Monday, October 16, 2017

Mini Necessary Clutch Wallet

My latest sewing project was a wallet... a Mini Necessary Clutch Wallet, to be exact. I made it to go with my  Sunrise Saddle Bag. Here it is!


The pattern is by Emmaline Bags and can be found here. I think there have been thousands of full-size Necessary Clutch Wallets (NCWs) made by now. In fact, there's a Facebook group called "NCW Addicts", as once people make one, they tend to want to make more, and they seem to be great sellers at craft fairs, etc. When I saw the pattern for the Mini, I thought that was more the size I wanted, as I'm not really a clutch or big wallet sort of person. Note that if you do decide to make the Mini, you also need to buy the regular NCW pattern to get the full instructions. I was fortunate to be able to buy them both on a 50% off sale, so it was like only buying one pattern. :)

I used the same pleather and fabrics (Jess's Holding Pattern barkcloth on the flap) that I used for my Saddle Bag, so they really are a matched set. I used a magnet snap closure for both. I even remembered to add my little label before it was too late to sew it where I wanted it. Ha!


Here's a side view. It's still a pretty good-sized wallet, and it can hold a lot.


Incidentally, I didn't even notice this myself, but my son did when he was examining it... look at the cool design at the top! That was not planned, but I love it!


It opens up to several sections. It has card slots on each end with a slip pocket behind them for holding paper money, receipts, etc. There's also a little zipper pocket for coins or whatever.


I confess that I used several of Erin (Erickson) Gilbey's Dog Under My Desk techniques instead of some of the NCW instructions when I put this together. I used her flap instructions from the Sunrise Saddle Bag pattern; the Essential Wristlet instructions for the zipper pocket; and best of all, the card slot pattern and instructions from the Encore Clutch because they turned out to be the perfect length (I just added a bit to the width) and they were so much easier than trying to do it the NCW way! So there are your tips if you decide to make one yourself. ;)

Here is my matched set!


I love them both, even though the wallet is bigger than I anticipated and takes up most of the space in the bag (which is only 85% of the original SSB size). But that's okay... this is my bag for traveling light, and I don't plan to carry much in it, anyway.

Monday, October 9, 2017

A new model

I was so delighted to receive this photo last week. It's our grandniece wearing the Geranium top that I made for her. Isn't she absolutely adorable? The top is still a bit big for her, but when it actually fits her in colder weather, it'll be great layered over a long-sleeve shirt. 

(Photo courtesy of her mom and dad, and used with their permission.)

Details on the top can be found here.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Sunrise Saddle Bag #2

I've been thinking for awhile that I need a new purse. Although I still love my Mini Daytripper and have been carrying it around everywhere, I tend to load the kitchen sink and everything else into it, and it seems just too much to carry for a quick trip to town for groceries or an evening out for supper.

Last May I tested the Sunrise Saddle Bag pattern for Dog Under My Desk. I really liked it but thought it was still a bit too big for what I had in mind, so I decided to try making one at 85% of the original size. I simply selected that size on my printer and reprinted the pattern.

I also wanted to use my favorite fabric from Jess's Holding Pattern barkcloth that she designed for Cloud9 Fabrics... and I wanted to use pleather. I made the main body pleather and the flap barkcloth. Here's how it turned out.


Last Christmas I found a package of metal zippers in my stocking (great idea, Santa - thanks!), so I used one of them on the back of the purse. I love the look! I also added some rivets on the strap and its tabs... just because I like the extra bling.


The pattern calls for a twistlock closure, but since I didn't have one in antique brass to match the other hardware, I chose to use a magnetic snap.


Everything went together very smoothly. I thought I might have trouble with the final topstitching going through all those layers at the seams and strap tabs, but my good ol' 47-year-old Kenmore came through again. I used a topstitching needle, which helped, and I did hand crank carefully over the thickest spots, but I had no problems getting through them.

I am totally pleased with my bag! I wouldn't change a thing about it. Now I think it needs a matching wallet, don't you?

Oh, and here's the obligatory pose with it on me, so you can see the size. Grandpa happened to get home just as I'd finished it, and I asked him to be my photographer. It was soon to get dark, so I didn't bother to change into better clothes... sorry about that... but it still beats the bathroom mirror selfie, right? ;-Þ At least the cat that had been winding around my ankles decided to step away for two seconds, although I wouldn't have minded sharing the limelight with her. Ha.


In case you might be interested in this or any other Dog Under My Desk patterns, they're all on sale right now through October 1st at 25% off using the code word PACKING at checkout. Erin and Bob are busy packing up everything to move back to the USA from Australia! Yay!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Classy Cargo Dress

Well, this one's been a long time a-comin'! First I kept procrastinating on starting the sewing, then I finally finished it a couple weeks ago, but my model had scheduling conflicts and didn't show up until yesterday for the photo shoot.

It was quite a windy day, as the photos will show you. Forgive me for posting so many, but as I was going through them, they were just so fun that I couldn't resist sharing a bunch! (I also skipped a bunch more!)

This is the Classy Cargo Dress, from the pattern by Olive Ann Designs. The fabric is Jess's Spring Quartet babywale corduroy, designed for Cloud9 Fabrics.





It was definitely not a good hair day! But at least it was warm enough (80°) for a sleeveless dress. Note that the fingernails and toenails happened to coordinate very well!



The dress has a little kick pleat in the back to allow for easy movement.



The pattern also includes a size for an 18" doll. I of course had to make that one, too, to match!


Wind was still a problem for the hair. Kit's held a little better than Courtney's.


Kit had her own photo shoot a couple weeks ago. It wasn't windy that day.


I particularly love this last photo. It looks like it belongs in a fashion magazine, don't you think?


That's it for now. I hope you enjoy the pics as much as I do and maybe even got some giggles. I'll come back (tomorrow?) and tell you more about the pattern, etc. I have a few tips to share in case anyone's interested in sewing the dress.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Another winner

Now I get to show you the other sewing project that Courtney worked on for 4-H. This was a bit more challenging for her, because it involved a lot more fabric to maneuver under the presser foot! She and her mom picked out two colors of cozy flannel.


It involved setting some snaps. Courtney's hands weren't big enough to handle my KAMsnaps pliers, so I did that part, but she did the measuring and made the holes to set them through.


Almost done! Here she is, stuffing it...


... and now can you guess what it is?


It's a pillow bed!


It can be used for sleeping on, or propped up to lounge on, or read on...


... or just relax and be a little silly on.


It's very comfy! I know, because I tested it myself (but you don't need to see that photo). It also folds up completely, but I forgot to take a picture of that.

We used a tutorial found here. It was simple and fun to make, with lots and lots of straight stitching, which was good practice. She did a beautiful job, and it earned her a BLUE RIBBON! Yay!

Courtney's been dying to try it out overnight. She could hardly stand to wait for the fair to be over to do so. I have it on good authority that it's going to get tried out as a bed at her cousins' house this week. I suspect she will sleep very well!