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It's In The Bag Blog Hop

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Thats right this blog hop is all about the amazing By Annie bags. If you have not heard of By Annie bags then man are you in for some great patterns and notions. By Annie has tons of bag patterns and all the items you need to make them; from zippers, to mesh, to hardware, to soft and stable and everything in between. I love a one stop shop, mostly because living in England finding a local shop that has all the items you need to make a bag can be pretty tough. I end up purchase a lot of items online and By Annie has it ALL!

Lets talk about the amazing and gorgeous fabric from Island Batik. This month I was sent the beautiful purple and white floral pattern batiks called Morris Mist collection designed by Kathy Engle. It is a bold and soft collection that worked well for this bag pattern.

The three fabrics I chose to work with for this bag were the Mixed Floral in Purple Thistle, Acanthus in Multi Purple Grey and the Paisley Dot in Hyancith. These three fabrics were so beautiful especially the mixed floral in purple thistle as it looked like it was painted with water colors. I probably could buy bolts of this and use it as a soft background for many different projects.

Now lets chat about the pattern I got. I have been wanting to make this bag since I saw the Tula Pink one she showed off. I have just never pulled the plug on buying it because it looks intense. I have to say that word sticks firm now that I have made it.

By Annie bags was gracious enough to send us the exact amount of all the items needed for the bag. This list is included in the pattern which you can view before you purchase it.

I spent about an hour free motion quilting the yard and some change of the fabric that I needed for the bag pieces. I love doing free motion quilting and went with a simple large looping design to densely cover the fabric but allow the fabric to still shine through.

Once I had the fabric free motion quilted I spent another few hours going over the pattern, cutting what I thought I needed and using the label pieces to clip onto the pieces. The best part about the By Annie bags is that you get a page with all the pieces labeled and all you need to do is cut them out and pin or clip them on to the pieces. I cut what I thought I needed, but as I worked through the bag I realized I did not cut everything out. I am always so confused by this part in any pattern, but I was excited to see it made more sense once I started in on the project.

I have always hated cutting bias binding, and yes, as a quilter i use straight strips and not bias binding. This was the first time that I can remember cutting bias binding. I mean lets be honest, if I don't need to cut it why ever cut it.

Doesn't this fabric just sparkle? I mean look at the water color like texture in the leafs and flowers. Oh its gorgeous.

Time to start sewing right? Yep, lets go, dive in and hope for the best.

Not really sure why this took me all day but it sure did. I spent several hours working on these inserts that go inside the bag. I will probably make some with the smaller zipper pouches later on as I think those will come in handy if I have an EPP project.

I worked on the straps for the project and if you are struggling to slide the webbing inside your fabric, I used a safety pin to help me accomplish this.

This probably looks weird but what you'll do is pin it on the end but pin with the closure away from the end.

You then have a firm object to help push the webbing through the tube of fabric. Now when you push the pin out the other end, it will be easy to remove as it will pull out through the end of the tube. If you did this with the pin going the other direction, you would have a hard time pulling it out and could catch the fabric.

For the front and back of the bag, I actually decided to mix and match the quilted fabric and pockets. I love showing off the purples and white water color fabric. It looks amazing and I absolutely love how the outer pieces came together.

Note for those working with a smaller machine, you might want to swap over to a denim needle or a thicker needle as the straps and all the layers was a lot to go through and I broke a needle on one strap area.

The zipper for outer part of the bag was next. This is kind of where I start to go a little wrong. Be sure to read the instructions carefully. If you are like me and prefer a much more in depth tutorial with pictures; by Annie has videos you can purchase with the pattern. I would recommend this as it would have saved me at this point. If you can figure out what I have done, more power to you. If not don't worry I'll explain it later on.

Because I was breaking a lot of needles I decided to do what I love to do and that is to finish the binding on the other side by hand sewing it. You can finish the binding as you please if that is by machine or by hand.

Assembling the outer part of the bag was my last day of sewing this project. Again pay attention to the instructions carefully. I am so use to bags being made inside out and then turned to the right side. Also, again if you are using a smaller machine this might be where you want to use a stronger needle. I again broke a needle trying to go through all these layers.

If you look closely you can see this is where I made my mistake. I am sewing the bag how I have done all the times before, inside out. When I flip the bag right side out my binding is now on the inside and not the outside. I didn't even notice this because I finished the binding while it was still on the outside. Silly me, maybe it was my time recovering from surgery still effecting me or it was just old habits die hard. Either one, this is where I will plug that video tutorial if the instructions seem like a lot.

I eventually finished the project and took some photos outside with the cooler weather moving in. I was absolutely over the moon with this bag. It was a lot of work, labor of love, and the instructions were a serious challenge for me (I really do a lot better with pictures or videos). I have made by Annie bags before but it was a simple bag and nothing this large or intense.

I am absolutely so proud of what I have accomplished and anyone who makes this bag, you too should feel accomplished. I will definitely be making another one soon, once I get all the supplies for it again, but I am so happy to start using this bag.

Lets check out the final results.

The free motion quilted loops look beautiful in this fall sunlight.

This is where you can really see the purples all playing so well together. Its just so soft and beautiful.

Can you see where my bag looks like all the edges are puffy? This is where the binding is now on the inside and not on the outer part of the bag. So bummed, but the bag looks great either way.

Alright lets look on the inside of the bag.

Well, there it is, all done. It is now ready for all my little projects and hand sewing tools. I hope you will go check some of the patterns, and be sure head on over to your local quilt stores and grab some of these beautiful Island Batik fabrics.

Don't forget to click along the blog hop and check out all the amazing fabrics and well made bags.

Please come back soon and check out the additional project I made for this bag. Its a quick hour or two project and all you do is add it to the already made bag! I mean how perfect is that. Come back to view what the project could be.

Other Blogs in this Blog Hop:

Boatright, Pamela:

Deshensky, Susan:

Hatziioannidi, Mania:

McAuliffe, Maryellen:

Thank you again to By Annie bags for the amazing supplies and pattern.

Thank you to Aurifil for the beautiful thread that I used to sew and free motion quilt.

Be sure to hop on over to Island Batiks instagram and follow along this hop.

Stay safe, stay healthy and be kind.


Brenda Parker Alburl
Brenda Parker Alburl
Nov 10, 2023

I think your bag looks great, Sarah. Love the fabrics you chose!


Nov 10, 2023

It's beautiful, just the way it is. I know you are going to love using it. And those purples are gorgeous! I need to get some of that! Have a great day!


Nov 10, 2023

Awesome bag.


Nov 10, 2023

Your bag is such a beautiful bag even though it was a lot of work. You did an awesome job!


Pamela Boatright
Pamela Boatright
Nov 09, 2023

That's an easy mistake to make - and I think I know where you went wrong with that mesh zipper because I've done the same thing, too! This bag is a lot of work, but it is so worth it in the end, I know I love the one I made last year. I can't wait to see what your other project is!

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