Friday, February 8, 2013

The Planet Earth Bag

I've started another Koos Bag, Vogue 1311     . This one is for moi. As I started putting together my fabrics and shapes I realized my colors looked like earth from space. That required I put a circle of hand dyed wool on the bag. Now it really looked like Planet Earth. I started to get more excited about the project.

 This bag, like the other, has lots of textures going on. The bias strips are hand dyed rayons and the other hand dyeds are wool. You also see here a home dec brocade and a heavy corduroy. The brown is a poly suiting. All has been interfaced with fusible fleece. You can't see it but there is also some machine quilting happening here as well. Since I did a tutorial on the unique Koos Zipper already I thought this time I would focus on the Koos Buttonholes.

Koos Buttonholes

I followed the directions exactly on these, up to a certain minor point in the construction. My choice of fabric made a nice bias shape so I stayed with the three dimensionality of it all as you will soon see. 
The first requirement of the button instructions is to sew a 3/4 inch hem folded underneath. This did not fit on the bag and still leave room for the zipper. I decided to use a one inch hem and mitered the hem on the BH appliques.

You can see the pressed folds from the first attempt here.  The BH  appliques are placed RS of app to wrong side of the bag after marking. Here is how I marked the holes. The bag straps will eventually come through the BH when done.
 I marked the actual BHs with waxed paper and a serrated wheel. Then I realized it was exactly a quarter inch wide so outcame the 1/4 inch masking tape.

I stitched around the tape. The important thing to remember here is to not start in a corner. Start and end stitching on one of the long lines of stitching instead.
The buttonhole is now cut with a BH chisel and into the corners with the applique scissors. You will have to really push down on the chisel as there are lots of layers here. This is just like a bound BH. I guess we will call it a "faced" BH.

Now the fun part! Turn and press your applique. Pin down the folds as shown on the pattern instruction sheet. Rayon on the bias has a mind of it's own so I went for curved outer edges on one side here. As long as what you do is consistent from BH to BH it will look fine. I discovered I really liked the three dimensionality of this so made a decision to not press it down. Just my personal choice. Once pinned you are ready for topstiching.
The instructions have you not stitch the pleat. I disregarded that and stitched it all down all the way around the applique. It gave a nice tight finish.Here is my version, a totally topstitched, puffy BH:

I have a couple more to stitch down and then it will be on to appliqueing the sides of the bag. I need to get a silver paint pen today so I can swish my initials and date somewhere on this. Have you tried Sharpie's metallic paint pens? They are fabulous!

Thank you to everyone for all your kind comments and encouragement while putting together the new dress form who will now be called Tilly from this day forward. You really inspire me to new sewing levels all the time. Thanks so much for that and I treasure all of you......Bunny


  1. I LOVE it....I WANT it!!!!! Your fabric choice is going to make Koos jealous;)

  2. This is going to be one gorgeous bag!

  3. This is going to be an awesome bag! I love seeing how you are doing the button holes.

  4. I love your fabric choice and the colours are just beautiful

  5. Looking good. Your fabric choices are fabulous. Love the pen idea too.

  6. I agree, this is going to be a stunning bag. Thanks for the tutorial on the buttonhole applique. Very funky look!

  7. This is awesome-I love that buttonhole and your fabrics!

  8. I can close my eyes & already envision what this one is going to look like, based on the last one you made, Bunny! Way Cool!!
    I like your idea of using the 1/4" tape to do your bound buttonhole. I just pinned a tutorial on doing them with masking tape. I noticed you re-pinned it, too. Great minds thinking alike! I hope I can use the information soon so I don't forget about it.

    I hope you & your family members all still have power & that everyone is safe & snug inside. How many inches of the pretty white stuff did you get this time???

    Warm hugs,

    1. Between sixteen and eighteen inches. Right now it is glorious outside with a blue sky and sparkling snow and no wind. At DD's in Boston it's still snowing and not looking good. They hightailed up to their lodge in the mountains before it all hit.

  9. Just great photos and complete directions with a always...this post tells all of us "you can do it!"
    So clever to just let those BH facings make up their own minds and add some really interest and texture...this might start a trend...beautiful wonky details all stitched down and also adding you name and date in metallic pen...genius!


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