Bound All Around Pouch Pattern and SALE!


Hello fellow scrap hoarders! I'm popping in to let you know that my brand new zipper pouch pattern is now in the shop! And because I know you're already planning your holiday sewing, all patterns are 20% off until August 1! No need for a code, prices are already marked down.

 retro mama | Bound All Around Pouch

I know you can't bear to waste those little treasured bits of your favorite fabrics, so let's make some super scrappy zipper pouches with them! These quilted bags are perfect for gifts or swaps, carrying projects, or organizing your purse or suitcase. The pattern includes instructions to make 3 sizes and features a linen back, binding around the top, and a machine sewn zipper.

 Bound All Around zipper pouch by Retro Mama

 Bound All Around Pouch by Retro Mama

 scrappy zipper pouch by Retro Mama

 scrappy zipper pouch by Retro Mama

 retro mama zipper pouch pattern

The Bound All Around Pouch pattern is recommended for intermediate stitchers. While the zipper is sewn by machine, the binding on the top and inside is finished by hand. Experience with zippers and quilting is helpful but not necessary.

The finished sizes are:

Large pouch 8" W x 6" H (20 x 15 cm)
Medium pouch 7" W x 5" H (18 x 13 cm)
Small pouch 6" W x 4" H (15 x 10 cm)

Share your finished pouches on Instagram with the hashtags #boundallaroundpouch and #retromamapattern – I love to check in so we can chat about your projects!

Happy Stitching!

Notions Pouch Sew Along Grand Prize Winner!


The Notions Pouch Sew Along has come to a close and I had such a fabulous time, which abruptly came to an end when I realized I had to choose a grand prize winner from all the amazing entries! How would I ever decide? Seriously, how to choose:

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Roundup
1. Mary @misspuppycostura 2. Jennifer @crimsonconfection 3. Mareike @mareike76 4. Maryvonne @sonnevonne 5. Saru @sewaftersix 6. Lindsay @linzentart 7. Michelle @coleandtaffy 8. Gracey @burlapandblossompatterns 9. Katharina 10. Donna @djnelson1973 11. Lesley @berry_birdy 12. Dawneika @dawneika 13. @maddie_sews 14. Lauri @laurispringer 15. Mike @zmama03 16. Sam @samanthamackie31

But first, here are the winners from Week 3, hosted by Kim @robotmomsews and Mary @sunnydaysupply (Sunny Day Supply shop)

Week 3 winners (Photos by Kelly and Julie)

First is Kelly @pinkadotquilts with her gorgeous sugar sack notions pouch. The binding is wonderful, and the words just fit on the front, perfect!

 retro mama | Notions Pouch Sew Along Week 3 winner Kelly @pinkadotquilts
And second is Julie @julesopotamus and her adorable Little Red Riding Hood pouch with that cute flower button and cherry zipper pull!

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Week 3 winner Julie @julesopotamus
Congratulations to all of the weekly winners, and thank you to everyone who entered their pouches in the #notionspouchSAL! I loved every single pouch--truly there were so many outstanding pouches that it caused me actual distress to have to choose--and I'm so grateful for your support and for inviting me and my pattern into your sewing rooms over the last several weeks! I’m going to miss the sew along, but I'm excited to see what all of you will be stitching up next!

Grand Prize Winner!

The pouch that I’ve chosen as the winner is one that I couldn’t get it out of my head--the vintage camper pouch by Cindy @freida_fritz. My retro-loving heart is in love with this amazing pouch--and bonus sweet floral pouch! I think Cindy got a lot of our imaginations going with her creativity! Photos are from Cindy's Instagram.

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Grand Prize winner Cindy @freida_fritz

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Grand Prize winner Cindy @freida_fritz
Her prize package includes the following:

*2 rolie polies from Riley Blake Designs (Mae Flowers by Lindsay Wilkes and Berkshire Garden by Lila Tueller)
*Small Mae Flowers bundle
*A huge stash of zippers from Zipit Zippers (not all pictured)
*An adorable wood button collection from Zipit Zippers
*Vintage style scissors from Warm Crochet
*A $50 gift certificate from Fat Quarter Shop

 retro mama | Notions Pouch Sew Along grand prize

And because I just couldn't resist, I've chosen two runners-up who will also receive prizes (prizes TBD)!

#1: With four incredible entries, Saadia @yasahandmade won me over with her beautifully detailed pouches, each showcasing her incredible sewing skills.

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Saadia @yasahandmade
#2: Melanie's @soupandsunshine notions pouch features the coziest little hobbit hole! I love the layered appliqué and quilting and basically I want to live there!

 photo NotionsPouchSALRunnerUpSoupAndSunshine.jpg
Photos by Saadia and Melanie.

Prizes will be mailed as soon as I can, considering that my kiddos are home for Spring Break this week!

Congratulations to Cindy, Saadia, and Melanie!

Happy Stitching,

Notions Pouch Sew Along Week 3


Wow, this sew along is flying by! We are already in the middle of Week 3 and you guys, I cannot stop making pouches! I've heard a lot of great feedback about how easy the zipper installation has gone for you, and I'm thrilled that so many of you are enjoying all of the hand stitching on these bags! I've caught up on some favorite shows and new shows (did I just age myself?) while hand sewing the zippers and bindings. What have you been streaming or listening to while you sew?

I've got a new pouch to show you this week, as well as the SAL winners for Week 1 and 2!

 retro mama | pinwheel quilted notions pouch
I revisited a fun technique for this pouch, using the Itty Bitty Primitive Pinwheel Ruler from Primitive Gatherings (you can find the pattern at Fat Quarter Shop, Etsy, and check your LQS too, that is where I found mine!). I made a mini quilt with this a while back and the scale is perfect for the medium sized pouch. The panel I made for this bag was 7 squares wide by 11 squares tall and I alternated blue and cream (or low volume blue) prints.

 retro mama

 retro mama | patchwork pinwheels

You can see the leftover remnants on my previous blog post—and spoiler alert: it's a fair amount of waste, so I do not recommend these pinwheels for your expensive or rare fabrics! I did have to hand stitch a seam back together a time or two as folding the bag stressed the seams a bit. I suggest using a short stitch length and handling the panel as little as possible. If you are braver than me a bit of FMQ would help as well.

I just had to add a little stamp from a piece of Kokka fabric I recently bought, even though it covered up a precious pinwheel or two.

 retro mama | pinwheel quilted notions pouch

 retro mama | pinwheel quilted notions pouch

 retro mama | pinwheel quilted notions pouch

We kicked off the SAL with so many incredible pouches! Heidi @fabricmutt (Heidi's blog) and Minki @zeriano (Minki's shop) chose the winners and generously awarded the prizes for Week 1

Week 1 Winners (photo credits to Deidra and Susan)

Deidra @quiltyobsession

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Winner Deidra @quiltyobsession
What a cute pouch—isn't that Dresden plate to die for? So much fussy-cutting goodness! Deidra recently hosted the #tinydresdenparty sew along so check out that hashtag for a ton of gorgeous (and bitty) Dresden projects.

Susan @3redtulips

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Winner Week 1 Susan @3redtulips
The colors are so pretty, and I love the phrase on the front of the bag! You really can't go wrong with Bonnie and Camille fabrics, and Susan used rick rack to great effect on her sweet pouch.


Our hosts Cat @tincatsew and Stephanie @sissybellesews (Stephanie's Etsy shop) chose the winners and awarded prizes for Week 2, thanks so much, ladies!

Week 2 Winners (photo credits to Polina and Sue)

Polina @polina.lisitsyna

 retro mama | Notions Pouch Winner Week 2 Polina @polina.lisitsyna

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Winner Week 2 Polina @polina.lisitsyna
Polina used such beautiful prints and multicolored Kantha stitching on her red pouch. Check out #libertysocietykanthastitchalong for more projects with gorgeous Liberty fabrics and hand quilting. Polina's teal pouch from Week 1 was outstanding as well!

Sue @suefromtexas

 retro mama | Notions Pouch SAL Winner Week 2 Sue @suefromtexas
This floral print is so lovely, and how perfect is the binding print on this pouch?! I love the three dimensional flower embellishment, too. Sue did a beautiful job stitching up her bag!

Congratulations to all of our winners so far! If you'd like to join us, you can find the pattern here. Follow this week's hosts, Mary @sunnydaysupply and Kim @robotmomsews and post your pouch photos with the hashtags #notionspouchSAL and #retromamapattern to enter. And remember, there is still another week left for your chance to win the Grand Prize!

Happy Stitching,

Notions Pouch Sew Along Week 2


Welcome to Week 2 of the Notions Pouch Sew Along! The first week was so fun and there were so many incredible pouches to see--I'm inspired by all of your creative patchwork and quilting, and how you are using those trims and buttons you've had stashed away! Prizes will be announced soon by @zeriano and @fabricmutt for the first week of entries! Read on for more notions pouch inspiration and new additions to the grand prize that will be awarded at the end of the sew along!

 retro mama button card zipper pouch

Riley Blake Designs generously sent several Mae Flowers prints from Lindsay Wilkes's new collection for me to play with. I've been dreaming about making a zipper pouch using sewing notions packaging as decoration and this week I've finally done it! Vintage buttons are a serious weakness of mine--I love old button cards so much that I decided to make my own!

 retro mama | fabric button card

 retro mama | vintage button card zipper pouch

The little price tag was inspired by my brilliant friends (who also happened to host the SAL last week)--Heidi's Five and Dime tag print, and Minki's sewing illustration style.

 retro mama | vintage button card zipper pouch

I broke out my trusty clear stamps for this project and now I want to stamp all the things! Be sure to use an ink pad designed for stamping on fabric and use an iron to heat set your work.

 retro mama | stamping on fabric


And now for the prizes! Riley Blake Designs sent some gorgeous rolie polies for our grand prize and I am swooning...

 Riley Blake Designs Rolie Polies

First is Berkshire Garden by Lila Tueller. I am obsessed with the pear prints, they are too, too gorgeous!

 Berkshire Gardens by Lila Tueller for Riley Blake Designs

 Berkshire Gardens by Lila Tueller for Riley Blake Designs

And the sweet, vintage-y Mae Flowers

 Mae Flowers by Linsday Wilkes for Penny Rose Fabrics

 Mae Flowers by Lindsay Wilkes for Penny Rose Fabrics


If you'd like to join in the sew along it's not too late, there are still 3 weeks to go! You can find the pattern in my Etsy shop, discounted until the end of the SAL! Up this week:

Week 2 February 26-March 4

Cat @tincatsew

Stephanie @sissybellesews

Simply follow me, Cat, and Stephanie on Instagram, and post your notions pouch photos with the hashtags #notionspouchSAL and #retromamapattern

I can't wait to see the creative pouches that this week will bring!

 retro mama | vintage button card notions pouch

Happy Stitching!

Scrappy Patchwork Notions Pouch Tutorial


The Notions Pouch Sew Along is just about ready to kick off, and I've got a quick tutorial for you! The dates will be February 19 through March 16 and you can see all the details here. Be sure to get your copy of the pattern now at a discount--it will go back to the normal price after the sew along!

 retro mama patchwork notions pouch

 retro mama

We will be sewing together for the next few weeks and I Can. Not. Wait. to see all the sweet little pouches that you are going to make! I have teamed up with some fabulous companies to offer some really fun prizes, and I'm so excited to share my first sponsor with you!

Zipit has a ginormous selection of YKK zippers, from regular nylon zips in tons of colors to all the cutest metal designs, including the donut pulls that are my current obsession. Jennie from Zipit has sent me a fantastic bundle of zippers that will be included in the grand prize at the end of the sew along.

Check out these beautiful zips (and bonus a-deer-able wood buttons!)--they could be yours if you sew along with us!

 zippers from Zipit

 zippers from Zipit

 zippers from Zipit

 zippers from Zipit

 zippers from Zipit


Scrappy Patchwork Notions Pouch Tutorial

(Note: this is an add-on to my pattern for purchase--you will still need the pattern to complete your bag!)

 retro mama patchwork notions pouch

You know how sometimes you hope and wish that the measurements will work out *just so* and then they DO?? Yeah, that never happens. Except this one time! I really wanted to use 3/4" patchwork strips on the medium sized pouch, and like magic, it worked out with 12 perfect scrappy rows!

Here’s what you need:

2 strips of quilting cotton prints - 2-1/2"H x 7"L (for the top and bottom)
lots of 1-1/4" quilting cotton print strips of varying lengths to make 10 scrappy rows
quilting cotton fabric for lining
cotton batting
8" zipper
pattern (you will need the medium template)

1. On a flat surface (I used a plain white canvas), lay out one of the 2-1/2" x 7" strips on top, then layer your scrappy strips below into 10 rows. Be sure to take into account 1/4" seam allowances to be sure you have enough length. Lay the remaining 2-1/2" strip on the bottom. I used 30 fabrics in total for the patchwork, without any repeats. All of the middle rows have between 2 to 4 fabrics each.

 retro mama | quilted patchwork notions pouch tutorial

 retro mama | patchwork quilted notions pouch tutorial

2. Move the strips around until you are satisfied with how they look. (You may notice that my strips are in slightly different places at each step as I kept fiddling with them until I was happy!)

Things to remember:
Rows 6 and 7 from the top will be underneath the bag

If using directional prints, make sure that they will be facing the correct direction. The diagram in Step 4 has arrows pointing in the direction that the top of the fabrics should be facing

3. Sew the fabrics in each row, end to end, trimming the strips to size as you sew. Press the seam allowances open.

 retro mama | patchwork quilted notions pouch tutorial

 retro mama | patchwork quilted notions pouch tutorial

4. Adjust the rows until you like the placement, then trim each row to 7". Sew the rows together with a precise 1/4" seam allowance, and press the seam allowances open.

 retro mama | patchwork quilted notions pouch tutorial

5. Make your quilt sandwich as directed in the pattern and quilt as desired. I quilted a scant 1/8" on either side of every long seam. Trim the fabrics to the size of the patchwork before using the template.

 retro mama | patchwork quilted notions pouch tutorial

6. When you cut out your bag, fold it in half exactly on the seam between the 6th and 7th rows, and place the template arrows on that seam. Use the medium sized template.

7. Add your embellishments. Instructions for fabric stamps and trims are in the pattern. If desired, sew a folded piece of ribbon to the front of the bag before sewing on the binding.

 retro mama | fabric stamp

Pro Tip: Keep your little embellishments and zipper together in a tray or box so they don't get buried under piles of fabric or fall behind your work table (I'm sure neither of those things have ever happened to me, why do you ask??).

 retro mama | fabric stamp

8. Follow the remaining pattern instructions to assemble your bag.

 retro mama | patchwork notions pouch

 retro mama

Remember to post your project photos on Instagram with the hashtag #NotionsPouchSAL and #retromamapattern as well as follow all of the hosts:

Cat @tincatsew
Mary @SunnyDaySupply
Kim @robotmomsews
Stephanie @sissybellesews
Minki @zeriano
Heidi @fabricmutt

Happy Stitching!