Back to School // Perfect Little Lunch Bag Sewing Pattern

Oh my goodness, this summer seems to have flown by.  We've got a couple weeks left and I've been making new lunch bags for both my kids and my etsy shop.  I got a great tip from my friend Roselee of Jane of All Trades that makes sewing the handles much easier.
Instead of sewing the handles to the exterior fabric a few inches down from the top, she lined up the raw edges of the handles (3 inches in from each side) with the top raw edge and then sewed the zipper right on top.
  The result is a much neater looking front and this technique saves a lot of time!  Genius!  Thanks Roselee!
  Last year, I had my kids lunch bags embroidered at a local shop.  This time around I decided to use my Silhouette Portrait and black and white heat transfer vinyl instead.  I really like how it looks and this way and they definitely won't get mixed up with other kids lunch bags.
You can find the instant download of my sewing pattern HERE in my shop.
 Don't want to sew your own?  I've got a couple of lunch bags listed in my shop and I'm also taking a few custom orders.
My favorite thing about my lunch bags is the fact that they are totally machine washable.  My kids used theirs for a full school year and I'm sure they got washed a least a dozen times.  The fabric color faded, but other than that, they held up great.  Something about a dirty, smelly, lunch box really grosses me out.  I'm never going back to store bought!


Kids Size Cargo Duffle

 I love my Cargo Duffle so much, I decided to make one for each of my kids.  With upcoming summer trips and sleepovers on the horizon, they both really could use a nice, kid sized bag.  Like my version, I simplified theirs from the original tutorial from Noodlehead. I didn't do any quilting and left off all the pockets.
I modified the size so that my pieces were as follows:

Front/Back - 18 x 11 inches (cut 2)
Zipper Panel - 4 x 28 inches (cut 2)
Bottom/Size - 8 x 28 inches (cut 1)

Finished dimensions: 17" wide x 10" tall x 7" deep

On the exterior pieces I lined each piece with a midweight fusible interfacing. 
 Since my daughter chose a directional print, for the bottom/side panel, I cut the piece in half and made a seam across the bottom so that the print wouldn't be upside down on one side.
 I used upholstery vinyl, folded in half and stitched, for the straps.
I cut the lining from a quilting weight cotton and used a sew-in, heavy weight interfacing on all the pieces except the zipper panels.
I let the kids pick their own fabrics and I think they made great choices!
These bags came together very quickly and the kids love them!  Can't wait for our upcoming trips.


First Birthday Shirt // FREE Silhouette Cut File

 In the past year or so, I've developed a reputation in my local community as the go-to seamstress for kid projects.  I've made a few bow ties and neck ties for weddings, a few tooth fairy pillows, and a few birthday shirts and dresses.  I've been able to use my Silhouette Portrait to cut some cute applique and I thought I would attempt to share my files.  I've uploaded the Silhouette Studio file to google drive.  You should be able to download the file
 For this applique I used Pellon Wonder-Under instead of the Silhouette fusible interfacing and I found it worked the same if not better.  With both interfacings, I've had trouble with the thread breaking while I'm sewing.  I did a search and came across a neat little trick.  I rubbed the tiniest amount of sewing machine oil on my needle.  Sure enough, no more broken thread!  I also sewed the smile and the nostrils by hand.  Too delicate for my machine skills.
Oh and remember my City Gym Shorts from way back in June?  Well, I guess I made the finals in Imagine Gnats, Shorts on the Line Contest.  Go check out the top 21 shorts here and vote for your favorite.