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Monday, June 8, 2015

Toile Multipocket Tote

I had this cotton/linen fabric set aside to make a dress with, but it sat there nervously, saying to me, "Would you really wear this?!" I was in love with the fabric, though. It's been in my stash for oh maybe 4 years, but I never thought of it as a bag until now. Problem solved. So much more appropriate as a bag, don't you think?


These 3/4" wide leather straps I ordered from Texas were too thick to put through my sewing machine. Actually the machine did fine, but the leather was so tight that the topstitch thread kept breaking. So I used leather glue, weighted down and dried over-night, then jean rivets to fasten the straps.


Actually I had tried making bags before but wasn't happy with them because they always seemed too floppy. Be that as it may, the stiffener called Pro-Woven Super-Crisp from Fashion Sewing Supply that I've been using for this and the previous RedHot Mama Multipocket Tote, makes it all worthwhile! 





 Bag Pattern: Red-Hot Mama Multipocket Tote by HotPatterns


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Red-Hot Mama Tote Bag

The supply list for this project is probably the most daunting aspect of HotPatterns Red-Hot Mama Tote Bag.  In addition to the usual places I order sewing supplies from, I ordered from two new-to-me vendors who have Etsy shops, and was very happy with the timeliness of their shipping. Although it took a couple of weeks for me to collect the fabric and notions, it became sort of a fun scavenger hunt ending in having in my eager hands all the goodies needed to make this wonderful bag.



The end result is better than I ever imagined! I love the colors in this bag, but I think I would have also loved it in a solid.


The leather straps were shipped to me from Thailand! They have a beautiful hand and a definite real leather scent.


Not sure how well this cotton lining will wear, but I like the nice clean look for now anyway. The lining and the pockets (and the clever shape) are what keeps the bag from looking like it was made in Africa.



I'm sure I've got to make more of these.




Friday, April 24, 2015

Workaday Pants

My son needed a pair of pants that could go from work to play and be comfortable (don't we all!). I bought the HotPatterns Mr. H.P. Workaday Pants some time ago because it seemed like a good basic pattern to own. And finally, son came home long enough for me to fit a muslin over a couple of days, and finish the pants in about 2 days. I ended up tracing the back pattern piece from the suit pants I had made him which I knew fit well, and they turned out to be pretty close to Workaday pattern except for the wider legs, and the extra seam allowance in CB seam which is traditional in men's pants. My son does not like skinny leg pants, and at his job he mostly sits at a computer. I think it's possible the pattern envelope drawing shows the pant legs to be wider than the actual pattern is. (At least that was my experience with the muslin.)
I intended these to be quite casual, but the pattern design makes them VERY versatile! In the cotton twill with subtle slubs fabric from FabricMart that I used, I think the pants turned out very classy! Check out the back flap pockets--slick! Love the shape of the flaps. And the front welt pocket. Topstitched is more casual, but I left it un-topstitched because it already looked great. Lefty son gets his little welt pocket on the left side.



Instructions suggested taping raw edges and seams on the inside, so I grumbled and did it. But I am quite happy with the result!
I got lost following the fly instructions, so I just did it similar to what I do with jeans, but inserting the pocket edges under the fly pieces as I went, which gives a really nice finish and probably helps keep the angled pockets from gaping open.


Instructions say to stitch the belt loops on, and then later, to topstitch the waist area. I had to topstitch around the belt loops! So, if you make these pants, please leave the bottoms of the belt loops for last. 





Love, love, love these pants!



Sewing is power!