Wednesday, November 8, 2023

It's In the Bag with and Island Batik


Honestly, this is one of my favorite challenges!  There are lots of great challenges, but making something like a bag is different!
Island Batik asked the Ambassadors to choose a bag, and pick fabrics from an assigned group, and By Annie would send us all of the supplies needed to make that bag.  Island Batik includes the fabrics. 

My fabric collection is called Limerick.  It was designed for Raija Salomaa by Kathy Engle. Some precuts are in shops now, and yardage will be available soon. 

This was the Surprise bundle included in our June boxes, but we got the yardage needed for the bag as well.  So generous, and simply gorgeous.  My Irish heart loves the Celtic theme tjaps, and the purple, teal, navy and green are so pretty together.  You know I love purple, and Teal is also a favorite.  

By Annie had packaged everything I needed for my pattern, Divide and Conquer, a great organizer tote, including the vinyl, zippers, interfacing, mesh, Soft and Stable foam batting, buckles and slides, and strapping for the handles. 

Included with pattern is an Add On Video coupon, so you can watch the videos specific to this bag, free.  They were SOOO helpful.  They always are.  This bag is a little different from other By Annie I've made, but I'm always up to a challenge.  I opted for the larger size, which will be about 11 by 16".  It has 2 clear vinyl pockets on each side, and 2 double sided pockets attached in the center, with mesh and zippers.

I picked the dark purple square print tjap for the outside, the white and aqua Celtic design for the inside, and teal Celtic triangles for the accents, which include binding, handles and trim sections.  

I put the main fabrics on my Handi-Quilter Amara with the Soft and Stable in the middle and used Pro-Stitcher to quilt the layers for the bag.  I think next time I'll baste extra trim on the backing yardage so I can really quilt the whole outer fabric.  Island Batik did give us a little more for getting it on the long arm.  Again, so generous.  

The Surprise bundle.  No, I didn't need to use any of these, I'm saving them for a sew along with my guild.  

So after quilting, and cutting all the pieces, I added stickers to keep them organized.  Annie provides a page you can copy to tag the pieces.  I printed it on my shipping label page, and cut out the ones I needed, and could stick it right on the pieces, then clipped the sections together (bag front and bag back have one sticker, so clipping them with Wonder clips helps!)  

Although my bag isn't completed yet, I have a good start.  As some of you may know I've had some health issues lately, and was sick again last week.  I got an appointment with an ENT who works with an allergist to see if there's something that we can do to help me feel better more often.  Unfortunatly, the medicine he wanted me to try, an inhaler, caused several side effects, which knocked me down again.  I need something that isn't medicine, but I have so many allergies.  Anyway, back to the bag. 

Since I haven't sewn clear vinyl lately, I really was happy to try the By Annie version.  It's wonderful.  It's thick, but clear, and sews pretty easily.  In the video, Annie suggests using painter's tape to cover the bobbin cover on her machine, which is the only place the vinyl seems to "cling".  I didn't have painter's tape handy, but did have a post-it note, and used that over my bobbin cover, and the vinyl slid through the feed dogs like any other fabric.  I was impressed!  I also used my Janome 9450's walking foot with the skinny foot, because I know that foot is 1/4" from the needle.  I usually use the zipper foot on zippers, but this worked just as well.  Of course, I used a Schmetz Microtex needle for the parts I've done so far, and will switch to a Denim 14 when I get to the thicker parts of the assembly.  I'm using a matching aqua cotton thread in 50wt and a 40wt purple for sewing, and changing often to match the fabric I'm sewing.  Both are from Aurifil.  

Current progress:
Bag front, with zippered pocket.
Bag back, with a zippered pocket, and the teal section is actually a strap to slide over the handle of a wheeled bag.  It's attached in the center by hook and loop tape, which was also included in the supplies. 
This is one side of the inside of the bag, showing my quilted design, but the clear vinyl zippered pocket will be attached by a side strip, so it becomes about 3" deep.  

This is the front and back of one of the inside flip pockets.  Both sides have mesh and zippers, so smaller items like a seam ripper, needles, thread, etc can go in here, and fabric or blocks or other larger supplies can go in the clear vinyl sections.  If I choose to use it for sewing, that is.  I haven't decided yet! 

Keep watching my blog for updated finished photos.  I'll share again.
While you're waiting, I hope you visit the rest of the blogs for this hop.  Leave a comment here before the end of November for a chance to win some fabric from my overflowing Island Batik stash!  USA has free shipping, but if you live outside the US and agree to cover the balance of a flat rate envelope, you can enter as well. Thanks!

Leah and Emily are also sharing this gorgous collection and their bags today, so please go to their blogs

Brenda Alburl ~ Songbird Designs Renee Atkinson ~ Pink Tulip Quilting Pamela Boatright ~ PamelaQuilts Susan Deshensky ~ Lady Blue Quilts Brittany Fisher ~ Bobbin with Brittany

Preeti Harris ~ Sew Preeti Quilts Mania Hatziioannidi ~ Mania for quilts Reed Johnson ~ Blue Bear Quilts Victoria Johnson ~ Forever Quilting for You Randi Jones ~ Randi’s Roost

Connie Kauffman ~ Kauffman Designs Emily Leachman ~ The Darling Dogwood Denise Looney ~ Quiltery – For The Love Of Geese Leah Malasky ~ Quilted Delights Maryellen McAuliffe ~ Mary Mack Made Mine

Anorina Morris ~ Lisa Pickering ~ Lisa’s Quilting Passion Sarah Pitcher ~ Pitcher’s Boutique Claudia Porter ~ Create with Claudia Lana Russel ~ Lana Quilts

Elita Sharpe ~ Busy Needle Gail Sheppard ~ Quilting Gail Sandra Starley ~ Textile Time Travels Jennifer Thomas ~ Curlicue Creations Suzy Webster ~ Websterquilt

In addition to all the lovely bags and inspiration, Island Batik is giving away 2 bundles of fabric, including Limerick.  Click on the Rafflecopter link to enter, and remember to leave a comment.  The full schedule of the blog hops are available at Island Batik's blog

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Pamela said...

So sorry you are not feeling well - hopefully you will feel better soon! I love these fabrics and your project is going to be beautiful!!!

Sandra said...

Really lovely fabric. It is going to be quite handy whether you use it for quilting or something else. Looks like lots of zippers and unusual materials and lots of binding too. You are definitely on the home stretch.

Jennifer Thomas said...

I've sewn that bag. There is a lot of steps! It's going to be gorgeous in those fabrics. I hope you feel better soon.

Kathleen said...

One of the funniest sewing adventures I had was trying to make a lion costume for my son - a windy day and fake fur made quite the mess! Meanwhile, I love the pieces of your bag...I have had some pieces quilted for awhile and am hoping to begin in earnest next week. I hope the docs find something for you is hard to feel lousy.

denise said...

I really love the fabric you chose for the shell. Wishing you a speedy recovey.

Joyce Carter said...

So pretty Maryellen. You did an awesome job. I love the fabrics you used and I really love this bag. Anything with lots of pockets are great. Is the mesh hard to work with?

Diantha said...

I'm sorry about your health issues. I hope you can get some resolution soon. I like the progress so far on your bag; am anxious to see the finished project!

Dawn F said...

This is a pretty collection of fabric! Your bag looks great so far.

Anonymous said...

Hope you are better soon .... take it easy ... your bag is looking great!!!

cshelleyqbq (at) gmail (dot) com
Cindy Shelley

Lee said...

Sending best thoughts for a speedy recovery! I am loving the look of your bag - that bag will look great in those fabrics!

Solomae said...

The bag looks great! Love the fabric and the quilting design is perfect too.

Elizabeth said...

great bag pattern nd great fabrics to make it from.

Cindy Shelley said...

Ove this colorway. Your bag is wonderful. I love batiks.

Homesewn said...

Love the fabric ! The bag looks great. The quilting is perfect. Hope you feel better soon.

Carol Ethier said...

Love your fabric choices! Bag making is a lot of fun - a lot of little steps that lead to one great result at the end!

Brenda @ Songbird Designs said...

Hope you are feeling better soon! I really love the fabrics you are using!

Nikki said...

love your fabrics....and I would love your scraps, lol!

VA said...

Such a beautiful bag! Bag-making is something I was intimidated by--until I tried one, and it actually turned out quite nice. Yours is especially nice with beautiful Island Batik fabrics!