Piebald Finished

Piebald Pouch - closed
Piebald Pouch – closed

I have undoubtedly become a Sew Sweetness groupie. I want to spend time making all of the projects I have in my library.

The Piebald Pouch is my first finished project from Minikins Season 3. I have to say that it went better than many of my other pouch and small bag projects. For whatever reason, all of the pieces and parts went together smoothly and I had very little trouble.

Except for the front panel. You can see that I didn’t line up the flowers properly, so the ones on the front panel are sideways. I still like it.

The pouch is a little bit of an odd shape. This one is for me and I am not sure how I will use it.

Piebald Pouch - open
Piebald Pouch – open

This was a fairly easy sew. I started it last week and would have finished it sooner, but have been so swamped that I just didn’t have a moment. It was fun and a charge to finish it on Sunday.

Piebald Pouch Progress

Piebald Pouch in Progress
Piebald Pouch in Progress

I started my first project from Minikins 3, the Piebald Pouch. I like the shape. I know you can’t tell the same from these weird pieces. Upper right hand corner holds the top.

Despite the plethora of zippers I have, I didn’t have one for this pouch. I will soon, however. In the meantime, I am making as much progress as I can.

My idea is to update SIL’s yarn minder with this pouch.  This version is not it. I want to make it for myself first, then hack it. The yarn minder version will include a shoulder strap and a double head zipper.

Check out the finished project on Sara Lawson’s Minikins page.

I-Spy Pouch Finished

I-Spy Pouch Finished
I-Spy Pouch Finished

I might be having a fit of reorganization. At least you might be thinking that after seeing yesterday’s post and reading today’s. I am sort of.

I have a number of acrylic templates for various projects. Many are for pouches and bags that I will make over and over. They come in thin plastic bags. Ideally I would like a set of map drawers in which to store them. Until I can take over the entire house, that isn’t happening. I have been looking at various bag patterns for ideas on how to store them.

I-Spy Pouch Finished with templates
I-Spy Pouch Finished with templates

This is my first attempt. The I-Spy pouch from Sew Sweetness’ Minikins Season 1 fits my templates for a Minikins Season 2 project called the Day Trip Wallet. Not all of my templates will fit in the various sizes of the I-Spy pouch, but some will and that is a start.

The pattern comes with 3 sizes (this is the medium size). It is a very quick sew, so I can look through my other templates to see which will fit in the various sizes. I am thinking I can easily adjust the sizes to fit other templates. Finding the right-sized zipper will be the challenge if I change the size. I have a bunch of different sizes, so I should be able to manage.

Yoko Saito's Natural Patchwork bag
Yoko Saito’s Natural Patchwork bag

I am still looking for a bag pattern with slots in different sizes that I can just slide the templates into and not worry about resizing. I have been looking at Yoko Saito’s bags, especially this rectangular bag from Natural Patchwork. It might be too small, but I like the shape. I’d have to make different blocks for the front.

Retreat Pouch #2

Retreat Pouch #2
Retreat Pouch #2

I made another Retreat Pouch the other day. I cut up the fabric when I went to visit Tim, then decided to sew the pouch on Saturday.

I am ridiculously pleased at how this Retreat Pouch came together. I think it looks great!

It is also a great project. Once the pieces are cut the bag goes together in a couple of hours. I think I talked about this before.

Retreat Pouch Fussy Cutting
Retreat Pouch Fussy Cutting

First, I love the fabric. This fabric is one of Anna Maria’s Hindsight prints. I received it in one of the Modern Handmade subscription boxes I received last year. Can you believe how lucky I got on the cutting? It looks like I intended to match the flower on either side of the zipper.

I really wanted to make the larger size, but one fat quarter is not enough to make one pouch, so I resorted to this size again. I bought two frames in each size, so I can choose some different fabrics that I have in larger quantities to make the larger version.

Retreat Pouch Beautiful Zipper
Retreat Pouch Beautiful Zipper

Second, the sewing went very well and the pouch looks professionally sewn. I am pleased with how the zipper ended up looking based on the instructions. I went an extra step by pinning the zipper down rather than holding it while I sewed and I think that helped. I knew where to pin it because I measured. I think this is another version of ‘veering’ the zipper that I have talked about with the Cotton Candy Pouches and the UCAB 45 degree angle technique.

Retreat Pouch Interior Pocket
Retreat Pouch Interior Pocket

Third, turning the pouch using the interior pocket was a smooth process. I don’t know why I don’t add these pockets for turning all the time.

This is not part of the pattern, but it is easy to add to any pouch or bag. I had to think carefully about the size because of the boxed corner. Despite my care, I still think the bottom of the pocket goes below the curve on the bottom of the pouch. I don’t think it really matters. For the moment I don’t know what I will put in that interior pocket.

I say this is an easy pocket to put in, but I always need to refer to general directions. I also have Sara Lawson’s Acrylic Zipper Pocket Template (no affiliation) and that makes the marking super speedy. I also saw one by Piera (no affiliation), which includes purse feet measurements as well.

I did watch the video before I sewed the first Retreat Pouch. I vowed to watch it again before making this one, but I didn’t. I don’t know why because it is a good resource.

I put my new Snap Setter and all of my Snap Setter Supplies in this pouch.

Here are a few more pictures of the zipper.



Sotak Purse Organizer #2

Purse Organizer #2
Purse Organizer #2

I showed this pouch briefly after I made it at New Year’s. The other day, I sent it off to Gerre to celebrate International Women’s Day (same day as her birthday, but she doesn’t celebrate her birthday anymore).

I want to make sure she knows she is remembered and valued so I try to whip something up at each holiday. This was the second of the Purse Organizers that I made, but the other one is for a gift in May. Look for the post then.

I struggled more with the construction of this pouch than I did on the first one, partially because I made some changes. One was to sew the two zipper slip pockets at the same time rather than with some other steps in between as the pattern says. That may have been a mistake as I had to do some ripping.

Gerre's Purse Organizer (#2) - inside
Gerre’s Purse Organizer (#2) – inside

I am not a huge fan of her method of constructing the inside [regular] slip pockets. They seem too thick to me and I may try and construct them using a different method next time.

The pattern also neglects to remind the maker to clip the corners. OR I didn’t see that instruction. Not clipping the seam allowances made poking out the bottom corners on the first Purse Organizer difficult and the corners didn’t look that great. For this pouch, I rounded the corners using a 2 inch circle template** and they came out a little better. I am not sure if that change impacts the usefulness of the pouch. For example, Svetlana’s picture shows the inside can hold a tablet. Since I don’t have a tablet this size, I don’t know if the rounded corners will change the size so the tablet will no longer fit.

I also added the leash so that it could be clipped to another bag. The leash is a useful feature if you are storing things in this pouch. Taking things in and out of a larger bag  is better if you have them organized in pouch like thisand are concerned it will fall out.

Gerre's Purse Organizer (#2) - back
Gerre’s Purse Organizer (#2) – back

The good part of this pattern is that makers can adjust the sizes so the Organizers fits the stuff you need to carry around.

I didn’t choose to put the snap on the back pocket, but since I received a snap installation kit for Christmas, I plan to try that out. I thought that back pocket might be good for my journal**. It was a passing thought and I haven’t measured them yet.

I look forward to hearing how it works for her.








**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Retreat Pouch Finished

Sometime ago I bought the frames for the Retreat pouch. The Retreat pouch is a free pattern from Emmaline Bags. The pattern, as I said, is free, but the frames are not.

Retreat Pouch closed
Retreat Pouch closed

Over the New Year holiday, I decided I was going to make some bags, the supplies for which had been hanging around. The Retreat pouch was one of the bags I sewed.

I started out with the small size, which is about 8 inches x 4 inches. I didn’t think the small size was tiny. Once cut out, this is not a difficult bag to put together. I was able to finish it in a couple of hours while I catted with a friend.

Retreat Pouch open
Retreat Pouch open

I thought the installation of the frame was a little weird because the pattern says to remove stitches you have already sewed in order to install the frame. The pattern didn’t say whether to sew up the hole that I made, so I did.

I just used a frame for the Sheffield Tool Bag. That pattern uses a casing to house the frame. Since I haven’t used a lot of frames in bags, I don’t know what is normal. I prefer the casing.

I plan to use this pouch for my bag making tools. I might need to make the larger version for the tools as I have a lot of them, but I plan to make the larger one anyway.

I found a video that shows how to add handles and make some other changes to the bag while showing how to make the pouch. I have watched it, but I didn’t watch while making this pouch. I may add handles to my next one.

N.B. on Frames: I still don’t have a good handle on frames. I know how to install them in a bag or pouch in a couple of ways, but I don’t know if different frames can be interchanged in different bags. I haven’t made enough bags with frames to understand them very well.

Sotak Purse Organizer

Recently, I bought a Purse Organizer pattern from Svetlana at Sotak Handmade. This pattern came out in 2015, but it was new to me. I made two of them in quick succession around New Year and can see this pouch becoming a go-to pattern for a quick, useful gift.

Purse Organizer
Purse Organizer

The excellent thing is that I was reminded how easy Zipper slip pockets (top pocket with the green zipper) are to add! Tim and I have talked about these types of pockets recently, but I was reluctant despite the cool zipper ruler I bought. This pattern got me back into the swing of those zipper slip pockets and I feel more confident that I can put them into any bag. I did have trouble keeping the zipper straight as I sewed it, so that is something to work on.


Gift Post #5: Butterfly Pouch

Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch finished
Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch finished

I finished the Butterfly pouch I talked about the other day. It was a relatively quick project and despite some problems I am happy with how it turned out.

I resolved the size issue by cutting off the excess on the side panels. I think this is a little smaller than others I have made, but I still like it. I am particularly happy with the fussy cutting of the main panel.

Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch finished - inside
Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch finished – inside

The inside fabric is a really good choice, if I do say so myself. It is a bright white and reflects the light really well. I think this means that SIL will be able to see her stuff easily.

Gift Post #3: Sidewinder Pouches

Finished: Sidewinder Pouches
Finished: Sidewinder Pouches

I finished the four mediaum Sidewinder pouches earlier this month, but didn’t want to show them until the recipients received them.

I wanted to make them all with stripes, but didn’t have any green stripes (that I could find).

I thought the leftover Philip Jacobs fabric from the back of FOTY 2019 was great fabric and the two young women who like green would like that fabric. They can donate their pouch if they don’t like it.

Finished: Sidewinder Pouches open
Finished: Sidewinder Pouches open

The top zipper placket would have looked a little better if I had turned the stripes vertically. I just didn’t think about it. I will know better next time, if I make this pattern again.

Butterfly Cotton Candy Pouch

Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch started
Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch started

We draw names at Christmas, so we can get a nice gift for one person rather than a bunch of small gifts for everyone. I usually purchase something off of my giftee’s wish list, but occasionally I like to make something as well. This year I got one of my SILs and really wanted to make something.

The Cotton Candy pouch is still a favorite, soI started another one on Friday as an additional gift. I used a similar fabric as I used on an apron I made for her a few years ago. I forgot that I used the blue instead of the purple. Oh well. I hope she likes purple.

Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch side view in process
Butterfly Cotton Candy pouch side view in process

I am still struggling a bit with this pattern. This time the side panels were MUCH larger than the main panels. I checked the measurements multiple times, but still can’t figure out why the side panels don’t match. And this time they are WAY off. Regardless, I can still make it work.

On to veering the zipper!

Sidewinder Pouches

Sidewinder pouches from Minikins Season 1 have been on list for Christmas gifts. I finally started them last week. While I was on the phone, I cut out most of the pieces. I say most because I found out later that I forgot to cut out several pieces. I found out once I started to put the pouches together. I guess I was paying more attention to the call the cutting. Oops!! 

I decided to make 4 of these pouches for various family members. Part of the reason I wanted to make them was the striped fabric version in the Minikins ad is so cool looking. I also wanted to make use of the patterns I bought. I have made several Cotton Candy pouches from Minikins Season 1, but I want to make more of the projects. Also, I enjoy making pouches and there are only so many I can use.

Two Sidewinder pouches in process
Two Sidewinder pouches in process

I have to say that I felt giddy after making good progress on Saturday. It wasn’t that I didn’t struggle a little, but I was just so excited about how cute these pouches were turning out to be.

I still have a bit of work to do on them, but they will be great. I hope the recipients like them.

Retreat Bag

Mary and I were talking about something else when I remembered the Retreat Bag she and I decided to make. Neither of us have done it, but we both have all of the supplies, including the wire frame. This is a free pattern from Emmaline Bags. The pattern shows the frame you need and that is not free, sadly, but having a free pattern is helpful. And we have to support women owned small businesses.

Emmaline Bags Retreat Bag -free pattern
Emmaline Bags Retreat Bag -free pattern

The bag really doesn’t have anything to do with Retreats – as in going away to sew – I think that is just the name.

I also noticed  that Laura Coia of SewVeryEasy has a video on how to make the bag with the addition of an outside slip pocket and handles. This video is linked from the pattern page on the Emmaline site. I also saw a video from Birdcage and Thread that shows how to make this bag. The techniques in the two videos are a little different and one might work better for you. It’s good to have a choice.

I have two frames, so I can make two of these with the supplies I have on hand. I have been trying to think about what types of items/supplies I would store in this pouch and haven’t come up with anything yet. I could make one, or both, as a gift.

I am also thinking it might need a handle, leash or shoulder strap.

I seem to have a strong desire/need to finish things. I know I should be more enamored of the process. I have been trying for years to be more about the process, but I think I am sick of looking at things in my workroom and need to just make the projects and be done with them. OR fall in love with the process once I have tried it and go back for more.

Bottomline:  many bags and not enough time.

Mini Pink Pouch Finished

Mini Pink Pouch - finished
Mini Pink Pouch – finished

My little Mini Pink Pouch is finished. It didn’t take long, though I had to work on it over a couple of nights in between other projects.

I used a tutorial from Quilting in the Rain just to make sure I had the right order when I was putting this pouch together.

Mini Pink Pouch - finished (back)
Mini Pink Pouch – finished (back)

One thing I would do differently is put fabric tabs on the ends of the zipper. I think it would make that curve on the side a little less.

Pink & Green Cotton Candy Pouch

Pink & Green Cotton Candy Pouch
Pink & Green Cotton Candy Pouch

I finished the latest Cotton Candy Pouch over the weekend. This is the one that Friend Julie cut out using her Cricut Maker. You last saw it as a bunch of pieces. I am always interested to see how strangely shaped pieces turn into something 3D. It was awesome to not have to cut anything but to have it all ready to go.

Zipper Beginning
Zipper Beginning

One reason I keep making this pouch over and over is to perfect some of my skills, especially Veering the Zipper, which went much better this time. I was also able to get the beginning of the zipper even with each other. So progress.

Yes, I could have gotten the head closer, but that is a challenge for another day.

I also like the shape of this pouch a lot. I am going to try the sidewinder next. Bronwyn, one of the moderators of the Sew Sweetness FB group, had so much trouble with the Sidewinder that she threw out her first attempt. This scares me!

I forgot to use a deeper seam allowance for the lining :(, but c’est la vie. It is fine for this time. Another part to work on.

The Sidewinder is another part of Minikins Season 1. I have two dozen or so patterns from Minikins Season 1 & 2 to try, so I need to get busy! I am constantly wondering if Sara will come out with a Minikins Season 3? Yikes! I need to get busy.

Mini Pink Pouch

After making the Mondo Bag last year, I had a few squares leftover. I sewed them together into panels of 6 charm squares, found a pink zipper and decided to make a quick pouch. Several months later, I finally got busy.

Pink Pouch fabrics
Pink Pouch fabrics

I cut some lining fabrics and found a random tutorial just so I wouldn’t mess up the steps.

I was pretty pleased with how it was shaping up, then I decided that I needed to include a leash. I love adding tabs with a lobster clip on the end, as I have mentioned numerous times, so I can clip my pouches to other bags. This step slowed me down a little as I had to find fabric that would look good (scrap diving!) and dig out a lobster clip, but I ended up being ready to sew the leash before I had to stop. Next time I’ll be able to show the item as done as I think I only need a half and hour or so to finish.