April 2008

Well I guess Amy Butler improves a bit upon reflection.  I made up another of her patterns, the Kimberly bag as another store sample for my employer. 

Here is the pattern cover and made up sample from the pattern.  As is normal for me, I really dislike the fabric choices for the bag.  I find the floral prints she uses are really not to my taste, and really cause the patterns to look like they were made for someone 3 times my age.


                  Pattern Cover                                          Pattern Sample

This was a significantly easier pattern to manage than the Weekender.  There was no piping to fight, and there was hardly any Timtex.

The supply list for this project included:

Exterior fabric, lining fabric, thread, zipper, small peice of timtext for base, and fusible interfacing.  I chose a home decorator faux suede in lime green, and another Alexander Henry home decorator weight cotton in white and lime.  I lucked out and found a matching zipper in our “Make a Zipper” zipper by the yard selections.


I still have the same complaint as before as far as the quality of instructions.  The pattern instructions are still overly verbose, but knowing the issues, I just went through them ahead of time with a highliter and marked the critical parts.

This was a super fast bag to make.  It only took about 5 hours from cutting out to finish.  I did do a little additional trimming of bulk that wasn’t called for in the original pattern instructions.  But everything else worked out nicely this time.  The larger challenge for me, was doing all of the construction without pins.  This is the first time that I have worked with sueded fabric, and I had noticed as I was laying it out to cut out, that pin holes were showing somewhat.  So I broke out the trusty binder clips that I used while making the weekender, and they worked fine.


Finshed Bag

While I think the bag turned out nicely.  I was not very happy with the scale of it.  Once finished it is so long and squatty that it looks like a loaf of french bread.  I like the overall shape, but it either needs to be shorter in length or taller in height to be a good scale for me.  At the moment, its not a really good size for me.  Despite carrying a rather smallish purse myself, this really is so short that my wallet wouldn’t really fit in here, and with the length of the bag, all my stuff would slide forward or back and cause it to look lumpy.  A scarf or tassel might help the scale a bit, but at the moment my fellow staff members at work have been teasing me about it being a case for a lady’s pool cue. 🙂


Needless to say, despite my issues with the scale of the bag.  I still liked how it turned out.  There are definite possibilities for this bag, and it wouldn’t be to challenging to remake this pattern to better fit me.  I liked how easy to construct it was, and a different fabric choice would let me use pins, which would really make this quicker.  While I still wouldn’t call this an absolute beginner pattern, it is simple enough for someone with a few sewing projects under their belt, and is a good introduction to putting in a simple zipper.


Hi everyone,  new content is coming, I promise.  I have plenty of stuff to update you on.


First is this super simple Kwik Sew sleeveless tee from  Womens pattern 3277.  This was made from Sophia knit in black and red.  I decided to use the black just for a little fun and contrast.  This is to be a sample for a class at work.  We shall see if it actually happens….so far no one has signed up.  It was definitely a challenge to come up with a project that could be completed in 3.5 hours of class time for relatively new sewers….that would accomodate both misses and plus sizes.  If I am teaching someone how to make clothing I want them to have a reasonable chance at finding a suitable pattern that will fit.

Kwik Sew is an excellent pattern company catering mostly to the intermediate sewist, and folks who want lingerie or athletic clothing.  Unfortunately Kwik Sew as a company has not yet realized how badly their photographed models, and artists renderings of their patterns portray their patterns.  They have very little current styling, and most patterns tend to look pretty frumpy in the pattern books.  Look beyond this and their can be marvelous rewards.  They have excellent swimwear, dancewear, outerwear, and lingerie. 




 Finished Neckline

Coming soon:  another Amy Butler bag