Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Phyll's Super Shopper

One of the really fun parts of doing the bags is being in on some sneaky stuff. :) Kathie contacted me a while ago about doing a Super Shopper for Phyll as a surprise for her birthday! How fun! (And happy birthday TODAY, Phyll!)

I was pretty familiar with her color preferences already, so Dave (Guide Dog for the Color Blind) helped me put together some amethyst purples and peridot greens. I put some feelers out within the SiberMal Society as to what the most popular handle-length was for the Super Shopper - long or short - and when Phyll voiced a preference for long ... I got to work! (Really. Sneaky is FUN!)

Here's the front of her Super Shopper Tote!

And the other side:

Yummy, don't you think? Here's a detail shot of the straps:

I used the poly pro again; it's really lovely to work with! And I quilted in a variegated YLI thread - Jewel.

Here's a peek inside!

The inside is quilted also, and has a nice, big pocket out of the batik with the writing on it. I LOVE that fab and was waiting for just the right project to use it in! Here's a close up of the outside - where pocket meets panels.

Kathie - thanks for letting me be part of the fun! And Phyll - enjoy your Super Shopper! Happy Birthday!

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Odds and Ends

Wow, have my Guide Dog for the Color Blind and I been busy in the Studio lately! He had some pretty exciting news on the Ao4 Digest today about some new fabs; I can't WAIT to play with them! He also showed everyone just how hard he works recently; those fabs were indeed used for Trace's Z Bag. Great job, as usual, Dave. ;)

So... in other news, here are some works in progress, starting with Patty's Deeve:

Still auditioning fabs, really. What would you think about that polypro for the handle/strap? It's deep purple and really looks cool.

This is a separate project (a Hold the Phone! Bag) for Patty:

Is it off-putting seeing bag guts, or is it cool? I find it fascinating, myself, so bear with me! :)

Here's a finished Boo Tote:

Cute, isn't it? Who doesn't love Mickey? It's a gift. More on that on a later post.

As Dave said on that Ao4 Digest post, I'm working on a Sitia Bag for an American Heart Association fund-raiser. Here it is in the early stages:

OK, real early stages. I'm actually much further along than that. The fabs are part of Sandy Gervais' Flirtations collection for Moda. I LOVE them!!! They make me think of chocolates.

I got in some cool new blue camo prints. I couldn't decide which I liked best, so I ordered three. I sent a picture of Dave showing them off (before I put them in the wash!) to the SiberMal Society and got this response back from Penny:

Dave's such a good salespup. I think she likes the one on the far right! :) The bright blue camo will be made into a Z Bag for her. Here are the fabs that may be joining it:

She specified, "Nothing red or pink or old lady" ... and "Go totally nuts and wacky on the inside." I think I have it covered. I may be adding something else bold. :)

I've also worked up an all-new design. I received a request for a more formal, small evening bag. A little clutch type. How fun! She wanted it formal on the outside, but kicky on the inside. An animal theme would be nice, as it's for a fund-raiser for her local shelter. I've actually finished the bag, but want to hold off on posting pix until I finish the other bag she ordered. In the meantime... here it is, in progress:

The black-on-black is the outside. It has a bit of sheen to it and is just rich and yummy. The inside is a VERY fun Laurel Burch dog print. I really hope they are able to reprint that line some day; it is really wonderful!

I wasn't sure what to call the new bag, but Heather - the client who requested it - came up with the PERFECT name. Think about it. The evening bag ... comes out at night, is a little bit on the exotic side, and is small enough to tuck in just about anywhere. Are you ready for this? It's Bart's Good Eeevening Bag. That's right - it's named after the bat who hangs out at our house. Hahahahahaha! PERFECT, Heather - thank you for an excellent suggestion! (Heather does not blog but her pups have been featured on the Ao4 Digest.) I ran the name past Dave, GDFTCB, and he agreed that it was ideal. Then he imitated Bart for me:

Dave, doing his Bart the Bat impression

He's not just a Guide Dog for the Color Blind, he does impressions, too. ;)

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Latest Z Bag

The latest Z Bag to come out of the studio has landed in Australia! I hope to post pix of Trace and her new bag (and Huffle Mawson, Explorer Cat and Honorary Husky!) on the Extras blog soon... but in the meantime, here's her Z Bag!

Here's the back:

Why, yes, the fabric IS rather bold, isn't it? :) The two main prints are by Kaffe Fassett. I quilted in a King Tut variegated purple (948, Crushed Grapes) ... here's a close-up:

Yeowzers; I love it! I used a very cool, huge button for the closure:

It was the perfect fit!

Here's the Hold the Phone! Bag:

Cute charm, isn't it? It's a cat; I actually thought it was a Siberian Husky at first. Since Huffle Mawson, Explorer Cat is an honorary Husky, it seemed fitting to attach it to Trace's bag. Here's a closer look:

Hmm. Yes, it IS a kitty. :) Here's the flip side of the HTP! Bag:

And a peek inside:

Here's a look inside the Z Bag:

Trace really likes the white/grey bricks with ivy fab (I used it in Jan's Boo Tote) and she asked if I could fit it in somewhere. Dave (GDFTCB) didn't put up too much of a fuss when I used it for the interior pockets, so I figured I was good to go with it.

I also tried my hand at doing a little key fob; I tucked one into Kathie's latest order, too (it matches her RAL); please let me know what you think! Here's Trace's:

There's a rumor going around that the latest "thing" at nail salons is to have a nail tech "chip" your polish for a chipped look. If we throw having short nails in, I think I'm finally in with the in crowd. :)

Lastly, here's the top of the straps:

What a fun, colorful bag. I hope you thoroughly enjoy it, Trace!

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Two Totes!

I've done a lot of fun sewing this past week and have put a lot of packages in the mail. It's been great! So great, in fact, that I need to make a run to buy boxes! :) Here are two totes that will head to the KC area as soon as I hit Staples.

First up, a Boo Tote! Kathie liked the fabs I used for Michelle's Boo, but asked for blue straps! Here it is!

I LOVE the blue. OK, I'm partial to blue anyway, but I love it! Here's a peek inside:

Same fab as the other. I stitched in a variegated blue this time. I even did a little stitching on the outside. I don't normally do that on a Boo... but the fusible interfacing I used on the outside did not fuse (thankyouverymuch), so I stitched it in. I'm the only one who would know it's just flailing around in there ... but I'd know. I feel better knowing it's secured.

Kathie also ordered a Super Shopper; she liked the assortment of fabs my Guide Dog for the Color Blind showed readers of the Ao4 Digest, so we went with those! I sent her this sneak peek as I stitched some final touches on the tote:

LOL. Aren't I helpful? :) OK, here it is for real this time, Kathie!

And the other side:

My Guide Dog for the Color Blind has been urging me to get more colorful; I think he's getting me there, don't you?

Here's a close-up of the quilting on the front:

I did a stipple/meandering stitch on the bag and a wavy criss-cross thing on the pockets. I used a slightly variegated pink by Aurofil. Here's the other side:

I was going to use pink straps on the Super Shopper, or maybe blue. Neither of my pinks worked, and blue REALLY didn't work. Fortunately, I just received an order I'd placed for some polypro webbing - and had ordered dark purple. It is THE right color! (Dave agreed.) Here's a look:

It's a great fit. You can also see the little touch of lining sticking up!

Here's a peek inside!

Isn't the fab dreamy? Here's the inside pocket:

You can tell by looking at the decorative stitching how subtle the changes are in the pink thread. But there ARE changes. At least to my eye there are. I didn't ask Dave.

Hope you like your new totes, Kathie! You'll have them by the end of the week!

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Dark Storm...

Sounds ominous, doesn't it? But it's a cool new Storm Bag! I had a great request for mostly black, with some bold pinks paired up with them. What FUN! Take a look:

OK, that's the bright side. :) But remember, the Storm is fully reversible. What's inside?

BLACKS! Let's flip it "inside out" and reverse it to the other side!

Yes, I do mix stripes and plaids. Who doesn't?!!? I love the look! The bottom is black denim and the blacks are homespuns; I paired them up with some interfacing to give them more body and substance.

For the pocket on the black side, I used the pocket from a pair of jeans, and lined it with the hot pink camo. Here's a closer look:

The pocket on the other side is the pink camo itself, with some decorative stitching:

I used a variegated black and white thread by Aurofil. Very fun and a great fit with this bag.

Here's a better look at the Hold the Phone! Bag:

The body of the outside is the pink camo, with strips of some of the blacks and the multi-color on black mixed in. Here's a peek inside of that:

One of the black stripes. :)

As I seem to do frequently, after I shot the bag, I remembered I hadn't added the beads to the HTP! Bag. Here's a delayed photo of that:

The pink beads are glass; the end caps are pewter. I thought the end caps brought the black and white theme back in! Oh, yeah... and they're hanging from a fishing lure because I LOVE using them!!!

It should be landing in Missouri tomorrow; thank you so much for ordering!

And as always, thanks for reading!

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Hold the Phone! Bag

The Hold the Phone! Bag is designed to do just that - hold your cell phone! There is a Velcro closure to make sure your phone stays put. The strap allows you to hook your Hold the Phone! Bag to your purse strap, your belt, your briefcase handle, your golf bag -- anywhere! Guys love these, too!

Dog lovers may want to use the Hold the Phone! Bag to carry their “good neighbor” plastic bags! Fill it with bags, hook it to your leash and you’re good to go!

Examples can be seen throughout the blog :) and at right!

The Hold the Phone! Bag is quilted and fully lined. Details include a Velcro closure and all kinds of embellishments - appliqué, quilting, decorative stitching, beads and/or charms ... it's really where I let my creativity come out. I never quite plan them. :) The straps are either made from a coordinating fab with a lovely toggle clasp (top right) or from small, re-purposed (new) dog leashes with the leash hardware (as seen at this link). The HTP! Bag as a stand-alone goes for $15.00.

Kayla and Maebe Baebe won the Hold the Phone! Bag (pictured at right) during the Kapp Pack's blogathon! (The Kapp Pack blogged every half hour for 24 hours to raise money for the MaPaw Siberian Husky Rescue!) Kayla and Maebe had a great idea for their HTP! Bag - it's a perfect fit for their mom's new camera! She can put her new camera in the bag, attach it to a leash, and take super fantastic photos wherever they go!!! What a wonderful idea! I love it!

As with the main bags, I'd rather not give exact dimensions of the HTP! bags on the net, but will let you gauge the size based on my helpful models. You can always email me the dimensions of your cell phone, so I can make sure it's large enough to accommodate it!

In addition to making the bag itself a bit larger to hold an iPhone or an iPod, I've also made HTP! Bags with longer straps to allow you to wear it "cross body". And made one for my hubby to wear on his belt. Just let me know what you'd like and I'll try my best to come up with something for you!

Many of you have seen my ever-so-helpful Guide Dog for the Color Blind (Dave) with a Hold the Phone! Bag hanging from his snooter. It's not a skill for just anyone, as mentioned before. Here he is, with a leash-styled bag for Andrea.

He loves doing that. Well... OK, he loves the cookies he gets for doing it. Thank you, Dave.

Thanks for reading!