14 June 2012

Quilting with cardboard again

A new week, a new bag, that's pretty much how I roll.

handmade accordion fan bag with zipper

Yeah, right.

As much as I'd liked to have sewn this up in the single week after I finished my turnback cuff shirt, it's actually a project I started way back in September, before the school year even got underway. I'd been obsessing over the whole "quilting with cardboard" idea and decided to make another bag, with the vague notion that it would have more room, a better zipper, a longer handle, a fuller lining -- and of course a set of board-backed knife pleats all along the front. Every bag needs that.

trimming seams for a bag
Before and after trimming the bottom seams.

But the whole process of making those pleats (sorry, no pictures) was so draining that almost right after finishing them I ditched the project completely. That meant that when I finally went back to this bag last Friday, it had spent about nine months being tossed around, stuffed into closets, sat on, and generally mistreated.

Still, this is what I was working with when I restarted:

cardboard and fabric fan for a bag
Not too shabby looking.

And it turns out I was right to have ditched the project when I did, since sewing a proper zipper band and lining into this was nearly as time-consuming as the original pleats. It was fun, though, if a little silly since I was quite literally sewing on the edge with this one, crafting maverick that I am:

sewing with cardboard
This might be why people don't usually sew with cardboard.

Mostly I'm just happy with the clean and semi-professional finishing on this one. The zipper band looks like a  real bag's band, the handles have metal rings, and the back even has its own matching stripes! Actually, with the colours and shape I felt like I was walking around with some kind of cake hanging off my shoulder. Not that there's anything too wrong with that.

handmade accordion fan bag with zipper

Here's what the bag looks like when worn:

handmade accordion fan bag with zipper

Look at the left side, at the way the flower panels seem like they're floating in the sunlight. I definitely didn't expect that, but isn't it a lovely effect?


  1. I try not to comment on your posts because if I start, I'll just be squealing over everything you sew. (I prefer to squeal over everything you sew to your face.) But, seriously, this bag turned out so nice! (sew nice)

    1. Yay thanks! And hey, feel free to compliment my sewing both online and to my face! I'll feel nice about myself, but that's no problem. ;)

  2. Thanks for taking the time to comment on my Lego minifig shirt. I thought about making one for my husband, too!