Selfish Sewing Week Featured Blogger: Sew Wrong
Lucinda is a Boston-area craft-a-holic obsessed with sewing and knitting, as well as other crafty goodness, and blogs about creating a handmade wardrobe at Sew Wrong. When she's not sitting at her sewing machine, she can usually be found with her running shoes on or swimming laps at the local pool.
UPDATE: The Senna Tote is no longer available on Indiesew. You can purchase the pattern here
It's been a doozy of a winter in New England, the worst one in the seven years I've been living here. So when I started thinking about what the make for Selfish Sewing Week, my thoughts immediately turned to making something cheery and bright to kick me out of my blahhh-weather slump. I think my Senna Tote
did the trick!
The fabric for this tote is courtesy of Art Gallery Fabrics, from the Cherie line by Frances Newcombe
- I majored in French in college, so the designs and story of the collection appealed to my inner francophile. Plus, the floral print of this fabric is so bright and cheery - I can't help but smile when I look at it, and it's the perfect fabric to welcome spring. For reference, the fabrics I used were: "Decoupage Couleur"
for the body, "Les Points Dust"
for the straps and bag bottom, and "Bon Voyage Lumiere"
for the lining.
To give the tote some structure and stiffness, since it's made out of quilting cotton, the bag is interfaced with a medium weight fusible interfacing and then underlined with 10 oz canvas or duck cloth. Have you ever worked with the stuff? It's pretty tricky, since it's so stiff and inflexible, and it definitely made it harder to sew the tote - a jeans needle is definitely a must! (Shhh I may have broke one...)
I love the outside pockets, a tiny one in the front and a big one in the back - good for stashing lip balm and some business cards, or whatever I need easy and quick access to. The magnetic snaps were easy to install and make the bag look so much professional! As an extra precaution, I added an extra piece of interfacing behind the snap before installing for extra reinforcement.
The lining was a no-brainer to me...I mean, how could I resist not just a bicycle print, but a girl-on-a-bicycle print? Too cute! I like how the inner pocket is customizable to what you need for organization, I made three compartments instead of two: one skinny one for pens and pencils that always flop around in my bag, and two medium sized ones for my phone and other knick-nacks that need to be corralled.
I also got to use one of my new custom clothing labels for the first time in my tote bag! Super fancy!
All in all, even though I had a few difficult moments (and so did my machine) sewing up this tote bag, I'm so glad I did! I know it's going to serve me well for all of the "jet-setting" and travel I'll be doing for work this year.