Tag Archives: lisa lam

Yes, another craft book!

About sewing totes and bags no less! Because I need more of those. My copy of Lisa Lam‘s new book arrived and I love it. This Too Cool for School Satchel is amazing, but it looks like an ambitious project.

This one is great too, just a compact little thing to carry a few necessities to a craft show or conference.

Can’t wait for school to end and have those empty days to sneak in some sewing between playing with my kids!

DIY – Adding a zippered pocket while lining your tote!

Ok, welcome those of you who are feeling adventurous!  Here’s my little part 2 on lining a tote where I’ll walk you through the steps to adding a zippered pocket to the lining.

I cracked open my Bag Making Bible for this part and followed the instructions for inserting a zipper.  Lisa Lam explains very well,  I’ll give you enough information, hopefully, to tackle it yourself.  I used the panel of fabric I cut off the bottom to make my pocket.  I just folded it in half and cut it to have 2 squares to use for the pocket.

Decide how big you want your pocket and cut 2 pieces of fabric to that size, allowing for a 1/4 inch seam.  The zipper should be placed with about 3 inches on either side of the pocket pieces.  I didn’t know this, but you can just cut off the end of the zipper if you need to shorten it.

Place one of the pocket pieces right sides together on the lining piece where you want to have a pocket.  Trace out a rectangle the same size as your zipper.  Mark a line down the middle and those cute little triangles at the ends.

Sew along the outside of the rectangle, this will sew the pocket piece to the lining piece.

Cut along the guide lines you drew inside the rectangle, the half way line and the little triangles.

Next turn the pocket piece through the hole, as Lisa says “like you’re putting a letter in the post”.  Press to get a nice crisp seam.  Lay your zipper on the wrong side of the pocket.  The book suggested using double sided tape stuff to secure it, I don’t have that and just pinned it.  Use your zipper foot to sew along and stitch the zipper in place.

Lay the lining piece right side down and place the other pocket piece, right sides together, on top of the pocket piece with the zipper in it.    Sew around all four sides with a 1/4 inch seam.  This will stitch both pocket pieces to the lining fabric.

Flip it over and access the pocket through the zipper!  Voila!

Now head back to post part #1 to finish lining your tote.

Crafty British imports part 1

A little while ago I stumbled upon some really fun looking craft books I wanted to order.  For some crazy reason I couldn’t find them here but I did stumble across them on Amazon UK.  Lucky me my in-laws live just outside of London right now and so I ordered and had them pile them into their ‘returning home for a Christmas visit’ luggage!

This first one is absolutely PACKED with information.  I’ve only flipped through it once so far, and the kids were around so it wasn’t exactly a ‘deep’ reading but I love it!  It’s called The Bag Making Bible by Lisa Lam of U-Handbag and has a forward by Amy Butler.  I have to admit, despite my newfound love of creating bags, I had no idea about her site.  It is also fabulous just like her book! Sadly it seems the book won’t be available this side of the pond for another month or two so hope you can wait (or have a British connection).

I *must* make this one, it’s like a grown up messenger/laptop/purse/bag/awesome thingie.  I need it.  The instructions are fantastic in this book and it really explains in detail how to use all sorts of fun hardware that really enhance the appearence and functionality of the bags.  Some of the things I don’t even know the names for, so I guess the book will help greatly!

Here’s another glimpse inside.  The fabric choices are fantastic too!  I think I might have to make another tea and go curl up with this book again.

Lisa also has a section of free tips on her site if you’re in need of some info or if you’d like to preview her informative and entertaining writing before you rush off to try and get your hands on a copy of this gem!