One of my friends recently had a birthday, and (very last minute) I decided to sew her some gifts. I’d stashed this purple elephant fabric with her in mind last year, and it seemed the right time to pull it out. I knew I wanted to make a bag, but I needed it to be fairly simple so I could finish it on time. Which is when I remembered that I had a Craftsy Class which included instructions to make a basic tote. This is the first time I’ve really sewn along with a Craftsy Class, and I have to say I found it really helpful to finish this project in a quick manner. I’m definitely more of a kinesthetic/visual learner, so I think watching someone make this project as I made it really helped me finish this project quickly. It wasn’t a particularly difficult project, the written instructions are really good, but there were some cool tips in the video instruction that I think I’ll be able to apply to other projects in the future. The other nice thing is that they don’t take up a lot of fabric. I was able to make the tote and the pouch with about 1 yard of main fabric and 1/2 yard of contrast. Granted, I changed the pattern a bit so that I used more of the main fabric, but it is still a very minimal investment fabric-wise. The best part is that the bags for my friend turned out really cute! I was pretty happy with the results, especially with the sort of last-minute slap-dash effort I put into the project.
Here is the reversible tote:
And the zipper pouch:
Overall I’m really happy with the way these bags turned out. My friend was really excited (she was totally surprised the zipper worked – non-sewing people are so easily impressed), so that was good. I’m really happy I remembered the Craftsy class was in my video stash, and that I used it for instruction. It was nice to have a quick and easy project turn out so well. I’ve been really busy, and it was very gratifying to be able to finish a project in only a few hours. And now I’ve got requests from other friends and family for tote bags of their own. So I expect I’ll be sewing quite a few more of these during the holiday season. The trick now is to figure out what modifications to size, shape, and design I want to make to the basic pattern before I make another one. In any case, I think this was a free Craftsy mini-class, so I highly recommend it if you are looking for a quick project or if you want to try out Craftsy without spending a lot of money on one of the longer classes.