1/5/15: Congratulations to Ashley M of Virginia! She was selected by the Rafflecopter widget as the random winner of this sewing machine. But don’t despair, we promise to hold more giveaways like this in the future!
12/23/14 Update: Hi everyone! We’ve drawn a random winner for our sewing machine giveaway and have notified the person via email, but are waiting to hear back from the person. (The winner has 48 hours to respond to our email.) Due to the holidays and the fact that our offices and Kansas facility are closed between Christmas Eve and New Year’s, we may not be able to select and notify another winner until the week of January 5th, should the first winner fail to claim the prize in time. Long story short, check back here after 1/5/15 to find out who won. On a personal note, we just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has helped support our social media efforts in 2014. You’ve made our forays into Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube and blogging so worthwhile, and we look forward to engaging with you even more in 2015. We’re taking a little break from social media while we spend some time—unplugged—with our families, but we’ll be back in full force in the new year. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all! —Meg and all your friends at the McCall Pattern Company
Do you practice sentimental sewing? This is when you sew something that is either impractical or not really you, just because making this thing evokes strong memories. Every year I make at least one cotton, old-school nightgown, sometimes two. I rarely wear them after I’ve finished sewing them, because I prefer my knit jersey tops and pajama pants. But my mother always had beautiful cotton nightgowns, so I guess I keep making them as a tribute to her and as a way to keep memories of her close. (That’s my latest nightgown make above, Butterick B5792, and I just picked up B6152, a nightgown and robe set that looks like something my mom would have loved.)
My mom also rocked a summer caftan like no one else. I used to make caftans for her when I was just learning to sew, and she’d gush and proudly wear them, no matter how ratty they looked on the inside. (Mom was always so delighted with everything I sewed—a dream client.) So when I’m feeling nostalgic I search for vintage caftan patterns on Etsy, buy them, and end up making at least one caftan a year. And I’m not even the caftan type!
See, sentimental sewing gets me every time, especially around the holidays. What about you? Are there things you sew just for the memories? Leave a comment here and let us know about what you make.
Hey, there’s still time to enter our giveaway for a brand-new Singer sewing machine! Click here to enter, and good luck!
The pattern is pretty straightforward. If you have basic sewing skills and are comfortable sewing zippers, you should be able to make it without any frustrations. Here are the things I did differently from the directions:
I used a dual-slider handbag zipper from Coats that I got at my local Jo-Ann’s. This is that double-zipper feature that allows you to open the backpack from wherever you like, rather than only at the zipper end.
I chose not to interface the fashion fabric as advised, because I wanted a soft and lightweight backpack that had no structure and could be rolled up and packed if I wanted to. Definitely interface or interline if you want structure, as in the product photo above.
I lined the side pockets.
I added a faux-leather closure to the front pocket.
The ikat-like brocade I used came from B&J Fabrics here in the Garment District, and I lined it with a bronze poly satin I got at Jo-Ann’s. (I love the lining! It’s very luxe-looking and it makes this backpack look expensive, I think.) The straps are from a black linen we had in our stash here at work.
Some more photos for you:
In other news, I’m nearing the end of my 2014 holiday DIY frenzy. So far I’ve made three aprons, a quilt, a poncho, a nightgown, and am finishing up two makeup bags. The end is in sight! How about you? Are you making gifts this season?