#Sewingdare Done!

Make It Nifty-#Sewingdare-CoverWhen Gillian put the call out for sewists to put their hat in the ring for sewing dares I mulled it over for a few days then signed up. I wanted a dare that I could sew using stuff from my stash already. I didn’t make a move on my dare until she posted about sewing dares progress others were making.

Make It Nifty-The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook Bag-coverThe #sewingdare was a great kick in the behind for me to make the bag from The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook. I’ve wanted to make it for a long time, I had the pattern all traced and cut out ready to go since the beginning of last year, but I just haven’t gotten around to sewing it. I’ve always found other things that needed to be sewn NOW. Know what I mean?


The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook – Bag

Pattern Adjustments

  • I made the elastic casings a little deeper to accommodate the wider elastic I was using (2.5cm instead of 2cm in the pattern) I mistakenly added 0.5 cm to the tops of the exterior and lining pieces too, but I made it work by trimming off the amount I added to the lining pieces.
  • Cut out a simple wide strap. I had to cut 2 pieces because the fabric wasn’t wide enough. Each piece was about 6″ wide by 32″ long and then joined them with a diagonal seam like when joining bias strips.

Make It Nifty- The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook-Bag -outside&insideMaterials

  • Leftover fabric from this skirt
  • 2.5 cm wide elastic


The bag was pretty straight forward to make. There were a couple of times during the instructions when I had to read the instructions twice, but overall pretty simple.

When making the strap I forgot to trim the ends to turn under nicely when I attached them. So I had to unpick the top-stitching at the ends so I could trim the ends before I attached them to the bag.

Changes I made this time

  • Omitted the strap from the pattern and instead just cut a
  • Omitted the strap loop, cord and tassel

What I Like

  • The outside side pockets are handy to slip keys and phone into.
  • Very roomy inside
  • The strap is simple and sturdy

What I don’t like

  • Because the outside pockets are the same I keep reaching into one pocket for my phone or keys, but they are in the other pocket.
  • Little bit too slouchy
  • The colour is not the best, but it’s neutral and I can’t complain because I used stash fabric.

Make It Nifty- The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook-Bag -detailsChanges for next time

  • Use a stiffer fabric
  • Interface the base of the exterior with something very stiff interfacing
  • Instead of external side pockets maybe try an elasticated pocket on the front and a zippered pocket on the back


Pattern The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook – Bag (had for ages) $0.00
  • Brown drill from stash
  • Blue floral twill from stash
  • Elastic from stash
  • Brown thread from stash
Time 8 hours (* $17-ish Australian minimum wage) $136.00
Total   $136.00

Final Comment

In the end I really like this bag. It will be a great to use as a run-around bag. I’m not sure if I would make it again, but it was fun to give it a try.

Make It Nifty- The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook-Bag -wornThe main reason I don’t sew from my sewing books is because my sizing falls outside a lot of the sizing included in the books. I know, I know, I should just suck it up and grade patterns; that’s the whole point of sewing your own clothes-you can make pattern adjustments and make things fit you. I know, but insert-some-lame-excuse-here. #lazyseamstress

For easy reference I’ve now added the sizing to my Sewing Books with Patterns page.

ETA (30 June 2015): Woops! I forgot to thank Gillian for giving me a great #sewingdare and hosting a fun sewing challenge 🙂

Do you have sewing books with patterns?
Do you sew from them?

Let me know in the comments.

Until next time,