My guild had their first in person meeting over the weekend. Maria organized a swap as a fun thing to welcome everyone back. I joined and was assigned Maria who wanted potholders.
Potholders are almost the last thing I would consider making. When I use potholders I want them to protect my hands from the heat and I have not found that homemade potholders do that. Still, Maria wanted potholders, so I made potholders.
I had some Insulbright on hand, so I used that in addition to two layers of batting. The sandwich was super fat. I didn’t want to do very much thread sinking, so I didn’t quilt it as much as I could have, but they turned out pretty thin in the end. I hope all the layers will protect Maria’s hands.
She also wanted lime green. Since I made her a pillow before, I decided to stick with that theme and use the same block. I had to redraw the block in EQ8, because I couldn’t find my block from the swap. The proportions came out a little different in this piece, but I think they still look good.
I didn’t think about a hanging loop until it was too late to put one on. Oh well.
I added in pink because I like pink and it made the potholders look cheerful and celebratory. The theme of the swap is Celebration! so the colors fit. I made a gift bag in the same fabric as the binding. The gift is ready to go.
While this is Mom’s UCAB, I tested it on my travel sewing machine bag to see if it would work for me. The key is to adjust the back sleeve to fit over your rolly bag handle. I have no idea if there are standard sizes for those, so make sure you check before you sew everything to the exterior.
I plan to put my smaller items in the UCAB. I am not sure how I am going to reconcile this bag with the Tupperware box.
The picture below shows the bag empty, but trust me when I say I filled it up. It isn’t completely filled.
I need mine to contain all my to go items – notions and rulers, etc. I put them in the various pockets of the sewing machine bag, which has a lot of pockets, but it makes some of the zippers hard to open.
I can’t tell you how excited I am to be saying that I finished the UCAB for my mom and gave it to her for her birthday! This bag goes with the set of items I am making from the Paint Tube fabric.
I am so excited because I spent a lot of time on this bag and got everyone excited about it, then the pandemic hit and all the excitement died.
I finished the bag on September 12, 2021 after spending September 11 ripping out a lot of what I had sewn the prior week. I spent the Sunday morning of the 12th thinking about construction and how I could avoid putting the bag together the way Natalie does. I know she has had success putting together a million of these bags, but the construction did not work for me. I can’t believe how flat she gets her binding.
What I ended up doing is putting the binding on before I constructed the whole bag. I know the binding is supposed to cover the edges of the sides. This made no sense since the sides were finished.
After thinking about how I could construct the bag without killing myself, I decided that I would put the binding on the exterior, then sew the side section to the exterior. The sides were already finished and the process worked very well. I lined up the bottom of the sides right next to the binding and clipped the living daylights out of it, then sewed that section to the exterior. It looked a lot better than my previous effort, which was a big mess. My effort is not as neat as Natalie’s, but I am happy with what I did. I am not embarrassed to give this bag as a gift.
The other thing I thought about is not finishing the bottom of the side panels. This would mean that only two layers of fabric along with the thickness of the exterior would need to be under the binding. I might try it that way on the other version of the bag.
Remember the Ring Toss block that I agonized over? I am pretty sure I told you I wasn’t going to make the quilt. The block, which I like has been hanging on my design wall since December of 2018. It occurred to me that it would make a great exterior for a Sew Together Bag. I thought this was an especially good idea since I had no idea what colors the recipient likes.
While I am sad I won’t have this block to look at, I am pretty pleased with how it came out as a Sew Together Bag.
I wish I had thought of how the bag would look from the top. I added grey around the block to make it large enough for the exterior. The viewer can’t see the Ring Toss block from the top. Mostly you see the grey. I think it is fine, since I mostly look at mine from the side or end.
I made this Sew Together Bag as a gift. I want to send it off now, but am trying to wait until Christmas.
The outside is a Charlie Harper print made from Barkcloth. I have never used Barkcloth before and it was fine. I interfaced it with SF101 and didn’t have any problem with the looseness of the weave. I am not sure how it will be if I cut squares and try to use them in a Fabric of the Year quilt. I only bought it to make this bag because my friend loved it. Ordinarily I wouldn’t have bought it.
I really struggled with what to put with it for the binding. I don’t think the turquoise is perfect, but I think it looks pretty good. Black was my other choice, but I think with the grey background and the black on the puffins the whole project could have easily gone towards depressing. I chose the turquoise binding to make it super cheerful.
I fussy cut some more puffins for the mini pincushion. I think they look really cute.
You can see similar interior fabrics to my Brocade Peony / La Pass Sew Together Bag. Same fabrics- different order.
I haven’t talked much about zippers as I have spoken about these projects. Each bag requires 4 zippers. I chose, mostly, different colors for each zipper to make the bags more visually interesting. I also think that zippers are another visual cue to where the maker put a tool or supply. I kind of wish I has used another orange zipper on this bag, but I think it looks good as is.
I worked on the leaf Sew Together Bag over the weekend and was able to finish it. Yay!
As shown the other, this used a Jane Sassaman leaf fabric for the outside. I used black for the binding, though green might have worked as well. I don’t have a lot of dark green. I think the black is a good choice.
As you saw on another day, I made all the insides light colored so items stored inside are easy to find.
The recipient works for a public health department and I have been assured she will like the ribs.
I did the pincushion a little differently from my red-violet Sew Together Bag. I made it much smaller and I machine sewed it to the interior. I don’t know if that is better, but we will see.
The flap on the right of the pincushion is for WonderClips. I think Sew Tites could be stored there as well.
I spent last weekend finishing the Sew Together Bags. Mostly what I had to do was put the bindings on.
In the last batch of Sew Together Bags, I did something a little different. I tucked the zipper tab into the side binding to make it look really finished. Look for a mini-tutorial about how to do this later. I did that again, so it took me most of two days to get them completely finished. Now they are and I am really pleased with how they came out.
These were much easier to make. I felt like I was playing a bit and not fighting the pattern. I guess that is what comes after you have made 14 of them!
I spent a lot of time over the weekend working on these bags. I have to say that it was a joy. I do want to get them done, but I really enjoyed the process.
I talked, a long time ago, about trying to be process oriented. It is hard and I have to focus on it. This sewing didn’t feel hard. I just moved through the process steadily, listened to an audiobook and felt very happy.
I also added a little flap to hold WonderClips. It isn’t a great solution and I’ll have to think of something better for next time, but it will hold WonderClips, which will keep them from falling out of the STB if it gets turned on its side.
The arrows point to the flap. I want to hide end somehow for future models as it is hard to get the end straight with the seam allowance pushed down into such a small space.
I am not sure if this is actually called a pocket panel. I might have heard that somewhere else or in another bag pattern. It fits the description, however.
I tried to match up the different zippers with the exteriors of the bags. Stayed to see what you think about my matching.
In the photo, you can see that I have already added the needle holder and pincushion. I haven’t found a good pincushion size. I did something different this time, which was to sew the pincushion to the lining piece by machine. I have sewn them by hand before. The pincushions are also much smaller. Not sure that is good, but we will see. I am sure I will make more in the future.
It occurred to me that I should add a WonderClip holder. I wish I had thought of it sooner, but I can still add something.
I decided to use the zipper foldy trick that I learned from making the Ultimate Carry All Bag on these Sew Together Bags.
I didn’t use it on all of them, because I wanted to be able to compare the final result. One thing I noticed is the big space from the end of the zipper to the edge of the fabric. We’ll see how that works once the thing is done.
It makes the ends of the zippers look very neat and tidy, which I like. I kind of wish I had used a longer zipper, but I know the side panels will take up some of the space.
I mentioned the other day that I had gotten my sewing machine back in gear. Some of my supplies, etc are still packed, so I am kind of doing ‘camping sewing’ – making do with what I have.
What I worked on was the exterior and sides of the Sew Together Bag pattern. I am making 4 of them this time. One is for me and the others will be gifts.
The first thing I did was quilt all of them. The two pieces above are from the leaf print. There are two pieces because I wanted the leaves facing up, so I had to use the ‘directional print’ directions for the exterior. Viewers cannot really see the quilting from the outside, but it looks great from the inside. I used a straight stitch and my quarter inch foot*
I did a little quilting on the others, mostly because I wanted to get to assembly.
*part of the ‘camping’ since I don’t know where my box of other feet are at the moment.
I made good progress at Craft Night on Gelato. I got all of the background sewn to the precut strips.
I wanted to prepare for my mini Sew Day with Gerre. This quilt was on the agenda. By sewing all the background to the strips, I could get it ready to transport. It was important to me to keep the strips in a certain order. I was able to use the numbered pins** I bought some time ago (and thought were useless) to good effect. I also used giant WonderClips** to keep the strips together.
I didn’t have a design wall at Gerre’s and with the numbered pins, I was able to keep the whole thing in order so I could sew it together.
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