Tuesday, November 13, 2012
The Unexpected Weekend
Last Friday I was so excited about the long weekend we had ahead of us. My husband was looking forward to three days of fun with me and the girls, and I had all my pieces ready to sew together for my Weekender in plenty of time to write my post. Everything changed, of course, when Bear came down with a violent case of stomach flu on Saturday morning. With seven of us in the house, we've learned to expect that if one person gets sick, everyone is going to get sick. As Mouse, my dad, and my husband all came down with symptoms during the next few days, I tried to work on my bag as quickly as possible during any free minutes I could spare so that I wouldn't miss my deadline, but unfortunately I just ran out of time before the flu hit me hard on Monday night. The bag as you see it here is almost finished -- it's just missing a lining. In my haste, I'm afraid I wasn't quite as neat and tidy as I normally like to be -- you'll notice plenty of imperfections here and there. The photos you see in this post were taken by my dear husband who stopped me before I tried to hobble outside to take them myself. As I look at them now I can see all the loose threads and wrinkles that I forgot to deal with before the quick photo shoot, and the perfectionist in me is mortified. Sometimes you just have to do the best you can and let it go...
When people say that this bag is a challenge, they aren't kidding. The cutting and prep work are endless, and you're fairly worn out before you even get started. Once you start sewing, though, it's not so bad. Things didn't really become daunting for me until I hit the dreaded step on the directions where you sew all of the exterior panels together. Yikes. I had to rip out seams more than once. A denim needle is well worth your money -- mine never broke even though I was sure it would a few times. You'll do well to go slowly and take your time, both as you sew and as you read through the directions. I read each step through at least twice before plunging ahead.
It's a nice sturdy bag, which I like. I followed several people's advice and made my handles longer than the pattern suggested, sewing them in a little more firmly down the sides as well. Since so many people were going the quilted route in our blog hop, and since I had recently made a quilted bag when I put together my Retro Library Case, I decided to try the standard Peltex version for mine. I used a lime green linen for most of the bag, accented with linen Nursery Versery prints by Heather Ross and some colorful scraps thrown in for good measure. I really love the way the paper pieced section turned out, and I hope to be making a pillow soon using this same pattern. My piping was store bought, and I have no regrets about that. It was easy to use and one less thing to have to make ahead. If you do use premade piping, be sure to cut carefully. It takes two packets to do the job, and each one has just enough for the one large pocket and the distance around the main panel. I almost had to go buy another pack because I wasn't as careful as I should have been at first.
Once I'm feeling a bit better, I'll be finishing the lining and passing this on to my sister who will be using it as her new diaper bag. I'm so glad that I had the chance to finally try this pattern -- it's been on my to-do list all year long!
Drop by Taryn's blog tomorrow for our last stop in the series before you can link up your finished bags at Lori's website. We can't wait to see what's in your Weekender!