Last Sunday I taught Anna's 241 Tote pattern for the VMQG. There were 14 guild members in the class and everyone was excited to make their totes (for some it was their very first attempt at making a bag!). I always forget to take photos during my workshops, so I don't have any from the class - hopefully some will show up in the VMQG flickr group. The modern guild students are very keen. Many had done online research before class and wanted to widen their bags and customize their pockets. I can't wait to see them all finished at our November meeting!
Whenever I teach, I like to do demonstrations of certain construction elements in patterns, so I come to class prepared with all of the fabric pieces ready to make my own bag. This time I made one using an adorable Heather Ross Spoonflower print of VW Camper Vans on linen blend. I've already got more 241 Totes than I could ever need, so this will be a gift for a friend desperately seeking her very own real-life camper. Hopefully this will tide her over until she can find just the right vehicle!
The side panels and strap are Essex Yarn Dyed Linen in black from Marmalade Fabrics, the lining is a Denyse Schmidt print for JoAnn Fabric and the pocket linings are a fun retro flower print from Patty Young's Flora & Fauna line. I like to put several rows of top-stitching on my bag straps for stability and strength. I use a topstitch needle, size 90/14 and in this case, a Guterman polyester thread. I have had cotton thread stitches pop on straps before, so if I have an decent matching or contrasting poly thread on my thread rack, I'll use it.
Once in a while very funny things happen in workshops, mostly due to people concentrating on their work with one ear and the conversation with their other ear. Here's one from Sunday:
Student to me: Do you actually use those little side pockets?
Me: Yes, just for a pack of gum
Another Student (using one ear): YOU PACK A GUN?!?!?!
Me: Yup, that's right, I pack heat in my little side pocket.
Hope you're having a great Wednesday. I'm off to watch D's high school field hockey team in their first play-off game. Go Eagles!!