Saturday, February 25, 2017

My Latest Mini Tote! - It's all about the base!

Hello Dear Readers,

Yay, I have a finish!!!

You might remember when I finished making my Sister's Tote I immediately wanted to make one for myself! I showed you the colours I was using, but somehow, I got bogged down with the detail!

An email from Benta of SLIKstitches asked whether I had tried the square method of boxing the bag rather than the triangular method (which I used for Sis's bag) ..... well, I have, but only when a pattern says so!

You've guessed it .... I couldn't resist the idea, could I ??!!!!!


Fabrics Used:
3 Fat Quarters
1 Fat Quarter of Calico
Strips of Wadding for handles

Finished size: 23.5cm High
14.5cm Wide
9 cm Depth
Handles are 27.5cm long, and 1/2" wide

After prepping the main fabrics, I found the pieces I'd cut off the boxed corners of Sis's bag, unpicked the stitching and placed the squares on the bottom of the fabric, and gingerly cut them out! (Cutting the outer squares 0.25" larger than the centre oblong, bearing in mind the centre "squares" had no seam ..... if you see what I mean!)

You cans see the squares in the background!

I made a pocket, and I was going to decorate the top of the pocket with a strip of one of the outer fabrics, but couldn't resist running a piece of elastic through the decorative strip .... well there was a gap .... so why wouldn't you add elastic? I do love pockets with elastic tops! I think it makes them so much cuter ..... and holds the contents of the pocket in place slightly better when the bag is in use!

As I machined the pocket in place, I stitched back and forth over the elastic to make it secure.

.... snipped off the elastic close to the edge of the pocket

I remembered seeing a very useful idea on somebody's blog (and if it was you, thank you for that!) to use pins at an angle ..... then they can be removed easier when machining the seams!

It was a nice sunny afternoon when I started stitching, and our cats were in the garden when I started stitching ..... however, with these short winter days it was dark by the time I finished! I was determined to use the machine while I could (another day and the cats might have commandeered my stitching table, and then there would be no stitching!)

..... a little bit like this!!!

But that was another day! So, back to the stitching!!!

 I always get confused here .....
about which way to stitch the corner!
..... but once I "opened"  the space up it became more
obvious how it should go ....
..... see, I remembered how to pin it! Tee, hee!

..... but when I turned the bag through
one corner didn't sit very well ....
..... and the frog visited!
.... but with some fiddling .....

..... and after a another row of stitching, when I  .....
.....  turned the bag through to check .....
Yep! The bottom was much squarer this time!

Pocket is 8"h x 7 1/2"w

After a short search I was able to find one of our home made buttons for the finishing touch!

To summarise the Pros and Cons of "boxing" or "squaring" the base:

I found it quicker using the "boxing" method ..... mainly because I'm used to this way, but "squaring" the base probably is faster because the corners don't need binding on the inside to finish.

I do hope you've made it to the bottom of this post!

And if you have, thank you for reading!

Hope you are having a great weekend.

Barbara x

Linking to Amanda's "Finish it up Friday"


Queeniepatch said...

That is one GREAT bag! The bottom is so neat the bag looks professionally made. I love the choice of fabric and colour, too.

Clare-Aimetu said...

It's gorgeous - congratulations on a great finish

Lin said...

What a great bag Barbara and your boxing worked out really well. Love the pocket. xx

Kerryp77 said...

Lovely bag. Great fabric choices

Pamela said...

What a great bag! I will have to try this method.

Christine B said...

Beautiful bag Barbara and I love the addition of elastic to the pocket.... it makes a lot of sense! Hope you are having a nice weekend! Christine x

Mii Stitch said...

Ohmygosh! Ohmygosh!!! I absolutely adore your latest make!!!! I was already drooling over your sister's tote but oh my!!! That one is even better :) is that possible?? When the previous one was already perfect. I love the fabric colours, the button... everything! So not jealous ;) well done, I will keep on drooling :D

France Nadeau ❅ inspiration imagination creation said...

Beautiful! The bottom is looking very neat. And I love the idea of adding an piece of elastic to the pocket. Pinned for future reference. :-)

Jen said...

That is a super cute bag! I love the wooden button against the bright purple. Lovely!

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

OMGosh, I love that fabric. Toward the end I was wondering which bottom you liked better and then you told me!. This is a great bag.
xx, Carol

Kaisievic said...

It looks fabulous, Barbara - lovely colour choice.

Rachel said...

Love the bag! The colors are beautiful :)

Have a great week!

Justine said...

I absolutely love this Barbara and I'm in awe of your sewing skills. I can barely sew a straight line with my machine and this is a work of art!

handmade by amalia said...

Oh, this is gorgeous, Barbara. And purple!

Annet said...

Love this purple bag, you used such pretty fabric. Great tip to use the elastic at the pocket, thanks for sharing so many details.

Raewyn said...

Beautiful bag - the colours work really well. I really like the elastic at the top of the pocket, too. Glad the cats gave you enough sewing time to get it finished!

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

Fantastic bag and a great tutorial too.

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

That's a very nice bag Barbara, the fabrics look great together. I have never made a bag, apart from my cutting mat bag of course, they just look so hard, though you make it sound easy.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Oh the dreaded frog - he visits my house on a regular basis too. Your bag looks wonderful and I'm sure you will give it lots of use. Thanks for the wee hint about the angled pins - I'll be trying that.

Wendy said...

I always box my bottoms and have never bound them? Not sure why you'd need to as both methods give the same result. The bag looks great!

Deepa said...

Love your bag!! I want to try, but the whole process like you've shown here makes me nervous. How did you start bag making? Was it easy?

Customieze said...

Your bag is very pretty! I love the color!

Sheryl said...

This is a lovely bag Barbara, love the colours and your tutorial.

Brigitte said...

A gorgeous bag. Thanks for the tutorial.