Tuesday, August 16, 2011

GUEST: Amber of Quilted Euphoria

Hello! My name is Amber over at Quilted Euphoria and I have been extended the opportunity to guest post here on All Things Fee today! What a great opportunity this is, and I want to say thank you to my lovely host!

Let me start off by introducing myself and telling you a little about what makes me, me and then we'll get to today's project!

I started falling in love with quilting at a young age. My grandmother made quilts for all occasions, and I remember becoming fascinated with her process early on. My very first quilt that I did myself was made when I was 19 out of leftover pioneer dress fabric. I then caught the sickness and started making many more. I took up quilting as a way to supplement my husband's income after I got married, and have been going full steam ahead ever since.

I started this blog as a way to share my addiction with everyone I meet! I wanted to get my name out there, promote my business and turn doing what I love into a real business. But mostly, I just want to share the quilting addiction! As much as I love quilting, I also love making all kinds of things with fabric, which leads me to today's wonderful project!

Carry All Diaper Bag

This can also be used as a beach bag, laptop bag, etc. So have fun with it!

You will need:

1 Yard each of two coordinating fabrics
Small swatch of quilt batting (leftover or remnant pieces will work fine)
18" of 1/2" wide (or larger, according to taste) Velcro in complimentary color
Basic sewing tools/machine
Coordinating thread

Cutting Instructions-(all instructions assume the piece of fabric is folded from off the bolt)

From lining and bag material: Cut one each 20" X25" (opened up is 20" X 50")
From lining fabric: Cut two 10" X 7" strips
From bag fabric: Cut one 8" X 6" Patch, Cut one 10" X 30" long strip

Unless otherwise noted, use a 1/2'' seam allowance

Step One: (Preparing the handles)

Prepare the handles by folding the 10" X 7" strip in half lengthwise and then in half again to form one 2.5" wide strip. Press to mark folds. Repeat with other strip. Cut a piece of your remnant batting 1/2" shy of the length of your handles, and 1/2" less wide than the width of each handle. Open up your folded fabric and lay the batting inside. Re-fold and press to hold its shape. Sew down one side of handle to close it. Flip and sew down the other side to keep it from twisting around, press. Repeat this process with the 10" X 30" long strip of bag fabric. This will be your long over-the-shoulder bag strap. At this point you will have three completed handles.

Step Two: (Preparing the pocket)

Take your 8" X 6" pocket patch and fold each edge in ºíí. Press to hold its form. Sew the top edge of your pocket piece to hold the fold down. (This is the top of the pocket, no raw edges here!)

Lay your lining piece with the right side facing you and position this pocket patch in the middle. Make sure it's not in the way of any side seams, or the bottom, otherwise you can place this wherever you find it works best for you. Pin your pocket in place. Sew around three sides to the lining fabric leaving the top seam unattached, making sure you're only sewing through one piece of the lining fabric. (Optional: Run a seam down the middle of your newly attached pocket to section it off and create two pockets) You can also add as many of these pockets as you'd like, just cut enough in the beginning and attach on both sides, wherever you feel you need more pockets!

Step Three: (Making the Bag forms)

Take your newly completed lining (complete with pocket!) and fold right sides together with the natural fold at the bottom to create a 20íí X 25íí rectangle. Stitch each side closed to make one bag form. Repeat with bag fabric. You will now have two separate bag pieces. Keep both bag forms turned inside out and make the corners as follows: (see pictures for clarification).

Create a triangle at each bottom corner with the side seam centered on top. I love my rotary cutting mat to help facilitate the process. Figure out what you want the bottom width to be. I wanted a good firm flat bottom, so I went with 4". If you want the bottom a different size, put that on your measurement and then add Ωíí for seam allowance. Check this very carefully before cutting.

In this photo I'm measuring the 4" seam. You might want to mark this with a pencil for sewing. Then I moved the ruler 1/2" down to create the seam allowance. Check again before cutting to be sure the side seam is straight on the mat and the triangle edges are aligned.

Cut across your line, and pin to hold in place. Do this on each side, sew, and press.

Now you should have two bag bottom corners that look something like this.

Step Four: (Attaching the handles)

Turn your bag form right side out. Center each smaller handled on the right side of the bag fabric about 1/2" up from the top of the raw edge. Pin this in place. (I double pinned it because I hate pin slippage) Be sure not to twist the handle as you're laying this out. Do this on each side of the bag form. Take your long body strap and center each end across the side seam on the bags. Center the strap and attach 1íí higher than the natural raw edge. This is a good point to test for length and comfort. Make any necessary length adjustments at this point. Do a basting stitch along all handles, making sure to tack them down securely.

Step Five: (Finishing the bag)

Take your bag lining still turned wrong side out and place your bag form inside it. This makes right sides together. Pin across the top securing the two bag forms together. Your straps that you sewed on earlier are now lying between the bag lining and the bag fabric, (these two fabrics are laying right sides together) Make any necessary adjustments at this point to get all seams to lay flat and straight. It takes some fussing but you can do it!

Sew around the top edge, being careful to grab the straps in your stitching (for extra security) and leaving a 5-6íí gap. Make sure to backstitch at both ends of your sewing as the seam will be stressed in the next step.

Reach in through the opening and pull the lining through the gap you left earlier. (As you finish pulling the layers through, the lining snaps into its proper place inside the bag.) Fuss around with it, and give it a good shake to get everything properly aligned.

Fold the raw unfinished edge inside the bag and press. Stitch ºíí seam all around the top of the bag, making sure again to catch your bag handles. (Optional, you can run another seam Ωíí underneath your original one to catch the tabs of the bag handles and give it some extra security)

Step Six: (Attaching Velcro)

In all actuality, this step could be skipped. If you're not concerned with a closer on the bag, then you're done! If you're like me and you're a tad OCD about your stuff staying where you put it, then read on!

Cut a six inch strip of Velcro of each the sticker and the receiver. (Not sure what they're REALLY called, so we're going with sticker and receiver!) Center the sticker piece of Velcro in between the handles on one side and pin in place. Attach the receiver on the opposite side, making sure to line them up. Pin all pieces in place, making sure that the receiver and sticker align when you close them. Sew around each piece and secure onto the bag. Test it out if you feel the need. (Come on! Give it a big ole' RIP!)

And that's basically it! This bag is so simple to do that once you do it once you'll become addicted!

I want to say thank you again to my host All Things Fee for letting me guest post! Everyone is welcome to come check out my blog over at quiltedeuphoria.blogspot.com I love getting to know all of you, and look forward to seeing many of you in the future!

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