I thought my previous article in the Weekend Duffel series, showing the finished product, was the end of it.
But I got a comment from a reader named Toby, who found my blog via Craftsy:
I have just started this course, am on the second or third video now … the bag looks HARD and I can see it will be a challenge for me.
I’ve never understood sewists who shy away from certain types of projects altogether because they appear too difficult. I like to undertake difficult projects, because I learn new skills, improve old ones, and I have a sense of satisfaction when the job is done. And even if I fail, the project is not a waste because i have learned something.
While I didn’t feel Toby was going to run away from the project, I was compelled to provide some words of encouragement. And I realized that my comments might be helpful to anyone tackling this project, so I’m creating a blog post from them. Continue reading
At long last, my Weekend Duffel Project has come to an end.
Actually, I finished them last weekend.
Photographs I make with the artificial lighting in my home always look terrible; I prefer natural light but am at work on weekdays. This past Thursday, I took the bags to work and photographed them in the beautiful natural light my office gets. Continue reading
I had hoped this article would be “project complete” for the Yellow Weekender duffel bag. I almost got there on my birthday.
That was before The Accident.
I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s review the progress so far.
Finishing the Sides
The bag side panels have rounded decorative corners. The class instructor has you sew a basting stitch around the curve, 1/4 inch in from the edge, then fold/press around that.
That seemed a little loosey-goosey for me. Instead, I made a cardboard template from the pattern, with the 1/4 inch allowance removed, and pressed the corner pieces around that. I was amazed how remarkably well this worked; the canvas molded and shaped itself around the corners with the steam from the iron.
I thought it might be good to give a progress update on the Weekend Duffel project.
I went to Fabric Outlet to find new lining fabric for both bags. For the yellow duffel, I found a gray quilting cotton that was a shade lighter than the gray cotton-poly which shrank to the point of being unusable. For the rocket blue duffel, In place of the navy blue lining I opted for a royal blue cotton-poly quiliting fabric which is a little bit lightweight, but was okay once interfaced.
I ran both cuts of fabric through the washer/dryer twice, and ironed them with steam. I also pre-shrank the fusible interfacing, following the instructions given in the book Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket. Basically, you soak it in warm water, press between towels to get out the excess moisture, then lay aside to dry.
With everything preshrunk, I went through the tedious task of re-cutting the lining pieces and interfacing, and fusing them together. This time, there were no incidents and everything turned out satisfactory. Continue reading
I spent all of this afternoon fusing fabric pieces for the Weekend Duffel project. Here’s all the pieces of the yellow bag fused, right before starting work on the blue bag.