
I am always stitching on the go and usually have a few hand piecing projects that I can grab as I run out the door and take with me 'just incase' a stitching moment arrises.  I like to store these projects in tins so today's tutorial will show you how easy it can be to turn any tin into more than just a tin!  

For me a tin that is pretty and functional for storing any "stitching on the go" project in is a necessity. 

I will also share a quick EPP (English Paper Pieced) Pincushion and a Needle Book tutorial to complete the set.

I picked this tin up in an thrift shop a little while ago and immediately I knew that I wanted to pair it up with Elea Lutz's Apple Farm line from Penny Rose.

To get started you will need:- 
 Basic sewing and EPP supplies,
Soft 'n' Stable,
Cotton Lace Trim,
8 x 2" Square EPP Papers or card to make your own,
Fibre Fill,
2 Buttons,
3" x 6.5" piece of Felt,
4" x 8" piece of Parlan (fusible interfacing)
and a Glue Gun.

1.     Start by taking the measurements of your tin. 
Length, width and height of the base and the internal measurements of the lid. 
For the base, add together the length + Height + Height = Figure A 
Also add together Width + height + Height = Figure B  
Cut a piece of Soft 'n' Stable to this size  (A by B) and then remove the corner squares.  
This should now sit nicely in your base.  
Now cut another piece of Soft 'n' Stable to the internal measurement of your lid.

2.    For the base cut a piece of fabric 1" bigger.
Layer it with your Soft 'n' Stable, take it to your sewing machine and stitch along what will be the fold lines.

3.    Pin the 4 corners together and stitch with your sewing machine as pictured.
You are only sewing the fabric, not the Soft 'n' Stable.

4.    Open the seam allowance fabric at the corners (this helps hold your Soft 'n' Stable in place) and fold over the top bit, pin in place and sew down close to the top edge. About 1/8".

5. For the inside of the lid. cut a piece of fabric 1" bigger.
Mitre your corners and pin in place.


6.   Stitch around the perimeter, again close to the edge (1/8").

7.   Heat up your Glue Gun and glue the fabric panel for the lid to the inside of the lid.

8.   Glue the Cotton Lace Trim around the outer edge of the fabric panel.  This should cover the edge of the panel and the stitched line to finish it off nice and neat. Fold the end over and glue down.

9.   Glue the base into the tin. Bottom and sides.

10.  Glue the trim to the top of the base lining. This should cover the sewn line and make everything nice and neat. Again, at the end, fold over and glue down for a neat finish.

"Ta-da" one lined tin.

Now for some accessories.

First up a simple EPP (English Paper Pieced)
(This tutorial assumes that you already know the basics of EPP).

Prepare eight (8) 2" Squares

EPP together two panels of four. Press with your iron. 

Start sewing the two square panels together as pictured (the pink and brown square).

Then begin to work your way around the squares.
As you can see here the pink is joining to the white.

At this point you can remove the paper from the pink square.

Keep working your way around, joining and removing papers as you go.

Leave the last seam open.

Remove any remaining papers and carefully turn your pincushion right side out.

Stuff your pincushion firmly with Fibrefill and slip stitch closed.

Using a long needle (I use a Doll Needle) sew a button to the centre of the top and bottom, pulling the thread in to make an indent and tie off. 

Congratulations you have a pincushion.

Now for a,
Needle Book.

You can download the APPLE TEMPLATE HERE.

1.    Cut three (3) 8" x 4" rectangles. 
One for the front, one for the lining and one for the pocket.

2.   Trace the Apple, Leaf, Stem and light reflection onto Visofix. Cut out slightly larger than the drawn line.

3.  Iron onto the back of your selected fabric and cut on the drawn line.

4.   Iron the front 8" x 4" panel in half. Peel the paper from the back of your apple, stem, leaf and light reflection.  

5.   Centre the Apple on the right hand side of the front panel ensuring you have a clear 1/4" all around.  Tuck a little bit of the stem under the apple and iron the stem and apple in place. 

Iron the leaf and light reflection in place.

6.    Iron the piece of Parlan to the back of your work.
Shorten the stitch length on your sewing machine and with dark brown or black thread in your machine sew around your apple. I like to go around twice for a darker line.

7.    Fold your pocket fabric in half and iron. 

8.   Layer your three pieces as pictured, (fold side of the pocket up - raw edge down), pin and sew 1/4" around leaving a 2" turning gap at the far left hand side. Backstitch at the start and end.

9.   Trim back the corners but be careful not to cut through the sewn line.

10.   Turn right side out, iron and slip stitch the opening closed.
11.   With the inside of your needle book facing up, position your felt page in the centre, pin and take it to your machine and sew into place down the centre forming your pages.

Well done, if you have made it this far you may just have a completed and pretty tin set to put your next portable project into.

Mine has already been put to good use.
More on that project soon :)

Happy Stitching,
Sharon xx


  1. The link for the apple template doesn't seem to work. Would you repost it?

    1. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. The link has been fixed. Happy sewing x

  2. Always a source of inspiration; which creates the problem of finding the time to fit your projects in!! I have had a lovely catch up read this afternoon. Have a great week Sharon.

  3. Just lined my tin, tutorial was FANTASTIC it turned out beautiful,


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