Friday, 10 August 2007


Having moved to a new house, with extremely heavy doors, I decided to get some doorstops. Once I started looking around, I realised that I could make fabric ones for myself for a fraction of the cost. Now I know that I have been down this road before and not saved a penny, but I was pretty sure this would be a reasonably simple task.

I checked out a load of websites, to get the dimensions, and decided to go with a 18cm x 15cm cube with a handle, the manufacturers claimed it would take 1kg of rice. Luckily I had come across some other people who had been making their own and the patterns they used were a load of rubbish, needing a huge amount of weights to fill them, so they had to downsize them and redo them.

Having 2 young children makes it near impossible to look in any shop for more than 20seconds without being moaned at. So I dragged them into one of those fabric shops that just had piles and piles of fabric, making it virtually impossible to see anything. Battled round the shop, having to leave the buggy in the doorway, as it wouldn't fit in!! Then I realised it was cash only. So went to Laura Ashley where it's all laid out clearly and easily and I could make my mind up in 10 seconds, which is all you have time for with a 4 year old and a baby. Went with a seasidey stripe - cost was ok for my test run. (bought 1/2 metre)

So I made my pattern, on some baking paper stuck together. And marked it all out on the fabric. Can't remember when I last used my sewing machine, but I had forgotten how to thread it up. I can still remember how to do my mum's one though! It sewed up really well. So I filled it with my rice (2kg) and looked at it and realised it was too big. 2kg of rice was enough to hold upon one of my heavy doors (worth testing this out). So took inspiration from the other people and unpicked it and resewed down to 16cm x 12cm . This was a lot better, but still a bit of room, but not enough to need to resew. Decided to make the second one the following day.

The following day

I start to make the next doorstop. It's going quicker, as I know the pattern (think an elongated cube with seems). Start sewing and the machine fails me. I check the bobbin, start again, fails me. Re thread it, fails me. Take the plate off, can't see anything, rescrew it. Then I read the manual, see what I can do, but it's getting late, so decide to sort it out the next day. (Ironically I had noticed a course at a local college called How to Maintain your sewing machine - I will be booking on that)

The next day

I took the machine apart as per the instructions, brushed all loose bits of thread out, oiled it and put it back, and it worked beautifully. So I was very pleased with my accomplishment. Sewed up the next doorstop, made it 12cm x 15cm this time, still has a small bit of slack, so could go either 11cm x 15cm or 12cm x 14cm. I need to make probably 2 more, and my sister has now expressed an interest in owning one! Although she has set doubt in my mind of using rice, as it is a perishable food, although over a fairly long firm. I might do the next one and velcro the final side, so the rice, or whatever can be changed. By the way, I put the rice into a plastic freezer bag first.

Hope you enjoyed by first post, I'm sure I'll be adding some pictures and whatnot soon.


Pinkie Cupcake said...

This is just what I was looking for! Thanks. Great read.

craftyclaire said...

Thank you Pinkie, I'm lanning on posting a doorstop tutorial over the next few weeks, it'll take time as I need to get it right!!

Anonymous said...

I use cat litter as it absorbs anything and it doesnt sell over time and its heavy enough to use in doorstops