Drowning in Fabric

Forever cleaning, organizing and creating

I finished something

on March 23, 2013

I took a break from borders today to put together my notions bag. This is something one of the ladies in my BOTM class made and I thought it would be a nice thing to have too. I had been using a wet bag and was scared that my pointy things would ruin the PUL. I found the pattern at one of the shop hop shops. It didn’t seem too complicated or like it would take tooo long. It was kind of a disaster from the beginning. Two needles lost their lives in this project.


The first set of interfacing I tried to use didn’t fuse. So I had to find some other interfacing to try. All the wet and steam caused some burn marks on my ironing pad to stain my white fabric. Ultimately, I was able to cut around the stain. I also gooked up my iron a bit. The notions fabric is the fabric from this year’s shop hop. I thought it would be perfect for this bag. And maybe a sewing cover. Because, you know, I always cover my sewing machine.


The pattern

The pattern (or – “what it is supposed to look like”)

So the cutting went fine. And then I started sewing. Well. I’d never sewn vinyl before. I knew it was supposed to be tricky, but I didn’t know why. The d@mn vinyl sticks to the machine and doesn’t move and then jams up the thread. I tried sewing while holding it up or putting something under it, and it didn’t help. It took me an embarrassingly long time to realize it was sticking to the foot. So I finally came up with the ingenious idea to cover it with a telephone book page and sew over that.  I was sewing blind, but other than that, it seemed to do the trick. And then ripped right off. I just had some nasty spots where the thread caught or skipped.

Things went along ok from there until I had to sew the inner lining to the back of the vinyl. The first time I tried, I was sewing too far over and the seam didn’t catch the end of the vinyl. It also was uneven and wonky. So I spent about a half hour ripping that seam out and then trying again. It is still wobbly but doing its job.




Ok. Just a tip. When it says to square up, square up. For serious. The front with the back.Otherwise your bottom seams won’t line up and it’ll be wobbly like mine. I tried to line the “bottom” seam up with the back instead of the middle, and it works, but isn’t beautiful and doesn’t sit flat. It tilts back. So then I had to sew the sides. This was a total disaster. First, I totally missed my aim and sewed the zipper thing. That’s what killed my first needle. and it took some work to unjam everything after that. Then, remember that important lesson I learned about sewing vinyl? Somehow I totally forgot it already. I was sewing all la-de-da then hit the vinyl part and suddenly my project wouldn’t move. It took an embarrassingly long time for me to realize why. Again. So I did my phone book trick again and now my seam looks like this:


It was intentional. Sure. Text prints are so trendy right now. Also, appreciate the contrasting thread. Totally intentional too.

Ok. Here comes the worst part. I am truly mortified to admit it. All I can blame is a long day and tired. I went to box my corners and wanted to put my hand inside the bag to push them out and…. I totally sewed my bag shut. It never occurred to me to unzip the zipper before sewing the sides. Stop laughing. I spent a good deal of quality time with some tools trying to pry it open before finally coming downstairs to my husband (who had been waiting quite a long time at this point for me to “just finish this up”) and said “you are going to laugh at me, but I need your help.” He looked so confused about what I would need sewing help for. Until I got about halfway into my first sentence and he put his hand to his eyes and started laughing. Then I handed it over and he spent some time til he finally got it open. Lesson learned.

The second needle died when I was doing my corners. I don’t quite remember why now. I think I just hadn’t tightened the needle well enough in the first place and it slipped out.

I finished my corners and here you go.


It is serviceable, if not beautiful. Oh well. I always do everything better the second time. The fabrics sure are real cute. I had meant to add a carrying/hanging loop but that never happened. Next time.

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2 responses to “I finished something

  1. Marit says:

    I am sorry, but this is too funny! I would have thrown in the towel at some point there. You deserve a medal for persevering at getting this done!

  2. […] Remember my ill-fated, yet semi-successful attempt at a notions bag? For better or worse, I made another one. […]

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