Sunday, 18 November 2012

.Leather bag.

It was a long time ago that I dreamed about sewing a leather bag. Two and a half years ago to be exact. Then I couldn't decide on a pattern to use and didn't know what style I wanted and was worried that it wouldn't work with leather, so the idea was pushed to the back-burner and the leather folded up and put away for another time.
I would look at the leather from time-to-time but still undecided on what pattern to use, never went any further. Until recently Anna from Noodlehead released her latest pattern, the Sidekick Tote. I knew it would work perfectly for what I had in mind and was excited to get sewing.
Anna sent me the pattern, but my sewing plans were put on standstill while I had to wait for the bag hardware to arrive. Finally on Friday night I got sewing and finished this beauty in one night! It was a great sew, very straightforward and easy.
I was a little worried about sewing with leather and couldn't find my leather needle anywhere, so ended up using a regular needle in my sewing machine and it was amazing. Even over several layers of leather and fabric, I had no problems. I did go slowly when it was super thick (like topstitching through the side seams on the top band) but there were no problems at all. The leather is really lovely and soft and thin though (I bought it from a local saddle maker, if you're wondering where I got it from).

It took me awhile to settle on a fabric for the pocket and lining. I really wanted to steer away from anything floral or too "pretty" and am so happy with my choice of typewriter fabric from Melody Miller. I haven't had this fabric for long, but absolutely love it and only wanted to use it for a special project. The front pocket dimensions were changed a little to make sure that I got the whole typewriter in the middle.

The thing that really won me over with the bag pattern is the recessed zipper top. AWESOME! Now I can throw my bag around and not worry about things falling out or the kids getting into things too easily. I used a shot cotton for the solid green fabric. Because shot cotton is a little thinner than regular cotton, I used two layers to give it extra strength and stability.  I was going to use the typewriter fabric for the handle, but the print was too large and messy, so I was happy to find this brown bag handle webbing in my stash and used that instead. Strong and practical - I wish it was slightly darker, but am still happy with it.

Here's a shot of the back of the bag - it looks just as lovely without a fabric pocket, just using the leather on it's own. I'm loving it and going to make another trip into the saddle maker's shop this week to see what else he has lying around.
Thanks, Anna for an awesome pattern - she rocks at bags and thinks of all the little things that are appreciated when you are out and about.

Sidekick Tote pattern from Noodlehead
REAL brown leather
Melody Miller, Ruby Star Rising, Typewriters in Neutral
Kaffe Fassett, Shot Cotton in Moss


thingsforboys said...

That's so cool! I've been dreaming of making a leather bag for ages too!

Kelly said...

Oh Toni - it looks fabulous! Loving the leather!

Ann said...

That is FANTASTIC. Love the leather, love the print cotton. That is one bag to be proud of!

rachelmp said...

Love it, so impressed Toni!

Jo said...

It looks great in leather! I've been thinking of buying an old coat from Vinnies and chopping it up for a bag - you've inspired me! And I have some of that great typewriter fabric, just haven't been able to cut into it yet :-)

Michelle said...

Love love love! I am in desperate need/want of a new bag so I think this is going to be it! I am envious of your super cool fabrics :)

L!$@ said...

Sweet design! Wanna make me one? :P

Anna said...

oh it's so awesome toni!!! the pictures are so beautiful! You did an amazing job with the leather. :) yay! so happy!

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miamihoney said...

What an AMAZING bag! I love it and the inside fabric is the perfect choice. Great job!

Luxury In A Gift said...

Nice bag. I love its simplicity.

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