Friday, February 26, 2016

A Fold Over Crossbody Tote

I've been seeing the folded bag (fold over) concept for a while now. Combine that with the beautiful oval frames use as handles (like in the February 2016 Bag of the Month from Mrs H and on Chloe's Court Clutch by ChrisWDesigns ) and this Tote came to mind.

 I got the oval handles and bag bling from

It can be used as a crossbody purse but also grabbed by the handles as a Tote. I wanted to use some accent fabrics for interest since the main body area is big. In order to keep the interest on the handles, the top edge shaping and the foldover I kept the construction simple. No pockets outside.

The bottom panel continues from front to back with no seam at the bottom.

The strap is adjustable and is connected to the bag with swivel clasps and D rings on the sides of the Tote. Those seams that hold the strap tabs were really secured. When making a big bag you have to think that it's going to get quite heavy so you should plan for it.

It closes with a recessed zipper on top.

Inside I added a zipper pocket. Maybe on the next one I'll add a slip pocket too with pen compartment since I see this Tote being used as a book back for college students.

I think it looks nice in either of the two ways of using it. I chose a strong gray fabric print from my stash (upholstery) and a thick black canvas. I interfaced with Pellon SF101 and added Peltex to the bottom and the handle section.

So, what do you think? What feature catches your eye first?

Until next time. Happy Sewing!!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Another Epiphany Bag

Since I made my first Epiphany Bag from Chris W Designs, I've been meaning to make more. I just love this design. So I actually have a list of fabrics I'll use to make others.

Here's my most recent one.

I used a dark brown Twill as accent and a jungle print fabric from JoAnn's.

I chose to use the solid accent fabric on the top and bottom pieces plus the straps and the print on sides and main front and back. This is the same combination I made on my previous Epiphany Bag.

I just love this design. The result is always very sturdy and the bag looks very professional. I used some bag feet, rivets and a bag bling from Emmaline Bags which reads "handcrafted".

For the interior I opted for a simpler construction of pockets. It has two slip pockets (one of them with a pen compartment) and a zippered pocket.

This bag is available at my shop here.
Another Epiphany Bag is on my list but it will be for me and not the shop. I'm sure I'll be very proud to show it off and say I did it!

A Blue Calla Convertible Backpack

Sharing Time!

I sometimes think I have just a couple followers and I should just quit blogging. I'm not a good blogger since I don't post that much. If you are still following please let me know by commenting.  But here I am again.

I got the new pattern from Blue Calla Patterns for a convertible backpack. If you want a copy go here.
When I saw the pattern design it reminded me of a bag my daughter have that uses a similar method for converting from shoulder bag to backpack. Converters always get my attention. This one has an asymmetrical shape. So here's my version.

Here's the front, were you see it as a shoulder bag:

This view let's you see the long zipper opening. The zipper covers the top and one side.

Here's the back. There are two 1" rectangle rings at the bottom and two 1-1/4" D rings on the top. You can also see the two sliders that make the straps adjustable. All this rings makes it possible for the bag to change from a shoulder bag to a backpack.

When you want to carry it as a backpack you can either just pick the straps between the top and bottom rings that are at the back of the bag or disconnect the clips on the front rings and connect  them on the top back rings. There's even a video to show you this. You can see it  here. I must say that if it works for someone to just pick it up differently (without unclipping) when you want to change from one mode to the other just do that and is easier. But you still have the option.

This last picture shows the bag with the main zipper opened. There's an internal gusset to hold your things inside when opening the zipper. This long zipper allows for a clear view inside.

I did make a change on the front pocket. The pattern has a zippered front pocket that opens top to bottom as you can see here on the pattern's feature picture.

I'm too practical and thought that kind of zipper installation will make things fall if left opened by accident. So I instead created a flap closing pocket that closes with a heavy duty snap. I matched the fabric so well that you can hardly see the pocket if it weren't for the flap.

For the bag I used a blue denim as contrast and for straps. The main print I had for a while and is from the "Fusions Ombre" Collection by Darcel Phillips for of Robert Kaufman. I got this fabric in different colors and still have some left for a future project. Inside it's lined with a solid gray cotton and it has a zipper pocket and a slip pocket with a pen compartment. The bag is available for purchase here.

I must say that the pattern is well explained (like all the other Blue Calla Patterns I have) for you to get a great result. The main zipper installation it's a bit tricky because it needs to be precise and there's always some fabric shifting and stretching. So you need to use lots of pins or clips. I did rip some seams and sew again. That was the only hard part for me. I will use the pattern again and I'm already thinking on another modification. I hope pattern designers don't mind me making modifications. But that's the nice thing about sewing bags, you can customize.

So, what are your thoughts on this design?