Friday, June 23, 2017

The Bag Buzz 6/23/17

Welcome to the first issue of the Bag Buzz!

Bringing you all the buzz in the bag making world, including pattern releases, sales, new products, tutorials and other fun news! Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links. 

Recent Pattern Releases:


30% of ALL fabrics while supplies last at Llama Fabrics with code LLAMA30

25% off of ALL patterns from Moments by Liz in her Craftsy shop during her birthday sale. 24 hours only June 23-24.

Fat Quarter Shop is celebrating their 14th Birthday! Through June 27th they are offering a different flash sale each day.

New products:

Sew Sweetness is now carrying faux leather that is perfect for bag making. It's much thinner than traditional faux leathers and marine vinyls, making it ideal for sewing bags on a domestic machine without compromising on quality and durability. Check out all the colors she has in stock here!  

Emmaline Bags has been adding more finishes to some of the gorgeous hardware in her shop. You can now get the Diamond Strap Anchors in all five finishes:

Andrie Designs just launched the Add a Little Colour bag bling collection. Find some colorful bling for your latest creation. Zipper pulls, Mini pins, Swing bling and Magnets available in a variety of different colors and quotes.

Other News:

For all of our U.K. Bagineers and worldly adventurers, there are still a few spots open for the Bag Retreat brought to you by Sewing Patterns by Mrs. H. Read all about this dreamy getaway and get your tickets here.

Sew Sweetness has launched the first of her videos!  Now, you have the option of purchasing a full video tutorial along with several of her most popular patterns. This is great for the beginner bagineer or for those who like more in depth walk through on the process of making bags. You can now try one of these videos and patterns out for FREE with this easy leather hobo bag pattern and instructional video.

If you are a blogger, a shop or a designer I’d love to include your sales, pattern releases and special projects. Email me at with your info and upcoming or current sales, patterns and projects to be included in upcoming posts.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Introducing The Bag Buzz!

I'm excited to announce an upcoming series that is aimed at all things bag making: The Bag Buzz! Each article is aimed at bringing you up to date with the happening in the bagineering world.

-Stay up to date with the latest pattern releases and sales from your favorite designers.

-Get the scoop on hardware trends, sales and ideas.

-Sales announcements for fabrics, patterns, supplies and leathers

-Find new tutorials and tips from other bag makers.

If you are a blogger, a shop or a designer I’d love to include your sales, pattern releases and special projects. Email me at with your info and upcoming or current sales, patterns and projects to be included in upcoming posts.

Stay tuned for the first post in this ongoing series!

Speedwell Sling Bag

As summer time kicks into high gear around here, we are hitting the amusement park when we can. As much as I love my shoulder bags and big totes, they aren't the most pratical thing to carry around from ride to ride all day. My two year old snagged my beloved Butterfly Sling Purse, and I needed a new bag for those long day adventures. So when I had the opportunity to test the Blue Calla Speedwell Sling Bag, I was all over it.

This is a sporty sling style bag that is the PERFECT bag for summer adventures. 

This clever bag has a roomy interior with two slip pockets (think sunscreen, small snacks, and even a few diapers and a small pack of wipes). The exterior has a zippered panel that opens wide to make the pefect place to stash your phone, and keys. Stash your wallet and cards in the interior zip pocket.

This pattern also gives directions to add grommets to feed through your ear buds, which I opted to omit but you can see on other versions here

This pattern came together pretty quickly, despite being a lot of pieces. I went out on a limb and tried to fussy cut my zipper panels for the front and I was very pleased with the results:

The zippered front panel is secured to the top of the bag with your choice of magnetic snap, a turn lock or a tuck lock. I opted for a magnetic snap for this one and the slim ones from Emmaline are super strong and hold very very well (I almost broke a nail trying to pry them apart to install them). 

The bag is constructed with fleece, but the back panel is stabilized with Peltex so it's a structured bag even with just the fleece. It's also written for you to choose which shoulder you wish to wear the bag over. 

This bag is rated for an intermediate bag maker, and I would completely agree with that rating. No parts of construction are difficult, but the number of pieces and different techniques could make this daunting for a beginner. 

Like all Blue Calla patterns, each step is easy to follow and the instructions are paired with full color photos making even more difficult steps of construction easy to follow. The lining is finished by binding the seams, which for me is always the most difficult part because I end up doing them by hand (I'm hopeless binding by machine). 

I'm looking forward to carrying this around tomorrow when we hit the amusement park! 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Castell Day Bag

Introducing the Castell Day Bag Pattern by Emmaline Bags. I had the pleasure of testing this lovely pattern a few weeks ago and I ADORE her! This bag is a 'BIGUN and is designed as a day trip bag, or an overnighter. It is a framed bag, a la carpet bag style but without the vintage vibe of most carpet bags. You will need the C style frames from Emmaline.. 

I stitched up this one in a mix of various Cotton and Steel prints along with some Essex Yarn Dyed Linen and I love the combo. 

The exterior boasts two large pockets that secure with a magnetic snap in the flap. The flap is the perfect place to add some bling and as you can see I will a little hog wild with the copper hardware (It's my current crush). For this bag I used the Emmaline curved metal edge trim, the script style bag label, strap ends and rivets all in copper. 

The bag opens WIDE which makes it perfect for stuffing and unstuffing (one testing showed hers with a carton of milk, which, barely took up much room inside). 

Inside there are two zippered pockets, which are gathered at the bottom to maximize your stuffage ability. They hold way more than a standard zip pocket. 

The zipper panel is so, so easy to install on this bag, as is installing the frame. It simply slides inside the casing you make with the zipper. Nothing complicated at all!

This was also my first time successfully installing rivets. I have tried them in the past and had zero luck, I have been using Chicago Screws for the longest time because Rivets and I have never played nice. After using these rivets from Emmaline, I learned that it wasn't me!!! Not all rivets are created equal and crappy rivets make for crappy results. I had tried multiple times with some value pack I picked up at the craft store. Now, I am no longer afraid to use rivets (just not the crap ones!). 

This bag is rated for an experienced intermediate to advanced sewist, but I don't believe it's because it's overly difficult, but there are a LOT of steps and pieces involved. A lot of the hardware I added is optional (rivets, edge trim, strap edges, bag label) so you can add as much or as little as you like. 

The pattern is clear and easy to follow, and although it's straightforward the number of pieces does take a while to put together. It's not a one night project, but it's totally doable in a weekend. I'm glad I ordered a second set of c frames because I am looking forward to making another. Head over and pick up your pattern and frames at Emmaline Bags

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Designer Spotlight Results

The results are in! Reece has taken a lot of time going through the poll results to share them with you! Head over to Happy Okapi to see the final results. 

We loved putting this series together and a special thank you to ALL of the amazing designers that took the time to answer our interviews and sponsor our giveaway (the winner has been emailed so go check your inbox!). Also a thank you to YOU for taking the time to vote and sharing what you love about your favorite designers. I know that I loved reading the interviews. Our hope is that you will be inspired to try a new designer or two!

Thank you again!