13 November 2017

The Weekender Bag - A Sewing Project

Hello! It has been forever since I last updated the blog, and as I haven't been twiddling my thumbs in the meantime, I have a ton of projects to share with you.

So I'll start with a sewing project from last year. It was a gift for a dear friend which took me a whole year to finish, due to a mixture of life happening and so-so confidence in my sewing skills. So, sometime in 2015, I bought this issue of Simply Sewing and fell in love with the Cath Kidston weekender bag pattern. As nearly always with sewing patterns, I wanted to change a few things, such as using several coordinated fabrics instead of just one, adding inner pockets and insert a top zip, as I am not a fan of bags you can't close securely. I also wanted the bag to be more rigid and to have metal feet.

It wasn't easy or straightforward, but otherwise where would have been the fun in making it? The result I was very proud of, and very nearly kept as a changing bag for my then upcoming baby. But I did manage to part with it and I am so glad I did, since my friend seems to absolutely love it and tells me she gets all manners of praise for it. Yay!

So, let's have a look at the finished object. Here's a left side and front view, respectively with one and three pockets...

The back view and its two pockets...

The top zip, with a peek of the lining contrasting fabric inside the middle front pocket (blue with white dots), and inside the main bag (beige with brown dots). The original pattern does not include a zip, so I used a tutorial from The Bag Making Bible, by Lisa Lam. I highly recommend it to you, though there are excellent free tutorials online as well, like this one.

 Another view of the top zip, with its end tag...

And inside the bag, with one blue-lined patch pocket and one blue-zipped flush pocket (the first ever I made, which got me very nervous indeed)...

A closer view of the zipped flushed pocket with its contrasting fabric. I have a thing for zips in contrasting colours opening onto matching fabric. It's such a lovely pop of colour which never fails to delight me.

 Below is a close-up of the boxed stitch on one of the straps.

And finally, a bottom view of the bag with the inserted metal feet. The bottom of the bag was reinforced with repurposed plastic place mats, and I used a seam ripper to cut small slits for the holding flaps of the bag feet. I also reinforced all panels with heavyweight interfacing and felt.

It was a labour of love, I'm telling you. From time to time, I itch to make another one in a different colour scheme, but I still feel daunted by the mammoth task this was the first time round. That being said, maybe it wouldn't be so bad if I made it again? We'll see...

In any case, thank you very much for reading! :)

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