Tuesday, 11 March 2008

The Amy Butler weekender bag

Here are the "proper" pictures of my bag (which still aren't very good - this weather is just terrible for photos).

It was pretty straightforward to follow, but the bulky layers did make it tricky to cope with. Definitely not a bag for the first-timer. The cutting was a pain (my least favourite bit of any pattern) I do sometimes wonder if LaButler has someone to do all her cutting out for her, because she always seems to have LOADS in her patterns. I made a couple of adjustments to the instructions because I like to be rebellious.


Firstly, I substituted the timtex. I find it to be very difficult to work with and, personally, I like my bags to have a bit of flexibility in them. If I'm making a basket style bag I'll interface the be-jesus out of it, but I wanted a slightly less rigid style for this one. I used some leatherette fabric that I bought last year thinking it was a bargain, that turned out to be quite cheapy looking. Although it's a good, thick vinyl type fabric, it didn't stitch nicely. I used that instead of the timtex and I'm pleased with the result. The only thing is that it was a bit slippery even when pinned, so it took a bit of patience.


When sewing the zip in place, I used the glue stick method. Use any ordinary craft glue stick, and put a line along each side of the zip. Then, iron it onto the fabric. Instead of pinning, this keeps the zip in exactly the right place without the bulk.

I also added a fabric flower to make it a bit different. I used a strip of fabric 4" by about 40" and ironed it in half, wrong sides together. Then I used long stitches (double thread) along the length of the raw edge, then pulled it into a gather. I then wrapped the gathered piece up into a flower shape and secured with a few stitches. I covered a button in lining fabric and sewed in the centre to make it all nice and neat. Then I just glued it in place.


When I make the next one (I already have an order) I'll put some bag feet on the bottom. I was going to do it with this one but I was so tired finishing it off I was scared of getting them in the wrong place and completely ruining the whole bag. The other thing I might do is make some zip pockets in the lining, for extra storage (and also so people go "wow, aren't you clever!"). See, I'm already talking about the next one!


Lesley said...

I've just found you via Crafty Blogs and love the things you are making!
Your bag is soooo gorgeous!!

I'm looking forward to reading more :)


Anonymous said...

I'm loving the bag. I've been tempted to have a go at this pattern myself but it always looked a bit complex for my begginner sewing skills. Yours looks fantastic - I especially love the little details.

Joanna Butchart said...

WELL DONE. I have ahd this pattern for nearly a year and keep talking myself out of making it. You have inspired me.

Cheryl said...

Thanks for the nice comment on flickr! I felt that I breezed through the first Weekender (the one featured on flickr).

Then I set about making a RockNRoll Weekender that I love and it nearly smoked my machine.

Plus - good thinking on the feet. I ordered in feet for the second bag and despite multiple measuring and thinking and rethinking it, I managed to get them too far to the ends of the bag and it sits rather awkwardly.

LOVE your rings - I've been whipping up a few of those around here as well!

Florence said...

This is gorgeous! And happy belated birthday too (although if I'm commenting on a post that was posted before your actual birthday that looks like I was actually sending early wishes...very cunning!) x

RubyMay said...

Thanks for all your useful tips on here. I think your bags are superlicious ! I was thinking of going back to bag making again(after making 53 last year for a local charity and being all "bagged" out! ) and seeing your blog has given me the incentive to get my sewing machine out again...thanks hon.

heather said...

this is a great bag- i subbed the timtex too, it's WAY too stiff! I used heavy-duty interfacing, and a friend used canvas. I love my bag, I use it daily for work- it's roomy & styling. Another improvement is to add velcro squares to keep the outside pockets flat against the sides, you'll see after a bit of wear it gets softer/flimsier and the pockets start to flap open,exposing all your stuff hiding inside!