Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Mini Saddle Bag Made From Neckties

A few years ago I tested a bag for a bag pattern designer. He was designing a saddle bag that he was going to send out to the testers, but he had some things happen at that time and so all us testers said we would be here when he wanted us to test the next bag. In the meanwhile, he emailed us a mini version of the saddle bag pattern he wrote and said the new bag would be larger, but similar to this bag. I thought for fun I would use some men's neckties to make this mini version. I had it cut out and pieces the front and back pieces, but then it somehow got put away and buried in my pile of UFO's for a couple of years. When I found it recently, I decided to finish this bag and here it is. But I can't help wonder what became of the designer? I never heard from him again. I hope he is alright, but I have no idea. He never posted to his Facebook Tester group (which I belong to), so it's a mystery I suppose.

Made from men's neckties on the front, back, flap and front pocket. The black gusset and strap as well as the lining are cotton fabrics.

The front has a flap and I added a turn lock closure instead of a magnetic snap.

Back view of bag.

Mostly silk ties. I used a decorative stitch to quilt this.

The front has a nice slip pocket, great for keys or a cell phone.

Oh how embarrassing to see all that lint! I thought I had cleaned it off, but now that I see the photos, obviously I didn't do a very good job of it, lol!!! Anyhow, this is the inside with a slip pocket and a pen pocket.

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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Lombard Street Bag

I was commissioned to make a bag that would hold an iPad and a cell phone (and a few other things of course) by a friend who is a former co-worker of mine. I emailed her some photos of The Lombard Street Bag that I had made 3 years ago and other bags that I thought would also work. The Lombard Street Bag was the one she went with. She wanted burgundy and gray. I brought in all of my burgundy colored fabrics for her to choose from and told her I would choose a gray that went well with it. I also chose a lighter gray print for the lining. She wanted this bag for a trip she was taking so she had a place to hold her iPad and phone, etc. She's not going on her trip until September, but told me she is already using this bag.

This bag is made with Soft and Stable foam stabilizer, which is great for cushioning the iPad pocket. The Lombard Street bag pattern is ChrisW Design pattern. It's loaded with pockets too!

FYI: This is my 900th posting since I began my blog in 2008!
The front of the bag has 3 pockets, one is a zippered pocket.

3 front pockets.

A recessed zippered closure to keep everything secured inside the bag. Can you see the zipper pull on the right for the hidden zippered pocket? One of the pockets has another pocket for your Smart Phone

Inside there are slip pockets and I always like to divide the pocket in the center for a pen pocket. 

This back pocket is for holding your iPad. It's nice and cushioned with the Soft and Stable stabilizer that's used.

Side view.

Zipper pull I made for the iPad pocket.


The strap is adjustable to wear across your body. Here is the back iPad pocket in front just to show you the scale of the bag.

Here is is worn with the front of the bag showing.


I also wanted to make a couple of little zipper pouches from the leftover fabrics. A friend of mine gave me this pattern for the Zippety Bags (from Bella Nonna patterns) and I wanted to make some of these, so I made the smallest and the one up from that too. The pattern includes 5 sizes. You can sew them two ways: one with the raw edge of the fabric against the sipper or you can finish the edge so it's not raw. I made one of each. I included these with the Lombard Street Bag. The smallest one is handy for holding coins or earbuds, the larger one could hold cords, batteries and recharging plug-ins or whatever she wants for her trip.
The smallest bag on the right I made with enclosing the raw edges. The one just a bit larger on the left I sewed with a raw edge, using a fancy zigzag stitch. These were fast to sew, especially the raw edge method.

They look like an "S" when unzipped. I did add some zipper pulls after I took these photos.
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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Bloom Blocks 19 & 20

The last of the Bloom blocks are finished. Here are blocks 19 & 20. They are all finished and now I need to decide how I want to set them into a quilt. I didn't sew borders on my blocks. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with them and still am thinking about it. I used all bright colored scraps to make the blocks and a variety of white and cream background prints too; whatever I already had on hand.



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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Polka Dot Tote

This tote was sort of made backwards. You see I wanted to make a lining for a tote bag that I had knit and felted. I thought I had measured things correctly to make a lining, but I am not quite certain how to go about measuring the inside of the knit tote so that it when I sew the lining it will fit exactly. Well obviously the lining did not fit the knit tote bag. I didn't want the lining to go to waste, so I measured the lining and then tried to figure out the measurement for the outside of the bag in order to make the exterior. It worked out and I made this bag. Is it practically perfect in every way? No, but it is useful and looks nice. I wouldn't recommend making a bag in reverse order without a clear pattern though, lol!

I added pockets all around the bag and the handles and side seams naturally divide the pockets.

This is the interior lining that I made first. I sewed this lining to a foam stabilizer.Then I made the exterior after this lining didn't fit my knit and felted bag.
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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Water bottle Tote

I made this Water Bottle Tote, a pattern from Sara of Radiant Home Studio, recently. I admit that had some trouble making this. I don't know if I am becoming dyslexic as I am aging or what? But I was just having a hard time trying to understand a couple of the steps. I emailed Sara and she helped me with it. I guess sometimes things just don't click in my head. Some of it was that I wasn't reading it correctly. I had sewed the inner dividers wrong because I was folding it the wrong way! Looks so simple to make, right? So I don't know why it ended up being a bit of a challenge.  Does that ever happen to you? Where some parts of instructions just don't make sense? Well I got 'er done and am happy with it. Thanks Sara for your help. I don't have 6 bottles of water (or other beverages) to use as models for the tote though.

Inside the tote there are divisions for 6 bottles. Or you can use this to hold other tall things like knitting needles, rulers, fabric rolled up, etc. I used some fancy stitches to stitch the dividers, even though you won't really see the stitches much.
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Monday, July 11, 2016

Let it Snow BOM

Here is the 6th Let it Snow block, the letter "T" for the word, IT. 

All stitched by hand.

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Thursday, July 7, 2016

Four Splendid Applique Blocks

I made four of the Splendid Blocks while sewing with a friend one day. I chose to make a few of the applique blocks. I enjoy the applique blocks better than the pieced blocks. I think it's because these are 6" finished blocks and some of those pieced blocks have such tiny pieces that I just can't seem to sew them very well to where they look good. Some of the pieced blocks came out looking okay that I made and a couple were so wonky and not square at all, that I decided I would work on the blocks I liked the best from now on. I certainly am not going to make a quilt using all 100+ blocks anyhow. In fact, I am not sure what I will do with the all blocks that I do make. I suppose I will wait and see how many blocks I end up making before deciding what to do with them.
Wouldn't having a pink sewing machine be fun? Why is it that most sewing machines come in white, black and tan instead of fun colors? I know a few of the newer Bernina's have Tula Pink or Ricky Tims designs on them, but I think we should have fun colors like when we buy a new car and get to choose a color we like. Some people are having their old Singer Featherweight machines painted, but they cost several hundred dollars to have them painted. Plus wouldn't that negatively affect the resale value of the Featherweights by painting them? You know what Antique Roadshow appraisers say about cleaning or refinishing furniture and other things: don't! It always makes the value go down when you alter them. 


I am showing how this flower block would look on point here.


This is how the flower block looks not on point. I prefer it on point, but it depends on whether I will use it with the other blocks or not. If I use this one alone, I will add setting triangles so it will be on point.

I like this cute like potted flower. I used rickrack instead of fabric for the stem.


This cute little bunny in his jacket reminds me of Peter Rabbit.



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