Friday, January 10, 2014

A new bag for a new year!

It was supposed to be finished in December for my daughter's birthday, but my sewing was interrupted by my husband's request for this -

He so rarely asks for anything, and then when he gets it, he is so appreciative and proud.  I can't say no.  It's a McCall's Palmer/Pletsch pattern that is so far OOP I can't find any links for it.  This is probably the 5th or 6th one I have made for him with this pattern.  So it was any easy request to say yes to.

And she is 27 and was completely understanding about the delay.

And then there was the trouble finding the tools to complete this bag - rivets and grommets and hardware, oh! my!

This is the free Coco pattern by ChrisWDesigns.  It is really a great pattern and I did I mention it's FREE! Free is always good in my book, but when it's a really good pattern too?? Score! you can score yours here.  The instructions and pictures are very clear and easy to follow, I think even a beginner could handle this pattern without a whole lot of trouble. 
When she picked out the pattern, we looked it over, compared it with a couple of her favorite bags and decided that it needed to be a little bigger. Not a problem, I took the pattern pieces to a copy machine and increased the size by 115% - I think.  I can't find where I wrote it down and I wouldn't swear to remembering that number correctly.
The only other change we made, was to make the inset piece a kangaroo pocket.  It looks like it should be a pocket right? Turns out, it was really easy to turn into a pocket - just use your inset pattern piece to cut the pocket and a lining and baste to the front of the pocket.  I cut the front and back main pieces by putting the inset pattern piece with the corner pattern piece, eliminating the seam, and cut 2 of my fabric.
Other than those two really easy changes, I made the pattern as is.  Just one note, when she suggests that you read through the directions first before cutting, maybe you should.  Then you won't be like me, trying the put the handles together, muttering that can't be right, it's too wide and re-cutting.  Then figuring out that she was right all along! But I'm pretty sure no one else ever does that ;)  It worked out OK, because the fabric I was using for the handles was thicker than what was recommended.
I would also recommend getting a few extra rivets and grommets to practice installation before trying it on the real thing.  Unless you too have beginners luck that runs out as soon as you go to work on the one that matters.
Isn't the lining fabric cute? I found it here.
Overall I really like this pattern and will be using again to make myself one. 
I gave it to her last night, she seemed pleased then.  Today I got the text "I LOVE the pocketbook!!! It's perfect."  Gotta love that!
Happy Sewing - Suzanne


  1. I make what I call ski shirts for my husband. They are shirts made out of fabric with a ski motif. He LOVES them. So I know how wonderful it is to sew for an appreciative husband. The bag is great. Thanks for the link to the pattern.

  2. GREAT job Suzanne! The kangaroo pockets are a great idea! :)