Some Holiday Sewing

I’ve been wrestling with a very large t-shirt quilt for several weeks now but I’m finally just about finished and ready to move on to other projects.  Christmas is only weeks away and I was asked to make a nurse/doctor bag for my niece by my mom.  Apparently one of my nieces asked for a Pogo stick for Christmas so my mom thought her sister should have a medical kit handy.  My mom is a nurse so she was able to find the tools necessary to make a well stocked nurse/doctor bag.  She just needed a bag.

I found a pattern for a rounded purse which I thought looked like the old time-y doctors bags and Joann’s had their patterns on sale for $1.99 so that’s where I started.

I haven’t followed a sewing pattern in a while so it was rough.  Plus I really don’t like to follow those directions because I always seem to have a slight modification that I want to make and then things don’t go well.  With this pattern, I wanted to change the handle.  I couldn’t find just the right leather type handle that I wanted so I had to use a set of wooden handles.  A little weird I know, but I was trying to take some shortcuts.

making the bag

There was some pinning and stabbing.  I’m not gonna lie, I wanted to quit after the first side.  I re-pinned this thing about 4 times because I couldn’t get it just right.  But I kept at it and got the sides on.  Then the lining had to be added.

bag lining

I actually had to sew it in by hand so that it would attach to the zipper.

medical bag

And the finished bag.  It’s not the prettiest thing in the world but I think it will do.

Mom wanted a caduceus (I learned a new word there) on the side so I found one on the internet and tried out those iron-on transfer sheets.  Since the bag was dark colored, I had to get the ones made especially for transferring onto dark colored fabrics as most are made to use on white or light colored t-shirts.  I learned all kinds of new things with this project.  Who knows; maybe my niece will learn all kinds of new things with her medical kit and decide to become a nurse someday.  Mom would definitely love that.

My sewing machine is calling me…

I’m in the process of moving my sewing stuff into what used to be our spare bedroom/son’s room.  He moved his stuff out and I took my time cleaning & repainting the trim.  The room isn’t huge so I want to make the space as practical as I can.  The bad thing about moving from the basement is that now I don’t have space to lay the pieces on the floor and move things around.  I need to expand my design wall and use that space instead so everything is still a work in progress.

I keep walking past the room wishing I had some time to sew in my new space but things are busy this time of year.  I miss my sewing time.  I did have a few minutes to plan out the Flags of the World quilt and was running into some problems because I had originally planned to put white sashing around the blocks.  It just didn’t look right because a lot of flags are white or have white edges.  I couldn’t tell where the flags started and the sashing ended.

I found a flag quilt online where the maker made the flags the size of a standard sheet of computer paper which is 8 1/2 inches by 11 inches.  I think this is a brilliant idea because the flags will end up rectangle and I can always draw out & paper piece the more intricate flags – like the British flag.  The finished blocks will be 8 x 10 1/2 inches.  I like the idea of not adding sashing; to just put the flags together side by side.  If I do 5 flags wide by 7 flags long, the quilt would be 52 x 56 inches without borders.

I was able to test out a couple flags after school today and I really like this size:

flag blocks

Maybe I can use the old blocks on the back somehow if I ever get time to finish it!