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Continuing our "Flower Power" theme we Present a
Flower Power Pouch 
by Rita Vainius

The term "Flower Power" became a favorite slogan of the "Flower Children" of the 1960's, also known as "Hippies." This project typifies style and spirit of those years and would have fit in perfectly with the traditional Hippie costume of tie-dyed shirt, fringed suede vest, frayed bell bottom jeans, beads galore, floppy hats or embroidered headbands over "hair down to there" and of course, flowers - the emblem of beauty, joy and goodwill. It's all part of our century, so you're really recreating a piece of history! Let's go for it!

 Click Here for Stitch Diagrams and Instructions

Materials needed:

1. Watercolours Thread - 1 skein each of # 18- Peacock, and # 86- Tahiti
2. 1 pair outgrown or worn jeans
3. Scissors
4. Pencil with blunt end
5. Needle - size 22 or any needle large enough for the thread to fit through the eye, with a point sharp enough to sew through denim fabric
6. Dressmaker's Tracing Paper ( Choose a color several shades either lighter or darker than the denim color of the jeans.)
7. Length of embroidered band, strip of leather, rope, heavyweight ribbon, twisted cord or braid for the strap, about 35 to 50 inches in length.
8. Embroidery hoop - about 6 inches in diameter
9. Straight pins - about 4
10.Ball point pen with medium point or fine point magic marker in dark color
11. Ruler

Step-by-Step Instructions:

1. Print out flower pattern (above) to be transferred to the denim fabric.
2. Print out the stitch diagrams and instructions for the 3 stitches to be used.
3. Watercolours is a 3 ply thread (3 strands twisted together). For the flower you will use only 2 of these strands. When you cut a piece the thread to stitch with, gently pull to separate 1 strand from the other 2.. Aside from the flower, you will be using all 3 strands to stitch with.
4. Lay a pair of jeans flat, zipper side up on a smooth surface (either floor or table).
5. Starting about 2 to 3 inches below the "crotch" of the jeans, cut across one leg in a straight line from left to right. Before cutting use your ruler to make the line on the fabric with your pen to use as a guide. (Figure 1)

6. Measure about 15 inches down the same leg from this cut and cut across the leg, above the bottom of the jeans leg. Again, make a line with your pen and ruler as a guide for cutting. (Figure 1)
7. Starting at the top of the pants leg you have cut off, cut down along the inside seam to about 6 ½ inches on both sides. Make this cut in front of the reinforced seams on each side of the jeans. (Figure 2)

8. Fold down the flap you have made by cutting, and cut this flap off in a straight line from left to right. Again use your ruler and pen to mark this line. Leave the fabric on the back part of the leg intact.
9. Fold this back part over the front over the pants leg. This will become the from flap of the pouch which we will embroider.
10. Spread the pants leg out flat so that the flap is face up directly on a hard surface, such as a table or wood or other smooth floor.
11. Place the dressmaker's tracing paper face down over the flap. Cut away he excess paper around the flower pattern leaving about 1 to 2 inches of white paper around the flower design. Place this face up on top of the tracing paper. Using straight pins, pin the design at the top, bottom and sides in the extra border of white around the pattern to the tracing paper and fabric so that it does not shift position while you are copying it. Attach the pattern so it is centered on the flap. (Figure 3)

12. Using the blunt pencil, trace the design, pressing down hard, while copying each flower. You may have to trace the flower several times. To make sure the pattern is transferring to the fabric, remove one straight pin and fold up one side to see if the tracing paper is transferring the design so that you can easily make it out. Keep doing this until you are sure the design is visible on the denim.
13. After the pattern is transferred, remove the pattern and tracing paper and go over the design of the flower again with a dark ball point pen or fine point magic marker right on the fabric, to make the pattern more obvious and also to ensure that the traced design does not fade while you are stitching and handling it. The threads you embroider with will cover these lines as you work on it.
14. Attach the embroidery hoop so that the design is centered inside it. You can move the hoop as you work on the pattern as you need to. The hoop will make it easier to stitch on the denim by keeping it smooth and taut.
15. Use stitch diagrams with the stitch instructions to start embroidering the flower. Use the Satin Stitch with 2 ply Tahiti Watercolours thread starting at the top of each petal and stitching from side to side until you have filled in the shape of the petal. Do the same with all the other petals. Use a contrasting color, such as the turquoise in the Peacock thread, also 2 ply, to fill in the center of the flower with the satin stitch (Figure 4)

16. When you have finished stitching the flower, lay the embroidery hoop over the design and center it on the flap, with one part of the hoop lining up with the bottom, middle of the flap piece. Using the outside edge of the hoop as a guide, trace the shape of the hoop with a ball point pen to define the curved shape of the flap and then cut along the guide lines you have made.
17. Use the Buttonhole Stitch to stitch around the outside edge of the embroidered flap from left to right with 3 ply of the Tahiti Watercolours thread. (Figure 6) Do the same along the edge of the fabric which forms the top of the inside of the bag, when the flap is up.

#7. Use the Backstitch to close the bottom of the bag with 3 ply of the Tahiti Watercolours thread working from left to right. Measure about 2 to 2 1/2 inches up from the bottom of the bag and mark a straight line across the fabric with your pen and ruler as a guide to follow for the stitches. (Figure 7)
18. After the bottom of the bag is stitched closed, use a sharp pair of scissors to create the fringed border by cutting from the bottom edge of the fabric to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch below the row of stitches you made across the bag. Cut these strips to be about 1/2" to 3/4" wide and don't be concerned about making them all even. (Figure 7)

19. Use your embroidered band, leather strip, braid, ribbon or twisted cord to make the shoulder strap. Cut it to whatever length you prefer and secure the strap by sewing one end of the strap to the inside seam of each side of the bag. You will need to fold the flap over to the back to do this. You can use either the Watercolours threads in any color, or a regular sewing thread and needle to do this as you won't really see this stitching, especially if you just sew the strap to the reinforced seam on the inside of the bag (on each side). (Figure 8)

That's it! Well done! You've created an authentic "Flower Power Pouch" and I'll bet you get some pretty awesome compliments when your friends see it!
Watch in the fall for our Part II of this project when we show you how to add more embroidered flowers and beads to the finge!
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