Sunday, May 20, 2012

Swap You Field Gnomes For A.....?

I'm participating in my first online Flickr sewing swap via Modern She Made Swap. This is a secret partner swap and the final project must incorporate some type of circle. It's been a great experience so far, and today I finished my partner's main gift, which I'm calling the Field Gnomes Beat Bag.

After reading my partner's wishes, I knew I finally had a reason to buy some of those Heather Ross fabric scraps I've been drooling over on Etsy.

Who doesn't love a gnice gnome?!
Then it was deciding what to make. I LOVE making bags and I felt like these fabrics were just gneeding to be used in a bag...but how? Originally I thought about making fabric buttons and sticking them on the flowers...but that didn't seem special enough.

My idea was that the gnomes would "pop" out of the flowers, almost like an inside look into the field of wild flowers. I've been afraid to try to applique, but decided to do some research, because deep down, I knew applique would be the way to go. Then, I discovered reverse applique.

I did a practice piece with some Garden State inspired fabric...

...and felt like this could work out.

However, would a tote bag be too simple? I love tote bags..but some of the projects being posted on the Modern She Made Swap group pool were pretty intricate and complicated. Peer pressure and insecurity started to weigh me down, but I managed to push those feelings away. Instead, I started sketching out some dimensions and got out my rotary cutter.

The Beat Bag, a fusion of my tote bag and hobo hipster sling bag, was born. This is a great size, roomy, and casual.

The girl on the phone is my favorite!

Now it was time to make my partner's actual bag. I figured out my circle placement, cut my scraps, got out the glue stick and started reverse appliqueing with my machine. It just didn't seem right, so I decided to take a shot at handstitching the circles. I think that was the right choice.
Handstitched circles, gnomes, and mushrooms, Oh My!

Feeling pleased, I went to work on the lining of the bag. Seeing that the outside was so fancy, I felt like the inside needed something, so I added interior pockets.

Double pocket on yellow polka dots.

Then, I put it all together. Say hello to the Field Gnomes Beat Bag!

I'm a tad bit giddy over this bag!
I'm pretty pleased with how this bag came out and I hope she is as well. I'm finishing up a few extra goodies to put in my package, so I'll post a picture of the final package before I send.

It's just a happy, cheery, bag!

Beat Bag Is Something to Write Home About...

Feeling a bit like Dr. Frank-N-Furter today, I married my Totes Reversible Totes and Hobo Hipster style bags to create my new Beat Bag! Essentially it's a sling-style shoulder bag that can be customized with closures, interior/exterior pockets, applique, and endless fabric choices.

My Boudoir Beauty tote bags and clutch-o-ramas have been popular, so I thought I'd try the Beat Bag with a new print for that collection. Say hello to the "Strike A Pose" beat bag.

The exterior fabric is a print of lovely pin-ups.

The  interior is a red on red pin-up shoe fabric. Definitely a statement bag.

The finishing touch....a Courtastic Creations label!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Annette Pillow

Good things come to those who wait, or at least that is what I keep telling myself as I procrastinate on finishing projects for the special people in my life. My sister from another mister in PA recently (*cough* in August *cough) posted a vintage picture of a woman in a flowing peach dress and indicated her bedroom redecoration would be inspired by this print.

I jumped on this opportunity and told her I'd be honored to make her a pillow to help with the redecorating process. I gathered some fabrics from my stash, and we went back and forth via Facebook as she picked the fabrics.

Eight months later and that pillow is now finished and it's pretty grand, if you ask me.

Sprocket pillow in peach, burgundy, gold, green, and brown.
The border band is a gold color and print that is also the center button. The back is the "Gold Astaire" print from my favorite Circa 1934 fabric line.

Even more special, I get to give her this pillow in person on Tuesday!

Sidenote, I guess I should get started on the b/w version of this pillow that my real sister requested...

UPDATE: She loves it!
Fits right in!