July 24, 2015

Tulapink Handbag

Hello and welcome back!

If you'll recall, earlier this week I shared my new sewing machine with you - a Janome MC 6600P - and I also mentioned that I'd already completed a project on it but at that time I didn't reveal what it was.  Well, now is the time.

In preparation for a recent sewing day with friends, these luscious Tulapink fabrics followed me home (completely on their own accord, I swear!):

From my own perspective, I found this really interesting, because that beautiful eclectic top motif is so not my usual style (bold colours, clean and geometric design).  And while I'm definitely a big fan of orange and turquoise, those lovely lilac and lavender shades of purple rarely see their ways into my wardrobe or projects.  I guess what I'm saying is that even I was surprised with my choices here but I had a plan...

So from that - to this:

I really couldn't have planned a better fit for the fabric on that flap had I tried.  In addition to the lovely fabrics, I used a double-sided fusible stiff interfacing (quite stiff) so the bag retains its shape even when empty.

There is a zippered pocket on the back.  I love that little peak of lining fabric around the zip.  Incidentally, this is the first time I've shortened a zipper for a project - crazy easy; why haven't I done this before?

And on the inside, there are two spacious interior pockets and plenty of space for even long wallets and sunglasses and the like.

My new Janome sewed through that stiff interfacing and multiple layers of it and fabric all like a breeze.  I did use my old Elna girl's freearm to sew the lining to the top of the bag and do the top stitching along that top edge but the rest is pure Janome work.  This bag has some pretty serious WOW factor going for it - or so I've been told by those who have seen it.

If you're interested in the pattern (the handbag is called 'Paris'), it's available for free from Romanian Quilt Studio.  It was very well written with clear instructions and plenty of helpful photos and diagrams.  The only addition I would make to the instructions is that when you sew the lining gusset to the lining sides, it doesn't state what seam allowance to use.  I would recommend that you use a 1/4" SA for this.  I mistakenly used a typical handbag SA of 3/8" and my lining was a bit small matching up to my bag.  I made it work but the smaller SA would have made it a perfect fit.

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