Creative articles about sewing

Coils ain’t coils, they’re bowls or vases or key dishes!

Dining room tables are such a grown up thing to have. I confess, I have spent most of my adult life eating on my lap in front of the television. But, as I now have an apartment that has a dining area and everything, it’s time to stop eating off my lap!

So first came the table from Ikea and then 6 chairs that I picked up on the side of the road, painted then recovered and my dining area was complete. Or was it? The table I got was plain white, which I thought was a nice practical choice, but it now looks sooooo boring compared to the chairs. Well I can’t possibly live with a boring dining room table, so it’s off to the sewing machine I go.

I have never really been a placemat sort of person and table runners are something I only use for special occasions, so with all that in mind what should I make? A fruit bowl would be good, a vase also a nice addition and somewhere to keep my keys, would make life easier. Now since I don’t own a potter’s wheel, a sewing machine and a double cording foot will be my go to for this project.



The first thing you need for this project is cord or rope. It depends on the look you are after as to what type of cord or rope you choose. Just make sure that your choice is soft enough for the machine to sew through. Then, depending on the rope/cord you have you need either Foot #59 (4-5mm cord) or Foot #60 (6-7mm cord). Lastly, you will need some strips of fabric and trim to decorate (I chose the leftover fabric that my chairs were covered in).



To start your bowl coil the cord in on itself until you have a circle around 5cm in diameter.

Starting Coil

Select the stitch you want to use (a zig-zag is fine, but I use one of the machines stretch stitches), and using Foot #1, stitch the cord together. Keep wrapping the cord around until the coil is around 10cm in diameter. Change to the double cording foot.

Change Feet

Place your coil into the left hand groove and the cord into the right hand side of the foot. Start stitching moving the coil as you go so the next row of cord stitches onto the last.

To add your fabric, first cut it into 2.5cm (1 inch) strips. Then wrap the fabric around the cord before it gets sewn through. Only wrap small sections, then stitch then wrap again.


You can wrap for as long or as little as you like. Don’t worry about the raw edges, it all adds to the effect.

When your base is the size that you want, you can start to build up the sides. To do this, hold the base up as you stitch around.

Turn Up

By the time you have stitched around 2-3 rows whilst holding the base up you’ll see that the edge has formed.


Continue stitching around until you are happy with size of your bowl. To finish off, simply cut the cord/rope leaving a length unstitched. Change back to the Foot #1 and arrange the tail of cord it a shape that pleases you. Stitch it all in place.


My absolute favourite thing about this project was just how quick and easy it was. All three items were made in less than 4 hours and with around 25m of cord and a 30cm scrap of fabric. But they don’t look cheap, all three look like something you would pick up at the most exclusive craft markets. All in all, I think my dining room table can now hold its own against the chairs. P.S. I am not some magical man that can make cord waterproof, there is a jam jar in the vase cover 🙂


I would love to see anything you have made with the double cording feet. Share your photos at:



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