Sunday, September 20, 2015

Simona Bow Clutch by Delinda Boutique

Front of the Simona Bow Clutch 
I recently was able to be part of the Delinda Boutique pattern testers for the Simona Bow Clutch. This is a great clutch that can be dressed up or down depending on your fabric choices and comes together quite quickly. It finishes to 11" wide by 5.25" high and is perfect for that evening out. You can get your pattern on Craftsy by clicking here just in time to make one or more for all the upcoming holiday special events. It would also make an elegant clutch for members of a wedding party.

I chose to make mine a bit dressy by choosing a special fabric for the exterior I had been saving for just that perfect item and this clutch was it. I chose a lovely vintage cotton print that had a green in it that matched the exterior color.

Fabrics selected
The clutch has a top zipper that opens to a roomy space with plenty of room for a cell phone, slim wallet and other accessories for a night out!

Simona Bow Clutch from the top showing the roomy interior and zipper closure
Although the bow appears tricky, it really isn't and the pattern has clear instructions accompanied with excellent photos. There is a bit of hand sewing at the very end of attaching the bow, but it takes less than five minutes to do (even for non-hand sewers like myself). It comes together rather cleverly and really is a stylish addition. Top stitching at the end around the top is optional, but I really liked the professional finish it adds and it keeps the zipper panels sitting nicely down into the clutch. I just sewed slowly using a longer stitch length and it worked great. Then, I added a cute heart charm as a zipper pull just for fun!!

As with previous tests for this designer, it was great fun to be part of the group of Delinda Boutique testers. 

Until next time, may you sew with joy, stay healthy and be filled with God's awesome blessings!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Pick A Pocket Wallet by ChrisW Designs

Early this past summer ChrisW Designs came out with the Pick A Pocket Wallet that is a relatively slim wallet and I immediately made the wallet shown at the top. As soon as I had time, I made the one in the middle and at the beginning of this month, I just finished the purple batik one as part of a lovely sew along. The first and third have quilting weight cotton exteriors and the middle one is made with a faux leather exterior.

All three have twelve card pockets, one zipper pocket, an ID window, three slip pockets for cash or receipts and one slip pocket that will hold most phones. There is an option for doing two zipper pockets and only four card pockets. I made all three of mine with the twelve card pockets - one zipper pocket option. The wallet finishes to a closed size of about 3.5" high x 7.5" wide by 0.5" deep.

Interior of first wallet made with a blend fabric.
Interior of faux leather wallet made with quilting cotton.

Interior of purple wallet made of quilting cottons. Although the turquoise pattern is predominant in this photo, there is purple in the swirls that matches the purple exterior.

Back of faux suede wallet featuring a lovely border that was printed along one edge of the fabric. I love the gold shimmer in this faux leather and plan to make more items with it.

As most of you know, my fabrics are almost always vintage from my stash (which has been augmented over time with fabrics from others) and that is true of all the cloth fabrics. The faux leather is newer and I got it from a friend of my daughter who is a costume designer so I have no particulars about any of them. 

I really enjoy making this attractive and practical wallet pattern (in case you can't tell). It is not hard, but accurate cutting and sewing is mandatory. I was impressed at how easy it was to do with the faux leather, but it could be difficult if your faux leather was thick because the final assembly requires sewing through multiple layers.

As always with patterns from ChrisW Designs, the directions are very detailed with lots of clear photos. I usually just print the pattern pieces and the text-only directions and pull up the more detailed directions with photos on my computer to refer to as I go along. The sew along was on ChrisW Designs' delightful blog and had some cool tips for making the card pockets. 

You can get your own pattern and find Chris' blog by clicking on the ChrisW Designs link on the right side of this page. 

Until next time, may you sew with joy, stay healthy and be filled with God's awesome blessings!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Layla Bag By Cozy Nest Design

Layla Bag front
I recently tested a fun new pattern for Sarah Gido of Cozy Nest Designs (the link to her site is in the right margin) named the Layla Bag. It has really classy handles in addition to a strap. Layla finishes to about 14.5" wide x 6.5" high (not including handles) x 4.5" deep making it a really nice carry size. It has foam padding which gives it a nice firm shape. I made mine from vintage quilting weight cottons. The pattern directions are clear and easy to follow. I would recommend it for sewers with advanced beginner/intermediate and above sewing skills.

Secure zipper top
Layla gets secured with a nice zipper top. Inside is a zipper pocket and I added a double slip pocket.
Interior showing zippper pocket on one side.
Opposite side of interior showing double slip pockets.
Exterior bottom of nice wide gusset that allows for lots of usable space inside.
Exterior showing straps in addition to the metal handles.
The pattern includes directions for making it with bound handles rather than the classy metal handles (which may be gotten from Emmaline Bags).

It is always a privilege to be part of the Cozy Nest Design pattern test group, and this experience was no different. This is a great pattern and you can get your own copy here.

Until next time, may you sew with joy, stay healthy and be filled with God's awesome blessings!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Loretta Tassel Bag by Delinda Boutique

Loretta Tassel Bag front showing large exterior slip pocket
I recently got to sew another bag as a test for Delinda Boutique Patterns -- the Loretta Tassel Bag (click to get your own pattern).  This is a nice roomy shoulder bag that finishes to about 15" wide x 2.5" deep and 12.5" high with handles that have a 9" drop. It has a large front exterior slip pocket that is lined and could be divided into two slip pockets. I left mine the full width of the bag.

I  used an antique button as a decoration on the front of the exterior slip pocket rather than using a tassel. The exterior fabrics are home deco weight (the flower print has a denim feel and the dark blue is more like a trigger cloth, both are from my stash of vintage fabrics). Quilting weight cotton was used for the lining.

Back of bag 
I  added a bit of free form quilting to keep my foam stabilizer in place and because I like the way it looks. I quilted both the front and back although the front pocket covers most of the quilting.

Interior showing zipper pocket with a peek at the gold fabric I used for for the pocket

Interior showing divided slip pocket made from the exterior fabric
The bag closes with a magnetic snap that can be seen in the photos above. However, one can easily add an inset zipper closure if desired. I found the 9" handle drop a bit tight. When I make this bag again, I will add 3-4 inches to the handles. Several of the other testers added length to the handles during our test sew.

This is a relatively easy bag to sew. It is important to read and follow the directions carefully because of the way the gussets are offset so that when you assemble the interior and exterior pieces your bag will end up with a nice professional looking finish. The pattern directions and photos are excellent and the pattern is clearly marked showing where stitching needs to stop so that the gussets join nicely to the exterior.

It was also a quick bag to sew. It has just a few main pieces, so cutting out goes quickly. Other testers used a variety of fabrics and faux leathers with excellent results.

I also got to test another new bag from Delinda Boutique that I will be sharing about as soon as that pattern is released.

Until next time, may you sew with joy, stay healthy and be filled with God's awesome blessings!