This post is all about pockets for the Weekender bag. There are a lot of pockets on/in this bag. Plus, there are a few specific instructions for sewing them. Read on for the next step in the sew along. We’re almost finished!
In our last post, we focused on piping. Now it’s time to plunge completely into the actual construction of the Stella Weekender Bag from Swoon Patterns. There are a number of steps, but in the end, you will walk away with a fabulous bag, that is so well worth the time spent.
What’s wonderful about this bag is the fact that it offers so many pockets. The first pocket that we’ll work on is the front zippered pocket.
The first step in constructing this zipper is the most important and that is the interfacing strip. PLEASE do not skip this step. If you do, the zipper will not have the stability that it needs.
The zipper interfacing is a 1″ wide strip that is placed just below the handle reinforcement. My line is faint, but look closely and you’ll see that I have marked a line down the middle of my zipper interfacing strip.
This may seem a bit scary, but trust me, it will work. Cut down the middle of the zipper interfacing strip. You will now have 2 pieces.
The next step will be to add the ends to the zipper.
Fold back 1/4″ on both the top and bottom of the bag pieces and then position over the zipper as you see below. Stitch the top and bottom of the bag to the zipper with an edge stitch. When you are near the zipper pull, you will need to reposition it in order to stitch to the end.
Now that the zipper is in place, take the fusible interfacing and press to the back of the front bag. The instructions tell you to cut out a rectangular area for the zipper. I cut out the entire strip from one side to the other. The application of the fusible interfacing will be much easier.
Take the pocket and stitch it to the back side of the zipper. The seam allowance will be quite small, so just take your time.
Bring the pocket under and stitch to the lower edge of the zipper.
Once the pocket is in place, stitch the ends closed with a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Now that the pocket is in place, if you are piping your bag, stitch the piping around the edge of the front bag.
Now for the cargo pockets.
Again, if you are piping your bag, you will begin by adding the piping to the edge of the pocket flaps. Be sure to remove the cording from the ends as was shown in our last post. This will be important in order to turn the seam allowance in once the flaps are ready to be attached to the bag.
Follow the instructions given for attaching the magnetic snaps.
One note, I like to add an extra piece of the fusible interfacing to ensure that the snap will not pull out of the fabric.
Attach the female side of the snap to the pocket and sew the pocket as instructed. Turn the pockets to the outside and press.
To form the cargo aspect of the pockets, press the sides and the bottom of the pockets in 3/4″.
At each corner, stitch across the 45 degree angle and then trim down to 1/8″.
Edge stitch around the creased edges of the pockets. You will need to start and stop at each corner. You will not be able to stitch continuously around the pockets.
Place the pockets on the front of the bags using the measurements given in the instructions. Be sure to the move the pocket bag of the zippered pocket out of your way.
Now stitch the pockets to the bag with an edge stitch. It’s best to stitch the bottom first, and then stitch each side.
Place the pocket flaps along the top edge of the pocket and edge stitch across the bottom of the pocket flap.
We now have 3 pockets inserted into the front of the bag.
The next step will be the handles.
Once again, the instructions say to use a stiff interfacing inside the handles. I used the woven cotton fusible interfacing in my handles and I was quite happy with the result. I simply interfaced both sides of the handle.
Stitch the handles and be sure to leave 1 long side of the handle open for easy turning.
Once the handle has been stitched and turned, press and then edge stitch around the entire handle.
Follow the instructions for placement of the handles. Once in place, stitch around the tab ends. To reinforce the handles, you may want to stitch in an “x” in the center of the tab.
The handles are now in place.
The next step will be to create the tabs for the “D” rings that hold the shoulder strap.
Simply fold the strip in half and press. Then fold each side to the center and press.
Fold in half once again and press.
Top stitch along each side.
Cut the strip in half.
Place the “D” rings in the middle of each strip and stitch across to hold in place.
Take the shoulder strap, press and stitch just as you did with the “D” ring tabs.
Once the strap has been top stitched, fold back each end with a 1/2″ seam allowance. Insert the swivel hooks and then fold down 1″.
Stitch across the end of the folded edge. I like to do add an extra stitching line for security.
At this point, lay the strap aside.
In our next post, we will insert the top zipper, sew the bag together, stitch up the lining and finish the bag.
If by chance you think that you might like to give the bag a try, and you have yet to purchase a pattern, you can find a paper version of the pattern HERE at Shop Sew It All.
Until next time…