Friday, March 30, 2012

Better Done Than Perfect

    Apparently the key to moving ahead is following through. If you have unrealistic goals for a project or keep tweaking it and adding to it you might never get it finished. Personally, my biggest issue is that if something goes awry partway though a project I can get discouraged and frustrated and end up putting it down and never picking it up again. I'm starting to realize that I should force myself to finish these troublesome projects right away to avoid them piling up and being a waste. Plus, odds are that once in a while they will turn out half decent in the end anyways. This is one of those times.

    So it was my boyfriend's little sister's 15th birthday last week she ended up getting the number one thing on her wish list: a new camera! Her parents got her the camera and my boyfriend gave her a memory card for it. I wanted to make her something with a little love, so I whipped up a camera case for it. She is in love with all the trendy owl things these days so I grabbed the first owl fabric I could find (I know she would have preferred having a black background instead of brown but I was in a rush :p). 

    Both these fabrics, and three others, came in a fat quarter bundle from Joann Fabrics. I absolutely love the fabric I got for the lining, it's kinda feather looking and matches the bellies of the owls perfectly. My boyfriend says it looks like the fish from the children's book The Rainbow Fish, which it totally does. I wonder if there is printed fabric somewhere like this one except in blues and greens and purples, I would love a piece of that... I wish I had more of this red and orange one too, it's pretty unique and I can think of a number of projects it would look cute with.

    The first issue I ran into with this project was when I sewed it all up and turned right-side out(it was sewn inside out to hide the seams). The corners where the flap met the rest of the case was really bunched up and wouldn't lay right. This was partially because I had forgotten to cut the little relief triangle things that you're supposed to cut out of corners and places where you stitched a curve. I turned it back inside out and cut those as close to the seam as I dared(which wasn't that close at all, I'm paranoid about the seams coming undone if the fabric frays a little if I cut too close). It helped quite a bit but there are still some wonky looking bits. If I ever make something similar to this in the future I might just make the flap separately and then sew it on to save the frustration.

    The other issue I have with this case is the gaps at the sides when the case is closed. I wish they were smaller and it kind of irks me because it makes it look like the flap was made too thin(which it's not!). The camera clearly isn't a perfect box shape so the sides of the bag aren't forced to sit in the dimensions I made them. To remedy this I guess I could have use a sturdier interfacing, or maybe if there was a thick strap it would help hide the gaps. Oh well. 

Other than those couple issues I think it's sort of cute... Let me know what you think!

Comments/Criticisms welcome :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Homemade Miche Shells

    So I recently bought myself a Miche Bag. For those who haven't heard of Miche before, they are a purse company that sells four different kinds of bags, and then a whole bunch of 'Shells' or covers for them. The shells attach to the base bags with magnets and allow you to change the look of your bag without moving all your junk over to a new purse. Quite handy if you ask me. I have a friend who has all four base bags and at least a dozen shells for each. When I first saw them I was intrigued, and after a while I knew I needed one of my own... but which one? There are a whole bunch of cute shells for the Petite and Classic base bags, but I find they don't open up enough for my taste, and the Prima is much to big for what I need it for. In the end I chose the Demi and it's so roomy, I love it!

    So I got my bag, and stocked it full of all my daily junk, but I still hadn't picked out my first shell. It's harder than you might think. Plus, if there's one thing I'm extra picky about, it's purses(and if there's two things, it's purses and shoes). I kept looking online on Etsy and Ebay and such, and saw a lot of people making their own covers for their Petite or Classic Miches and the ability to customize just made their bags that much more awesome. I knew I'd have to at least try to make a shell for my Demi. 

    I have to admit I was a little nervous to draft this pattern because it needed to fit properly to be functional. Although I've been making bags and purses for most of my life, making things to fit, or a specific size, has never been a strong point for me(this is why I tend to make things to carry, not things to wear). So to minimize my losses(the main reason my fabric stash is out of hand is because I'm afraid to waste beautiful material on a not-so-great project), I grabbed a skirt from the thrift store for $3.99 to use to test my pattern.

    I still have to sew on the flaps for the magnets, and line it I guess... So far I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. It's being held on with pins in that picture so I could see how it looks and take a picture, but you can see it fits almost perfectly. I need grommets, magnets, and corresponding fabric to line it with, so I'll try to get to the craft store sometime this week. I'll post again when I finish it. I'm also considering making matching straps because I'm not sure what I think about the beachy/tropical shell with black leather straps... Let me know what you think!

Comments/Criticisms welcome :)