a brand new bag

We are going on a trip pretty soon*, to Universal Studios and Epcot! I am pretty excited since we haven’t been on a vacation in awhile, and it’ll be Halloween-theme-time at the parks. It’s also the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, which we loved the last time we went. And we haven’t ever been to the Harry Potter parks! I’ve been bingeing Witch, Please in preparation (I have been listening to this anyway because it is THE BEST, but I’ve been spreading the episodes out so I could always have more – I finally gave in and just got caught up).

I knew that I wouldn’t want to carry my usual purse in the parks and that I wanted a cross-body style for max comfort and making sure I don’t lose it (a shoulder bag is too put-down-able). I know that generally you don’t need to carry a lot of stuff with you in these parks, but I always want sunglasses and sunscreen and mints and whatever and anyway, I knew I needed a bag.

The perfect one was already in my pattern file: the Two Zip Hipster by Dog Under My Desk.

Spoopy Two Zip Hipster - pattern by Dog Under My Desk

It turned out awesome! I have raved before about Erin’s patterns but seriously, they are THE BEST (equal level of awesome as Witch, Please). They’re so easy and every step is laid out and it all goes so smoothly. I chose this super spoopy fabric in honor of Halloween time. I had hoped to find a Harry Potter themed fabric, but all the ones that Joann carries (at least in our local store) are loud and juvenile and not cool enough. I’m happy with this spider fabric, though, and I’m also going to embellish the exterior with at least one Hillary pin (#ImWithHer)! If any of you lovelies have tips or things to know about our destinations, please share!

*would-be evil-doers, take note that our house will be occupied while we’re away! No opportunities here!

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purse replacement

About a year ago I made myself this purse using the Date Night pattern by Dog Under My Desk, but expanded to 120%. I’ve been using it every day and it has been perfect for the stuff I always want to have with me (probably still more than I should require but JUST IN CASE is always on my mind). When I made it, I just used some random fabric from my stash, and it was not a very high quality quilting cotton.

Former purse strap unraveling

Just recently the strap has started to fray. I really don’t think this would happen with a higher quality fabric, but as it is this gave me an excuse to make myself a new purse. 🙂

New DUMD Date Night at 120%

This time I chose an apparel fabric, a sturdy grey and black houndstooth that is a bit heavier than quilting cotton, but not a lot as I didn’t want to add a lot of thickness (this is what has kept me from using a duck or similar heavier cotton). This fabric is super my style and I am really pleased with how it turned out.

New DUMD Date Night at 120%

For the inside, I couldn’t find any nerdy fabric that suited me – so much of what Joann has is male-focused and I am sort of tired of everything always being either men or princesses. My kingdom for some Phryne Fisher fabric! This bird fabric is cute, though, and who can resist putting a bird on (in) it?

New DUMD Date Night at 120%

I did the same double-inside-pockets that I did last time. They have been perfect for my needs! On one side, I can carry my phone, a bottle of lotion, and my favorite pen, and on the other side, my reading glasses and my sunglasses each in their own compartment. I love being able to customize my purse like this!

New DUMD Date Night at 120%

Here’s a close-up on the fabric. Isn’t this print elegant yet practical?

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FO Friday: 120%

I really like the Date Night purse I made, but it’s just not quite big enough for day to day use. So I decided to take matters into my own scanner/copier’s hands and enlarge the pattern!

Date Night purse at 120% -  Dog Under My Desk pattern

(apologies for the flash on that image – I was having trouble getting the very subtle fabric print to show up.) I chose to do it at 120%, which may be a tiny tad larger than I truly need, but it works really well and the purse doesn’t feel stuffed when I have all my necessities in it.

Date Night purse at 120% -  Dog Under My Desk pattern

I also love this lining fabric – so fun and reminiscent of the days when I was sewing from paper patterns (not that people don’t still do this – I just happen to use mostly online stuff right now). There’s something romantic about paper patterns illustrations.

I also put in an extra pocket, so there’s one on each side of the lining. I really cannot ever have too many pockets in a purse! This way my pens have a special spot, as do my sunglasses, phone, reading glasses, and lotion. I can also fit in an Essential Wristlet (minus the strap) containing the little stuff (gum, mints, advil, etc) that tends to get lost if it’s not contained, as well as my wallet and whatever small items I need that day. I’ve already gotten a few compliments on this bag!

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FO Friday: super duper catch-up

I have been so busy lately making things that I haven’t been making time to post about them. I also procrastinated taking photos of a number of things, which meant I had an excuse to not be ready to post yet. This past weekend I was supremely productive and not only made a bunch of new things, I also got almost completely caught up with myself.

First, let’s start with some knitting that I started what feels like AGES ago.

Crassula Shawl

This is the Crassula Shawl. I made this one up as I went along – I wasn’t 100% sure what I wanted, but I’m 100% pleased with how it turned out!

Crassula Shawl

I started out with narrow stripes and gradually worked up to wider stripes, alternating colors between a grey and a really lovely variegated turquoise blue colorway.

Pink Fizz Wrap

Next up is the Pink Fizz Shawl. I named this one for the Hellebore variety that has a pink and white stripe-ish pattern on the petals. It starts with narrow stripes at each end, works up to fairly wide stripes and back down to narrow again, with quite a few narrow stripes in the center section. This shawl is also designed to be a sort of curve-sided diamond shape (there has to be name for this, other than being vaguely vaginal) rather than a traditional triangle shawl.

There are a couple more knitting projects yet to post about, but they’re gifts so they must wait to be revealed here.

I had last Friday afternoon off which made for a lovely long and very productive sewing weekend for me. I decided on Friday that I would finally make the Gadget Guard for my iPad for which I knitted some fabric nearly a year ago. I have a few professional events coming up for which I’ll be flying, and I may not want to take my laptop on all the trips, so I wanted to be prepared to take my iPad instead if I so choose.

You may remember that I made a Gadget Guard for my lappy last spring. I have been SO SERIOUSLY PLEASED with this thing. I use it all the time and it fits my laptop so well. The beautiful thing (well, one of them) about this pattern is that it uses a formula, so you can adjust it to fit practically any gadget. It’s super easy and is written so that you hardly even end up doing any math at all!

Knitted Striped iPad Gadget Guard

I was so pleased that my knitted fabric worked out so well! It adhered to the fusible interfacing really easily and I mostly kept the stripes going very straight.

Knitted Striped iPad Gadget Guard

I had to work in some nerdy fabric somewhere, so the lining is Star Trek – images of the Enterprise.

Okay! That’s it for this post. Stay tuned for next week where there will be more sewing and more Dog Under My Desk pattern-adoration!

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