Sunday, February 10, 2013

Yes, It's the Long as Same Means Different

Often when I am faced with something I'm not in the mood for I find it's best to just start. Starting is often the most difficult part and once I'm in the swing of it I wonder what the big deal was. Such was the case with this bag. I thought if I did a little bit each day it would be easy to get through. But then, since I was going to do 'just a little bit' it was easy to put off. But on Saturday I went through it like gangbusters and now have the first bag of 2013.

I've made this bag so many times I should be able to do it in my sleep, but I felt a bit out of practice so I had to consciously think of each step instead of going through the motions. I did a few things differently this time, though. First, I used a different interlining. I normally use fusible fleece for a soft, squishy bag. This time I was asked to try for something a bit stiffer. This is a curvy bag so I couldn't go ultra stuff. I used sew-in Peltex for this one. And jiminy! Did I have a time of it! Holy crap!!

It wasn't too thick to sew through or anything like that. It was just verrrrrry shifty. Even my handy Clover clips didn't do it - I had to use oodles of pins to keep everything straight for stitching. After it's all together you can't tell the difference until you touch it. If I were to go this route again I would do the sides with fleece, but give it a bit of stand-up structure by doing the gusset in the Peltex.

Another thing I did differently was how I sewed on the side pockets. I had the exact amount of fabric I needed so I didn't want to cut up the gusset and sew it into the seams in case I messed up. Usually I press a fold and then topstitch it down. This time I sewed it down first then folded it up so it looks like it's a separate seam but it's easier to do.

I also put some elastic on top of the inside pocket. Sometimes when I sew the pockets into the gusset instead of flat on to the lining piece I get a bit of a gap situation. This way the elastic tightens it up a little bit but doesn't restrict access to the pockets (I tried, and my fat hands fit in them :)  There's a regular zipper pocket on the other side.

Also, I changed how I tie on my zipper pull tie. Usually I work the ends through and make a big cumbersome knot that seems weird. This time I figured out how to make that loop (which for some reason has eluded me previously). I stitched it down to keep it from getting lost, but it's on there pretty secure anyway.

My new favorite thing to do with bag straps is to sew several rows of top-stitching. It makes for one very sturdy-feeling strap and adds a bit of a kick to it too. I enjoy little details like that.

My eternal favorite with this bag--the piping and the pleats. This is one quite roomy bag that has quite a few pockets to it. It's for a friend of mine--it's her Christmas present. I know, whaaaat? I gave her a bag "gift certificate" for Christmas, anything she wanted, and she picked the design she always goes with. I was quite shocked by her fabric choice--she's very neutral, so I was surprised when she showed me this one. It was such a nice fabric to work with--very soft, yet sturdy. So I'm not sure if this is the first bag of 2013 or the last one of 2012...but here it is.

Linking up here:

Under the Table and Dreaming*** Skip to My Lou *** Pinkapotamus *** Sew Can Do *** Craftomaniac *** Homemaker on a Dime *** C.R.A.F.T. *** Sarahndipities *** Today's Creative Blog***  Funky Polkadot Giraffe ***Chef in Training *** My Girlish Whims *** Sew Much Ado *** Free Pretty Things for You *** Tea Rose Home *** Someday Crafts*** Somewhat Simple *** Fireflies and Jellybeans *** Suzy's Artsy Craftsy Sitcom  *** The Shabby Nest *** While He Was Napping *** Tatertots and Jello *** Be Different Act Normal *** To Sew With Love *** Craftionary ***


  1. I LOVE piping! Darling bag!!!!
    xo Kris

  2. Gorgeous bag. Looks so well made and the piping is perfect.

  3. Oh I feel your pain, I *hate* peltex! The bag came out fab though :o)

  4. Absolutely gorgeous bag! Love all details.Thanks so much for sharing. Would love to have you visit me sometime.
    Have a great week!
    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft

  5. The bag looks great, love the piping and the handles.

  6. I really like it, you did a terrific job!

  7. What a great bag. I love the bright colors!

  8. it's gorgeous! Love the top stitching on the handles, that is a great idea. Do you interface/inter-fleece (just made that word up) the handles too?

  9. Hello, I'm your newest follower. I found you on Girlish Whims blog hop and came to visit your blog. I will visit often and hope you will visit my blog sometime.

  10. I'd like to invite you to link up to Show and Tell Saturday at Sassy Little Lady!


  11. The bag looks gorgeous. Lovely fabric and the piping really sets it off. I'm sure your friend will be really pleased with it.
    Ali x

  12. Such a cute bag! I'm your newest follower and eager to see what all fun things you have on here!

  13. Very nice....I once (years ago) made lots of bags too and felt I could do it in my sleep! I'm thinking of trying my hand at it again. Thanks for linking with me.

  14. Wow! Cute bag! Thanks for sharing @ Submarine Sunday!


  15. Wow.. I love everything about this bag..

  16. What a gorgeous bag!!! Great ideas to add elastic to the pocket and the extra stitching on the straps. The piping really finishes it off well. I'd love you to share this at our Ongoing linky that's just for Bags and Totes

  17. You did a lovely job on this. I recently bought some hawaiian fabric that I want to make a bag with. I appreciate seeing this example. Bless you.

  18. Good looking bag.. nicely done. I just did my first bag with piping.. adds such a nice touch to a bag.



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