Sweet and Sweeter

If you follow my sewing adventures on facebook you might recall that long about a month ago I announced, boldly, that I was going to whip up the Amy Butler Sweet Harmony handbag.  A few things have happened since then, things that have tilted my world a bit.  Back on track my mission this weekend was to sew up the bag.

I need to say that this is the FIRST bag I’ve sewn.  I’m thinking I wouldn’t really feel good about recommending it for your first bag, get a couple under your belt first.  I think you’d have a better time of it.  Hey wait… maybe not.  I’ve got a little break-down of my construction right here and maybe that’ll be enough.  That and a less than perfectionist outlook and you should be g-2-g.

Here’s the finished product along with a little sweetness my husband made for us.  This is is fourth straight week out of town and he knows what it takes to keep us in high spirits!


I better start with the fact that Amy does a fabulous job of detailing out every little thing.  I think I only made 2 notes to compliment the pattern.  Here are all the pieces.  Okay, truth be told:  I ran out of fusible interfacing so there are a few less here than you might have.  My strap only had fusible felt (no interfacing), one main panel was bare and the bottom was short one layer of super think pellon.  And the verdict is my strap will stand up and the bottom is hard and bottom-y and I don’t think anyone is going to say, “Wow one side of your bag isn’t as stiff as the other!”  It all worked out in the end!


Next, IRON!  love your iron and keep it filled with water.  It took half a day to fuse all those pieces together.


Making the piping…


Hey, I made piping, now I’ll attach it!


Place the little media pocket on the main panel, this goes on one of the outside panels and will be (should be) hidden (mine is a little high despite detailed instructions on where to put it!)


Interuption 1,001: “Mom, please make me some silky p.j.s!”  Never mind that her p.j. drawer is flowing over 😉


outside of bag


Make the handle, take note (as I did not) to leave the opening for turning.  Since I didn’t have all the suggested fill inside the handle I was actually able to pull it all through one of the open ends.  But it would have been much easier to pull the ends through the middle opening.


Attach the zipper.  Have you done this before? I hadn’t done a zip.  Nope, not ever (I LOVE Farbenmix patterns, you’ll rarely see a zip there!)  The zip wasn’t half bad and I don’t know what I was afraid of.  The pattern directions were clear and the zip went in without a hitch.  Wait, one hitch:  I did something wonky with the placement or something, my pocket hung down well below the bottom of my bag so out came the rotary cutter and zip, zap, you’d think I did it right!

Place the zipper pocket upside down on the main (lining) panel to stitch on.


next is the tricky ‘u’ shaped part   You’re attaching the lining bag to the main bag and have a whole lotta thickness to stitch through.  Buzzing along the top edge wasn’t so bad but I’ve gotta say my machine was skipping stitchs and acting like I was asking way too much once we started the curves.  One thing I found to make the process a little better was to turn it so the body of the bag was going up; not down under the arm of the machine, like so


It never did end up perfect but it’s sewn together and really, that’s what I was going for!

Add a little label:


and voila!




P.S.  I was rather annoyed at the directions after having you cut out your fusible fleece and interfacing it tells you to trim off the seam allowance (to make your machine happy and not have so much to thickness to stitch through)  Next time I’m going to measure off the seam allowances on the pattern and just cut them out the right size to start with, I hate doing things twice! 

And Amy, since I’m sure you read my blog (NOT!) next time could you please make a little dashed line or something where you want us to cut the interfacings, I’m sure it wouldn’t be too much trouble and would save us all some precious time 😉

now this doesn’t happen every day


Lookie what came a knockin' on my door!

The stars must have been aligned just right.  I called on a craigslist sewing machine and the owner just happened to be coming right down the street from me to collect her craigslist purchase.  She brought it over for inspection and well what's a girl to do when there's a turquoise sewing machine in her house, except KEEP IT!  It's not perfect, but then neither am I.  Just wait, I've got some plans for this one.

FWIW, it's a Brother model 210 selectomatic IV.  Made in Japan and guarenteed by Good Housekeeping!  Do you know anything about it?

pink makes everything better

I'll start by saying that etsy ROCKS!  There is so much talent over there I can hardly see straight.  Thing is:  generally my best finds come from blog posts giving a shout out to one of those super talented artisans.  How does one stumble across, say, cute little clothespin dolls


Or even know there is such a thing unless someone else says "Hey, I think this is amazing and you might too!"  I know, I know there is a search button and the handpicked, and the featured artist; I think I could spend the entire day surfing around and never get where I set out to go.  Today, however, was different. 

This makes me think pink hair  might, just maybe, be a good idea!   Il_430xN.81581394 

I've been up to my eyeballs in paint, white paint for now, pink paint on the horizon, and dreamin and scheamin the rest of my oldest girls' room.  This perfect pink hair caught my eye and the rest of the picture is just as lovely.  You might just want to take a peek!  The artisit is in Turkey but the shipping rate is extreamely reasonable.