Butterick 4409 Completed!
The Retro bag is complete and really was quite simple to pull off. I like that it puts me in a more summer type of mood. I say that as I look out the window at all the snow and ice we still have up here. As far as the pattern, Butterick 4409, a little "beware" is in order. I did View F, the one with the fabric straps and outside pockets. At first site it looks just like View E, which has a different handle and contrast gusset. As I raced thru the tissue pieces I mixed my Es and Fs. Its easy to do as they look exactly alike. I know, you are saying I should have read the tissue more closely but I did (yeah, right). So then there was more gusset to fit into the sides than would fit. I had extra, about a half inch extra. I immediately blamed it on poor Big Four drafting and proceeded. When my lining, which had separate pieces, went together perfectly, I took a closer look at all the tissues. The E is not the same size as the F and it was all my own rushing around fault. Will I ever learn? It was an easy fix and you can't even tell now that the bag is completed. For the interfacing I used Decor Bond. It worked out OK, but just OK. Next bag from 4409 I will use a fusible fleece. I think this small bag really needs the heft that the fleece will give it.
I will say I don't like the way the outer pockets are drafted and that is not my fault. There is barely room to cover the outer pocket with the flaps and get them to lay nicely so I added a flange to the flaps and this worked much better. I sewed the flange on so that all the edges were enclosed and thought it came out nicely.
The lining is a tomato red washed silk and I love it. It did have a mind of its own and at times I thought I would go crazy but it ended up fine. It is totally fused to Armo Weft, something I do to all my bag linings. I just like a heftier lining. I did not do the inner pocket as per the pattern, choosing instead to use the technique of cutting the pocket on the fold and then sewing RS together and turning. I think this gives a much neater and prettier finish than clean finishing the edges. This is often seen in Vogue bag patterns.
For the straps I zigzagged the ends and then wrapped them around the rings. I sewed over the zigzag with a 1.0 stitch back and forth. Then I changed to a zigzag again and did that back and forth to cover any exposed edges. I thought it was a neat clean finish.
I did my feet first poking thru the holes with a dental pik-er that DDDentist gave me. Those make the greatest sewing tools, by the way! After the hole was poked I pushed thru a large brad, opened it inside and covered the legs with a blop of glue gun glue. I didn't want those legs wearing a hole thru the cloth.
Next came the rigidity! Bag patterns seem to all specify plastic canvas for the bottoms. I find this is still too flexible, even when doubled. I like to use foam core board. It's waterproof and more rigid. I use blue painter tape in the area where I will be cutting. This gives me a really clean cut. I hate those little foamy things muking up my cutting! The piece of foam core goes in and is also glued down with the glue gun.
This is a great little bag and I am already lined up to do my next one in a large oriental print. I may start that one tonite. I am thinking bags for Mother's Day gifts for DDs.
Paula asks if I find the fusible fleece slouchy. It definitely can be, particularly in wool bags. In those I found it necessary to then fuse a layer of Decor Bond on top of the FF. Let me tell ya', it can be awkward getting it thru the machine but its doable. I cut away all seam allowances from the fusibles before fusing. That eliminates a lot of the bulk when sewing.
Update on the silk smocked blouse: I am almost completed smocking. I need to put some sort of trim where the smocking meets the bodice. My intent was to insert piping there all along but somehow, in my haste, I totally just forgot to do it. So I am having fun playing with some different trims to put in that area and probably elsewhere. I'm thinking raw edge..... Tata', Bunny