Monday, 15 September 2014

Marilyn's Nappy Bag

Hello lovelies,

Check out Marilyn's gorgeous Nappy Bag!

Pop over to her blog to read more about it and see her detailed review of the Nappy Bag pattern.

Marilyn's blog, shades of bold, is so inspiring, she makes such beautiful bags, and very regularly inspires me to get off my bottom and go do some sewing!

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Candice's Bookbag Backpack

It's always nice to receive compliments, but it's especially nice to receive them from customers who love making one's patterns.

Last week I was so blessed to receive the following messages from one of my customers Candice. She very kindly agreed to let me share the photos of her latest make, the Bookbag Backpack with you all.

Candice says she's not very good at photography but I think her pics look great! 

Here's the messages Candice sent with the photos:

About a million years ago LOL (okay, that's an exaggeration) you had asked if I had pictures to share of the back pack I made for my granddaughter using your pattern. Well, I didn't. BUT, she requested I use your pattern for her back pack again this year. :D She loves it, and so do I. She's certain she is the envy of ALL her classmates - not only does she have a one of a kind, it can be used so many different ways. I'm certainly far from a photographer, but I did the best I could. LOL And of course, heaven forbid I forgot to put the long strap in the pictures. LOL Oh well. Super super pattern, great instructions and is by far the best back pack pattern out there! I'm looking forward to buying your nappy bag pattern soon, though I'm far from needing a nappy bag. hahahaha 

I am just so impressed - again, you have a real talent! I know I will be making this pattern for her in different fabrics for other years and for my other granddaughter soon too! Thank you for sharing your talents with the world. :)

Nothing in the world makes a pattern designer happier than to hear that her patterns are being used....and then enjoyed. That's the beautiful thing about buying PDF patterns, you can print it time and again and your bag will always come out unique depending on what fabric you've chosen!

Thanks for sharing with us Candice!
P.s. if you've made a bag from one of my patterns and would like to be featured on my blog, please do leave me a message or drop me an email!

Saturday, 6 September 2014

The Nappy bag - tester's photos {Part 2}

I'm back today with the second part of our beautiful tester's Nappy bags! 

First up is veteran tester Liz from Moments Blog. I'm not suggesting she's old, just that she's been testing for me for a while now and always does a stunning job!

She made this as a travel bag for her husband who promptly turned his nose up and called it too girly. He's lucky she didn't bring it over here because my husband would have snatched it out of her hands before she had a chance to say 'there's no red polka dots on this bag for once'!

Next up is a new to me tester Margareth, I couldn't find a pic of the front of her bag, but these pics show the hidden zipped pocket in the front slip pocket and the interior of her bag!

Next up is Maria who's been testing for me for a while and who's opinion I really trust. Wouldn't you when she makes such beautiful bags as this?!

Another Maria is Maria from Mia's Creations. She pinched a pair of her hubby's trousers to make this bag. I wonder if he's even noticed yet?

Next up is Mary's bag, I had never even thought of putting a button on the flap, but what a difference it makes! Good work Mary!

Another of my regular testers is Sally from Life in Sally's World. I'm lucky this pattern test fell right in the middle of Sally's break from her work, she's always fabulous at picking up my silly spelling and grammar edits! Thanks Sally!

Simone is one of the ladies who made two test bags, and here is her first. Helpfully guarded/photo bombed by her dog! Good job it's foxes on the print and not cats!

Although I love the first bag, Simone's second bag is gorgeous! Check out the precision on this bag!

Next up is Stacey who has used such beautiful fabrics. I'm always such a scaredy cat with matching fabrics, I think I need to be a bit bolder because this is beautiful and goes together so well!

Stacey's also included some inside shots of the bag laden with bits and pieces to give us an idea of just how much this bag will fit inside!

Another veteran tester is Susie from Susie's Sunroom.

She always does such beautiful work with such beautiful fabrics! Thanks Susie!

Finally on the pictures list is Vanessa who's made this beautiful version, I love her choice of fabrics, inside and out!

Don't forget, if you want to make your own Nappy bag (or of course travel bag), you can find the pattern for sale in my Etsy store here: The Nappy Bag.

Happy sewing!

Thursday, 4 September 2014

The Nappy bag - tester's photos {Part 1}

Lovely friends, I am possibly the luckiest pattern designer in the world, because I have such talented and generous pattern testers!

This pattern proved to be a bit tricksy and had a few fairly major design edits. My testers stepped up to the plate discussing improvements, things they thought could be bettered and some even went so far as to make a second bag when the edits had been made. That's commitment!

Thank you testers, I'm so grateful to you all!

I'm sharing some of their photos with you today, and the rest will be later on. I was so fortunate to have a wide variety of testers for this bag that it's too many to share in one post!

I don't usually have so many testers but some tested as a travel bag, some a nappy bag, some a large handbag. Their feedback was all so valuable!

First up is Anita who modified the flap to be a bit more funky, isn't it gorgeous!

Next up is Anna from Messy Rooms who made two versions, this is the second version with the edits to the pattern.

 And here's Anna's first version, so fun!

Hold your horses, it's pink polka dots and denim! Great way to upcycle, Annette!

Next up is Barbara who is a first time tester and did a smashing job!

She also made two versions, I can't find a finished pic of her first version but here are some 'in progress' shots.
 Barbara recommends using webbing for straps and on her first version lined them with cotton to co-ordinate with her outer fabric.

Barbara's second version was made into a travel bag for herself and took her on a wild coach tour!

Once again Dee managed to make a beautiful yet functional test bag. Grandson approved!
 You can still catch Dee's double zip tutorial on my blog here: How to convert a single zip to a double zip 

This next bag was made by Emma from For my little monster. She finished it with a few days to spare before her newest monster arrived! Phew! That's lucky!

She also managed to make a Sling Bag during labour itself. That's dedication to bag making!

Having a 'Whale' of a time pattern testing is Jessica from XO, Jessica. Isn't her choice of fabrics great!

Another dual tester is Katie who first made this gorgeous bag,
 ...and then made this second bag from the edited pattern. look how much fits inside!!

Next up is Katy from Handmade Escapade with her rather foxy bag. Check out that pattern matching on Mr Trilby Fox!

Finally, our last tester today is Lindsey, who made this beautiful test bag. I love her choice of colours!

Some of the edits include changing the interior pockets from flat slip pockets to elasticated pockets, editing where the long strap attaches to and making the large back slip pocket a touch more secure. That's why there are a few variations on the pics shown.

If you want to make your own Nappy bag (or of course travel bag), you can find the pattern for sale in my Etsy store here: The Nappy Bag.

Happy sewing!

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Introducing the Nappy bag sewing pattern

You might have guessed my next pattern would be a nappy bag/diaper bag/changing bag pattern due to my current 'predicament' and you wouldn't be wrong!

This is by far the most involved pattern I've written with a grand total of 10 pockets! It comes with shoulder handles, a detachable long cross body (or slinging over shoulder) strap. The outside has two full width pockets, one with a flap and up to two keychains/dummy holders, one with a hidden zipped pocket. It has an elastic side pocket on each end (ideal for water bottles/milk bottles). Inside boasts 4 elasticated slip pockets, one zipped pocket and two elasticated bottle holders. Phew, I'm tired just thinking about it!

Here are a few more photos to whet your appetite!

Front pocket with flap fastened by magnetic snap. 

Full width back pocket fastened with hook & loop tape, hiding a zipped pocket

Elasticated side pockets & detachable shoulder strap

I used a double zip, fortunately we all know how to make them now thanks to Dee's guest post!

I used some gorgeous bag bling from Emmaline Bags
For the handmade script label please see Emmaline bags, they're absolutely gorgeous and really make a project look professional. Installation instructions also to be found on the listing page.

Back pocket with hidden zipped pocket, fastened with hook & loop tape

Interior with 4 large elasticated slip pockets, 1 zipped pocket and 2 elasticated bottle holders
As you can see from the interior photo this bag doesn't need you to finish the inside seams with bias binding, but nor does it need you to hand-stitch the lining to the outer along the zip. There's a very unique way of inserting linings like this which I walk you through with clear photos and lots of explanation in the pattern meaning you end up with a turning gap at the bottom like most regular bag linings. This method also stops the lining caving into the bag as the seam allowances are attached together along the top.

Here's the bag all ready & packed in case my little lady comes early! I've got a full pack of wipes, 6 nappies, nappy bags, breast pads, nipple cream, nappy cream, 3 muslins & 2 full outfits in here. In the outer pockets I've got a dummy, a pack of tissues, a coin purse and space for a wet bag (when I get around to making some wet bags!)

The pattern calls for either medium weight interfacing AND fusible fleece on the outer layers or Soft & Stable on the outer layers. Whichever you choose it also calls for medium weight interfacing on all of the lining pieces. I use Vilene F220 for my medium weight interfacing and I believe Pellon SF 101 is comparable.

I used Amy Butler home decor fabric Trumpet Flowers in pink and co-ordinated it with Robert Kaufman Kona Solids Melon.

I would follow the fabric recommendations on the pattern though and NOT use home decor fabric, no matter how nice it is, you'll save yourself a lot of headaches when trying to fit all the layers through your machine at the end! Quilting cotton is definitely better!

The Nappy bag pattern

This pattern is definitely not a quick sew, but you will be so impressed with the results that you have achieved I don't think you'll mind. The full copy is 28 pages long with 96 steps and when you purchase you will also be able to download the text only copy which is 11 pages long to save you ink.

My testers have reported sewing times of between 4 - 8 hours depending on confidence level and number of smaller 'helpers' hanging around so don't be put off by the 'advanced' classification, the pattern walks you through everything clearly and has a couple of links to extra tutorials such as fitting the bag bling and zipped pockets.

The Nappy bag pattern also makes a great travel bag pattern, just adjust the pockets to your own need. I'll be back later this week with some of the tester's bags to show you how they altered the pattern for their own requirements.

If you want to purchase The Nappy Bag pattern on my Etsy Store please feel free to use the code ATHOMEWITHMRSH10 for a 10% discount on your purchase of pattern/s & or hardware.