Monday, February 27, 2012

Finishing a UFO! (Unfinished Object)

Now, I like to think that I am the type of person who starts a project, and doesn't start another project until the first one is finished. 
However, I am not that type of person. ;-)
I'm about 50-50, really. Fifty percent of the time I'll finish a project that I started within a reasonable amount of time. And the other fifty percent of the time I'll start a project and never, ever finish it. Then, without warning, it becomes a UFO - otherwise known as the dreaded unfinished object. 

This particular UFO was started in 2010, back when S and I lived in our second home. I had recently discovered the world of designer fabrics, purse patterns, & all the glorious ideas that come along with the sewing world. I was elated! I bought yards upon yards of beautiful fabrics & many, many patterns.
When I first sat down to begin my first project, something happened. 
I realized that all the fabric I had just spent hours picking out & days waiting for it to be shipped, this fabric, well it was just too beautiful to cut into! 
I was scared; I did not want to ruin the perfection of an entire yard of premium fabric.
So, I waited a few more weeks, slowly building up the courage to make that first cut.

The first purse pattern I wanted to tackle is this one, by Izzy & Ivy.
I loved (and still love!) the contrasting trim fabric & body fabric. I love the metal details on the handles. I also love the shape & the bow! The pattern arrived in a cute paper envelope, and the pattern was drawn on medium weight white paper, not the slippery tissue paper that I was expecting. The pattern was easy enough to cut out, that did not take too much time. I had bought some nice fusible fleece to line the bag with, and I also decided to install a magnetic clasp to help the bag stay closed.

I had all the trappings to finish this bag! Somehow though, life got in the way of my sewing dreams. I'm not sure how many hours I spent working on the purse while I was in Silver Spring, but I only got about 1/3 of the body sewn together. And there it sat, for over a year!

A few days ago, S & I decided to rearrange & tidy our home. It was then that I discovered the bag that was hiding my sad UFO. I decided that enough was enough, and I needed to finish the darn thing.

The funny part about this UFO is that I actually lost the pattern directions. I was able to locate all the fabric pieces that I cut out & all the paper pattern pieces, but not the directions!
I decided just to wing it. And you know what, it turned out awesome.  
I spent about four straight hours this afternoon finishing the bag, right down to the bow on the front!

After finishing this bag I had decided one thing: I'm still not entirely sure that I enjoy bias tape. I understand its use, and without it, this bag just would not work. I thoroughly read this tutorial & this tutorial on how to install bias tape, and mine did not turn out like the pictures in the tutorials. In my defense though, it was my first time!

That thought aside, I think I made a pretty sweet looking bag!    

Before I installed the handles

Close-up of zipper pocket, magnetic clasp, & slip pocket 

Close-up of handle part

Two handles & four handle tabs (I sewed the metal bits to the tabs first)

Close-up of the front bow

Its finished!

This purse is quite large, big enough for a large laptop, a cardigan, some books, some snacks, your wallet, & a small kitten.
I'm about 5'2 and this bag dwarfs me. I do enjoy a large bag though; more room to put all my stuff! 

I think this bag turned out just great!
And I love how well interfaced it is; it stands up on its own!
The fabric I used for the body & tie is by the very talented Tula Pink.
The navy fabric is a heavyweight canvas. I also used navy bias tape to complete the contrasting look.

I hope you have been inspired to go off & finish a UFO of your own!

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