Jan 192014

I’m the Queen of Bs in my home. Nope, that’s not a typo. B stands for Books, Boxes and Bags, all three of which I collect in all sizes and shapes. I’m guilty of purchasing duplicate books and bag patterns, in fact, because I likely have too many of them and can’t keep track of them. That being said, I have decided that 2014 is the year when I will begin to actually use those bag patterns, mainly to learn about bag construction, with a long-term goal of designing my own.

BagClubButtonTo get started, I joined Bag of the Month Club, organized by Sara Lawson, author of Big-City Bags: Sew Handbags with Style, Sass, and Sophistication. The club is open to anyone, releases one brand new bag pattern a month from a different but well-known designer, and runs for six months. Over 200 individuals have joined the club so far, which you can join anytime you like during the six months of the club, and you’ll still get all six patterns. The cost is $40—pretty reasonable for well-written and illustrated bag patterns from designers like Sara of Sew Sweetness, Janelle of Emmaline Bags, Samantha of At home with Mrs H, Betz White, Anna of Noodlehead, and Chris of Chris W. Designs. You can join a Flickr group, too, or visit Facebook, where you can view other people’s finished products.

January’s bag is the Bye Bye Love Bag, designed by Sara Lawson. The bag features two exterior pockets on the front, a zipper pocket on the back, and six pockets on the interior. So far those who have completed the bag say it is very roomy, perfect as an overnight bag.

Photo courtesy of Sara Lawson

Photo courtesy of Sara Lawson

I have some purse hardware I bought locally at Jo-Ann Fabrics, as well as some online sites. Some great online resources for bag hardware and purse-maing supplies include:

I have not yet begun to sew my first bag because I have been occupied with Destination Imagination volunteer activities this month, but I did purchase my fabrics. They are from the Bobbins and Bits line designed by Pat Sloan for Moda Fabrics©.

Bag Fabrics

I don’t know whether I will actually be able to finish one bag a month, but that is certainly the goal. Have you started a new monthly challenge recently?

© 2014 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.

Jul 312013

In my previous post, I highlighted bag designs you can purchase online from Etsy sellers who allow you to sell the bags you make. There is much more to the world of bag-making, however, such as knowing where to find bag hardware. Most of your local fabric stores provide a basic assortment of bag handles, D-rings, zippers, magnetic clasps and maybe even purse feet. If you’re looking for something a little more unique, however, online shopping is probably your best bet. I’ve collected 16 different sources below, all of them on Etsy, that will help you get started. Always check the feedback rating when you shop this way, since small items can easily become lost in transit, and that’s when you’ll be relying on good customer service to remedy the situation. Just click on the photo to visit this treasury. If the item has sold, you can still visit any of these shops to look for alternatives.

Where to find bag hardwareLooking for bag-making tips, tutorials, videos, patterns or supplies? You may find the following online resources helpful:

Finally, bag-making help is as close as your library and local or online bookstore.  Whatever type of bag you like to wear or tote, these great titles will have you sewing professional-looking bags in no time at all!

If you’d like to add to this resource list, or tell us about a favorite resource, please comment below.

© 2013 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.