Saturday, May 12, 2018

Spring Fling bag

I was privileged once again to test the newest pattern by Dog Under My Desk... this time the Spring Fling bag. It's another winner, and has possibly become my new favorite bag (although since I've made so many fun ones it's really hard to say). The hardest part of making any bag often is deciding which fabrics to use for it! I went through many options for this bag, but then I found a piece that Jess had brought me back from Japan a few years ago, and it seemed to be the perfect choice. Here's my bag.


The fabric was reversible and had a totally different print on the other side, so I decided to use that side also, for the lining. The entire bag was made from 2/3 yard of 44" wide fabric, plus one little pocket lining piece that I just couldn't squeeze out of it. The fabric was like a soft, light-weight canvas, and it handled beautifully! Even turning the bag inside out and back a few times in the process of making it didn't produce any wrinkles. I wish I had a lot more!

Here's what the other side of the fabric looks like.


The pattern includes Erin's detailed instructions for a zippered pocket with no raw edges showing, and her method makes it easy to end up with a perfectly aligned zipper.


See the inside? Even the zipper tape is enclosed. Awesome! And easy!


(Forgive the color differences, as some of the pics were taken at night under artificial light.)

There's also a slip pocket on the inside.


The top zipper installation is pretty unique, too, and it works out so well. Sewing those ends was a bit challenging for me because of the heaviness of my fabrics, all of which I'd interfaced too, but my trusty old Kenmore made it through again! 


The centering of the little trees on those tabs was only coincidental, but it made me happy.


And then there were the pleats. Oh, the pretty little pleats!


These turned out to be my best ever, thanks partly to the cooperativeness of the lovely fabric, plus having had some practice making them before on my Roundabout Hobo bag and my Encore Clutches. But they're not hard to do, regardless.


Here's the obligatory size reference photo taken hastily (due to sprinkles falling on us) by my favorite photography assistant, Miss Courtney. It was her first time using my DSLR, and she did well.


So there you have it... another fun one! The pattern got rave reviews from all the testers, myself included, so if you have a hankering for a bag like this, purchase the pattern now while it's 20% off (through Monday, May 14th). You can also check out the pattern page for more details, photos and other options (such as the accent panel and a crossbody strap). Erin will soon have her blog post up with more tester photos, too.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Little things, more color

To cover up the previous post so I don't have to see those awful white photos every time I check my blog, I'm going to do another post right away. One with some color! 

I made a simple little pouch, because I needed something to store my large size Wonder Clips in. The fabric is canvas from one of Jess's older collections from several years ago.


I boxed the bottom wider than usual...


... so that it would open wide for easy access.


I used techniques that I learned from sewing Dog Under My Desk patterns, which are THE best. Look how those seams came together at the end of the zipper!


I'd also had so much fun making doll-sized "crocs" (the first of which you can see here) that I decided to make another pair.


The holes are made with a paper punch, and since I had a star punch, I went with that. Too fun!


So now there are two pairs!


Next up... a garment. But it isn't finished yet, so you'll have to wait. :)

Blizzard in April

I mentioned in my last post that we had several more inches of snow predicted for the following weekend. We got that, all right, and then some. It became a full-fledged, record-setting blizzard... on the 14th of April! We got around 18 inches, with wind gusting up to 50 mph. Ugh.

I'm posting these photos just for posterity. It's not like I'll ever want to look back and see them myself. As a matter of fact, I'd be quite content to never see snow again! 

The mini lilac bush in front of the house:




The backyard got more snow than we've ever had there before!





The top of the drifts were higher than the bottoms of the kitchen windows!


Grandpa finally gave up with his snowblower and got the tractor and loader out to push the snow out of the way so he could get out of here.


Such fun. NOT. The good news, however, is that it's been melting very fast. We still have some left, but here's a comparison from yesterday.


That's it. Enough reminders. It's spring now, hopefully to stay. The birds, who've had a really tough time the last couple of months, are busy singing and nest-building, and the rhubarb is peeking out. Hopefully the farmers can get into the fields in a week or so, which is very late, but better late than never, right?

Enough. The end.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

I needed some color

We've had snowstorm after snowstorm this 'spring', and I'm sooo tired of seeing the white scenes out our windows. Many of you can relate. I decided I needed a quick, fun and colorful project to work on. At about the same time, I'd gotten the Pixie Faire newletter. You know the one... that comes every Friday and offers a free doll clothes pattern? I've gotten so many free patterns, although I confess I haven't made many of the items... yet (I have lots of good intentions). After downloading last week's free cute dress pattern, I happened to look back at the newsletter and made the mistake of scrolling down to see what other patterns were listed. I say "mistake", because all the patterns are so stinkin' adorable that I'm always tempted to buy, and on occasion have. This was one of those times! I couldn't resist. I bought.

I bought this pattern. And look what I made!


I've made little American Girl doll shoes before, some from patterns by the same writer, so I knew these would be pretty simple and fun to make. They certainly were! There was no sewing involved - just a lot of hot glue (which I admit I'm pretty messy at doing, but the photos hide that). The holes were made with a regular hole punch, and there are eyelets on the sides that hold the straps on.

I chose that color (which, thanks to Blogger's thinking it knows better than I do, is not quite true) so that they'd go with the dress I'd made for my doll from Jess's corduroy fabric. You can read more about that here. Below is Kit, modeling both the dress and the "crocs".


Yes, that in the background is some of the white that I'm so tired of seeing (and which we have potential for getting several inches more of this weekend). My sweet model got pretty chilly, but she didn't complain a bit. I was glad Grandpa didn't drive in while I was taking photos, or he'd have thought I'd lost my sanity for sure, since I was lying on my stomach on the cold cement. Hey, a photographer's gotta do what she's gotta do! At least I had a winter jacket on.

Making the little "crocs" was definitely a day brightener. In fact, I smiled and even giggled a little during the process and when seeing the final result, because of the cuteness. I think I just might make another pair while the how-to is fresh in my mind. I have a couple of colorful sewing projects lined up, too. So I'd better go get busy............

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Flip Flop Wallet #2

I told you in my last post that I had another Flip Flop Wallet in the works. I finished it last week but couldn't show you right away because it was a gift for someone. It's been received, so here it is!


Can you guess who it was for? If you said Jess, a.k.a. How About Orange, you were correct... although I don't know why you'd have guessed her. Ha. :) It was her birthday on April Fool's Day, but I fooled her... she didn't get it till yesterday. ;-Þ The ribbon on the outside was designed by her. I added it to differentiate front from back, because I thought that might be a good thing so she wouldn't be opening it upside down.


This time I chose the closure that includes hidden magnets in those little "wings" on the sides. I don't really know which version I like better - I like them both.




If you want more details, read my other post here. The pattern is by Dog Under My Desk, and you can read her blog post about it here and see a lot of the other tester versions. Due to some technical problems, the discount price has been extended until this Friday, April 6th, so now's a good time to get it and save $2.00!