Friday, July 29, 2011

the everyday tote

The everyday tote from Weekend Sewing, had been on my project list for a very long while.  But the other night I had a sudden inclination to make one (late at night of course), with a vintage fabric I'd had set aside for it.

The fabric I chose is a very vivid woven print I had picked up in my op shop travels. My untrained eye is guessing it may be bark cloth. Can anyone more experienced shed a little light on this?

The project (mostly) came together well. It was quick to cut out and the main bag and lining were a breeze to sew up.

I say "mostly" because I did have a few issues with the binding. I would not line the binding next time, only the handles, as it created far too much bulk which made it extremely tricky to sew. The finished result was far from satisfactory, so it was all unpicked and I sewed the binding onto the lining by hand. Due to the bulk you can still see it, but it is far neater than before.

An inner pocket was sewn into the lining and space made for the mobile. Knowing what works now I do believe I could make this up in one session, as it was it took two nights.

As the name suggests it does fit everything in it and will no doubt be handy for a combined hand/nappy bag or to pop knitting or groceries into.

With all this sewing going on here lately you may be led to believe that I've had plenty of time on my hands. Unfortunately this hasn't been the case. At all. Violet is not a happy baby while sick, and that, combined with the general household chaos, and hubby working longer hours this week, has made for a very trying week. Sewing has been my sense of calm in the storm. I am not sure if it is the creativity or the distraction. Perhaps both. But it is surely helping me get through, what is otherwise, a difficult week.


  1. Oh yes, sewing to calm a stressed mama is certainly how it works! Some of my most inspired projects were made under considerable mama stress!
    In my amateur opinion, I think it is a piece of bark cloth you have there... and a very lovely bag you made!!

  2. What a great bag! I know exactly what you mean about sewing during times of stress, some of my best ideas pop up when I know I don't have time, but the rhythmic hum of the sewing machine and the lovely feeling of slicing through material with the scissors seems to take an edge off everything. Definitely a worthwhile thing to do when things all seem too much!

    Hope your bub gets better very soon. xo

  3. I hope that you have a better weekend and that you have time to relax with your hubby and sweet family. Sewing is such a great way to give you some time and space, and productive too. I really need to take note, I've been sitting zoning out in front of the computer, must do some crochet tonight.

    You have such an eye for great fabrics Tania. It looks great, I think I need that craft book now;) Hoping Violet feels better soon. Have a wonderful weekend. xo

  4. Sorry to hear you have had a trying week Tania...mine has been much the same, which makes trying to get anything done near impossible. Crafting is such a great distractor/destresser though and look at how gorgeous your bag is :)
    Hope Violet is soon on the mend.


  5. Love the bag. Again, you have given me inspiration of what to do with some of my fabric stash! On sewing bulky fabrics, I can highy recommend investing in a walking foot. Mine just powers through thick fabrics and they are great for quilting projects of course. A bit pricey, but cheaper online and worth it in my opinion.

  6. I've been eyeing this project for a while now! I'm so glad you posted about it (and especially glad for your tips). Your finished bag does look fantastic, even if it was tricky :)

  7. Great fabric choices - I love it! Yes, it is my understanding too that that is indeed barkcloth - and a very nice one indeed!
    I hope there are lots more calm moments in your immediate future x

  8. So sorry to hear about your crummy week! I hope things are on the way up with darling Violet. On another note, this bag is gorgeous! I haven't heard of this book before, but it looks swell!

  9. Gorgeous fabric. Hope you have a better weekend...

  10. Love the fabric, coral and olive are such a lovely combination. The tote looks fantastic, looks like barkcloth to me too. I totally get you about late night creative frenzies, I only ever get stuff like that done at midnight and usually I feel so great, until about 5 am the next day!. Hope your weekend improves. melx by the way, loved the japanese fabric a few posts back.

  11. Gorgeous fabric and a lovely and practical bag too. Fingers crossed for a happy, healthy week ahead.

  12. Very pretty fabric Tania, the tote turned out really lovely...

    Hoping next week is a better one for you and that little Violet starts to feel better soon.

  13. Such a great bag! I just got a sewing machine and I'm just learning to use it. I have tso many things I want to make!


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