Friday, May 28, 2010
Thank God for the Sallies
Of all 36 pattern reviews written about this bag, the Amy Butler weekender bag, not one of them said, "this bag costs an absolute fortune to make."
We start with a $30 pattern and then we add several metres of bag interfacing (Fast 2 Fuse) at $42 a metre and finish with lining priced out at $35 per metre. I worked out if you used the recommended Amy Butler home decorator fabric with the recommended bag stabilising interfacing you would spend upwards of $300. I did not, of course, do that.
Actually how I came by the fabric is a cautionary tale for anyone who likes op-shopping (that'd be goodwill shopping to my American friends). I sorted through a box of the usual debris at the local Sally Army and sorted two possible contenders - this, a piece of vintage bark cloth and another piece of hand beaded silk sari. I put the fabrics on a chair next to me as I was rifling through the box. A woman approached the chair picked up the fabrics and said, "ooh lovely fabrics."
"Put. the. fabrics. down. Step. away. from. the. fabrics." No of course I didn't say that, but I gave her a look that said it for me.
"oh? Are these yours?"
This flurry of bag activity was set about by the decision to have a weekend away in my hometown this weekend. It is very satisfying to return to the city of my youth with the skills of the last two decades away in evidence about me. Such a simple thing - to make your own clothes, such a big satisfaction to create something totally unique.
The piping is made with the lining lurex, not the easiest fabric to work with:
Fabric outer: Sally Army, from their litter bin mascarading as fabric box $10
Lining: Nick's upholstery weight lurex $20
Notions: Smart Dress Fabrics - 1 and half metres bag weight interfacing $18, 4 and 1/2 metres piping $7, Thread $3, Jeans needles $4.50 Bernina shop: Interfacing, 1 metre wisperweft, $12, 1 patchwork template plastic $7
Pattern: purchased on line $30 from All Things Patchwork - Cheryl the owner delivered the pattern personally because she knew I wanted to finish it this week .. is that service or is that service?
Grand total: $112 (that's around $75 US), and that people, was making it on the cheap.