Alphabet burlap on the outside . . . coffee print on the inside . . .
happy birthday, Jen! ♥
(Visit THE Inspired WREN for the tutorial!)
(Visit THE Inspired WREN for the tutorial!)
A fun way to present a handmade or store-bought gift is in a bag made of a fabric design that fits the gift. Sometimes you can use a bit of fabric left over from the project itself, such as this bag for Katy’s superhero cape with a “K” logo for a-la-mode:
Other times, you can use a themed fabric, such as this beach-designed bag for the swimsuit cover-up I made for Danielle and bunny/carrot fabric for a carrot and book for a toddler Easter gift:
It’s also fun to find fabric that matches books. Here is some Mr. Men fabric for a drawstring bag for a set of books for Kira and some Nancy Drew fabric for a tote bag full of books for Ally and Miranda:
A final idea is to add embroidery to “regular” fabric to fit the theme, such as this bag for cookie cutters:
I love making drawstring bags and totes when I need a quick “sewing fix,” so this is definitely win-win. Thank you for checking them out! ♥
Brown and pink for girls . . . gray and chevron for boys . . . bunny pattern available from Positively Splendid . . . bunnies embroidered with names and attached with Heat n’ Bond and outline stitch . . . use any lined tote pattern . . . time for an Easter egg hunt! ♥
On a recent visit, our eight-year-old granddaughter Miranda and I raided her mom’s fabric stash and put our heads together to design and sew a tote for her Nook e-reader—a colorful, lined bag with shoulder length handles and shabby chic roses for a-la-mode. What a fun project with a fun sewing buddy! ♥
I bought the fun Anny Bag pattern from my blogging friend Anny of It’s Sew Anny, and I decided to make my first one using Christmasy remnants. Although the pattern calls for ruffles on both sides, I left the back unruffled to show off this fun print. The pattern has fabric measurements for two different sizes, and the lined bag has a flat base and two large inside pockets. It was REALLY fun to sew, and I’ll definitely be making more! Check out the Anny Bag and Anny’s other great bag patterns at the It’s Sew Anny Etsy Shop . . . thank you, Anny! ♥
Remember my “Get a Clue with Nancy Drew” coasters? When I bought the charm pack, I also bought a yard each of two different Nancy Drew fabrics to make lined tote bags for a couple of cutie-patootie girls in my family . . . and fill with their first sets of Nancy Drew books!
I used a tutorial from Quick Stuff to Sew (Volume IV), a publication of Craftstylish.com, for the totes (like this one, minus the stripes). I hope there will soon be two new Nancy Drew fans in the world! ♥
Clear back in January I posted about the Mini-Screen Bag pattern I bought from Sew Michelle. I finally found the perfect spot of time to make it! It was really fun, and I learned some new-to-me techniques, such as making and inserting piping and making zipper tabs. The pattern uses screen (which is why it’s see-through!) and two coordinating fabrics. And did I say that it’s REALLY fun to make??? 🙂 You can find the pattern here along with other bags, totes, purses, and notebook covers. And . . . Michelle even has some F-R-E-E patterns for us on her TUTORIALS page! Thank you, Michelle! ♥
I bought this purse pattern from my talented bloggy friend Laura at LC’s Cottage Etsy shop and couldn’t wait to try it!
The pattern comes in four different sizes and has very clear directions. It was perfect for my first try at sewing a real purse!
This project was really fun to make and I plan to try it again . . . although maybe with fabric that doesn’t need matched next time. 🙂
The purse has a large outside pocket and two smaller ones inside, and I used one of my grandmother’s vintage buttons for the closure.
Since I had some fabric left over, I designed a little tote with the patterned fabric on the bottom, inside, and handles and some vintage bead a-la-mode. ♥
As you know from my Shop Love! posts and page, I’m all about supporting small businesses.
That hasn’t changed!
But . . . I found a “big” business item that I just have to share!
I bought these gorgeous scarves from the Kohl’s Cares Jennifer Lopez Collection for FIVE dollars . . . and ONE HUNDRED percent of the net proceeds goes to breast cancer research!
The collection includes other scarf designs, too, as well as t-shirts, pajamas, tote bags, jewelry, and other items . . . all priced at $5, $10, or $15.
Who doesn’t love fun and affordable accessories??? Oh, and if you haven’t already, please visit my other recent “accessory” post and sign up for the Origami Owl blogger locket giveaway! ♥
I’ve been following Christina at Le Trango: An Illustrated Accessories Company for quite awhile and always get a smile when I see her adorable illustrations coming through my WordPress reader. So I decided to check out her Etsy Shop and found this sweet set of notecards I can send to my friends and family. The shop also features Christina’s whimsical creatures on canvas tote bags, pocket mirrors, and stuffed toys. Click here for Le Trango’s blog, here for the Etsy Shop, and here for the FB page from this post or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. Thank you, Christina! ♥
I recently bought this fun tote pattern from my blogging friend Michelle of Sew Michelle. I can’t wait to make it! Besides the detailed, photo-filled e-book, Michelle includes a unique feature called a “Sewnopsis” at the end of her patterns—a reference tool that has the supply list, cutting instructions, and important steps all on one super-handy page. Michelle has other amazing bag patterns as well and has also been kind enough to make some FREE patterns available to us! Click on the “Tutorials” link to find projects such as this “Owl Sweet Treat Holder”—PERFECT for Valentine’s Day!
“I have taught sewing classes for many years and have learned that including detailed instructions with lots of pictures makes it seem like I am right there with you when working on your project. My mission is to ‘Inspire You to Sew’ and I hope you will go and do just that,” shares Michelle. Please check out Michelle’s patterns at Sew Michelle from this post or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. ♥
I now have two more pattern stores on my Shop Love! page!
(1) I can’t WAIT to make this Ailsa Large Market Bag pattern I bought from Susie D Designs! Susie also has patterns for many other tote bags, travel bags, diaper bags, hobo bags, shoulder bags, wallets, iPad and Kindle sleeves, and more, and her customer service is SUPER. Check out Susie’s blog here, her Etsy store here, and her Craftsy patten store here. Thank you, Susie!
(2) I won a pattern for this adorable Charlotte Skirt from Joanne at Stitch and Witter. Joanne’s blogging friends at Stitch Me Softly have recently created By Hand London, and I’m one of the lucky ones who gets to try one of their brand-new designs! Thank you Joanne . . . you’ll be seeing one of these skirts on Pillows A-La-Mode soon! ♥
Awhile back I wrote a post about my blogging friend Laura of As Time Goes . . . Buy and how she inspired me to do the Good Neighbor Award project and refashion for my one year blog anniversary. Laura has been traveling, and I’ve been sewing, but she’s home, and I’m finished . . . so today is the reveal! Laura, your coat is now on my “What Can You Make With A . . .” page, and your package is in the mail! I was able to make:
All three of the leafy placemat tote bags I made last spring have finally found a niche. I shared the red one a few days ago—it’s hanging on the wall in the dining room filled with dried eucalyptus branches. The green one is now on the coat/umbrella rack by our front door filled with pretty scarves and gloves to grab on the way out. And the orange one . . . well, it’s the perfect autumn running-around tote . . . for now . . . ♥
When I posted photos of the placemat tote bags I made last spring, I mentioned that I might use them for decorating instead of in the usual fashion. I found the perfect spot for one of them in my fall decor—hanging on the wall in the dining room filled with dried eucalyptus branches. The ceramic hook is from World Market. (They’re about $2 apiece in a big bin in their store, and I love them for hanging jewelry, too!) I’ll keep you posted if the other two bags appear somewhere! ♥