Saturday, April 30, 2016

Vogue 8823,,,,That zipper!

Vogue 8823 instructs you to complete the outer bag, complete the lining, serge them both together and then add the zipper to the top. Can you see how there might be a bulk issue here when you hit the machine ? Doomed for failure, IMO. Well,maybe some can do it but if I can find an easier way without dealing with all the bulk at the machine, I will and I did. 

The bag consists of three divisions and is basically a tote. Wouldn't it be a lot easier to, number one, do a drop in lining, less bulk to deal with there, and number two, insert the zipper before lining into just the top band? Well yes, and it was! The top band was then added to the bottom section of the bag once the zip installation was complete. 

Above you can see the top band fused with fusible fleece and completed. The top edge is simply folded and the lining will be dropped in and stitched to it after zip time. The centers are marked. This will be a new type of bag zipper installation for me as the ends of the zipper are left loose like many I've seen on the Emmaline site. They are capped off with these zipper ends, more bling, which I think are pretty cool. 

The zipper is lined up and centered in between the top folds of the top section of the bag. I used Wonder Tape, one of my best sewing friends, to place things and a few security pins as well. It looks rather uneven but came out in the end.

ETA: I just wanted to share a pic from Mia's Creations of her use of the zip ends. Mine will be tucked in the bag. Mia has some incredible bags to drool over on her blog "Mia's Creations". Talk about perfection! She hasn't posted in a while but you can go for a hours looking and being inspired over her bag creations. Thanks, Maria.

The ends were marked where to end the stitching and I used the triple zigzag to sew in the zip, one of my fave techniques. I like the look and the strength that stitch provides. Now, picture sewing this in with the entire lined bag underneath. Really. Really, Vogue? They do have you open the zip and stitch it in that way. whoopee do. In the end this was easy peasy and I like it. Where the red arrow is the zip will be trimmed and set into the metal end caps then tucked in the bag, just something different that lets me use more bling! Also, once the zip was installed, it was folded out of the way and the edge of the bag was stitched with the triple zigzag. That gave an even matching line of stitching all around the band. All that needs to happen now is this top section gets attached to the rest of the bag. Then I will add the nameplate to this section, drop in the lining and done! Won't be long now......Bunny

Monday, April 25, 2016

Where's the Bling????

I keep calling it the Cobalt Bling bag but where is the bling? Well here you can see some of it. I can't do the last finishing until the remainder of the bling arrives in the mail, hopefully this week.  I will have a lot more to say about it when it arrives and gets installed on the bag. The bag will definitely be blinged out!

At this point the zipper hurdle has been overcome and it worked out well, more details coming. I just need to add the rest of the bling and stitch in the lining which is all complete. 

Here was a visitor to our garden this past Sunday. I think he was still a bit numb from the cold as he kept sticking out his little red tongue but moved quite slowly otherwise.  There are no poisonous snakes in the Adirondacks, or so I've been told!


Monday, April 18, 2016

The Cobalt Bling bag continues.....

I had to figure out a way to do a decent zipper installation on Vogue 8823. I was not going to put a zipper across the top of a a totally completed and lined bag, after the fact. There had to be a better way. I thought about this for the past three days and there were quite a few options considered. This is the winner. The goal here was to install the zipper more easily and at an earlier point in the construction. I think I've got it. Because I am going against pattern directions, I want to document every step for you.

The first change made in the pattern:

The pattern has you turn under the edges of the Bottom piece, shown above. The scalloped edges will then be stitched to the middle painted section. Taking from my heirloom sewing experience I decided to do a "mock" Madeira Hem. I say "mock" because this is not heirloom sewing but the concept is similar to  Madeira Hems the way Martha Pullen teaches. What you do. instead of painstakingly  basting and turning under scalloped edges and hoping for a smooth look, is make a "lining". Cut a second piece of fabric exactly like the bottom band piece. Right sides together, stitch the edges in a half inch seam. Clip inner points and grade and notch the edges. You can see here on the second edge I used my pinkers which did a great job.   Now turn this right side out and go to the ironing board.

Iron the scalloped edges doing a tiny "favor" to the wrong side, like you would on a neckline. You can see here what a much cleaner finish the edge has as opposed to turning and basting. It's easier and quicker too! Now this has to be attached to the middle painted section.

Next is to mark the half inch seam allowance on the middle section of the bag. It also has the scalloped shape.

Now Wonder Tape, a double stick adhesive tape,  is placed in the seam allowance. The paper is pulled off and the bottom leather section can now be placed on the marked line. Press it down with your fingers and head to the machine. No pins! They are not a friend to faux leather.

All placed and ready for topstitching! I put on the edge stitching foot and did a line 6 clicks in from the edge, about an eighth of an inch. Then I lined the blade of the edge stitching foot on top of the just done stitching and stitched again. Here are the results:

Doin' the Happy Dance!

Next this  lower section will be interfaced with fusible fleece. Because ironing can be unpredictable with faux leathers, I am trying to do as little as possible. The fusible fleece will be attached to a piece of muslin that will be an "interlining" to the bag. The same will happen on the top section. Fingers crossed. There is more finagling to do. ....Bunny