Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Weekend Bag or Really Great Place to Stash Your Knitting, Vogue 7653
While the rest of the handbagaholics I know are struggling with the Amy Butler messenger bag pattern, and her weekend bag pattern, I turned to an old pattern I had in my "library". The pattern is Vogue 7653 (all Vogue patterns are on sale at JoAnn's right now!). I've actually had it for about 4 or 5 years and never got around to tackling it. Not sure you can still buy it in retail locations.
The pattern itself is a bit more complex than others I've used. I think it's a Vogue thing. There were 34 pieces in all to make 4 bags. All of them are luggage size, if you will, and all of them use similar directions (which is confusing if you ask me). The pattern I made required three layers of each piece, a befuddling process of lining up outer fabric, interfacing, and lining fabric. Then there's this whole disconcerting issue with folding and cutting the handles. I was genuinely flummoxed and a little worried that the whole thing would fray. But it seems to be holding.
If I were to make this bag again, and I do think I will, I would consider a completely perplexing process of shrinking the pattern. Has anyone ever done that? It's just a really big bag and I just don't have need for bags that big. I also think that I would try using duckcloth as interfacing. I used a very stiff interfacing -- as the pattern calls for -- and it crinkles ever so slightly when I use the bag. This bothers me.
The inside lining has no pockets. All that work to basically have a bucket. So, I would probably fashion some system of pockets of all shapes -- like blackberry size, diaper size, pen/pencil size. There's room in there for a lot. I still can't figure out why interior pockets weren't accounted for in the pattern.
Lastly, and this certainly isn't a must, I would probably try to find a harder/stiffer/springy-er cording. I used your basic decorator's cording (like you may use to pipe a pillow) and I feel that it falls in on itself when the bag isn't full. One thing that I changed about the pattern that I do like is that I used a cut up plastic placement for the base rather than cardboard. That way if it gets wet it won't crumble. The placement was on clearance for 25 cents.
I used Laurie Smith fabric, of course, and various notions from various local sewing stores. I figure I spent a grand total (excluding pattern) of $10. Not too shabby. You may be asking what I'm going to use this crazy orange bag for. Just going to stuff all the knitting and crocheting supplies I've ever purchased in there. You remember my feelings about knitting.