Thursday, November 22, 2012

Dallas City Satchel

It's been while since I sewed anything, so, inspired by a friend's upcoming visit, I decided to tackle the City Satchel from Sew What! Bags: 18 Pattern-Free Projects by Lexie Barnes:

First of all, I highly recommend this book, especially beginners.  It's user-friendly with lots of diagrams and pictures with projects from "newbie" to "daredevil" levels (though I would say these levels would apply to someone who is very new to sewing).  It covers a lot of basic, fun, and useful bags and organizers.  And I really appreciate the spiral binding--so it lies flat when I'm working with it.

Even though this project was at the "daredevil" level, it was thankfully relatively easy to follow and sew together.  After cutting all the pieces and ironing interfacing to the pieces, I was able to sew it together in about 3 hours, which included an annoying thread tension snafu with the strap.  I had come across this Dallas Cowboys fabric at my local Joann's (which I'm dumbfounded that this is stocked here in South Carolina), which is perfect for my friend who is a lifelong Dallas fan.  Since it was a fairly light cotton, I chose to iron on heavyweight interfacing (Pellon 931TD) to give it a bit more strength and heft.   Since it was the first time I made it, I went with the measurements used in the book.  Since I had bought 2 yards of the fabric blind, I decided to use it all to make the bag (versus the contrast design with two fabrics), including using it for the interior lining.  It may have been a bit of Cowboys overload, but my friend appreciated it:

Regarding my stitching snafu--as I was edge-stitching on the strap, the threads kept getting tangled up.  For what it's worth, the edge-stitching was for decorative purposes rather than functional, but it was still so maddening and I just tried trimming most of the tangled knots away.  I fiddled a little with tension adjustment and I didn't have a problem with the rest of the bag.

I think if I make this bag again, I'd probably use the two contrasting fabrics (especially if I use novelty fabric like this).  And I'd try to use thicker material to begin with rather than iron on interfacing.  And I think I'd make the strap an inch less wide.  But overall, I was pleased with my first run--especially that I kept all the logos right side up on the flap and bag body!

Looking forward to making another one--

Friday, November 9, 2012

Almost the most wonderful time of the year at Target

I swung by Target to pick up a few things and couldn't help strolling by the Halloween Clearance section:

Big mistake. I got sucked in and started contemplating ideas for next year with stuff they had on sale:

In the end I got a lot of Halloween gummies and boxes--at siren-calling prices:

On the plus side, gummies make great packing material in a flat rate box!