Evolution of a Bag

September 19, 2008 at 10:19 am Leave a comment

I wanted to sew some grocery-style bags. Re-usable, environmentally friendly and lovely to boot. I have some old string bags from my California years but they’re completely forgettable. Meaning I forget them at home every time I go to the grocery store. I wanted something nicer. My friend Becca made some beautiful ones from a pattern she found online. So I searched online. I found this pattern and made my first bag.

It was pretty quick and easy. I was fairly loosey-goosey with the plastic bag template and there is quite a bit of unevenness in the sides and handles. Still, I liked the sturdiness of it and the fact that there is no seam at the bottom. That seems like a good idea considering the weight it could possibly hold. My only objection to it was a bit of bulk in the tops of the handles.

Then off to class to compare with Becca’s bag. Turns out she used this pattern. It’s much more polished, especially the handle top. The cons for me are bottom seams and the fact that is more labor intensive. (I’m truly a lazy seamstress at heart.)

So I tried a few adjustments to my first pattern. The fabric I had (and love, isn’t it gorgeous even though it clearly needs ironing?) was 2″ narrower than my template but I decided to go with it anyway. I added topstitching and french seams to make it more polished. It got quite a bit smaller and I hadn’t adjusted the handles enough so the openings are a bit tight.

I decided the topstitching was definitely a good idea but the french seam inside was overkill. Onto bag #3.

I tightened up the template, making a paper one that was even on the handles. I sewed it following the original pattern only I left the handle tops open instead of the side and turned the bag inside out that way. Then I topstitched around the handles. With the four handle ends open, I did a french seam there only. A tiny bit less bulky but not that noticiable. Overall the improvements from the new template and topstitching are good. I’m still hoping for a little less bulk in the handle top. And of course, all these variations are still very usable and oh, so pretty.


Entry filed under: fabric. Tags: , , , , , .

Impromptu School Bag Auf Wiedersehen

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Hi. This is my blog about fabric, food, family and fancy. Welcome. I'd love to hear from you. Peg

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