Apr 132015
 

I’ve really been loving being a part of the Oahu Modern Quilt Guild — the other ladies are so fun and kind that it’s awesome meeting up with them every month. Since I’m behind on blogging (as usual!!!), here’s some things I’ve made for OMQG events since I joined…

In December, we had a mini swap as part of our holiday party, and I made mine based on Carolyn Friedlander’s Bartow quilt. I actually got to see the Bartow quilt and other Kona anniversary quilts in person! A local fabric shop close to my work had them on display, and I wanted to visit and take pictures for our guild during my lunch hour. Since I was nervous about going and taking pictures in the shop, a fellow guildie who goes to there a lot stopped by to go in with me and make me feel better. 😀
bartow mini

I think you can see that I did matchstick quilting… even though it’s only a mini, I got SO BORED while I was quilting. I fell asleep a couple of times.
bartow mini

More recently, we finished up a Bonnie Bucket Bag sewalong. I had a smallish piece of my squirrels and hedgehogs having tea fabric left, and I wanted to use as much of it as possible, so changed my bag to have just two panels instead of three.
bonnie bag

For the exterior zipper, I left off the welt pocketiness of it — in almost all of the Bonnies I’ve seen, the welt things remind me unpleasantly of lips.
bonnie bag, back

My bag was not as impressive as others finished for the sewalong, but people seemed to get a kick out of the gnomies inside. :}
bonnie bag, inside

Finally, the quilt block due this month is for our guild quilt. The blocks had to be made using only our guild colors in solids and could be any size. I made another humuhumunukunukuapua’a; luckily, I had at least saved my initial drawing, although it didn’t have any seam lines drawn on it. I kept referring to my old blog pic while I was sewing this one, heh.
omqg humuhumunukunukuapuaa

Feb 132015
 

Back during our New York trip (in October! hehehe), I was a little nutty from not being able to sew, so I made a bunch of sewing-related purchases that I normally wouldn’t have — they were awesome, but cost more than I’d normally spend all at once. One was a Swoon subscription, and that was neat because, while shopping at Joanns, I offered to make my sister-in-law a bag out of the fabric she was getting, so she looked through all the Swoon patterns and chose the Rosie crossbody bag.

(I have no idea why I thought it would be cute to include the Essex linen selvedge on one end of the strap.)
rosie crossbody

Still in the spirit of justifying impulse buys, I used Michelle Patterns’ curvy patch pocket templates for one of the inside pockets. It came out really cute!
curvy whale pocket

I put in two zippered pockets (there can never be too many in a purse!), and of course only the exterior one came out wonky, while the interior one was nice and straight. >_< rosie crossbody back

My sister-in-law doesn’t sew too much, but she really had fun at Joanns and was buying fabric because I also offered to make her some scrubs and fabric baskets. She found a book in the store with some that she liked, and I remember that they seemed pretty easy to recreate without instructions, so I told her not to buy the book. But now I forget what they looked like! doh! I’d better get cracking on making more stuff out of her fabric — I see it every day, and its guilt cloud is getting stronger…
rosie crossbody

Jan 202015
 

I made two more poolside totes recently for presents because I love this pattern so much. The cutout makes it easy to reach in to grab stuff without taking one of the handles off my shoulder!

The first one was for my co-worker who retired at the end of last year. I actually wanted to make her a quilt, but ran out of time. :(
mochi dots poolside tote

Since I wasn’t sure how flashy she likes her bags, I used a conservative mochi dot canvas for the exterior. (Can you see the slip pocket? Pattern matching! :) ) She used to give me cute little origami boxes (with candy inside!) made out of adorable cartoony paper, though, so I figured it would be okay to use this fun print on the inside.
mochi dot poolside tote interior

The second was for my friend’s birthday. I sent it in the same box as her late Christmas present, which ooops, I forgot to take a good picture of. I’ll just slap up the instagram pic here (which I took while I was waiting to find out what length to make the handles) — it’s a Petrillo bag that she chose the fabrics for.
birdie petrillo bag

She’s going to use her Petrillo bag for work, and she remarked that it looked pretty somber compared to the bags I normally make. :> So then to balance things out, I made her a silly horsie bag (my fabric choice, of course) for her birthday!
horsie poolside tote pocketless

I did the zipper pocket on hers (instead of just a slip pocket like the others) because, even though it’s a silly bag, it should still be a little bit practical for my practical friend. 😀
horsie poolside tote

Dec 052014
 

I got to test Sew Sweetness’s new Holland bag pattern (I believe it’s going to be released next year), and it makes such a cute little bag!
holland bag

I haven’t gotten around to buying thicker topstitching thread, so my straight stitching on the Essex linen straps was looking wobbly (even though I swear I was sewing straight). I ripped that out for the strap extenders on the bag body and experimented with the decorative stitches on my Juki F600… I may have gone a little crazy with the cutesy-folksy look, but I like it with the matryoshka print!
holland bag -- lookit the straps :D

Since the pattern is going to be aimed at beginners (I think), it includes instructions for patch pockets on both sides of the lining, but I replaced one with my usual interior zipped pocket.
holland bag interior zip

The bottom lining is an Aneela Hoey fabric — this is going to be my niece’s Christmas present, so hopefully she’ll get a kick out of the girl reading a book.
holland bag bottom

The tester version of the pattern has pretty long straps (30″ strips), but I like smaller bags like these to be right under my arm, so I cut mine down to 23″. Here’s a five year-old for scale!
Cosmo and the Holland bag

I sewed this on both my Juki TL-2000qi and F600. I started out on the F600 because of the decorative stitching on the straps and continued until I was sewing the exterior pieces (canvas and Soft & Stable) together. Then I noticed that when I tugged the exterior pieces apart at the seams, the stitching would become exposed, which looks awful. I switched to my TL-2000qi, and that sews things together much tighter so that individual stitches are never exposed when the seams are stressed.

Now I’m curious: do you think that if I needed to, I would be able to adjust my F600’s settings so that thick seams are more secure, or is this just the natural difference between a computerized/decorative stitch machine and a straight-stitch-only machine? Either way, I’m glad I have both! hehehe.
holland bag -- lookit the straps :D

Nov 122014
 

When Noodlehead’s Poolside Tote was released earlier this year, I was kind of meh about it. But then my OMQG guildie showed up with a goooooorgeous poolside tote that she received, and I had to make one for myself. This was also something that I made at the last minute before our NY trip — I had visions of carrying my loads of shopping goodies around in my rawr bag. 😀
lions poolside tote

I really wanted to make mine like my guildie’s one — with faux leather pocket and handles — but I eventually calmed down (after mentally reviewing how much I’d been spending on fabric >_< ) and eked the handles and pockets out of some denim scraps I had lying around. I lurve this bag... I especially want to point out the cutout, because at first I just thought it was a cosmetic feature, but it really is practical and makes the bag comfier to use! lion poolside tote, pocket side

Oct 212014
 

While I was on vacation, my review of U-Handbag’s It’s a Cinch Tote went up at Sew Sweetness as part of this autumn’s Purse Palooza. I was not together enough to schedule a post about it to go up while I was away. aheh.
its a cinch - cinched

tl;dr: the bag’s really cute, but the instructions leave something to be desired. :}
it's a cinch - rock wall

My friend seemed to really like it! I hope she did — she’s really super duper polite and would never let me know if she didn’t…

Oct 092014
 

I found myself in need of more luggage (also, I was trying to justify recent purchases by using my stash, hehe), so made an owl-riffic portside duffle bag. The exterior fabric is all bought locally for once — I got the owls (at full price O_o) from a local fabric shop, and the base and handles are made from my twill maritime shorts’ leftovers.
owl duffle skyline

Having started my grown-up sewing from the quilting side of things, I thought it was interesting how the portside instructions and pattern differed from indie bag patterns I’ve used in the past, considering Grainline Studios is generally focused towards apparel. Specifically, I found myself printing out eight jillion pages in order to end up with a bunch of pattern pieces that were rectangles. >_< I've read apparel-focused people getting frustrated when pattern pieces weren't included for every single thing, so it makes sense that Grainline would write a bag pattern this way, but I kept grumbling, "just give me cutting measurements! ARGH!" owl duffle right side

Even more frustrating was that the yardage required was given for the entire set, not for individual pieces in the set. The first time I made this bag (oops, this owl version is actually the second one I made — I gave the first one away before I could take pictures of it), I bought way too much because I bought the recommended yardage even though I only wanted to make the duffle. doh!
owl duffle left side

This bag could definitely benefit from piping, but I tend to fall on the side of laziness when it’s not explicitly called for in the pattern. :> Anyway, I’m looking forward to using this bag — it’s huge, and there’s no way someone can try to pretend its theirs and walk off with it. muhaha!
owl duffle on ground

Oct 022014
 

I recently got hooked on Massdrop, and I one of the things I bought was a Noodlehead pattern 3-pack that included her Runaround bag. I actually bought the pattern pack because it included the super tote and divided basket, but then I ended up making the runaround bag first because it was perfect for a quick present for my niece!
runaround bag

My first impression when the runaround bag pattern was released was that it’s too smooshy/formless for my taste, but after I made it, I found out that it’s really a comfy and convenient bag to use. Comfy and convenient always wins for me since I forget what I look like when I’m not in front of a mirror. Also, I love that the pattern’s instructions are impeccable, which I dooooon’t take for granted anymore. >_< runaround bag sunshine

I do think that the magnetic snap could stand to be maybe 1/2″ higher. And I swear I followed the instructions, but my zippered pocket looks waaaaaaay too low. While I was sewing, I was even thinking that the zipper looked like it was in a strange place, but I was in verbatim compliance mode and didn’t just move it up, doh.
runaround bag lining

I had bought some metallic gold thread on a whim, and I tried using it on the patch pocket. It’s pretty cute, but I didn’t remember to adjust my tension or anything to accommodate the thread and it kept shredding. ugh!
runaround bag patch pocket

When my niece was opening her presents and got to this, one of her friends said it looked like Santa’s bag. She didn’t even see it when I tried using gold thread to topstitch the binding — then it looked super Christmassey! I ripped that out and used plain brown thread instead.
runaround bag close

Since it’s nice seeing bags against people for scale, here’s the runaround bag on a five year old. 😀
runaround bag cosmo

May 212014
 

Ooops, I found pictures of some small things I made half a year ago and forgot to post about. Must document everything (hah)! 😀

Last year, While She Naps made a free tiny kitty pattern that’s super adorable, so I put together a couple of them for my kiddos.
two tiny kitties

I used fleece for Sunshine’s one, which wasn’t the best choice since it came out not quite as poofy and cute as the other one. Wait, why is this one grey with blue eyes? Oh! I remember now — I had made three; the grey one that Sunshine’s holding is his, and the purple one in the other picture is his cousin’s. Sunshine refused to give up his kitty for the group photo, that’s why. I know you really wanted to know all of this. 😉
fleece tiny kitty

Cosmo’s is made out of super soft minky. It came out cuter since the minky was stretchy and could poof out more, but I had to watch out because the stretchiness meant that I almost made the head too big. And later on, the minky attracted dirt like craaazy!
minky tiny kitty

Then at Christmas, I made my aunty two bags for her Secret Santa present. Gah, you can see here that I forgot to make the two sides of the right bag mirror images so the fabric would line up correctly at the bottom!
two bags for Aunty

The left one is Michelle Patterns’ grocery bag. I really love making these now with denim for the exterior and handles — it looks really cute this way, and I don’t have to stress about coordinating three different prints. hehe.
woodpecker grocery bag

The right one is Echinops and Aster’s spa bag. My aunty complimented my mom’s one, so Mr. Yazoo pointed out that I ought to make her a similar one. I cropped out the evidence that I put it together wrong, muhaha!
Aunty's spa bag

Apr 102014
 

My old bag was looking rather worn (plus, it’s a little too small for three waterbottles, assorted cars and trains, and my actual stuff), so I made my annual new bag-to-use-daily. I love it! It’s floppy (makes it easier to stuff full), big enough to hold a normal amount of kiddie+me stuff, and comfy to carry. I don’t know if I look doofy being a grown-up who prefers to use a backpack over a normal purselike, but I don’t care because I can’t see myself!
cloud backpack

I’ve been waiting for the longest time to find something I could embroider this cute cloud (free pattern!) on. It fit perfectly on the flap and is in such a cool style. I printed it out on a sheet of Sulky sticky fabri-solvy, which is so awesome, and then just slapped it on the fabric and started embroidering away.
cloud backpack embroidery

The bag itself is actually Michelle Patterns’ messenger bag (retired); I just printed the pattern out at 150% and then replaced the cross-body strap with backpackish straps (which I didn’t make adjustable since it’s only for me). I also made the back pocket zippered — I aaaaaagonized about whether to figure out how to put an inset zipper at the top of the main compartment, but finally decided that having a zipper on the back pocket would be enough of a semi-secure option. (Um. I just noticed the background of this picture — that’s a seed pod, not a dead bug. Sorry!)
back of cloud backpack

Prior to this bag, I thought that elastic-topped pockets looked kind of frumpy, but now I love them! They’re nice and deep, and the elastic makes me feel like things won’t just slide out, so it’s been super convenient just to chuck my phone in there.
cloud backpack front and elastic pockets

Slip pocket, zippered pocket, key dingledangle, as usual. Nice and roomy! I’m a little worried about that white birdy fabric — it’s so bright white that I suspect it’ll look dingy more quickly. Ah well!
cloud backpack inside

I had been thinking about making a backpack without a pattern, but I’m glad that I made this one instead. It came out to be a great size! When I’m on my own, I tend to overestimate how large bags ought to be, heh.
cloud backpack on

In other news, I made another Renfrew top. It’s my funny Christmas version — it’s kind of like I’m wearing a reindeer sweater vest! Mr. Yazoo doesn’t think it’s that funny… :P:P:P
Christmas Renfrew top