Thursday, May 31, 2012

In Love With...

my Zakka Style Stem Messenger Bag!!  I have been looking forward to this project since the sew-along began.  I haven't kept up with the projects as much as I had hoped, mostly due to the last month of school activities and our town's community-built playground effort, but thankfully things seem to be calming down.

I jumped ahead a few weeks ago and made the zip organizer.  You'll have to wait til next week to see the finished product.  But I made the Stem Messenger Bag to match my organizer!  I absolutely love it.  Working with this book has me using linen for the first time, and it has such a great weight and feel to it.  Aside from having issues keeping it squared up when cutting out project pieces, I really enjoy the natural fibers.  (I have fixed that issue by ironing interfacing onto the linen of the correct size and shape before cutting the linen out.)'s my new favorite bag!  Completed just in time for the Great Alaskan Road Trip next week that my kids and I are taking...from Homer to Fairbanks and back, via Denali National Park.  This bag will hold all of my travel necessities- phone, wallet, notebook, iPad, Kindle (techie, here!), Alaska TourSaver Book, smaller camera, snacks... It has lots of pockets, and I added a magnetic snap closure on the flap so that things don't fly out while I'm chasing my 4-year-old.

Gray linen with Outfoxed and Fly a Kite

I made my own double-fold bias binding for the first time...I can see how that could get addicting!  I envisioned an entire Etsy shop with handmade binding.

Fab design in the Zakka Style book- outside pockets and inside pockets to hold just about everything.

I made my strap out of two pieces of black cotton webbing zig-zagged together with teal thread.  My loops are nylon from my local marine hardware supplier.

Pocket on the back.  Attaching the flap this way was tricky and it doesn't look very neat on the inside top edge.  Next time I'd probably put it on the "regular" way.

Just the right size.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Giveaway Day Winner

Wow.  156 entries!  Thanks to everyone for stopping by!  It's about time to choose a winner.

Congrats, Monica!  I'll be emailing you shortly.

While I also prefer to make my own things, I find Etsy to be a fantastic source for supplies.  A couple of my favorite shops are Zip It Zippers and michelle patterns.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Giveaway Day!

It's Giveaway Day (well, Week, really) over at Sew, Mama, Sew! and I'm offering up something fabulous.

I have been following along, mostly, with the Zakka Style Sew-Along, and I jumped ahead, thanks to Sara at Sew Sweetness, to the Zip Organizer.  Then I decided to downsize it into a wallet.  I loved the result so much that I have made several wallets this week.  They all have a charcoal linen base with fun designer cotton prints as pockets and accents.  The binding is hand-sewn.  You'll have to wait to see the original organizer that I made until its time comes in the sew-along!  For a sneak peek, check out my Facebook page.

This lovely prize features some Joel Dewberry prints.  It zips closed and has a zip pocket on the back for change.  The inside has 3 card slots on one side and three slightly larger slip pockets on the other.

To enter, leave a comment below letting me how you shop on you search for something specific, browse new listings, check in with your favorite shops?  Open to anyone, anywhere.  I will randomly select a winner on May 27.  For an extra entry, like my Facebook page and comment that you did.  PLEASE MAKE SURE I CAN CONTACT YOU IF YOU WIN.  Make sure your email address is visible in your profile, or include it in your comment.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Recent Projects

I am SO behind on my sew-a-longs! Between gifts and custom orders, I have fallen behind on personal projects again.

 But I've made several fun things lately! I found this cute tutorial a few weeks ago for a kid's sling-style bag. It was meant as a fat quarter project, but I made a couple of alterations to the tutorial directions. Well, really, I made several! The tutorial wasn't all that clear, especially for those who may not be familiar with sewing bags. I used canvas for the bag body since the inside is not lined. I also made the accent fabric on the outside a larger width to show off more of my chosen print. I used cotton webbing for the strap, and on this version I even sewed some cute red trim down the center. I made two of these prior to this one that have the outside zip pocket. The tutorial is not clear on how to make this part look nice, and the original pocket size given is about the size of a Matchbox car. I am happy with the end size of my zip pockets, but in order to make the zipper part look nice you really need prior zip pocket experience!

As soon as I finished up that bag as a birthday gift for our cute next-door neighbor, I got a call about making some of my boxy vinyl-lined cosmetics bags. Twenty six, to be exact! Since the timeframe was too short for me to get more supplies, I ended up making 12. They went to our local Nordic ski club instructors as thank-you gifts for their season of teaching. It's so fun to make things for local people, and even more so when they are the ones who taught my family to ski this winter! The organizer thought these bags would be perfect to hold ski goggles and wax, since they are lined with vinyl. Great idea!

 I am also caught up with Mother's Day gifts, but they remain a secret until next weekend. I have internet-savvy moms and grandmas...wouldn't want to ruin any surprises! This weeks's plan is to finish up my very first international order (to be sent to Australia!) and then begin again on my New York Beauty blocks. I'm sure I'll add some other things in there as well. I have joked about it before, but I really do have sewing ADD! I can't work on one thing for very long without getting bored, so I always have several small projects going at once.