In keeping with the 2014 theme of "throw lots of balls up in the air and juggle them", I started yet another project the other day, and finished it at late-o'clock last night! It's my Super Tote! Now, to be honest, I'd worked myself up a bit about the Super Tote. I had put it in the "this is going to be difficult" basket and was a little bit scared. But I'm here to tell you - it's actually relatively easy! Once you get past all. the. cutting. out.
As you can see, I used my beautiful Cotton + Steel canvas for the outer sections. I adore the tones in it, the green is actually a really subtle shade. I kept changing my mind about what to use for the main sections - I had some shot cotton that was in the running, but in the end I went with denim. I found a few metres of it in the bottom of my shelves, and when I got it out and looked at how dark it was, I remembered a tip from one of the girls at the Sit n Sew day I went to! Emma from For My Little Monster uses her denim INSIDE OUT!!!! Bingo! This front section is also a big old pocket - with another magnetic snap!
Once I sorted those main parts out, I had to work out which prints to use for the million other sections! This bag pattern is proof that you don't necessarily need to order fat quarter bundles or larger of fabric collections. You see, I have a fat eighth bundle of Cotton + Steel (in two of the ranges), and from a fat eighth you can get the recessed zipper pieces and the inner pocket pieces! Yeh! So I chose my favourite colour for the recessed zipper - coral. LOVE this print. The zipper was super easy to do - except for the part where I chose to use a chunky metal zipper. Please note - metal zipper + hot iron = ouch. Angie from GnomeAngel had told me of this before, and I was being reallllly careful, but no. Ouch. Anyway, I got it done!
The lining of the bag is the Butterfly print I used for my 241 Tote.
And the gorgeous little pockets on either sides are yummy turquoise prints. I'm not sure if you have picked the little mistake I have made with the gusset? Hmmmmmm.......... well, when I was pulling the bag all the way back out the right way, I realised I had sewn the gusset lining in with the dark side of the denim! Whoops! Moving right along....... Constructing the bag was relatively straight forward. If you've made any sort of lined bag before, you will be able to work it out - promise. If you haven't made a bag before, you may want to read the instructions through a few times and really wrap your head around them. When I was attaching the lining to the recessed zipper sections, it took me a few minutes to realise why it's called "recessed"...... derrrr.....because it sits lower in to the bag!
And the handles. Sigh. I would be devastated to know if people are actually NOT using the selvedges from these fabric ranges! They are really something special, with gorgeous little quotes on them "Leap and the net will appear". Love!
So, a review of sorts. I freakin love this pattern! For the interfacing I used a reasonably heavy weight iron on wadding from Spotlight. It is not a stiff interfacing - because I don't like my bags to be stiff. But having said that, I think next time I make one, I will put a slightly stiffer interfacing on the gusset, to give the sides and bottom of the bag a little extra oomph. Stitching the final topstitching around the top of the bag was a little bit of an effort. The thickness, especially at the sides of the bag, was reasonably tricky to get through the machine.
I used my walking foot through the entire process (except for the zipper installation). This made sewing through the layers a little easier. I used a regular machine needle, because I didn't have a denim one, but I'm thinking next time I shall invest in a denim needle :) I also used Aurifil 50 weight thread in #2000 - a beautiful golden colour. I'm thinking a 40 weight thread would be good in future.
All in all - the big thumbs up from me! I can see many, many more of these in my future. You can buy the Super Tote pattern by Noodlehead HERE.
I'm linking up - You can too!
PS. This is sort of kind of me sewing along with Sewvivor. You HAVE to head over to see all the fabulous entries this week for the bag challenge HERE. And if you're feeling patriotic - remember to vote for our two Aussie girls - Angie and Crystal!