lunes, 13 de octubre de 2014

Vinyl straps, finished ends...

Disclaimer: This entry may or may not contain useful bag making information as well as some affiliate links...

So, you managed to resist the temptation, all those great glittery vinyls called your name but you walked away. Or maybe you answered the calling and found yourself hitting your head against the wall because there's no way on earth you can attach the handles. That's twelve, yes, twelve layers of vinyl  (even without interfacing, that's a lot!!) right under your presser foot... Bananas!!!

And then Alicia from Swoon Sewing Patterns does her magic and releases Charlotte and well, you have to bite the bullet and make it work, because even if she did include directions for using fabric instead of vinyl, you know you wanna... Hey!! You do!!

Behold the Charlotte City Tote Yvon, from Lippy Anne Designs, made!!!
I told you!! Now I have your attention and you neeeeed to use the vinyl (or leather, or pleather, or plastic alligator or whatever), lets solve the handle attaching problem. You have options. For once, you could use rivets, if you have them, and the tool, and all that jazz. Maybe you could just totally disrespect you machine and do it as you would do with a fabric strap!! IT CAN BE DONE!! Seriously!!

See here Miss Betty by Swoon using both techniques, I really love it!!!

If you do respect your machine and don't have any rivets available you can always leave the raw edges (it's a non-fraying fabric after all) and cut super straight with a super sharp pair of scissors... If you cut like a two year old with paper scissors, like me, you need a plan D, like me. And that plan is getting finished edges without bulk, to fold just once and therefore sew only trough eight layers of vinyl, way more manageable!! I'll give you the directions and measurements to do it with Charlotte, for a finished strap 3/4" wide.

First cut your vinyl as in the pattern directions, you could add 1.5" in length (twice your finished width if making for another size strap) to account for the fold made if you like but it's not a must.

Then, make the following markings on both ends of your straps, at the back of the vinyl. The straight lines should be 3/4" away from each other (finished width) and the diagonal lines should cross them as in the picture.

Cut along the green lines, getting a pointy end. Remember, do this on both ends. After that, get some contact glue (not required, but totally recommended) and fold along the orange lines.

I didn't use any glue, but finally bought some after taking this pictures. The glue will keep the little triangle in place and the corners sharp while you fold your whole strap in half and keep in place with a lot of clips. If you don't use any glue, you risk getting those small, almost invisible, round openings at the corners.

Finally, sew all around your strap, 1/8" or less from the edge. Don't backstitch when you finish the whole strap, but at least keep going for 1/2" so your stitches are secured.

Now you can attach to your bag with a single fold and enjoy your beautiful bag!! :D I would show you mine, but my pics are, well, hmm, nothing good to say about them!!

jueves, 21 de noviembre de 2013

The Eleanor slouchy hobo

This last couple of weeks have been chaotic and I've been very tired... I fell down and got my entire body bruised. I mean, I had amorphous green and black lumps on my back, hips and buttocks. I'd like to pretend I got injured rock climbing or kung fu fighting but sadly it was the result of cleaning my bathroom... Slippery, messy and certainly not glamorous!!! So I should have been in serious pain but I wasn't! Instead, I was sleepy and cranky, meaning I wasn't in the mood for sewing. But a few days before my fall the ladies at the post office fell for my handbag and wanted me to make them some and yes, I had to sew!! Thank God it was the Eleanor slouchy hobo from Swoon patterns they wanted!!

Alicia really makes beautifull patterns, but what I like the most is the simplicity, how easy to follow they are. I have to say that this is the first and only pattern I bought, printed, taped, and sewn in less than a week (there's patterns I bought six months ago that I have not even touched!!). In fact, in less than 4 hours I even presented my finished bag at crafsty!! That, my friends, is love!!! Love inspired by a lovely design and a simple pattern!! This time it took me more time, between the fall and maybe the fact that these two lovely bags weren't for me... I'm mean like that!! :P (no, not really, I just wasn't that exited)

I did change the pattern a bit, I don't like shoulder bags and I'm a carefree, sometimes clueless, girl in a big, busy city, so I need a crossover. For that porpoise I added 8" to the strap pattern piece (adding 16" to the actual length of the strap)  and voilà!! On the previous picture you can notice the curvy outline of this spacious bag, but it actually hangs freely, following the lines of your body; SLOUCHY is a great description and it is what I love the most about this bag.

This is the Eleanor without the 10 yards of fabric stuffing!! Also, without light and with a mop, a bucket and a broom on the background... :P I'm showing you this lousy picture for you to see the color of the fabric. I used a marbled violet and black home decor canvas, the visual effect is this beautiful dark plum. I took some other photos with flash, you'll see a very light violet and you'll notice the marbling, but I wanted you to see the actual color first.

How not to love this outline???

 I used D-rings instead of circular rings. It works just as well...
 For the two bags I used this super cute star pulls. Because of them, it was hell to install the zipper with the method on the instructions, but it was surely worth it!!

Here yo can see the detail of the marbling of the fabric, violet and black, lighter because of the flash...

Love, love this pattern!!

And I'll love you to share your thoughts!!



PS There's still time to get your tickets for the B-Day raffle!!!

lunes, 11 de noviembre de 2013

Dino Rol Messenger!!!

Finally!!! And if you wonder why there's a Koala with a bag on a dinosaur related post I'm telling you right now!! Because I'm weird!! This bag is named as Rol and, as you can see, also is the koala... and the koala has a bag, a messenger bag!!! And... As I told you before Rol is a designer residing in Australia and he needed the perfect bag for him, therefore the koala with his bag -you have to know that Rol draw this lovely friend on a postcard he and Ale sent me last month . Following his instructions, I designed this bag and made a test on black denim and magenta canvas that resulted so popular that I had to make one after another until I got out of fabric (and sadly the stores are out of stock!!) making small changes and variations to experiment a little with the design and make each time a unique item.

And voilà the end result!!! I love the color scheme, the contrast between the textures, the distressing on dinosaur canvas... I can almost hear it ROAR!!!

I also love that not all the webbing and not all the zippers are the same color. And this is the first time I use plastic hardware everywhere and like the way it looks!!

It has a lot of useful pockets and we'll review one by one. First a big front pocket, perfect for folders. This pocket also holds four different other pockets, the first a regular pocket for keys, cell phone or even a mini tablet!! Then, we have the infamous pen holder formed by a divided elastic and a little pocket to prevent pens and pencils from falling. I didn't like it at first, but Rol love's it!! The third and forth pockets are two zippered pockets, perfect for coins, keys, or whatever needs to be a little more secured.

Notice here the strap is removable, you wouldn't believe that it's harder to get this plastic hardware sold by unit than it is to get metallic d-rings and swivel hooks!! I found some kits over amazon, but getting them to Mexico was more expensive that buying a milliard over here... Nuts!! Right?

I love this mesh bag!!! It's meant for holding water bottles and secured by a string instead of an elastic with this two pieces of hardware I don't know the english names for. At first I planned to use 1/2" black bias tape, but decided it was a lot cutter to use the "Dinosaurs!!" fabric instead, not cut on the bias, so you can read the words...

The id pocket!!! This mesh-zippered pocket is placed at the flap and lies upside down when the bag is closed so it is right when the flap is completely open... The main functionality is for holding college ids, metro cards, library cards or any other magnetic card for it to be presented to readers (or college security for instance) without taking it out of the bag, then reducing the chances of loosing it (happened once or twice to me :P)
The main compartment is closed by a recessed green zipper. You can see the top panels of the "recession" are on the same dinosaur canvas of the back of the flap.
Meanwhile, the inside of the compartment, the back of the zipper panels and the divider pocket are all from the gray dinosaur cotton.

This is the only time I used a black zipper and double zipper pulls.

Here, you can see the detail of the end of the recessed zipper, maybe next time I'll use a jacket zipper to avoid having this little tail hanging...
Last, but not least, I have to talk about my zipper pulls!! My favorite feature!!! I looked for them like crazy and that was because after all the efforts made for having all the hardware in plastic I wasn't using shinny metallic pulls!! Right? So, I found these rubber covered pulls but they were the wrong size [for an 8 mm chain zipper and I use 5 mm (regular dress zippers are 3 mm)] so I had to change the slider... That means you have to find the sliders on the right size and on a model that allows you to add any tab you want, then you have to separate the tab from the wrong slider and put it on the right one.. Easy, right??

Thanks for letting me share my work with you and, please, let me know what you think!!!



ps if you can, stop by the Big Birthday Raffle, maybe you're interested...

jueves, 7 de noviembre de 2013

Gran rifa de cumpleaños

Mi cumpleaños es en menos de un mes y quiero celebrar teniendo mi laptop de vuelta...Para hacer una triste y larga historia corta, mi laptop, una de mis herramientas de trabajo se descompuso y tengo que reemplazar algunas piezas y pagar por el servicio de laboratorio. Entonces, necesito juntar como 5 mil pesos y esperar a vender las bolsas suficientes tomaría una eternidad.

Y como simplemente no puedo pedir dinero sin dar nada a cambio, decidí vender boletos para una rifa. Tendrá lugar el día de mi cumpleaños, el 3 de Diciembre y escogeré hasta 4 números con para que ganen uno de mis productos. También donaré el 10% de lo vendido a alguna organización de rescate animal que será anunciada próximamente (tengo ya dos candidatos)  Mascotas Coyoacán.

Venderé 115 boletos a 56.25 pesos mexicanos (un poco menos de 5 USD) y por cada 25 boletos vendidos un premio será desbloqueado de la siguiente forma:

Primer premio: 1 a 49 boletos vendidos

Una Necessary clutch Wallet (diseñada por Emmaline Bags) a escoger entre las que están en esta publicación

Segundo lugar: 50 a 74 boletos vendidos:

A escoger entre una de las carteras no seleccionadas por el primer lugar o un Danopack, un compacto estuche para organizar cables diseñado por mí con un bello bordado de calaveras (el bordado es diseño de Urban Threads)

Tercer y cuarto premio: de 76 a 99 y de 100 a  115 boletos vendidos, respectivamente:

Un juego de 4 amarracables, perfectos para evitar que los cables de cámaras, celulares y audífonos (etc) se enreden!!!

Pueden pagar de forma segura a través de Paypal (haciendo click en el botón aquí abajo) y les mandaré por correo electrónico el número de su boleto. Si quieren un número específico y está disponible, se los puedo dar. Si quieren pagar con transferencia electrónica o depósito bancario, déjenme un mensaje y me pongo en contacto con ustedes.


Aquí les dejo unas fotos de otros Danopacks y amarracables en uso:

Gracias por su apoyo y por favor, háganme saber si tienen alguna duda o pregunta.

Con amor,


Minitablet cover

This is not a licensed Peanuts Worldwide LLC product.
It is however, hand-crafted from licensed Peanuts Worldwide LLC fabric.
I am not affiliated with or sponsored by Peanuts Worldwide LLC.

First things first; should I tell you about the fabrics and the pattern or should I tell you the story behind this beauty??

The pattern is Kwik Sew 3924 Erica's E-reader Cover & Case and includes pattern and instructions (wich I tend not to follow) for this cutie and a little bag for a 7.5" by 12" kindle e-reader. It should take a couple hours to make, depending on your procrastination level... Mine is high!!!

Now, the fabrics!! The three fabrics I used are manufactured by Quilting Treasures with a License by Peanuts Worldwide LLC and are:

It's been so long since Ale bought the fabrics and I couldn't wait to use them, but the fabrics came from the States in July and the pattern traveled all the way from Australia and arrived mid October.

So, Sammy is a 7" tablet and Ale, its owner likes to dress her in cute outfits, most of them Peanuts themed since she's a big Snoopy fan and she asked me to make her this cover and the case (coming soon!! :P).

The interior features 3 card slots, a big pocket and 4 corner triangles to hold your tablet or reader. I have to say the patterns also has instructions for re-sizing if you want to make one for any other device... Also, the patterns asks for a fleece padding (for protection) but I used 1/4" polyurethane foam.

 I looove the shape of the closure tab, but the Velcro (c) stripe did posed a challenge!!

So, the pattern asks  fot the stripe to be sewn over the finished tab (I normally sew Velcro (c) over only one layer of fabric to avoid seeing the seam on the other side) and me, being me with my contrasting threads got the mess you see above... (and yes, that top stitch needed to be redone!!)

Since the fabric was striped, just using yellow thread posed the same problem... Thankfully, Ale suggested (yes, I know I should came with that idea on my own, but, you know, I was frustrated!!) using nylon invisible thread!! And voila!!! I love, love this cover!!!

And I love you!! 


ps... don't forget to check out the raffle post, just in case you want to participate...

miércoles, 6 de noviembre de 2013

Big Birthday Raffle!!!

My birthday is coming in less than a month and I want to celebrate having my laptop back... Making a long, sad story short, my laptop, one of my work tools crashed and I have to replace some parts, plus paying the lab. So, I have to raise around 500 dollars and waiting to sell enough bags will take lots of time.

And just because I can't ask for money without giving anything in exchange, I decided to sell tickets for a raffle. It will take place on my birthday, December 3rd and I will pick up to 4 numbers trough to win some of my products. I will also donate 10% of the entries to an animal rescue organization yet to be announced Mascotas Coyoacán (FB page in spanish). They devote themselves to the rescue of dogs near my home.

I will sell 115 tickets at 56.25 MXP (a little less than 5 USD) and every 25 sold tickets a price will be unlocked as follows:

First price: 1 to 25 tickets sold

A Necessary clutch Wallet (design by Emmaline Bags) to choose from the ones on this publication

Second place: 50 tickets sold

To choose between a NCW nos chosen by the first place and a Danopack, this compact cable organizing  bag of my own design with a beautiful silver skulls embreoidery (the embroidery design is from Urban Threads)

Third and forth place: 75 and 100 tickets sold, respectively

A set of four cable holders, great elastic/velcro design perfect to maintain earphones and other cables untangled...

You can pay securely through paypal and I'll email you the number of your ticket. Or if you want an specific number and it is available, I can give it to you.


Here, some pictures of other Danopacks and cable holders being used:

Thank you very much for your support and please let me know if you have any doubts or questions.