Yeah, I procrastinate.
This swap has been "live" for over a month but I waited until the last weekend before I needed to send it to get it done. And I have ZERO REGRETS. It turned out just like I wanted it to so. . .yeah, procrastinating isn't so bad, y'all.
That's a long shot (including my toes!!) I just wanted to show the full size including the extra long handles.
See, I prefer a long handle on a bag. These are long enough you can wear the bag cross body if you wanted. But it's a firm cross body (the bag is very close to your body that way). The straps are 4 inches by LOF (including the selvages--no need to trim them off since they weren't going to show). I sewed the handles then turned them. Then a quick press and two rows of top stitch and they were ready. Super simple.
The basic bag design is based of the free pattern at Green Bag Lady. I just sized the fabric down to my needs and did add a full lining. I also made the straps way longer and I didn't square off the bottom (thought about it but then decided not to).
I attached all the patches onto the fabric before assembly. One patch was hand sewn on but that was a huge pain in my ass so I machine stitched (roughly "in the ditch" where the borders of the patches are) the rest. That went SUPER fast and there were no issues).
The bag body pieces were 15 inches square. I folded the top down approximately 1/2 inch and ironed it then sewed the sides (making sure everything lined up nicely at the top). Then (with the bad still inside out) I attached the handles roughly centering them and aligning them with the folded over bit at the top of the panels. I did a full row of top stitching around the top of the bag, backstitching over the handles.
THEN, I made the lining (same size as the outer pieces) including the folded over bit at the top. I pinned it inside the (turned right side out) bag and did another row of topstitching (along the top of the bag) again backstitching at the handles.
The lining is the same fabric as the body which is the rose print from the Briar Rose collection (that fabric I bought months ago and broke my fast, but I used just about all of it so MISSION ACCOMPLISHED).
OK, on to the patches.
The example bag offered was not made like my bag. It was made by sewing the patches butt up against one another (like making patchwork fabric) and then assembled as a very boxy bag. Not that I don't like that style (it looks good) but I didn't want to make that type of bag. I wanted a very "baggy" bag and I also wanted to showcase the bag fabric, like mortar showing in a brick wall.
For the patches, I knew I wanted to use this fairy fabric I bought along with a few random pieces of other fairy fabric I found in my stash. So I made those patches first and based the quantity of patches and the basic sizing on that.
This patch is from that fairy fabric I bought. I'm so happy I bought that fabric. It's gorgeous and I'm excited to share some of the leftovers with my swap partner (ok, I'm not *that* nice, I gave them the scrappier piece and kept the "nicer" piece for myself--hey, I'm nice but I'm also selfish!--the piece I shared is roughly a fat quarter with just the two images I used on the bag missing--still tons of cute images left).
I found that little fairy charm in my postage stamp quilt charms. It's 2.5 inches. I didn't have to do much to it since it already has sparkle to it. I just added a bit of embroidery and some beads.
Since that fairy patch was so small, I needed to make another small one to fill in the space. I found that sock monkey charm at the craft store (for one measly buck, love that) and removed the clippy and just made a generic sock monkey fabric backing for it. Super simple and not that exciting, really.
I LOVE this patch. I'm sure a big part of it is because I LOVE that sock monkey image. It's from a fat quarter I have had FOREVER. It's a Heidi Kenney print (she sells her fabric on Spoonflower). I appliqued the super cute sock monkey onto that groovy fabric and then stitched on pom pom balloons. It's really so much freaking cuter in person.
Hmm, doesn't that sock monkey look familiar? Only this time I made him some fairy wings. I knew from day one I was going to make a patch like this using that sock monkey print. It turned out very cute (mostly because the monkey is so freaking adorable, there's no way it couldn't be cute).
For the whole bag, I focused on purples and turquoise/aqua shades. Turquoise is hard for me because I'm not entirely sure where turquoise ends and aqua begins so my colors may be a tiny bit off in that department. I did the best I could with the colors I had in my stash. (oh, and I chose the rose fabric because it was one of the things my partner likes, along with fairies, sock monkeys, purple, and turquoise).
The other side of the bag.
The guidelines were the bag had to be a minimum of 8 inches in size, have a strap, and contain at least 4 patches. I met all requirements.
This was another patch I had a feeling I'd make for this. I definitely wanted a few patches with actual scok monkey sock fabric on them and this one was a no brainer. It came from my sock monkey scrap bag (yes, I keep all the bits when I make a monkey). Fairly simple but very cute. This is the patch I had to hand sew on. I bet I could have machine stitched it but it was the first patch I put on the fabric and I thought I was going to have to hand sew them all but after I got it done (it was so TEDIOUS) I said "eff it" and stopped being so intimidated and just machine stitched the rest of the patches. I was nervous I'd botch it up and ruin a patch and/or the fabric. I didn't have enough fabric to botch it (well, I could if I didn't want rose print for the lining, too) and I didn't want to mess up any of the patches (especially any from one of a kind bits of fabric). Thankfully, there were NO issues at all.
This was some random fabric I found in my collection. It was just a small piece (this is all of it) and I have no idea where it came from (probably a swap). It's kind of "meh" as far as the look but I liked having different representations of fairies. On the other side there is the "baby" fairy and the monkey fairy and then the fairies from the same fabric so this was a nice addition. I call these the Little House on the Prairie fairies (thanks to their very conservative dresses). I just added some beads and embroidery to bling it up a bit.
This is another patch I knew I wanted to make. Well, not exactly. I knew I wanted to use that charm I had and those purple buttons but I didn't know they'd end up together on the same patch.
Oooh, and that damn charm! I was getting ready to add it to the patch and didn't I drop it and hear it bing off the floor and when I went to find it it was GONE. I was about to have a tizzy fit. I'm normally really good about finding dropped stuff but I had prowled the floor on hands and knees and even got the broom out to get under the cupboard edges and all that and she just WOULD NOT appear. Just as I was getting ready to give up, I moved a package of water and there she was. Sneaky biotch! I sewed her down post haste. I was really worried I had lost her forever and was disappointed I wouldn't have her for the bag. CRISIS AVERTED!!
This was another patch I knew would be on the bag. When I got this fabric the images were a bit larger than I anticipated but when I saw this image I KNEW she would make the bag. The size was just perfect and I love the colors. I just added some embroidery since the artwork really doesn't need any more.
There is one big image on that fabric that I'd love to make into a patch but it was just too big for this bag. It's two fairies together holding a stem of flowers. It would make a finished patch about 5x8 (at least) which was just too big for this project. But I'm sure I'll get this same partner again and I can always make that patch for her later. OR, make it for my own patch collection.
Speaking of my patch collection, I think I'm going to start sewing them to each other (butt up against one another) to make one big ass wall hanging for my craft room. I also want to work on my Star Trek series again. Hell, there's a lot of stuff I want to work on but first I need to finish up a few more swaps and do some Fluff Project sewing.