March 30, 2014

Whew! I made it!

Well, I did it!  It is March 30th and I just finished the March bag from the Bag of the Month Club.  I didn't think that was going to happen.

The bag is The Convertible Bag from Samantha at Sewing Patterns by Mrs H.  Her Etsy store is here.  This is a cross body messenger type bag that can be converted into a backpack style bag.  I decided not to put the backpack pieces on as I thought it would be used more as a messenger.

This is a good looking, great sized bag that sports a thumb catch latch closing that highlights a contrasting front pocket.  I really like the look of that.  This bag has 2 slip pockets and 2 zipper pockets, one of each on the inside and one of each on the outside.

I had this fabric in my stash.  I liked it when I bought it but never found the right bag to use it on.  When I went to make this bag, I couldn't decide if I still liked it.  Now that the bag is done, I really like it again.

 I paired it with a denim look quilting cotton for the lining and a bright green home dec fabric for the straps and the contrasting pocket.

Here is the finished bag front.  This is the first time I have used a thumb catch and it was super easy to install.  The one I used was attached with a rivet.  All I had to do was punch the hole for the rivet, spread the metal plate of the catch far enough to insert the bag flap and then attach the rivet as usual.  It was much easier, faster and less messy than installing a twist lock.  I could get used to these.  I'm glad I bought several of them.

Here is the back view without the backpack pieces.

Now I am ready for the April bag.....

March 26, 2014

Spring has Sprung ?????

Spring finally arrived 6 days ago and then this arrived overnight...

I know it looks beautiful....

All fresh and untouched....

But come on, my tulips and daffodils were poking through this week. 


March 25, 2014

Butterfly, Lime Green and Black...Something Fun

That was my new order..."a Butterfly Bag, lime green and black...something fun".  A friend of one of my sisters admired her bag, a brown and cream animal print Sugar and Spice Bag by Chris W Designs that I had made for her. After looking at my blog, she decided to place this order for her own bag.

I sent her a picture of the lime green and black fabric that I had and here was her selection...

The Butterfly Bag was the February bag in the Bag of the Month Club by Janelle of Emmaline Bags.  It is a fun bag to see come together and it is a very practical bag as well. Here is how the bag turned out...


I still need to make the March bag of the month but not until I complete 2 more orders.  Can I make it before April??? Not much time left.  I lost 2 weeks of sewing while on vacation and have been suffering with tendonitis in my right shoulder for almost 3 weeks.  Sewing but not as quickly because I need to take more breaks.  The clock is ticking...

March 18, 2014

Another Frog Bag

Who knew when my sister picked the frog fabric for her lunch bag that it would be so popular.  Before I went on vacation, I got an email from a customer who had seen another "frog bag" that I had made for a customer who collects frog things and thought it would be a great birthday gift for her mother who also collects frog things.  Who knew so many people loved frogs??

She wanted a cross body bag that was not too large.  I chose a medium Messenger Bag from  I had purchased the Messenger Bag pattern from her and had made several of these larger messengers.  I was looking for a smaller sized bag and found that she also sells just the pattern pieces for 2 additional sizes (medium and small).  Since I already had the original pattern, I bought the additional pattern pieces for these  2 sizes.  I love the medium and small sized bags much better than the original.  The shape is an elongated rectangle that is a little wider at the bottom than at the top rather than a square like the original pattern.  This bag goes together easily and looks great.  I changed the closure to accomodate hardware that I had and I usually use this combination....

Since this bag was going to an older woman, I thought a twist lock might be easier to open, so I changed the closure to a twist lock this time...

But back to the beginning.  Here is the fabric and lining that I used...

This fabric does take some fussy cutting. The front of the bag has a couple of seams.  Here is the completed bag.  The strap is adjustable.

The back of the bag..

and the lining...

March 17, 2014

Victorian Coco Bag

It really is fun to choose the fabric for a particular bag I want to make.  I realize that most of these bags are to my taste and I am not sure whether others will see them as I see them.  When you are sewing to sell, you have to sometimes reign in your wild side.  That is why it is also fun to sew someone else's vision.  Before I left on vacation, I completed a bag like this.

I have a customer that knows what she wants and actually chose the bag and fabric that she wanted.  This is the first of several that I will be making for her.  For this bag, she wanted a Coco Bag from Chris W Designs.  She looked online and found the exact fabric she wanted.  That makes my job easy.  No second guessing, no wondering if she will like the look of it. 

I used my standby fabric for the straps, inserts, and top band.  It is a faux leather crocodile pattern in black this time.

I love the fabric I used for the interior.  Since the exterior looked Victorian to me, I thought this fabric carried the theme to the inside.

If you have not tried this pattern, Christine offers it on her website for free.  It will give you the chance to try one of her patterns.  Trust me, you will love the step by step directions and pictures.  Her bags are very professional  and with her designs and detail, you will be amazed at what you can do!

March 13, 2014

Back to Reality

I haven't posted for a while because I have been on vacation for 2 weeks, trying to escape this cold, harsh winter.  My 2 sisters, their husbands, and my husband and I finally had a chance to all slip away together.  We started our trip in Las Vegas. 

Can you guess where we stayed??  I knew I was already having sewing withdrawals, (I sew EVERY day) when I started admiring the chair in my room and thinking what a great bag it would make!!

One of my sisters and brother-in-laws had to return home after that leg of the trip but the remaining 4 of of us went on to Arizona for baseball spring training to see our beloved baseball team (the Cleveland Indians) play. 

I am a huge baseball fan and am pleased to report that our team looks really good at this point.  Not that it means anything yet.  The real season does not begin for several more weeks.  My fingers are crossed again this year hoping for good things.  They did win all 3 games we watched them play.  Then last night, it was back to reality when we got off the plane at Akron-Canton airport to snowy, icy conditions and single digit temperatures.  And now....back to work.  Don't tell anyone but I really missed sewing for these 2 weeks but I want to show you a treasure that I found while I was gone.
I learned a while ago that souvenirs could easily be purchased as a remembrance of a trip.  My souvenirs just happen to be fabric now.  I always come home from trips with new fabric.  I search out fabric stores that I don't have close to me and I found a treasure in Arizona. 
I found an ad for a fabric store in the local telephone book and decided to check it out.  The name of the store is Mulqueen's.  They have 4 locations but only 2 have fabric.  I went to the location in Glendale.  (I later visited the Mesa store, too).

There were racks and racks of fabric neatly displayed. The fabric was $6.95/yd unless it had yellow in it.  Yellow was the color of the month so it was $4.95/yd.

They also had clearance fabric for $3.95/yd.

If you thought the fabric selections were great, look at the sewing machine department. Boy, do I dream about a few of these!!

Thanks to Annette and Vicki at Mulqueen's for their help. Here are my souvenirs....

Now, back to work. I have orders to fill and the March bag of the month to make.