Last year, about this time, I was frantically making three full sized quilts for our PTA's fundraiser auction, called Jubilee. Crazy? Yes. A good cause? Yes. Will I ever make three full sized quilts in a month again? No.
So, even though I'm pretty sure I fulfilled a lifetime's worth of PTA volunteer obligations with those quilts, I have found myself once again crafting for the Jubilee auction. I can't really complain, though. Billy and I had a lot of fun at the auction last year and these little suitcases are our ticket into the auction this year.
My friend and current PTA president, Melissa, suggested that I donate a train case for the auction. But, I'd really been wanting to try this fabric decoupaging method I recently learned about from a new friend at church. While vintage suitcases in good condition are hard to find, the day was saved (once again) from the thrifting super-twins, Emily and Terri, and I got to work picking out fabric. (This project was really a group effort). It was too hard for me to figure out what look might have mass appeal, so I went with a vintage/shabby chic feel. The actual process of covering the cases was a lot easier than decoupaging with lots of different paper. I think the outsides of the cases turned out great. Read on for the sad part of this story...
If you have ever opened an old suitcase you'll have noticed a certain old-make-up-meets-musty-attic smell. It is a universal smell found in every vintage case I've ever seen. But, I'd heard if you re-line the insides, the case won't smell anymore. I debated whether or not to try re-lining these cases. On the one hand, they did smell musty when opened and that could affect the potential money raised for the school. On the other hand, I'd already spent all the time/money I had to spend on this project and I'd never re-lined anything before so I didn't know if I actually could do it. In the end, I decided to give it a try. FYI: big mistake.
I went to Hancock's and picked up some fusible fleece (Kristin's good suggestion) and a roll of huge red rickrack. I went to work pulling out the old blue lining. Armed with my glue gun and some yellow broadcloth, I started to glue the fresh yellow fabric fused with the fleece into the case. It did not turn out well. The fabric was the wrong size for the inside of the case. My glue gun was too puny to really hold the new lining in place. And the gianormous rickrack I'd bought was just big enough to trim out one lid. When all was said and done, the inside of the case looked like a clown threw up hot glue. AND I had underestimated how much fleece and fabric it would take and ended up with nothing for the other cases. So, now, my donation for the auction is a cute set of three nesting suitcases, two with vintage lining and one with clown vomit. At least I've learned that my skills do not extend to re-lining things.
Good to know.