thank goodness for embroidery floss. sometimes a little embroidery can save a piece of clothing. have some random oil stains that won’t come out of a favorite shirt, skirt, etc.? pull out your needle and some floss, and hey, no problem!
i suppose you could also cover the offending marks with fabric patches or maybe some flowers. speaking of which, i pulled some fabric strips out of my stash and tried out some quick-and-dirty flower-making.
i foresee more flowers in the future. i may have to cover a vest or purse with them, just for funsies.
SPEAKING OF PURSES… over the years, i’ve made loads of purses and shoulder bags, for myself and for friends. i started out winging it, with a couple rectangles of fabric and some webbing for a strap. nothing fancy, strictly utilitarian. eventually i learned how to add lining, flaps, pockets, handles, different types of straps… and i eventually found some patterns here and there, but mostly i’d just wing it, using whatever fabrics and trimmings struck my fancy at the time.
earlier this year, i figured i’d come up with a nice basic shoulder bag pattern. something that’s the size i tend to find useful, that i could modify with pockets, zippers, whatever, but that i wouldn’t have to “wing” every time i needed a new version. i made a few prototypes, two of which were sent to friends. the third was made from my “fancy fabric scraps” stash, and is now kind of falling apart after half a year’s daily use.
the flap is fabric i printed with my inkjet – it’s a scan of a page from a “strawberry moshi” book.
there are pockets on the front, sides and back. it’s fully lined, and has an inside zip pocket for my wallet.
you can see where that back pocket silk is tearing. so sad.
but that’s what prototypes are for! see how they wear, see how the pockets work out, whether the strap is long/wide enough, etc.
so i changed a few things with the pattern. made the sides wider, added some different pockets, and used cottons instead of random polyesters, rayons, nylons and silks. and this is what i got:
i used fabrics from the stash, mainly in red colorways.
the outside is reinforced with heavy-weight fusible interfacing. the flap has a layer of cotton batting, as does the strap (in fact, i think the strap may have two layers).
i forgot to check the strap length before sewing the lining to the outside, so it ended up being too long.
no problem – i just made a loop in it, which is a perfect place to clip my keys.
there’s a zipper pocket on the back, and another one on the inside.
i added a fabric divider in the middle, which was a bit of an experiment in itself. if i make another of these, i’ll have to reinforce/stabilize that middle divider a little better.
in any case, i call this one a success! it fits all my stuff, and it reduced my stash. win-win!