Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lined Drawstring Bag

In my quest to learn more about sewing, I started reading some really helpful blogs. (See the list to the right!) There are easy-to-follow tutorials for just about every aspect of sewing, even how to change the feet on your sewing machine and pick fabrics that will complement one another. I always had this impression that people who sewed, embroidered, and the like were stodgy old ladies who were sticklers for the rules. Not so. By and large, the crafty ladies who write these blogs are young-ish, really psyched about what they do, and eager to share their knowledge from both their successes and their failures. They like big, bold fabrics, bright colors, and taking shortcuts when they can. Some of them are newer at sewing, like myself, while some grew up stitching. It's definitely reassuring to know that the seasoned pros still make mistakes and that's part of the charm of making something by hand. It's a nice little community out there!

Thanks to these blogs and Pinterest, I have no shortage of projects I want to get started on. But I'm a pretty practical person, and I knew I'd have to start small. When I found this tutorial for a lined drawstring bag (it was free!), I knew I had to make one. Or five.

I had purchased a bunch of fabric from an Etsy seller in anticipation of making my plum Aviary quilt (which I will describe in detail one of these days, I promise!). Since the seller offered flat rate shipping and I wanted to get my money's worth, I decided to buy a bit of Alexander Henry's Spotted Owl fabric in Smoke, too. I have a slight obsession with owls and I really couldn't resist. I figured it would be perfect for my new bag, and I paired it with some leftover gray Kona cotton from Ryan's pillow and black cotton from Sean's pillow.

It took me about four hours to cut the fabric, figure out how to pin everything together, press, and sew, but when I was finished, I had this awesome little bag:

It's the perfect size for storing my embroidery projects in my commuting bag. You've already seen the canvas case I keep my needles, scissors, and floss in, but here's a photo of all of my embroidery notions, including my fab magnetic polka-dot needle case and scissors, both from Sublime Stitching. (I'm pretty sure I've ripped off Lindsay's taste in notions!) The scissors have a cute embossed cover and they fit inside the needle case. Ingenious!

The hoop is 5 inches (I think) from Jo-Ann. After trying a plastic square snap-frame, which doesn't hold the fabric very tight, and wooden hoops that sometimes snag the fabric, I think I've settled on plastic hoop -- this  purple one in particular. So, all of that fits into what will henceforth be known as my owl bag which, in turn, fits into my commuting bag. I don't travel light.

Jeni of In Color Order had another pattern for the same bag in a variety of sizes, so of course I had to pay for that one, too. I used it to make birthday presents for a couple of special people. I'll post pictures after they open them.

And finally, I finished my Aviary quilt this weekend and I love it! I'm sooo close to being caught up with my project recap, so I don't want to skip out of chronological order at this point. I also anticipate that post will be a long one, so I may have to put it off until the weekend -- but it's coming! 

1 comment:

  1. What a cute bag! I also have that purple embroidery hoop! HA! I think it works the best out of a few I've tried.I shamefully have two of those polka dotted cases (one in black and one in pink). I'm addicted.