Mama’s Got a Brand New Bag

Yes, I did just call myself “Mama” but only for effect, you know, as in “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag”.  I’m not actually a mama.  I feel the need to get that cleared up before anyone (hi Mom!) gets their hopes up.

Check it out!  Cute, right?  I made it.  Did too.  Really.  In just over one movie.  This seems to be my measure of time when sewing.  I can make a bag in two episodes of House or one viewing of Stardust including the deleted scenes.  I actually did watch Stardust while making this bag.  I love that movie.  Have you seen it?  I seem to fall hard for the fairy-tales-for-grown-ups-type movies.

Anyhow, my bag!  Do you love it?  The strap is just the right length and it hangs perfectly on my shoulder.  I love it.  It’s puckered funny in this picture because it has my brick of a phone and my iPod in it and they’re pulling on the magnetic clasp.  It’s actually too big for me since all I carry are my phone and iPod and a little credit card holder, but I’m thinking of making a much bigger version for all of those large bag-lovers out there.  What do you think?



In the middle fo my sewing machine breaking and having to wait three years for it to finally be fixed, I managed to make this cute pleated bag from Amy Karol’s book Bend The Rules Sewing.

My resemblance to my sister in this shot is creeping me out.  I never thought we looked particularly that much alike, but from the nose down we seem to be the same person.  Weird.  Only her hair is shorter now.  And she wishes she had these pants.

Aside from the itty bitty pleats in the apron I made, I’ve never sewn pleats into anything before.  I was scared, but the instructions in the book were simple and straightforward and I love how they look.  I used a heavier canvas-type fabric for the patterned parts and a plain cotton for the solids.  That made for a couple of really thick areas where the inside pleat met the outside pleat, but overall I think the project was a success.

Did I mention that this is a Christmas present for someone special?  I’m tempted to keep it for myself.  It’s a perfect size, but I already have too many bags.  Plus that would be very mean.  So what’s next?  A couple more bags, some potholders (if I can ever get them to come out right) and hopefully a cute bunting like this one.  Stay tuned!

Talulah Does the Hula from Hawaii

Did you hear that story?  About the 9-year old girl in New Zealand who just won the right to change her name?  The name her parent’s gave her: Talulah Does the Hula from Hawaii.  I love it.  I want to know what their last name was.  Daily?  That would be fun.  That wouldn’t have worked too well in my case.  Talulah Does the Hula from Hawaii Niewinski just doesn’t flow properly.

Anyhow, that name has been stuck in my head lately, partly because someone else gave their poor kid a ridiculous name, and partly because I’ve been cutting up and sewing things out of my old Hawaiian shirts.  This is a new style of clutch/wristlet I’ve been trying out. The zipper on the front opens to a split pocket.  The left side is perfect for credit cards and ID, the right side is small enough to hold change or lip gloss.

I’m not completely satisfied with the design yet but I like the overall idea.  Some things need to be bigger, some smaller.  I’d like an inside pocket, too.  Look for some fancy new Talulah-inspired bags in the shop this fall.

When Life Gives You Lemons, Make a Tote Bag. Or something like that…

Well, it’s not what I planned to make.

I should never have written down my to-do list because I’m much too scatter-brained to stick to any one idea.  I set out to make the painted fabric wall hanging that Martha had on her Craft of the Day to hang in my hallway.  I, of course, cannot follow directions to save my life, so decided to do it differently.

I made a stencil out of freezer paper and painted this leaf thing on some gorgeous batik fabric.  I pulled the freezer paper off and finished painting it freehand.  Then I stretched the fabric over a wooden frame, stapled it, hung it on the wall in the hallway, went to bed, and woke up the next day hating it.   It wasn’t right, the frame was too big, the color of the fabric against my purple walls looked too matchy, something wasn’t right.

So I did what any normal person would do, I cut it off the frame and made a tote bag out of it.

Now I love it.  It’s big enough to fit a hardcover book, a water bottle and my little purse.  The straps are nice and long and they stay on my sad little shoulders.  And I had fun with the fabric painting, I might make a few more hand painted tote bags for the shop.  What do you think?

PS: Check out the cute bistro set my sister bought us for our deck (in the first picture). Who has the best sister ever?  That’s right, ME!

Got a Brand New Bag

I made myself a new bag last night and I am in love with it.  I bought this apple and pear fabric months ago with no idea of what I’d make with it.  I just knew that every time I walked past it at Jo-Ann’s, I’d pick it up and admire it and for some reason I loved it.  Last night it finally found its purpose.  Cute, huh?

It’s really not that big.  It’s only wide enough to fit my checkbook, and just a bit taller, but plenty big for me!  Tonight I think I might make a matching checkbook cover.  I just typed that sentence and thought, how lame does that sound?  A matching checkbook cover?  What has become of me?  OK, how about I make a funky, coordinated pouch for my checkbook.  There, that sounds much better.

Excess Baggage

Luke was cutting down some trees in my neighbor’s yard yesterday and I just wasn’t in the mood to change out of my jammies to go out in the cold, so instead, I threw some more logs into the wood stove, sat down in my new lovely pink office, set a movie to play on the computer, and started to sew. And sew I did. Two totes, ten wallets, and five wristlets. I even put together some gift wrap bags to sell at the Holiday Sale. Oh, by the way, yes, that means it’s on. More info later in the week.


Brace yourselves for the whininess.

Last night, after finding out about the ebay fiasco, I wasn’t feeling as creative as usual.  I sat down to watch Funny Face (which was adorable, it was the first time I’d ever seen it) and sew some purses.  I put one together but kept forgetting things and breaking thread and riping seams.  It wasn’t going well.  Hence, only one purse was made.  This little brown one.  Which looks terrible in this picture because I left my camera in the car overnight and the lens fogged up when I brought it in to take a picture of the bag.  I didn’t have time to defog, so here is what this cute little purse would look like on a foggy day.  Or with dirty glasses.  Or maybe if you were tipsy.  I’m still grumpy.  Can you tell?

There is something to look forward to that might bring me out of my funk, Pushing Daisies tonight on ABC.   I’m very excited.