Friday, August 2, 2013

Infecting my Eldest Niece with Sewing

I love sewing (and all the other crafty stuff that I do), and I want to be able to infect those around me with that same love of it. One of the things I wanted to be able share with my Eldest Niece is that with sewing, you have the capability of making one-of-a-kind thing for yourself that is useful AND pretty.

And that the process wasn't difficult.

So, while she was working on her skirt, we also designed for her a book bag that she can carry her books around with her on outings (so she'd never have to be without a book). It had to be big enough to carry one or more of her books around, but not something huge. We settled on a vertical style bag, and what she wanted from it.

Here are the initial drawings that we sketched out. We measured out some of her books with a tape measure, and she made the final decision on how big it should be.


While we were shopping for skirt fabric for her skirt, we also found some fabric for her bag. The purple sateen was a remnant and perfectly matched the purple leopard print (I highly approve) fabric that she found. She also found some cute heart shape buttons.



And the bonus? She found all of the stuff that was on sale. She kept looking at prices and putting things back if she thought it was too expensive. (How many 11 year olds do that?!)

Creating the bag was easy. It just needed five pieces:
  1. front piece -- that would also have a front pocket
  2. back piece -- that would also be the front flap, 
  3. side strip piece -- that would go around the edges
  4. handle -- purple belting
  5. handle tabs -- that would attach the D-rings to the bag
Here's the lining portion of the bag (being attached to the fashion fabric). You can see the three parts: front, back, and side.

And the serged fashion fabric being pinned together. I did have to interline the fashion fabric to make it more sturdy for use as a bag.


I used the leftover bias tape from her skirt to edge the flap (with her approval, of course), and then she arranged the buttons she picked out. And we were done!


She was super excited about her new bag and being able to carry her books around with her. She ended up using her bag during her visit with me to carry her books while we sat drinking hot chocolate in coffee shops. I do hope this teaches her she can learn how to make her own things, and even matching accessories to her outfits.

She watched me sew a good chunk of her bag, and I hope she realizes how easy it is to make what you need!