Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Weekender Sew Along : Supplies

It's April 30th and that means its time to get this Weekender Party started!

This week we are talking supplies.  Christen, Nicole and I are all making our bags a little different.  Christen is following the pattern and using home dec weight and the peltex interfacing.  Nicole is using hexies and quilting hers and I am going all out with pieced & quilted panels and pockets in a similar fashion to my first bag.

So let's talk about what you'll need ...

Obviously, you will need the Weekender Bag pattern.  (We have more arriving on Friday and they are on sale through today 4/30/14. :-)  The pattern has all the instructions as well as templates for the bag parts and components.

General supplies you need: 

  • Zipper (I am going to use a metal one - I used a plastic molded last time.  I chose metal this time as it matched the closest to the main panel fabric I think I am using.)  - You need a 30 inch zipper - I found mine at a big box fabric store. 
  • Coordinating thread 
  • Jeans Needles
  • Appropriate machine feet - regular piecing, walking foot, zipper foot, piping foot (Note:  I don't have a piping foot, so I use my zipper foot.) 
  • Clover Wonder clips (or binding clips) - HIGHLY recommended.  Pins would work, but its not going to be fun. 
  • Fabric marking pen
  • 5 yards of cording to make your own piping (I am working on getting this in the shop)
  • Sewing Machine - this is definitely the job for a machine! ;-) 

Fabric Needed: 
Since I am making mine by piecing all the pockets and quilting the main panels, my fabric requirements are a little different.  Here's what I will be needing:

  • 2 side pockets - approximately 1 fat eighth
  • Top panels & end pocket panels - 1/2 yard
  • 2 main panels (body of bag) - approximately 1/2 yard
  • 2 main pockets (large pockets) - approximately 1/2 yard 
  • 2 straps - approximately 1/3 - 1/2 yard
  • Bag bottom (exterior) - 1 fat eighth
  • Lining - approximately 1-3/4 yards
  • Piping - approximately 1/2 yard
  • Batting for all panels
  • 1/4 yard Fusible Fleece for straps 
  • Pellon SF-101 Interfacing (about 2 yards)
  • Cotton Drill cloth (heavyweight canvas) for all panels (about 2.5 yards) 
The above are rough estimates for the exterior of the bag.  I am piecing the side pockets and the two main pockets.  I plan to use mostly April Showers as well as some low volume prints in the background of my piecing.  

I am still a little undecided about my main fabric (straps, main body, etc) - to use Mochi Dots in Putty or Essex Yarn Dyed Linen in Black.  I used the Essex last time and one thing I really like about it for the bags is that the stitching "melts" into the fabric and is not very noticeable even if I use white thread.  I will probably quilt a piece of the Putty Dot and check it out first.  

Other Patterns I'm Using for Piecing the Pockets: 
I am planning to piece all my pockets.  Next week I will share my pockets and how I put them together, but fair warning ... I am using four of Camille's Thimble Blossoms Minis patterns - Swoon, Dwell, Spools and Rise & Shine.  Since these are her patterns, I won't be showing you how to piece the blocks.  I will show you how I pieced around them to make them work for my pockets. Make sense?
Of course, you can piece your pockets any way you'd like!  :-)

My Modifications & General Tips: 
There are some things that I did a little differently in my first bag than the pattern calls for and that I plan to do again:

  • Quilt my panels and piece & quilt my pockets. 
  • Make my straps longer - 54" long to be exact.
  • Install my lining a little differently - more on that later. :-) 
  • Use straight grain strips for my piping.  (Granted - bias is better.  I'm too lazy for that.  And the little bit of smooshy-ness in the corners isn't enough to drive me totally nuts.  But this is personal preference.)
  • Add piping to the top of the end pockets.

A general tip for you ... remember in school you weren't allowed to write in your book?  Well, you aren't in school anymore ... write on your pattern!  Take notes about mods you make, layers of interfacing you used, etc.  In the picture below, you can see I took notes on the foot and needle position I used to get my piping on.  Take good notes for yourself!  :)

Are you in?  Have we talked you into it yet?  C'mon ... join us!  You can totally do it and you will feel so accomplished when you are done!  :-)

Email me if you have questions in the meantime ... otherwise, follow my progress this weekend on Instagram and I will see you all back here next Wednesday with pocket and panel assembly details!

Happy Sewing!  :-)

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Tutorial : Mini Charm Patchwork Pouch

 Hey friends!  I am excited to share a quick and easy pouch tutorial with you today and its all about the dots!  It's no secret that I love some polka dots and when our Moda rep came around with the Dottie collection samples, I was pretty much all in!

This tutorial uses Linen Mochi Dots for the exterior, Essential Dots for the lining and Dottie Mini Charms for the accent strip on the exterior.  (Please note that the Dottie collection comes in all shades of colors, it just happens that I made this particular pouch in the greys and blacks.  You can actually get 4 of these pouches from one mini charm pack as you use 10 squares in each pouch.)

Materials Needed for 1 Pouch: 
1 Fat Eighth Exterior Fabric (Mochi Linen Dots Putty)
1 Fat Eighth Lining Fabric (Essential Dots White Black)
1/4 yard interfacing (Pellon SF-101)
10 Mini Charm Squares (2.5" squares; I used Dottie)
1 10-inch zipper
1 yard perle/embroidery floss (grab a sampler to get your perle collection started)

We do have kits available here.  (Please note Kits include FQs of exterior and lining fabrics and a half yard of interfacing, so your kit will allow you to make 2 pouches - just add zippers and thread of your choice. A Clover Sunshine Thread Sampler is a great way to get a rainbow of thread easily, but we have colors by the ball as well.) 

Step 1: Make the Patchwork Accent Panel
Choose 10 mini charm squares and sew them together in two rows of 5 squares as shown below.  Press when finished.

Step 2: Prepare the Front & Back Panels and Lining Pieces
From the main exterior fabric, cut one 8 x 10.5" rectangle for the back, one 1.5" x 10.5" strip, and one 3" x 10.5" strip for the front.

From the lining, cut two 8" x 10.5" rectangles.

Sew the 1.5" and 3" exterior fabric strips to the top and bottom respectively of the patchwork panel as shown.  Press toward the patchwork squares.

Next, cut two 8 x 10.5" pieces of interfacing and use to the back of the front and back exterior pieces. Follow the manufacturer's directions for fusing the interfacing using a hot iron.

Next, using a large running stitch, hand stitch a line of stitches above and below the patchwork strip on the front panel. Knot the ends to hold the stitching in place. Don't worry if your stitches aren't totally even.  (If you prefer perfection - check out the Tiger Tape we carry to help you achieve even stitches. :-)

Step 3: Install the Zipper
Lay a 10-inch zipper face down on top of your front panel. I positioned mine so the zipper opens to the right and so that the metal stop at the end of the zipper was just to the inside of 1/2" from the edge of the fabric. (See photo referenced below.)

Using your zipper foot, baste the zipper in place with a line of stitches close to the edge of the zipper tape.

Now, lay a 8" x 10.5" lining piece face down on top of the zipper and front panel.  (Note: your fabrics will be right sides together.) Adjust your needle position so that you will stitch a little closer to the zipper teeth this time from where you basted the zipper in place previously.

When you get close to the zipper pull, stop stitching, leave the needle down and lift the presser foot to allow you to move the zipper pull out of the way.  Then keep stitching!

Once you've gotten this side of the zipper sewn in, it should look like this...

For reference, see how I've positioned the zipper stop just inside the 1/2" seam I will sew later.  (If you are using a longer zipper this isn't a big deal.)

Sew the other side of the zipper to the back panel in the same way. Baste to the exterior then add the lining.

Top stitch along both sides of the zipper.  Do not top stitch through the lining - this is JUST the exterior and the zipper tape - move the lining out of the way for this step!

You should catch the edge of the zipper tape here to just tack everything in place neatly.

 Now are are ready to finish this up!

Step 4: Finish the Pouch
Lay your pouch out so that the linings are right sides together and the exterior panels are right sides together.  (In the photo below, I have pulled the exterior over to show you that the linings are right sides together.)

Line up the zipper, exterior and lining panels.  Pin and sew 1/2" seam all the way around the pouch.  Leave a 2.5" hole in the bottom of the lining to turn the pouch later.

Box the corners by pinching them and lining up the side and bottom seams.  Use a ruler and a removable fabric marker to mark a line approximately 1" from the point.  (The line should be ~ 2 inches in length as shown.)  Pin and mark all the corners.

Sew along the line, backstitching at both ends to secure your stitches. Trim away the excess of all four corners leaving a 1/4" seam allowance.

Carefully trim the zipper ends away from the stitching to help reduce some of the bulk in this area.  Don't clip your stitches!

Turn your pouch right side out through the hole in the lining.  Slip stitch or machine stitch close to the edge of the opening in the bottom of the lining.

Stuff the lining inside the pouch, carefully push out the corners and iron as needed.  Then admire your work! 

Here's another one I made with some other squares from my Dottie mini charm pack ... 

I was lucky enough to get a mini charm pack from Kate Spain of her new Horizon collection (due out this fall) and here's what that looks like ... 

Cute huh?

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial.  If you make your own mini charm patchwork pouch, I'd love to see it - share a link in the comments or tag me on Instragram (@sewlux) and #isewwithsewlux.

Happy Sewing! :-)

Friday, April 25, 2014

Back in Business!

Just a real quick post to let you know that our site is working again and allowing folks to check out. :)

Thanks for your patience!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Weekender Sew Along

Hey everyone!

I am really excited to announce a new sew along that kicks off next week.  My friend Christen at Love by Hand has organized a Weekender Sew Along with Nicole at Modern Handcraft and myself!

I made my very first Weekender bag earlier this year and I love it!  I decided to piece all my pockets and then quilt them before assembling my bag and I plan to make my next one in a similar fashion and would love it if you'd join us.

I know this bag can be a little intimidating, so we're splitting up the process over several weeks and sharing how we are making all the parts and any modifications that we incorporate as we sew this bag together. With a little patience and some denim needles you can totally do it too!  Will you join us?

Here's our schedule of events: 

Wed. April 30 - Planning - Fabrics & Materials
Wed. May 7 - Cutting, Interfacing, Making the Panels
Wed. May 14 - Sewing the Outer Bag Together
Wed. May 21 - Finishing the Bag & Link Up
Wed. May 28 - Winners Announced

And with any Sew Along, of course there will be prizes!  We are excited to be sponsoring along with some other great companies - which will be formally announced next week. :)

If you need the pattern, you can snag one here (and at 15% off now through 4/30/14)!

Off to plan my new bag ....

Happy Sewing!  :-)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Easter Basket Tutorial

Hey again!  (Two posts in two days ... I know, right?!)

Since Easter is coming up fast, I thought I'd share my tutorial from a couple of years ago for these cute baskets.  You can find the tutorial here.

Happy Sewing!  :-)

Monday, April 14, 2014

Weekend Sewing

Hey folks!  Hope you had a great Monday!

Recently, I've been working through some stuff and it was strongly suggested that I slow down and take some time for my self.  So, in an effort to complete my homework assignment, I took Saturday and sewed ALL day!  I got quite a lot accomplished ...

I made a another little Sunshine Mini Mug Rug.  These are super easy and charm & scrap friendly.  (See the tutorial here.)

Finally bound my Lazy Sunday quilt in Scrumptious!  The bias stripes are perfect for bindings.  :-) I still need to photograph the finished quilt.

Then I got this striped binding on my St Louis 16 patch ... another quilt I need to photograph!  (Which I just realized I made the top for this in August ... oops!)

Then I moved on to making pouches!  Kate Spain sent me a mini charm pack of her upcoming line called Horizon.  It's really pretty!  I especially love the aquas and the blues in this line.

This aqua pouch turned out cute.  I used some teal perle thread from the Clover Sunshine sampler.

Then I made a blue one.  (More thread from the sampler and, of course, my new favorite neutral - Mochi Dots in Putty!)

That was so much fun I started prepping to make more ... including some with the awesome new Dottie prints.  (Charms, mini charms & yardage of Dottie just came in!)

By request, I am working on a tutorial for this little pouch - so be on the lookout for that soon!

That's all for now!

Happy Sewing!  :-)

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Shop Updates - Linen, Perle & More

Happy Thursday!  A few shop updates for you today ... here's what's new: 

Bloomin' Fresh by Deb Strain is a fun, happy collection filled with bright colors, cute banners, chevrons, & dots.  Perfect for spring! 

We loved these Banners from the Bloomin' Fresh collection so much that we made them our Stash Worthy Special this week - save 15% when you buy a half yard bundle of all four. 

We are still waiting on the Mochi Dots to come back in stock, but we have some beautiful neutral Mochi Linen Solids now available for your next project - the weight of these are great for bags and pouches!

We loved the opportunity to provide these perle samplers for Alison Glass's workshop at Sew South this year and now you can get your hands on a sampler too!  A beautiful rainbow of 10 colors (5 yards of each color).  Grab a perle sampler here.  (Learn more about the project they made here.)

And, we are so excited to be offering some limited pre-sale opportunities for Heather Ross's Far Far Away reprint.  These bolts will arrive in the shop July 2014.  Preorder now and we will ship as soon as it comes in!

Hope you are having a great week!

Happy Sewing!  :-) 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Shop Updates

Hey there friends! 

I've neglected the blog a bit, so if you follow me on Instagram (@sewlux), some of this may be old news to you!  New collections now in the shop ... 

8 Days a Week just arrived the other day ... I  could NOT resist these numbers and months prints - they are totally fab.  If you like the Ikea Britton Numbers kit, you will love these.

Color Me Happy by V & Co is another great collection of prints and colors!  There are some awesome blenders in this one!  In fact, we loved it so much, we've made our next BOM available in this collection.

There are still a few cuts left in this collection as well as April Showers - the BOM starts June 1st.  Come on and join us!  Learn more here.

Then there is this new Sweetwater Quilt Label print ... which is also a great low volume too.  :)

I am working on some other fun things ... including some posts about making Super Totes, the Weekender and more!  Stay tuned!

Happy Sewing! :-)