Monday, September 6, 2010

Lavender Luggage

Since I made a little handbag shaped lavender bag for Australian Homespun Magazine recently, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of expanding on the theme.

An opportunity to write a guest post for Whip Up led me to spending WAY too much time on this little tutorial.... and then it was too long for Whip Up. Waste-not-want-not Nikki is recycling it here.....

Make the pattern:
1. Fold a 15cm x 12.5cm piece of card in half and centre a cd over the fold line, matching the edge of the cd with the top of the card.

2. Trace around the top half of the cd to make the curve at the top of the bag.

3. Measure 7cm up from a bottom corner and draw a line from that point to the cd-tracing, creating a smooth curve.

4. Fold the card in half again and cut along the curved line to make a symmetrical pattern piece.

Cut and Prepare:
1. Use the pattern to cut 2 in main fabric.

2. Cut 2 rectangles 15cm x 7cm in a contrast fabric.

3. Cut 2 straps 3.5cm x 22cm (or longer) in either main or contrast fabric.

4. Press a 6mm (1/4 inch) turning along a long edge of each rectangle piece.

Sew the bag:

1. Make the straps: (alternatively, use ribbon)
Use an 18mm bias tape maker to fold and press the outside edges of the straps to the centre. Fold each strap in half again, matching the two folded edges together and enclosing all the raw edges in the centre. (See DETACHABLE STRAP tutorial for details on how to make the strap with a bias tape maker).

2. Topstitch the full length of each strap 2-3mm from both edges.

3. Mark the strap placement on the main bag pieces - evenly spaced from the centre and beginning about 6cm from the bottom edge.

4. Align and stitch the ends of the straps into place on the right side of fabric.
5. Using basting spray or fusible webbing to hold the fabrics together, lay the rectangle contrast piece over the main bag piece (covering the raw ends of the straps with the folded edge of fabric).

6. Topstitch along the folded edge to attach the contrast to the main piece.

Alternatively, stitch the contrast piece first and overlay longer straps from the bottom edge (topstitch them in place to the top edge of the contrast piece).

7. Place the two main bag pieces right sides together and stitch across the straight edge at the bottom with a 1cm seam allowance, leaving a gap of 3-4cm (about 1 ½ inches) in the centre of the seam.

8. Press the seam allowances open and then fold the pieces back to right-sides-facing.
9. Stitch around the curved outer edge to join the two bag pieces together. Trim the curved seam allowances to about 3-4mm (1/4 inch) with pinking shears.

10. Pinch the corners at the base of the bag to align the side and base seams. Stitch a “boxed corner” seam 1-1.5cm (about half an inch) from the corner point.

11. Turn the bag to the right side and fill it with lavender flowers. A funnel made from rolled cardboard (Eg. the pattern!) makes this task easier.
12. When the bag is full of lavender, plug the hole with a little bit of hobby-fill or other woolly stuffing. This will stop the lavender from escaping as you finish the bag.

13. Cut a little rectangle of template plastic or cardboard to fit into the base of the bag. Slot it inside the base seam, tucking the short ends into the boxed corners..
14. Slip stitch (ladder stitch) to close the gap in the base seam and admire your new luggage!


Gay McDonell said...

How totally cute - totally practical - totally aromatic - but mostly totally cute!!

Ooty said...

Thanks! This is sooooooooooooo cute, and would be great for gifting =)

Unknown said...

It's just gorgeous , thanks so much !

Tanya said...

thanks! that's one for the one day list!

Fiona said...

Very, very cute!

Fer said...

Aw how sweet! Will definitely have to give this one a go. Thanks!

Anne said...

What a clever idea! And so cute, too!

I linked to your tutorial over at Craft Gossip Sewing:


quilary said...

Great little idea for using up left over fabric. Thank's for sharing.

Ady said...

That is too cute!!

Rosali said...

Gracias por compartir el tutorial. Saludos desde México. said...

Very cool! I'm so glad you got to share it all. I'll be linking to this.

Maaike said...

what a great idea! Thank you for sharing.
Love, Maaike

Anonymous said...

My granddaughter will love making these for Mum, teacher and aunts. Many thanks.