First Sewing Project (Pics)

dee_can1March 6, 2009

Well, my real first sewing attempt looked like a bird's nest of thread on some fabric; but I'm getting the hang of it. The pattern for this tote bag came with my sewing machine. It has a zipper and a button (so I used the button hole foot). Now, I'm making bags for everyone I know... : D

Front:

Back:

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

That is a very nice looking professional job! You did great and you must have a very nice machine. I'm very impressed you did a zipper and a buttonhole first try out. Every bag you make it will become like second nature and when you are ready you can try other things now without worrying about "can I do a zipper" or "can I do buttonholes"....Very very nice! Give yourself a big round of applause......and welcome to a very addictive hobby and to the forum.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 3:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
kathyg_in_mi

I'm impressed!! Great job!! Give that girl a round of applause!!
Kathy G in MI

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 3:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thanks for your encouragement, budster and Kathy. : ) I have to admit that the pattern came with a DVD, so seeing the 'visual', at the same time as reading the pattern instructions, really helped. I don't suppose all patterns come with a DVD? ; )

budster, the sewing machine is a Kenmore - it has 58 stitch patterns. I didn't want to go for anything too elaborate, but I also wanted something that wasn't too basic. (Testing the waters first to make sure I like sewing.) I decided to get a machine because I had to take in several pairs of pants lately, for hemming; and I thought why not hem them myself, and get a machine?

The buttonhole didn't go as planned the first time. I forgot to bring down the (stopper? not sure if that's the right name) that stops the machine at a certain point (to indicate how big the button hole should be) - so it kept sewing and sewing. I had to take all the stitches out and start over again.

I can see why sewing is so addictive!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 5:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bayareafrancy

Fabulous Dee!!

Zippers and buttonholes? Ooooooh! I wish I could do buttonholes (easily). But my 1965 machine doesn't work properly (needle position is finicky, and my "fine" stitch eats fabric like crazy).

How I wish all patterns came with dvds! That would be awesome!

I'm hoping to go in search of affordable fabric this weekend, to do a second project. Everything nice in the store near me is 12 bucks a yard.

:-)

francy (longing for a Kenmore with 58 stitch patterns! 58?!?!?!?!?!?!)

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 11:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
minnie_tx

It sure doesn't look like a beginer project nice work

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 12:55AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thanks francy and minnie : ) I actually did make a mistake on the bag - the light blue section on the bottom is uneven, (the back side doesn't align with the front - see photo below). I laid the fabric right on the line, notches matching, so I'm not sure what went wrong. Also, that should be 58 stitch 'functions', not patterns. Oops. I'm not sure what the difference is yet, though.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 7:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
teresa_nc7

Great job! Isn't it grand to live in an age where we have videos and DVDs to show us how to make/use something! Bags make great gifts!
Teresa

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 9:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
kathi_mdgd

Great job for a 1st project.You've got the bug now,so happy stitching.
Kathi

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 5:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

dee can - I can see you now buying up all kinds of nice fabrics making these bags for presents..... I'd make a bunch for Christmas gifts for the ladies whenever I found some fabric that appealed to me for the right price. I'd probably add something for inside the bag to suit the receiver's interests...even a coffee cup and some nice herbal tea with a magazine tucked inside would make a great gift for most of the ladies I know. You are very smart to be thinking of making them as gifts....and we would never have known about the mistake if you had not turned the bag....you live and learn. Budster

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 5:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
susie53_gw

Nice job.... Stand proud when you carry it.. Shucks, I still sometimes don't make it perfect and I have sewed for 50 years...

Susie

    Bookmark   March 7, 2009 at 5:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bayareafrancy

Thank you for showing me the misalignment. I feel a bit better now.

:-)

francy

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 1:59AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thanks, everyone, for your kind words and encouragement! I will be looking for advice from each of you more experienced pros, as I get more into this. : )

I agree that the bags would make great gifts. I made another one today - I bought material for two bags, so each is identical. Funny thing is, it seemed easier to make the first bag than it did the second one. I think I got a bit more confident, and instead of following the dvd word-for-word, I followed the pattern instructions. I did a few more stitch-rippings (because of mistakes) than I did when I made the first bag. I even put a hole through the button, and sewed the top of the handle to the bag at one point. : D

And, lol! francy - so glad I could make you feel better! ; )

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 8:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
gram999

You've made all the mistakes beginners do & unfortunately still do. Now you know what can happen & you'll have great results from now on.

Stitch-ripping is also called reverse sewing. It's supposed to make us feel better to call it that.

Your bag looks very professional. Have you thought about using old jeans for the fabric? You could mix faded & dark denim. Use the pockets for a phone, etc.

Keep up the good work!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 9:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bopeep

Very nice...... that mistake is what we call.....character : D, you did a great job, have fun making more.
bopeep

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 10:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bayareafrancy

Reverse Sewing! LOL!!

Dee--I totally know what you mean about the second one being harder/more mistake ridden. Same thing happened to me when I went to knit my second-ever sock. Maybe I got overconfident. And I was too lazy to get off the couch and get the instructions. So I made so many mistakes!

I really want to make a bag out of "oilcloth." (I have to put that in quotes b/c it drives me bonkers that they use the old fashioned name to refer to a plastic product.)

I also love the Amy Butler bags, but where I live, the patterns are about 15 bucks (maybe more), and the fabric is 12 bucks a yard. So much for saving money by sewing one's own stuff!

:-)

francy

    Bookmark   March 9, 2009 at 11:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

lol - ooh, I like that, 'reverse sewing' - I did a lot of that in the last couple of days... I love the word, 'character', too - I guess a hole in the button adds character... And, excellent ideas, Gram - I really like the idea of a pocket for a phone. I'll have to incorporate that into the pattern. I've already done a little tweaking; for instance, instead of folding the top of the bag once (and having a frayed-looking edge inside, I'm now folding it twice, so that I have a more finished edge (like hemming). Looks much better.

The oilcloth bag sounds like something I would like, francy. I'll have to google Amy Butler bags - I love bags.

Here's what I've been up to for the last couple of days. I'm learning from my mistakes.

1st Lesson - Never place a hot iron on the zipper when you are pressing the edges of the pocket:

I ended up 'reverse sewing' the top of the pocket; and cutting out a new one and reattaching.

2nd Lesson: Pin the fabric down before sewing! I thought I'd save time, and by the end of the row, my notches didn't meet up, and the fabric wandered off course:

I ended up 'reverse sewing', and restitched that whole side. It still ended up a bit slanted upwards, though.

If you've had enough of my tote bags (that I'm cranking out!), just say, 'Uncle'! : D

    Bookmark   March 10, 2009 at 7:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
themommy1

The bags look great. I have just started sewing again, and would not have started with that bag.(to hard for me) I just wthought you all might enjoy what my mother told me about mistakes. She always said " mistakes are what trim was made for" and over the past 50 or 60years,I don't know how many yards of trims I have used.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 3:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thank you. : ) You know, I think trim might have been the answer. I ended up cutting the top off (along with the huge humps), and thought I'd re-sew (just make the bag not quite as 'tall' in height). It didn't work out, though; and I took the bag apart. I should have just put a one inch strip of contrasting fabric across the top; but I might have run into the hump again. I'm on the search for a 'hump jumper', though.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 6:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
birdtalker

Just read, you did beautiful for a first project. I have been sewing for 49 years and I still rip out on just about every project. Sometimes the pattern has a flaw, sometimes the material doesn't cooperate, and sometimes I am not paying attention. But it is always enjoyable. I have even learned to enjoy the ripping out and re doing. I also enjoy working with scraps to turn out something totally unexpected, even by me. Enjoy your new obsession.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2009 at 10:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
clothndolls

It looks sensational darling. Keep it up. We can never tire of them. May I suggest using your bags as canvases for a sort of quilting look. You can find some lovely fabric on the link below to dress it up more. Just add your imagination to the basic design and u can create your own master piece.

Here is a link that might be useful: Nomads Hoard Fabric Store

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 1:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thanks, birdtalker and clothndolls. And thank you for the suggestions.

I haven't sewed since the last bag I ripped apart. : O I don't know... maybe it's because it's spring, and I'm gravitating outdoors more. I'm sure once things are less hectic (with yard work), the urge to sew will come back. iow, this isn't permanent! But, I put my sewing machine away just tonight... I wonder if this is common - a seasonal type of urge to sew...

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 8:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

Don't be so hasty........that machine will not linger long. You will spy something that tugs at you to make one. Yes, yes, yard work calls, but then so do rainy days. Keep your eye out and soon some project will appear. Trust me. Budster

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 10:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

I'm sure you're right, Budster. : ) The thing is, about a week ago, I thought I'd practice with the hump jumper; and afterwards, I did some practice sewing, both, on scraps of fabric. Well, the stitches didn't look right - I kept adjusting the tension, but it didn't make any difference. The stitches no longer look 'individual', and they are misspaced and grouped together, sort of thing.

I had to change the needle, because I think the old needle was dull, but I ended up putting the original needle back on because the other needle didn't seem to work any better. I got a little frustrated with the stitch issue, which was another reason I put the machine away. And there is the matter of gardening; and, oh ya, spring cleaning that I haven't gotten around to yet... : P

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 7:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

dee can - Sounds like your timing might be out. Are the stitches the same length at least? The hump jumper never affected my machine in anyway when I used it. Look for a trouble shooting guide in your manual. Let us know when you figure out the problem. Budster

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 4:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Thanks, Budster. I think the stitches are the same length. I don't think it was the hump jumper's fault, necessarily; I did notice when I tried to sew through the thick area (before I even got the hump jumper) the machine would keep sewing in the same spot, plus it made a banging noise a few times when the needle was in the down position (as if the needle had hit something). I noticed this same issue is mention in another thread about timing...

I looked in the manual, but I couldn't find anything about timing. The trouble shooting guide just said the wrong needle is being used. I'll let you know if I figure it all out, though. Thanks again.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 9:13AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

Your fabric stayed in the same spot because the feed dogs couldn't grab the fabric and move it along. As for the banging noise something is hitting somewhere. When you have no thread in the machine and it is stiching with the presser foot down is there still banging.....does it seem to come from the lower area of the machine (bobbin case) or from the upper area....that is something to consider. Good luck

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 1:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
dee_can1

Hi Budster, I followed your instructions, and the machine didn't make any noise when it stitched w/o thread, and with the presser foot down.

The times when it did make the noise, it was a banging (sounded like the needle hit something) that came from the lower area, where the bobbin case is located.

Thanks, Dee : )

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 5:50AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
budster

I'm just wondering if your bobbin is staying in the bobbin case or is the hooking mechanism on the bobbin case not completely coming back into position when the bobbin is turning around. Have you tried a different bobbin, is the needle all the way in the holder, ..... just pondering here. If it keeps up do take it back in...banging can't be good in my experience. You don't want to wreck your machine so do keep an eye on the problem...and make sure you follow up with the repair guy (my best advice at the moment) - just call him on the phone and say you are waiting to see if this banging continues .....(could get you another free look at if nothing else). Budster - now about that purse......

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 4:06PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Need drapery fabric problem advice
I had polyester draperies made and the workroom pressed...
sierrashopper
a place to order
My family room has windows all around . It is nice...
barb_roselover_in
The little Singer 15- made her way home today!
I went back to the Thrift Store and asked the clerk...
caroline94535
Singer Inspiration 4210 Feed Dogs do not move
I have a new Singer Inspiration 4210 that I bought...
MaterialGirl47
questions about sewing lipped cord onto draperies
I am sewing drapery panels that will have a 2 foot...
lsst
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™