Monday, April 18, 2022

Bag making sew day on May 19

Most of us have patterns we've been longing to make, but if you are one of the few who needs a bag pattern for sew day in May, here are some suggestions.

Sources for free bag patterns 

 “moda bake shop free bag patterns” (search revealed dozens of free patterns!) 

 35 FREE Coin Purse Patterns (sewingsupport.com) 

 Free Sewing Patterns – Bagstock Designs 

 https://sewcanshe.com/free-bag-patterns/ 

 https://www.allpeoplequilt.com/bags-pillows-gifts/bags-and-purses/free-bag-patterns

If you have other sources not mentioned above, please share them in the comments!

Here is the bag I taught years ago at a NewBees class:

  

UFO Tote Bag            


Supply list:

UFO blocks – recommend 12” or larger, cut into strips – or other scraps or several fat quarters or some 2 ½” strips from a jelly roll… whatever you have – any scraps are fair game!

½ yard of lining fabric (or 2 fat quarters)

½ yard of fusible fleece (I like the thinnest fusible fleece for bags but the foam is getting very popular too – I really prefer the fusible fleece for this as it is much easier to handle through the sewing machine.)

¾ yard for handles and outer bag – note (1 ¼ yd) belt webbing can be substituted for handles – reduce yardage to ½ yd of fabric.

3” full width strip for bag facing – I used a contrasting fabric that was not used much in my bag – but you can use whatever you like… - fold/press in half lengthwise (binding wise) and set aside*** Note:  wider is better, but narrower won’t work.  A 3” strip will only give you a 1” facing.

Thread that matches the lining fabric

Sewing machine – walking foot helpful but not required.

This project will use up some of those blocks you may have started and decided you just did not like well enough to finish… or maybe just a bunch of scraps that have no other purpose.

If you have no orphan blocks, any strips will do…. A few fat quarters will be enough to substitute for the blocks.  I used six 12” blocks from a 9 block quilt that I was never going to finish.  I cut them up into strips of varying widths from 1 ½” to 2 ½” – or maybe 3” not parallel but narrow at one end and wider at the other.  It doesn’t matter how wide you cut them as long as the cuts are straight.  The wider you cut, the fewer you need… hint, hint.

I had another piece of fabric in the stash that was about ¾ yard – I cut two 4” strips across the full width for straps and set them aside.  From the rest, I cut for the outside top and bottom of the bag – 3 inches wide x WOF for the top, and 6” x WOF for the bottom. 

And …. I cut ½ yard for the lining from another fabric.

First, I steamed the lining fabric to a piece of fusible polyester batting.  I cut this into two pieces to make it easier to handle – a front and a back!  Each piece was about 20” x 18” (like fat quarters!)

I marked two parallel lines (with a permanent pen) on the top and bottom of the fleece side to guide where my strips should cover.  You can cover yours in a wider or narrower strip, but I recommend at least 6- 8”.  Mine was 10”, but 8” looks good, too.  If you make a narrower strip, you’ll need more fabric for the top & bottom.  Think of it this way, you have an area 18” high and 20” wide to cover with fabric.  Your pieced section will need to be 20” wide, so you may, if necessary, adapt the height to accommodate the size of blocks or scraps you are using.  My blocks were 12”, but I trimmed them to fit 2 bands of piecing 10” high and 20” wide.

Starting in the middle, I used the ‘quilt as you go’ method to sew the block/strips to the middle of the fleece.  Make sure the strips cover the guidelines on both ends (top and bottom) as you sew them down.  Sew them ‘right sides together’ - You want to go a little past the lines with your stitches, then pull your threads to the ‘inside’ of the seam and tuck the thread tails into the seam allowance on top.  Use ¼” seams for the strip piecing.

Complete a band of strip piecing through the center of both pieces.  Make sure you have covered those lines you drew on the batting! You may want to snip off any strips that go well past the lines – but you want to allow for about ½” seams in the rest of the bag.

Square up both sections once strips are completed.

Measure both fleece/pieced sections and trim so that both have the same measurement from the pieced section to the top edges and the bottom edges before adding the bottom and top fabrics.

These will also be added with the “sew & flip” technique. – you may want to re-mark guidelines onto your pieced sections to make sure you enclose all the ends in this seam.

After adding the top and bottom fabric to both pieces, baste or zigzag (not satin stitch, but a wide open zigzag) along the edges to help prevent them from sliding when you sew the seams – I like to sew all the way around both pieces with a zigzag stitch to cover the raw edges, since that’s all the finishing they will get in this bag.  If you have a serger, that also makes a nice finish to these edges.

Note:  there is no lining or turning required with this bag!

The only difficult part is sewing the side seams so that both sides match exactly…. But if they don’t it isn’t going to make the bag any less useful!

For the straps, you can use a finished belt webbing in a color to match, cover the belt webbing with a matching fabric or make straps from leftover batting with fabric strips wrapped around it and sewn for reinforcement.  A full width strip (4” or so) with a 1” strip of batting in it will make a nice set of straps.

The straps are usually cut about 20” long.  Some like them shorter, some longer – cut your straps short or longer to your taste.  Make sure they are both the same length.

Straps:  Cut 2 strips 4" x 20".
Fold and iron the strips in this way – tucking the webbing or fleece into the first fold– it doesn’t show in these pics…Sew the edges and make sure the handles are the same length. Fancy stitches are optional.

 Mark the center of each top bag piece with a straight pin, then measure 3” to each side and put pins there also.  The inside edges of the straps will be alongside those pins, which are 6” apart.  Go ahead and sew (baste) the straps to both sides of the bag now (with the straps hanging toward the outside bottom of the bag.  Again, use a zigzag stitch along the edge so the strap edge does not ravel, then sew again with a straight stitch so the straps are secure.  Back stitch if you feel inclined…

Pin the straps to the outside body of the bag until after the side seams and bottom are sewn. 

***Top Edge Facing:

Turn your bag right side up in front of you – leave the straps pinned for now – pin the pressed facing strip(s) to the top edge of the bag – raw edges together, fold toward the bottom, on the OUTSIDE of the bag, OVER the raw edges of the straps.  Sew this facing to the top edge of the bag using your walking foot with a ½” seam allowance.  Press the facing up away from the body of the bag.   

Now sew the side seams – top to bottom – fold the facing seams in opposite directions to make the side seam less bulky and easier to turn…then sew across the bottom – use a ½” seam allowance (or more).

Press all seams open – use steam and/or starch.

Turn the facing to the inside of the bag.  The fold is now on the inside, ready to cover that unsightly raw edge at the top.  Pull the now unpinned straps up into ‘carry position’ – pin the facing with the pins on the outside of the bag – be sure to tuck in those facing/side seam allowances or trim them so they don’t show.  With facing side down, topstitch ¾” and ½” from the top edge.  Use a decorative or matching thread.  Again, FANCY stitches are optional!

Press side and bottom seams open.  You may need to ‘unstitch’ the corners to get them to lay flat.

Form box bottom.

With bag still wrong side out, align side and bottom seam of one corner – flatten the point with seams together, steam press the points open, mark a sewing line about 2” in from the corner/point.
 Note – the further you sew from the point, the wider your bag will be – you decide how ‘flat’ you want your bag!  I make mine about 4” wide.  Just make sure that BOTH of your corners are the same distance from the point! Repeat the operation for the other corner.

You are almost done!

Clip all threads, trim any straggles, and your bag is finished! 

Bring your bag to next guild meeting for show & tell

 Note:  This bag can be adapted to a much smaller bag for gift size bags or children’s totes.  Send me pictures!

 


Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Quilt Show & Tell Pictures

Show & Tell on Monday March 21, 2022

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If any of these are yours and you would like info on your quilt included - please email info to me at grannygoodstuff@ymail.com


























 












Tuesday, February 22, 2022

TUTORIAL from Quilt Company East Quilt Guild Sew Day - 2-19-2022

With so many guild participants and friends from far and near joining in on ZOOM, it seems appropriate to share some of the goings on with those unable to attend. The block of the day was very well received so let's put it here for future reference!

This block tutorial was presented as a Power Point slide show at the QCE Sew Day on Saturday February 19, 2022.

All guild members are encouraged to make a block for Community Quilts. Choose a variety of Black on White and White on Black prints for contrast. Note how blocks can be a Star, a Cross, or a big X.
You decide!



See the examples towards the end for ideas.






Notice how this block looks like an X?



Bright colors go so well with the black & white prints!  

Add the coordinating borders.

Here are Sally's blocks:




Thirty blocks make a twin size quilt approximately 77"x92"!

Please leave comments below 
- we love feedback. :-)







Monday, June 7, 2021

Picnic Time

Our annual June Potluck was a "July Picnic - BYOF" this year.

We met up at 5:30PM on Monday July 19th at Beulah Church in Churchill for our first "in person" full guild event since the onset of the Pandemic. Members provided their own food - not for sharing, like we usually do - just enough for one.  The Guild provided beverages (bottled water) and a cupcakes for dessert.

The first order or business was to install our new officers as President - Adrienne Hunter and Secretary - Tonya Nardi. Of course I did not get pictures.  Sorry!

The next order of business was to present out outgoing President Lynn Koza with the gift quilt that so many of our members had gratefully contributed blocks. Organized by Vice President Sally Martin, Thea McCurry (yours truly) had designed the quilt not knowing how many participants might contribute, and Jian Li had very helpfully assembled and finished the quilt.  Lynn really seemed surprised and appreciative! 

We proceeded to share some of the member's "Pandemic Projects" from the past year. Below are some of these projects - some without explanations as I am getting more forgetful these days.

Some of the many "Shimmer" quilts from a recent ZOOM workshop lead the way.



A lovely hand quilting project by our incoming President was very impressive!

An intrigue of log cabins from Karen Luce!

Ruth Ann Ritter finished several small projects!



A masterpiece from Marlene Finoglietto!


Sally Martin shared a sampler from another recent ZOOM workshop!

National Quilt Museum 2021 Block of the Month interpretations by Thea McCurry. 



Our next meeting will - hopefully - be in September. We will probably wear Covid masks, so bring one just in case. 

If you are a guild member who can remember something I forgot to include (such as the names of the workshop presenters) please add the info in the comments below.



Friday, August 21, 2020

QCE Update 8/21/20

 

Facebook, Blog, Zoom, etc.

Hello Quilters! I’ve missed you all so much. It seems like forever since we’ve been together at Churchill for a regular, in person meeting.  It also looks like it will be a while longer until we can be physically together. To help us all keep in touch while we wait, we are and will continue to take advantage of whatever we can on the Internet. To aid in that social distancing requirement, most meetings will be held online. For your viewing pleasure, all guild members are invited to join our Guild Facebook page (if you have not already) at https://www.facebook.com/groups/122668044442741

Facebook also allows us to have albums where we can post pictures of our latest quilts and other projects. I have created albums where any member can upload, and albums for our 'special interest' groups such as Creative Quilters and the recent results of the Progressive Quilters as well as past meetings and monthly Show N Tell.   https://www.facebook.com/groups/122668044442741/media/albums

Also available on FB are files of various forms and documents such as the membership application form: https://www.facebook.com/groups/122668044442741/files

If you are not already a FB member, please send a request through the FB site so I can “admit” you to our private QCE page. There are several albums on our FB site where you can add photos of your latest quilts – you might want to use a ‘stamp’ or ‘label’ on your photo if you prefer not to post anything other than your photo.  For those who are concerned, you can view once you are admitted, but there is no obligation to post comments or photos. Also, if you don’t want to use your ‘work name’ you can let me know via text or email of your “QCE ID” which can be a slightly miss-spelled version of your name, or a totally fictitious name of your choosing, such as the “kwlt kween” id that my sons gave me many years ago.

Thanks for being a guild member, and please renew so you can take advantage of all the innovations that will be happening as we move into our electronic future, however long this situation lasts.

Here is one of my quilts waiting on the "to be quilted" line:

SHOW N TELL

Please let me hear from you by leaving a comment below.