My First Few Cork Makes
04/06/2017 - 4 Comments
Posted by Toni Knapp
My First Few Cork Makes
Cork fabric (and rivets)...where have you been all my life??  If you follow me on facebook or instagram then you'll have seen that (as it's been a little while since my last blog post) I have made a few things out of cork by now.  And the verdict?  I love it!!

The first thing I wanted to make was going to be quite ambitious (at least for a first make with a new fabric) - I was thinking of making either a Miss Maggie from Emmaline Bags or a Snowdrop from Blue Calla patterns.  But seeing as I had never made either of these before, not to mention never having made anything out of cork before, I decided to keep it simple and stick with my trusty messenger bag.

Cork Messenger Bag

Cork wasn't the only thing I tried for the first time on this bag - I soon learned that sewing through that many layers of thick fabric is a bit too much for my little domestic sewing machine and so I decided to try out rivets for the first time.  Why have I not used these before???  They are so easy to use and they immediately transform the look of a bag into something much more professional looking and more finished.


After the success of the messenger bag I decided to have a go at the Miss Maggie, using a small amount of turquoise cork that I bought for my own stash (this colour will be available to buy on the website imminently!).  I am so pleased with how this one turned out!  What a great pattern from Emmaline Bags, and it's free!  The bag looks just fab in cork, especially with some gorgeous Emmaline hardware to finish it off.

Miss Maggie Bag

Next up I made a Mini Necessary Clutch Wallet (NCW), another pattern from Emmaline Bags.  This one was a Mother's Day present for my Mum, made out of denim blue cork (one of my best sellers) and Philip Jabobs' Brassica in blue from the Kaffe Fassett Collective.

Mini NCW

Then I had a go at making some passport holders as I have some summer craft fayres coming up soon.  These were my own design and I love how they turned out.  They were super quick and easy to make as cork is like leather in that it doesn't fray, so these just have raw edges.  I'm also planning on making some small coin purses if I get time, and maybe a few simple card holders.

Cork Passport Holders Cork Passport Holder

Next I decided it was about time I made myself a NCW to go with the cork messenger bag (see above).  I love it!!  I cannot wait until I have time to make more of these - I have so many ideas for different cork/fabric combinations with these - especially when the new cork colours arrive in stock!  (Yes that's right!!  New cork colours are arriving this week!!)  Unfortunately the NCW is just a teensy bit too big to fit comfortably inside the messenger bag so I will just have to make myself another cork bag - how terrible!!

Cork NCW

My last cork make was an Etsy custom order for another Mini NCW, made with wine coloured cork and Butterfly from Eclectic Elements by Tim Holtz.  I had been meaning to make one with this combination of fabrics anyway but the customer chose this combo herself - great choice!

Mini NCWMini NCW

That's it as far as my cork makes go.  Here's a quick sneak peek at the new cork colours that are arriving this week - these are already available to pre-order.

New Cork Colours

From left to right, top to bottom:
  • White crocodile
  • Black
  • Green
  • Fuschia
  • Charcoal grey
  • Orange
  • Turquoise
  • Red
  • Purple with silver
  • Yellow
  • Navy
So what's next on the agenda?  Well I still want to make a Blue Calla Snowdrop in cork... and I also have my eye on the Slimline Wallet pattern by Carla Peicheff which I'd like to make in both cork and cotton.  And, as I already mentioned above, I really want to make more NCWs in various different cork/fabric combinations.  Then there's a whole load of other things I have been wanting to make for a long while...

In no particular order... I need to finish a quilt I started a couple of years ago for my son and I want to have a go at hand quilting on this one as I've never tried it before.  I have a beautiful civil war quilt kit that my Mum bought me for my birthday that I've not started yet, I want to make a New York Beauty quilt, I really want to have a go at dress making (I've bought a few vintage dress patterns that I want to make) and I would love to have a go at making a shirt, either for my son or my husband.  I'd like to make some cushions out of one of Kaffe Fassett's books (already have the fabric ready and waiting) and there are a few more bag ideas in the back of my mind that I'd like to get out and into actual bags, including the upcycled denim jeans bag that I mentioned on instagram a few weeks ago...  
Then there are teacher gifts, of which I need to make seven!!!  Seven!!!!!  That's just for my two kids' teachers /TAs!  But with only six weeks ish (?) until the end of term, said teachers may be getting bottles of wine instead!

If you've made anything with our cork I'd love to see it!  Send me a pic or use the tag #tlbfscork

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Glenis Brown 12/05/2018
Hi could I please ask your advice. I bought some cork from you as I was wanting to make a NCW with it what type of interfacing did you use as you cannot fuse it on? Also (this may sound silly ) do you do the seams as normal? I am only a newie at bag making but I love it. Thank you Glen x
admin 13/05/2018
Hi Glen, I have made cork NCWs both with and without interfacing on the cork. It doesn't really need it but does add a bit of extra structure/stability if you decide you want it - I guess it comes down to personal choice. I think I used woven fusible interfacing - the one I sell on the website. It turns out you actually can fuse it - I used a medium heat iron and didn't leave the iron in one place for too long. I tried with a pressing cloth first as I was worried about putting the iron directly on the cork but that just didn't work, and it turned out OK in the end. Hope that helps! Let me know how you get on! :-) Toni
Lorraine Newman 19/10/2017
Hi, I love your cork and cork-makes! Here are some things I've made so far from your cork fabric: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/lnewman0852/items-ive-made-with-cork-fabric/
admin 19/10/2017
Hi Lorraine, Thanks for sharing, these are fab!! :-)