Nest Egg Tote: learn from my mistakes.

The Nest Egg Tote by Carolyn Friedlander made me realize I can’t always use what I have on hand or it won’t turn out the way it should, and I learned precision is vital when making this tote.

First mistake: I cut the handle and strap strips too wide. Luckily I was using the wrong sized D-rings and it wasn’t too much of a problem on the handle, but the straps were supposed to sit completely on the outside of the gusset and mine are inside the seams so the handles hang a little wonky:

nest egg tote side seams

Second mistake: I didn’t use ultra-firm stabilizer for the inside inserts. Instead I used Soft & Stable stabilizer and when the tote was finished it tended to collapse. This was one mistake I fixed. I bought ultra-firm stabilizer and stitched it to the inserts I had already made:

ultra firm stabilizer

It was now even stronger and I liked that.

Third mistake: Using a dark fabric on the outside and a light fabric on the inside. The black thread from the outside stitching sometimes peaked through the light fabric even though I used white thread in the bobbin, and I don’t like that.

Fourth mistake: I didn’t intertwine the elastic strips to give the right tension to hold the items inside. When I redid the inserts with the ultra-firm stabilizer, I fixed this mistake:

elastic strips

If I made this tote again, I would make the outside gusset cover the same fabric as the gusset, and I’d try to follow the directions exactly.

Coloring Book Bags.

My dear friend Diane’s son and daughter-in-law recently welcomed twins (a girl and a boy) to their family. I wanted to make something for the new arrivals and their big sister. I adapted the pattern, Large Coloring Bag., by Clothesline Quilts by using the Shirts pattern by Carolyn Friedlander. The coloring book pattern didn’t have a lining, but I wanted lining. It was easy to adapt that part of the pattern as well.

They turned out great:

For big sister:big sister

For little sister:

little sister

For little brother:little brother

The backs of the bags:

big sis back lil sis back  lil bro back

Coloring is so much fun, and I think these bags were the perfect gift for a perfect family of five.

I’ve made these coloring book bags for two other little girls and I was told they were used and loved. I’ve made quilts for newborns as well, but I suspect they have not been used as much as the coloring book bags.

Coloring outside the lines,