Tuesday, December 26, 2017

More Making

Thank you for Christmas wishes! It was nice to hear from some of you who read my blog. I always enjoy a good catch-up.

Our Christmas was quiet. It's been eight years since either of our children have come to see us for Christmas, and I admit that I miss that family craziness. Also like last year, we didn't travel to see them because of the potential for risky winter-weather driving. Still, the two of them found ways to share time with family: our daughter and her family at their lake home; and our son and his family with our DIL's parents who moved near to them earlier this year.

Dan and I enjoyed the other half of our Thanksgiving dinner (thawed from the freezer), and my homemade pumpkin pie. I mostly spent time at my Janome, quilting while listening to an audiobook: The House Between Tides by Sarah Maine.

Now that gifts have been gifted, I can share what I made for a special friend. It's a Sew Together Bag.

I made one for myself in 2013, and struggled mightily with the poorly written printed instructions (not nearly enough diagrams or photos, either), so it took quite a bit of determination to use the same pattern to make another. It helped to follow the online sew along tutorial by QuiltBarn.

Of course, the most fun is choosing fabrics. For the exterior I selected one of my newest pieces: Diving Board by Alison Glass. Noticing that there was a medallion in the print, I decided to work Karen's initial into that spot. I chose a computer font that I enlarged to fit the opening, and then traced the design onto a piece of linen. From the back, you can see the fusible stabilizer I added to give more support to hand satin stitching using perle cotton.

I cut out the fabric print circle leaving 1/4" to turn under, positioned the initial in the opening, and clipped the edges of the fabric circle to hand-sew to the embroidery. While it appears that I also stitched a lovely scallop around the initial, in fact that's the fabric design!

Here you can see the entire exterior of the bag, before it was quilted and sewn together. Notice the medallion that's on the opposite side of the Sew Together bag. Yes, it took quite a bit of measuring to get the print fussy-cut to the right size. 

Quilting is straight stitching, with a pass around the initial medallion to ensure it's not going anywhere. 

Here's the bag in progress. I used a couple other prints from the Diving Board collection, some Tattooed (yellow print) by Libs Elliot, and the gold binding is Blueberry Park. 

I added a pretty silver zipper tab that says "handmade."

Three zipper pockets and four open pockets are great for storing sewing supplies. I use mine primarily for English paper-piecing projects.

I'm pleased at how the Sew Together Bag turned out, and Karen certainly seems happy with it too.

Doing a little sewing for myself, here's my new fabric case for my new music stand, the latter of which I need for playing with the Ukulele Club performance group. I modified the dimensions of this Drawstring Backpack pattern. I'm very glad I bought several yards of this colorful print when I first fell in love with it - a rare favorite from JoAnn Fabrics.

Now, I have a complete matching set: ukulele case, ukulele shoulder strap, and music stand case. There's no mistaking mine from the standard black that most ukulele players have!

With the year-end in mind I'm trying to finish one more quilt that I started earlier in the summer. It's getting lots of rulerwork, and some big stitch hand-quilting. You know. Just keep makin'! Right? Linda


  1. Best wishes during the Christmas holidays from MO. Thank you for your wishes to us. I was so busy cooking and baking the last 2 days that I didn't even turn on the computer until today. Your Sew Together Bag is beautiful and I'm very impressed with your fussy cutting abilities. Karen surely is very pleased with her gift. The fabrics you used are so much fun. What a great idea to make all the pockets a different color. That would make it easier to remember where you put which things without having to open all of them to check.lol Your music stand case is perfect to join your ensemble. You are too clever. I like to have my items look different from everyone else's too. Good job on all of your sewing items.

  2. Hi Linda, and Happy Christmas! These are certainly fun items you’ve made, and Karen must love her Sew Together bag. I have one (made for me by a friend) and find it so handy, but your beautiful monogram on this one makes it extra special!

  3. What a beautiful job you did on Karen’s Sew Together bag! The personalised initial gives a really professional finish! And of course your musical instruments will be admired as well as easily identified!

  4. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours. I love your Sew together bag and thanks so much for pointing me in the right direction for better directions and photos. I've had the pattern for quite awhile and am now excited to give it a whirl. Personalizing your bag is a great idea. Thanks for all you share.

  5. Christmas was a quiet affair here, too. As will be any New Years celebration. I’ve made 3 Sew together bags and couldn’t have done it without the tutorial. I love my bag! It’s full to the brim! While I think it’s wonderful, I don’t think I’ll be tackling any more, though. I like how you’ve embraced your ukulele and have made it fun. You’ll be the envy of all the other players with your matching bags. Happy New Year, dear friend! Happy making!

  6. Awesome medallion work, and I agree--you have to have the Quilt Barn tutorial to make any sense of that pattern.

    I love that you are already gearing up for a big finish, inspiring all your readers--thank you for your wonderful sharing and instructing and all that you give to us throughout the year. I hope you have a lovely New Year's Eve, and my advice? Stay away from making resolutions! (That is what makes it a HAPPY New Year, right?)


I reply to comments! If you are a no-reply commenter, or your profile appears as anonymous, I will reply to you directly on this blog post. Please check back!


Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin