It never fails. When I am gathering up my goodies to go on a holiday or a fun weekend with friends, I suddenly realize there is something that I HAVE to make before I go. Last trip it was the Alder Skirt. This trip it is a (absolutely gorgeous must-have) tote bag. How could I ever possibly live without it? It would make everything that bit better, right? I could bring all of my class supplies to the retreat in it. And so I sew like a maniac to finish off a project before my flight takes off. Why do I do it?
I present to you my most recent obsession: the mahosive tote bag. Ta da!
|I took it out on my morning walk with Molly for a photo shoot.|
This was made using Judith's QAYG tote bag pattern. I loved the colorful scrappy look of hers, but quickly realized I didn't have enough time (being a tote bag emergency and all) to QAYG the front and back panels. I instead made two log cabin-esque panels for either side with Echino as the center focus, a Kona border, then Architextures (Curry) as the background fabric. That piece of Echino has been held dearly in my stash for well over a year. I've been waiting for the right project to use it in a large space to show it off. This bag was the perfect project.
I will say, though, because I didn't QAYG (as the pattern clearly tells you to) my bag sides are a small bit squishy. The bag can not stand up by itself. I did quilt my side panels in 1/2 inch straight lines, but that's not enough to keep the sides rigid.
As part of the pattern, there's a recessed zipper to close the top of the bag. That's key if you're going to shove it under the seat in front of you on a flight. This is my first recessed zip. It's fine. It opens/closes and doesn't look awful, but now that I have made one I know my next one will be much better. I used Dottie here and for the lining.
I wish I had a curry colored zip, but being totally unprepared for making this bag I had to run to the Galway shop to pick one up. They only had browns, maroon and white. White it is.
I was watching Sarah as she made her QAYG bag a few weeks ago and loved how hers came together. She had added to the pattern two inner pockets, one slip pocket and one internal zip pocket. In a bag this size, a zip pocket is an absolute must. Sarah was such a huge help in giving me advice on placement, tutorials for the zip insertion, etc. She's an absolute star. This pocket is 8 inches wide, so I needed a rather large piece of fabric to make the pocket lining. I wish I could have made it out of Architextures curry so that there's a piping effect along the zip and a fun surprise inside, but I had such a huge scrappy piece of the Dottie print I just had to use it.
And finally, for most trips I bring my ipad and travel docs slipped into a large external pocket. I instead used a "scrap" of the Echino (12x12 inches) and made a slip pocket that will fit an A4 sheet of paper in a folder and my ipad. Given that the external part of my bag isn't very rigid, the pocket does sag a big. I will see how it goes for this upcoming weekend, but I think I may have to put a button on the top. There's space, so that's easy to add in late.
That's my class supplies ready and my bag made. If only I had clean clothes to pack and had the shop prepared! Priorities, Cindy. Focus.