Little Bag Giveaway – Winner!

Participating in this Sew Mama Sew Giveaway was just as fun as the last one. My mouth is watering with some of your favorite summer drinks – Mojoto, rose wine, gin & tonic, blackberry lemon tea, white wine spritzer, elderflower cordial, Pimm’s Cup #1, water w/strawberries and basil, lavender lemonade, Arnold Palmer, pear cider – just to name a few!

The winner of the “Passport Bag” is Alexis of cobcottagecraft.com. Her favorite summer drink is rhubarb lemonade. Congratulations! I hope you’ll love you new bag!

The strap is 1 1/4" x 50".  The dimensions are 7 1/2" x 10".

The strap is 1 1/4″ x 50″. The dimensions are 7 1/2″ x 10″.


A big thanks to everyone who submitted an entry. I truly am flattered that you took the time to visit my blog to enter the Giveaway. I do have a few of these bags for sale in my Etsy shop, if you care to take a peek.

Best, Lori

Wear a little tie-dye on your hip

A few months ago I posted photos of some beautiful hand-dyed fabrics in Great Weekend for Dyeing. I felt they were too pretty to cut up, but I finally took the plunge and made a few things. Here are two fold over bags.

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I sewed on leather handles. A first for me. I just got a new machine that can do this. (40 year old Elna Super – I still love you and will always keep you.) The inside is fully lined with an Amy Butler print fabric. (Side note – I had the good fortune of attending an Amy Butler workshop in Los Angeles this past Saturday, and she truly is a rock star. Also the nicest – and possibly tallest – woman on the planet.)
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DSC_0642These bags are both for sale on Etsy.

Fun, Day of the Dead totes

I had been waiting since spring for this Andover fabric to be available. The collection, “Mi Famalia,”  is designed by Jesus Cruz who is an artist that lives in my city of Riverside, California. Both my husband and I are thrilled by this fabric – me, because I sew, and my husband, because he actually had Jesus as a student in a printmaking class several years ago at our local community college when Jesus was beginning his art career. My husband, Michael, can say “I knew him when…..!”

So far, with the fabric, I’ve made two totes. Same pattern with variations.

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The totes are also lined with fabrics from the collection. They have two interior pockets.
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The long strap tote sold before I had a chance to list it (I’m sure I’ll make more!), But the short handle one is for sale on Etsy.

These square bags are not square!

I seem to alternate between using new fabric and fabric from my stash. These two bags were made from fabric from my altered fabric stash. I had a lot of fun piecing together patchwork designs to make these classic square totes.

This varied patchwork is made from fabric that was tie-dyed in several small batches.

This varied patchwork is made from fabric that was tie-dyed in several small batches.

This square patchwork was made from fabric from JoAnn's that I bleached and over-dyed.

This square patchwork is made from fabric from JoAnn’s that was bleached and over-dyed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They are lined with hand-dyed fabric and have two interior pockets. They are have a layer of cotton batting for stability.
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Here are some close ups.

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These bags can be snagged in my Etsy Shop.

Refreshed – new handles for Sandra

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There are few things I love more than knowing that a bag that I have made has been well-loved and well-used. My bags are made of fabric, and while I pride myself on craftsmanship and functionality, it’s just a fact that fabric does not last forever. My dear friend Sandra came to me with a bag that I had given to her probably about eight years ago. The handles were completely broken. The sight of those broken handles distressed me, but I also felt pleased that she had used so much that the handles had worned out.
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Now Sandra lives green, she always looks for ways to save and re-use. I love that instead of tossing the bag out, she brought it back to it’s maker, and said, “The rest of the bag is still in perfectly good shape. Is there any way to replace the handles?” Argh, repairs and alterations, the two things I dislike using my sewing skills for. But because it’s Sandra and one of my bags, of course, I will think of some way to replace the handles.

I went through my hand-dyed fabric stash and was pleased to find a piece that would work perfectly with the purse. I removed the old handles. Instead of sticking the new ones between the layers, I sewed them on the outside.
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Now I’ve been inspired to “refresh” my own bags with worn-out handles!
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Sandra cooking on the left, our friend, Audrey in the middle, and me on the right.

Sandra cooking on the left, our friend, Audrey in the middle, and me on the right.

Laptop case for one of California’s greenest ladies

This summer my family and I had the good fortune of joining my college buddy Karen and her family at a historic beachfront cabin on Lake Tahoe for three glorious days. Another one of their guests was Karen’s sister-in-law, Liz Varnhagen, who, along with her husband, is dedicated to leaving the smallest footprint possible on this planet. Liz and her husband, Steve, have actually been featured in the San Francisco Chronicle as some of the state’s greenest people.

Liz’s birthday was coming up and Karen was lamenting to me that it was difficult to buy gifts for Liz because she gets annoyed if she is given something “new.” I suggested to Karen “Why don’t you commission me to make laptop case out of recycled t-shirts?” (I had noticed that Liz was using well-worn bubble wrap to protect her laptop.) Karen thought that was a brilliant idea, especially because she could give me some t-shirts of Liz’s late mother, and that would make the case even more special.

Here are the t-shirts Karen sent me.
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Here is the laptop case that I made.
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I vowed to myself that I would put nothing new on it. The front pocket is taken from the lining of a purse my daughter put in the goodwill pile.
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The straps are from a backpack I found in my daughter’s closet. (She just left for college, so I figure anything is fair game.)
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Here’s the inside.
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And here we all are enjoying a great dinner the porch of the historic cabin!
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cool cat bag

I ordered two cat print fabrics online because I wanted to make a tote for my son’s girlfriend who likes cats. I decided I would choose which one I would use for Ryley’s tote once the fabrics arrived, and I would make another bag with the other print. I just finished the other bag and put it in my Etsy shop.
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The fabric was originally grey, black and white with accents of pink. I over-dyed it with deep yellow and bright pink. The bag is fully lined with pink polkadot fabric and it has one interior pocket.
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The dimensions are 8″ x 8″ x 2″. You can throw it in the washer and dryer!
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Here’s the totebag I made for Ryley. She likes purple.
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