Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sneak peak - the Gussie bag

I just can't wait to share part of this bag, on one hand because I need some serious help figuring out a little problem, and on the other hand because I'm just so excited about the little "extras" I added. Yes, I realize these are just practice bags, but I figured if they turned out nice enough (hey, I'm optimistic!), I wanted them to be a little less plain.

I've made two versions so far, varying only slightly. The one on the left ("flower") doesn't have a top band because I added a pocket panel to the front side and I used bias tape to bind the edges. This one isn't lined yet because I'm not entirely certain the best way to do it. The one on the right ("heart") has a top band (and pocket on the back) and I sewed the pieces right side together, then flipped right side out.

One side on the heart bag turned out really nice & pretty:

The other one (on the right, here), not so pretty:

Any bright ideas on the best way to add a gusset? I'm really attached to the idea of this purse & don't want to give up on using it for the bag swap. I do know I could do square corners instead of having them rounded, but I'd prefer not to. And I could keep the general shape of the bag & use darts instead of a gusset, but I like how this is the full depth all the way up the purse. It makes it surprisingly roomy for a smaller purse.

I can't figure out quite why, but one side was also higher than the other. So when I tried to sew in the lining, the top seam was super angled going from one side of the strap to the other. To fix it, I just patched in another piece of muslin (wasn't too terribly concerned about how it looked for now since I was just going to carry it to check the functionality & sizing. Although, it's really growing on me). I wasn't able to get the original edge in the seam, so it's a little messy in this corner.

I had to add this little heart to hold in the patch. But it turned out kind of cute, so it was totally on purpose. :)

Oh, and don't mind the ugliest topstitching in the universe on this, I wasn't too particular.

And now for the fun pretty stuff.

I just hand drew this heart (as well as the little one that's on the other side for the patch). It's nothing spectacular, but I like the simplicity. And yes, I do draw my hearts with that line going from the bottom back up to the top. It was on the little one too, but I chose not to stitch it because it looked funny on such a small heart.

And my favorite part:

I found the flower pattern over at Needle'n Thread, and there are a ton of other really great patterns, including a couple alphabets. There's also a lot of other good embroidery info over there, so check it out!

I did a simple stem stitch for all the lines, a French knot at the end of each vine, and French knots to fill the flower centers. I mixed colors for each part so it was a little more dimensional, and I really love the way it turned out.

Oh, and don't mind those faint blue & purple lines, apparently not all the ink has disappeared yet, and I obviously didn't completely follow all the lines.

So there you have it, let me know what you think!

Until next time...

Sumo Sweet Stuff


  1. wonderful embroidery,your handbags are superb...i love all these ...waooo

  2. I wish I knew how to embroider. Yours look great! I also wish I had some tips to help with the gusset issue but I only ever sew from patterns. Not so good with figuring things out on my own.

  3. I wish I could help, but I have major sewing issues when it comes to having everything line up perfectly in the end! I think they look really cute, though, and if you hadn't pointed out your issues, I never would have noticed:) The embroidery is beautiful... I really like the heart. I hope someone has an answer for you. Thanks for sharing!


  4. I'm very impressed by your embroidery skills! That's not something I've learned yet!


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