Sunday, October 30, 2011

Winter Blues in Fall

I can't believe tomorrow is the last day of October already. I greatly dislike the speed at which the days zoom by when one is no longer a child (when five minutes seemed like a year!). I was able to scratch a thing or two off the list in the past week - always a good thing!

A bit ago a girl I work with asked me to make her a bag for her mother-in-law. She told me she was thinking blue and green. After going through different combinations and shades, we narrowed it down to pretty much basic blue and basic green (as opposed to varying shades of aquas and limes). The print that we settled upon was Amy Butler's Trailing Orchids from her Soul Blossoms line.

These are not colors that I am typically drawn to, personally speaking, and I thought that finding matching fabrics might be a bit of a problem. A few recent hunks of fabric that were given to me fit the bill so exactly it was almost as if the giver knew I was going to need those exact shades in the near future. I used one of my favorite patterns that I've made a ton of times before, slightly modified from the original. 

I stared and stared at the blues, talking myself into and out of how well they matched. But as I got going I thought that any other shade of blue would have blended in TOO much and that the slight contrast would really make everything on this pop. This fabric looks like regular quilting cotton, but is part of Amy's fashion corduroy collection. OH. MY. HEAVENS. I wanted to touch and pat and fold this fabric forever, it is so beautifully soft and cozy. It doesn't fray out the wazoo when you cut it and it stitches up wonderfully. I did use woven interfacing as it is a pinwale corduroy and not a thick and sturdy one, but it kept its drape and was a joy to work with from start to finish.

I put a zippered pocket on the inside, as well as a slip-in pocket. It may be the finest zip pocket I've ever done, but it was also the worst photograph I've ever taken so there's no photo (I didn't realize this until a little while ago and the bag is out of my hands so you'll just have to humor me and picture it). I also did a recessed zipper. I forgot about buying zippers before I started this, so I'm glad I have a bit of a stash problem when it comes to them and had a few blues and greens to choose from.

Here's a photo of the back--the green didn't photograph well, but it is almost the exact same shade as the lining you see peeking out:

This is one of my favorite patterns - it's comfy to carry, and it's roomy without being obnoxiously large. I really should make one for myself. One day.

In other news, it SNOWED yesterday! It was an icy, freezing snow, and didn't add much beauty in the way a soft blanket of the white stuff does, but the occurrence of a snowstorm before Halloween here in Philadelphia made me silly happy. And I don't need much more than a coating to declare it a snow day. I wore comfy pants all day, sister Rachel came over and we played all manner of old-school board games (Mall Madness, Mystery Mansion, Rummikub), ate breakfast for dinner, and curled up on separate sofas for late night TV (she under 3 different blankets, me with my knitting needles to finish a dishcloth that has been hanging there for weeks). Sister Alicia had plans related to her friend's wedding, but afterwards she was home and it was just like old times, all of us up late together, watching TV and chatting. Fun stuff. A perfect Saturday.

I've got quite a thinker of a project up next, but I'm hoping it'll end up being one of those projects that takes more thinking than doing. I'm planning on a broken needle or two, however....wish me luck!

Linking up here this week:


  1. Hi Bethany! What a cute bag! You could definitely give Vera Bradley a run for her money! I am now following you via the Creative Bloggers' Hop and I hope you will follow me, too! Blessings to you!

  2. Oh I love that bag, it turned out great! I have a bit of a thing for pinwhale cord though, so soft and strokable... *sigh*

    Sounds like you had a fun snow day too :o)

  3. Your Sunday sounds absolutely perfect! I'm looking forward to colder weather (still Indian Summer here, unreal...) so I can do the same.

    That bag is lovely, I have always been drawn to blues and greens so this is great. Have a lovely day xo

  4. Beautiful! I think that extra blue matched well. I love that kind of corduroy as well.:)

  5. OH MY!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE this bag. It's awesome. Wow. Those fabrics all work very well together. You did a fabulous job. I'm positive the one getting that bag will be thrilled with it. I know I would.

    Maybe I missed it but, what pattern is the bag? Is that one of yours or someone else? It looks like a nice one to put on my ever-growing wish list.

  6. Oh and you must be the only one excited about that snow out East. Some areas further up from you got insane amounts of snow. There was one (possibly more for all I know) that has actually cancelled Halloween I heard this morning. I feel so bad for the little kiddos because they all look forward to this day for so long and get so excited about dressing up and, of course, getting lots of candy. They must be so sad. :(

  7. It is so cold in Singapore as it keeps raining. Just a small window of sun in the morning and then it's dark, dark clouds. But I imagine snow is waaay colder. I've only used corduroy once and it kept sliding. Then I found out from my fabric seller that I could get corduroy that isn't so slippery.

  8. Great bag! Wonderful details! I love the straps and the zipper detail.

  9. Kyra @ caramelpotatoes.comNovember 1, 2011 at 10:17 AM

    New Follower via Chef in Training! Love this bag-I might just have to get my sewing machine out!

    Come by for a visit - we're sure you'll find something delicious!

  10. This bag is gorgeous! Love the pattern you chose and as always I am totally impressed! Thanks so much for sharing with the Pink Hippo Party... can't wait to see what you share next!
    Hope you stop by and enter my current 500 follower giveaway @

  11. Your bag looks great! I'm way to embarrassed to zoom that far in on anything I've made

  12. What a great bag! Love it!

    Love for you to link up at:
    "Made by ME" Linky Party at JAQS at

  13. This is so pretty!! Would love it if you would link this up at my turquoise lovin' party going on right now!!

  14. It's so beautiful! What pattern is it? Great job!

  15. Super cute bag!!! I also noticed that you are from Philly...I'm from a suburb and am always looking for local bloggers to follow :-)

  16. what a cute bag, Bethany! have a lovely weekend ^^)

  17. I just saw this on pinterest, I realize your post is from Oct 2011, but still hoping you might have directions on how to sew this purse. You called it "Winter Blues in Fall" It is a "Vera" type purse. Thank you!

    1. Most of this purse was made using the 'Highbrow Hobo' pattern by u-handbag. I simply added a gusset to give it some more depth. I measured the 'u' shape of the bag and cut a piece of fabric to fit around (maybe about three inches wide for the depth) I also added a suspension bridge zipper across the top. In my wavy top tote sew along (there's a tab at the top for sew alongs) I demonstrate this kind of zipper, but you could probably google it and find a million sets of instructions.



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