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Hello all,

It has been one week since woolfest, and I am still a little hyped up.  Overtired, yes.  The whole trip was exhausting, and then work has been insane, and I had travel issues on both Wednesday (the train went straight through my stop and I ended up in another city with a load of angry commuters) and Thursday (there was a storm at 4pm which caused massive flooding – it took me 5 hours to get home), but I will deal with each of those in seperate posts.

To begin with, I did finish the Cosmo bag before Woolfest.  It was very tight.  I managed to break my sewing machine (again) the weekend before Woolfest, so went on the hunt for a new one.  I decided that now I am earning, it was time for a brand new, high end sewing machine, rather than the cheap ones I had been buying that really weren’t suitable for my sewing needs.  The result?  I am now the proud owner of a Singer 3321 Talent.

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I love this machine.  It is faster, quieter, and has many more stitch options than any of my old machines.  It comes with a 15 year warrenty, a free annual service, a set of dressmaking scissors (I was so pleased – mine went missing months ago) and thanks to a fortuitous coinciding of sales, I managed to get it for £152.10 instead of £259.00!

I haven’t tried all the features yet.  I am excited by the blind hem stitch, and the buttonholes and the ability to use it to sew on the buttons.  I have also never had the chance to change feet, so once I figure out what the feet are for, I’ll definately be trying that.  For now though, I’ve just done basic stitching.

Keep an eye out here for a new cover for my shiny new sewing machine.  The little plastic one Singer sent really isn’t jazzy enough!

 


So on to the bag!  I finished it on Thursday evening and we travelled down to Cumbria when I finished work on Friday, so I couldn’t have cut it much closer, but I am thrilled to bits with the FO.

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I managed to get hold of some new lining fabric the Tuesday before we left, which was a huge relief.  I didn’t have any fabric samples with me when I bought it so I was a little nervous but I think it goes well.  The inside shot at the top there shows the main pockets, which held my medication, a thermos of soup and a spoon, my camera and an empty decoy purse for thieves (yes, I’m a bit wierd).  I also inserted a hidden pocket with an invisible zip.  This held my chequebook and real purse.  You couldn’t tell it was there unless you knew about it – even feeling around in the bag gave no hint that it was there because the zip was flush with the lining fabric and the pocket was secured on all sides to the lining panel.

I made the inside pocket by cutting a pocket panel from the pattern piece as written.  However, instead of attaching it as in the pattern, I inserted the pocket as follows:

1. I measured my zipper and cut a hole big enough for it on both the interfaced pocket piece and the lining piece, 2″ in from the sides and about 3″ down from the top edge of the pocket panel.  Be careful to match the bottom edges of the pocket and lining.
2. I sewed in the zipper (I’d never done an invisible zip before) between the panels, facing the right side of the lining.  So I basted it lining WS to zipper RS, then basted the zipper WS to the pocket WS and sewed all the way around.
3. I folded the lining away from the pocket and sewed the second pocket piece to the first, RS together, along the top edge.  I had also interfaced the second pocket panel since this pocket would be taking a lot of weight (my purse is always full of change and weighs a ton).
4. I folded the interfacing back to its proper place so that the pocket panels lay flat against each other in line with the bottom half of the lining.  I pressed the whole piece.
5. With WS facing, I sewed a 0.5″ seam all the way around the pocket panel, holdingboth panels together and securing them to the lining panel.  This prevented the pocket from moving or bulging on the exterior.
6. The lining piece is now ready to sew to the rest of the interior.  The seams for the lining side panels should cover the seam used to secure the pocket.

You will also notice that I have a picture there stuffed with wool.  That wasn’t Woolfest; it was my test run to see if there was enough room for all my anticipated shopping.  I can apparently get 36 balls of stash DK and aran weight into this bag.  As it turns out, that wasn’t quite big enough.

All in all, though, a wonderful bag, and one I will definately keep using.  I liked the pattern and may make it again at some point in the future, though next time I will reduce the pattern pieces to make more of an everyday sized bag.  This one is slightly bigger than my torso!

Stay tuned for the Woolfest report, an update on my knitting and sewing projects, and a look at the storms that hit North-East England last Thursday.

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