Friday, February 8, 2013

grey trapezoid tote


It seems that I'm on a charcoal bag kick. There was the linen one in the last post, there's some industrial grey wool on my cutting table, and than there's this quickie I whipped up yesterday. I just needed something bigger than my current tote- an easy "toss everything in" bag. Funny how everything is the same color this week. Soft, neutral, put-together, works with everything... charcoal grey.

Yesterday's new project was reinvented from a pair of men's wool trousers. They had been abandoned by my ex-husband, but you can find them at thrift stores by the dozens. I decided to turn it into something useful, rather than toss them or be bitter. But I will admit that I enjoyed the deconstruction immensely. 

First- I cut off one leg and ripped open a seam from ankle to thigh. Next, I sheared off the bottom cuff and opened the leg to get as much usable fabric as possible. That felt good... satisfying, to say the least. Now, I could move on to creating something new. 

Spread out on the table, the seam left in tact was now in the center with the wrong side facing up. When I folded up the bottom, a trapezoid appeared, and the bag's shape took form.  I cut a lining fabric to match. It was some yardage discovered at SewGreen years ago and ties in the contrasting white thread perfectly. Using a feather stitch directly over leg seam reinforces it while adding a sweet detail to an otherwise very minimalistic tote. A thin strip of grey leather makes a delicate, but tough strap. I completed it in less than an hour, and packed it up with afternoon snacks for hungry kids. Now, that's a happy (and useful) reinvention!


And for the underbelly of my week, there's always a little Honoring Hope, if you are so inclined. Have a lovely weekend!
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19 comments:

  1. Oh boy! I'm sorry but your choice of words made me laugh. Sometimes cutting, ripping and shearing can be so satisfying!(especially given the source of your material) Love the finished project!

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    1. Thanks Diane. Laughter eases everything... and I'm working on doing more of it these days.

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  2. What a great bag! I love the feather stitch! This project reminds me of something I did with an old pair of my husband's jeans. I used an entire leg to make a yoga mat bag. It was the perfect size! Then I found a little scrap of fabric that I cut into a 'peace' sign and I appliqued it onto the side of the bag. Pant legs are so versatile!

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    1. sound great gina! I've always thought jean legs, in particular, are fun to work with.

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  3. I love the sweet little top-stitching.

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  4. Love it. Love you.
    You are so talented, Maya.

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  5. Maya, what kind of sewing machine do you use?

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    1. I love my Pfaff so much. It's a Classic Style. Basic, but with a few sweet stitches and very strong.

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  6. you used those pants for good! and I wish you had another pair to make me a bag just as pretty and full of snacks for my six children.... just beautiful post (again) :)

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    1. Might need a couple pairs of pants to fit enough snacks for six!;)

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  7. How did you make the handle? Is it a thin strip of leather?
    No matter how many bags I throw together it's the handle that becomes my nemesis!

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    1. Yes, it's literally just a think strip of leather attached with thread by feather stitching over it several times for strength. It was the easiest handle I've ever made! So far, it's holding up quite well.

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  8. Don't think I told you yet, but I love absolutely everything about this post. The beautiful bag, the images and certainly the tone(!), which made me laugh out loud. Well done. Off to make some "Te quiero mucho!" Valentine hearts in the Spanish class. And, of course, te quiero mucho!

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  9. The bag sure is lovely but I'm dying to know more about your boots! ;) I love them.

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    1. Ha! Keens. I have two pairs in this style and can't say enough good things about them- sturdy, comfortable, long wearing, looks great with everything... even good in snow. I think they are the Bern series.

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  10. Stupid question with all of the beauty your blog but....what kind of jeans do you wear?
    I can't find any that I like. Thank you.


    Pamkins

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    1. Pamkins- I wear a variety of jeans. These are actually hand me downs from my son- Levis 510. You wrote a second comment when I didn't respond instantly to your jean question that I am not publishing for its rudeness. I prefer to keep things positive here and if you don't get a timely response about something like a pair of jeans, I suggest you move on rather than spend your own energy and mine leaving bad thoughts. This is my home online and I generously invite the public in. In return I have an unwritten expectation that readers (and commenters) know that there is a busy and full life beyond each post.

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