Sunday, January 10, 2010

Belated Christmas gifts.. part 1

I had a few Christmas gifts left to finish and I was able to cross 2/3 of them off my to do list tonight. Hooray! I know it sounds bad and very belated, but I have a good excuse. Well, for one gift I do. That is the one I'm blogging tonight.

To set the scene a bit, my brother and his girlfriend Kate flew from New York (by way of Dallas, Texas to see her family) to spend the holidays with us. Kate is wonderful, and I knew I wanted to make her a handmade gift of some sort. My brother recommended a bag, but having only met her a handful of times, I was not comfortable choosing fabrics and patterns. NY is much more trendy and funky that the Midwest - would she want something fun and bright? Vintage and homey? Classy and understated? How to know what suits her best? My brother is of little use in that department, so instead of guessing, I printed up an exclusive gift certificate from "the Dabbler" and stated she could peruse the archives and find something she liked. Happy day for us both when she picked the Pleated Beauty from Amy Karol's Bend the Rules Sewing book. Absolutely, one of my favorite bags to make and drool over, as I'm sure you know if you read my blog frequently, semi-frequently or at all. My every day purse is one so I can attest to the functionality and 'beauty' first hand. Double happy day when she said to make it fun and bright. Right up my alley.. hope a touch of whimsy is OK as well.

I used fun Tina Givens fabrics for the exterior panels, and a hodge podge of her fabrics for the handles too. The inside fabric is a thrifted vintage sheet that matched perfect. I built in 2 pockets, and closed the larger one with some Velcro. I added a magnetic clasp to close the bag as well.

I had a little flannel on hand to line the straps, but not enough to line the entire bag. (note to self: time to hit the thrift stores and look for more flannel sheets). I ended up lining the bag with wool felt I had picked up in the remnants land at Joann's a long while back. It feels wonderful... sturdy and strong but still flexible. While I've made a boat load of these bags, this is the first time my seams all matched up perfectly! Check them out...

This baby will be off to NY tomorrow... hope she likes it. Merry Christmas Kate! (though I don't think she'll read this prior to receiving it in the mail).

In case you are wondering, I'll blog the other 1/3 of the gifts I completed tonight after the actual act of gifting occurs tomorrow. Since that giftee is a blog reader, I don't want to give it away!

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