Thursday, March 13, 2008

Laura's Sweat Shop

I've been away for a bit because I'm frantically working until all hours on Amy Butler's messenger bag and let me tell you, there are a lot of pieces in that bugger! And you have to be very careful and very sober (I've learned from experience) while cutting it out. Some pattern pieces are used for 3 different parts of the bag in addition to using them for different fabrics: lining, canvas, or exterior! Keeping them straight is a full time job in itself.

I've also decided (and I hope this isn't a major goof) to use fusible batting instead of canvas. The canvas is there to provide support and strength, but do you have any idea how heavy canvas is? Pick up a couple of yards in your hands and you'll find out! Added to the weight of my 14" computer, accessories, and the bag itself, I don't feel like getting a work out while carrying it.

Again this comes from experience! It harks back to the time that Hans and I had to literally run from one end of San Juan's airport to the other 3 TIMES (and still missed our flight)! First of all their airport is loooooong and our terminal was the last one in the building and very deceptively labeled # 1. Second of all , in an idiotic attempt of mine to design a unique carry on bag, I created a monster. It was a bucket shape, made from old blue jeans (HEAVY) with pockets all around the front, in which I put 4 hard back books (what the hell was I thinking?) and anything dropped into it was immediately lost. It's narrow leather shoulder strap bit into me, forcing me to clutch this monstrosity to my chest as we ran like terrorists though the airport.

But I digress! Back to the bag! Changes that I'll be making:

A wide strap flush across the back (below the back pocket zipper) that will secure the bag to my rolling luggage's extending handle, with the bag sitting on top. (I'll post an example of what I'm trying to explain, when I'm done).

I don't want the computer flopping around the inside of the bag , so adjustable Velcro straps will be added to hold it against the back.

Side pockets for magazines or drink bottles. The sides are 3 inches wide so I'll make the pockets slightly wider and pleat them at the bottom in the same manner as the front pockets and elastic will be inserted at the top so they don't just gape open.

A D-ring will be attached at the top of the side panel in the same seam as the handle.

I'm going to make a bag that holds my HUGE (sarcasm!) quart size baggie that contains all my liquids, and it will also hold my passport. Then when we are giggling and cavorting our way through security, I can hang the 'liquid' bag onto the D-ring, whip out the baggie (without having to dig for it) and pop it right back in when the security people are done torturing and interrogating me.

We will be flying once again next month to go visit Hans' family and when I'm being searched, questioned, and prodded, I'd like to be properly accessorized!


Angelia said...

I've looked at this pattern before... I look forward to seeing it done... sounds a little time consuming!

btw... I have the patterns all together I want to send u! Now if I could remember to give them to Bald Man to ship....

Marji said...

I've run the length of the airport in SanJuan too - only to find our flight delayed so the run was unnecessary.
When Amy Butler calls for canvas though, isnt she referring to Hair Canvas interfacing?
And, ok, I talk with my hands and lots of parenthesis I already like you. But I have to know, and really don't want to wait, What is the significance of Sew At Sea?
If you check out my blog you'll see the big honkin' machine that I'm purchasing right now, that will be my sew-at-sea machine. At 47 lbs, if it ever quits working, it'll make a great auxiliary anchor.

laura said...

From what other people have written, I think it means just plain old canvas. I see that the hair canvas is dry clean only. But I have to say I really like fusible batting!