My Star Wars Bag is Amazing

I mean, it’s super awesome.

Mistakes: I’ve made a few. But then again, too few to mention. Well, not really. I mean, there’s the piping that is very imperfect in parts – but it was the first time I ever made piping and I did it!! And it’s Star Wars piping. So that awesomeness pretty much negates any mistakes, right? Right. Also, there are places where it looks like this and that is amazing to me:

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And my modifications for the strap worked out OK, but not perfect. Fortunately: that can easily be corrected if I want to go back and twiddle with it.

But overall: man, it’s an awesome bag. And it’s BIG. I can fit all of my work stuff (laptop, cables, iPad, expandable file folder, etc, etc) along with my lunch and a sweater and it’s still got room. And the little pocket panel on the front makes it so handy to store things without losing them right away (which I am want to do).

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And really: you can’t beat the fabric. It’s so deliciously nerdy! But what’s great, is it’s almost totally serious and normal looking on the outside (except for those darn too wide piping parts!), but then you open it up and you can see that it’s lighthearted and geeky. Just like me ;)

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I didn’t grab good pictures with my camera right after I finished the bag and now I’ve been using it for almost a month(!) and I’ve started to get it dirty, so I figured I’d just go ahead and post my pictures I snagged the day that I finished it. My husband’s palindrome birthday is this week, and he’s requested that I make him a new laptop bag, so I get to do this whole thing all over again. I’m looking forward to correcting my mistakes and making an even better (constructed) bag this time!

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Star Wars Messenger Bag Planning

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....(or actually: Right now, in my craft room…)

Star Wars Messenger Bag!I’m embarking on a new adventure: sewing a bag using a pattern! I’ve sewn quite a few bags in my limited sewing experience – bags are the thing I’ve sewn the most out of anything – but I’ve never bothered with a pattern. I’ve always just followed online tutorials. My favorite has been the Convertible Stroller Bag from Make It and Love It, which I’ve made about 4 times since I began sewing. ANYWAY, so now for the first time I’m going to use a purchased pattern to make a bag for myself. I picked up the pattern at Joann’s this past weekend during their $0.99 McCall’s Pattern sale. It’s M5824 – a laptop bag and case:

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And since character fabric was on sale for 40% off at Joann’s, I figured there was no better fabric to use for my new adventure than some Star Wars fabric:

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I originally was going to do the bag in navy blue with the comic book Star Wars fabric for the front of the flap and the starships in space fabric for the inside contrast pieces, but I decided to narrow it down to just the starships in space fabric and the navy blue canvas.

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I also decided that I’m going to do the entire outside of the bag in the navy blue, and only use the contrast fabric on the inside. I was inspired by my friend, Carrie’s Harry Potter umbrella: it looks like a plain black umbrella from the outside, but open it up and you see stars (so it looks like it’s enchanted like the ceiling in the great hall at Hogwarts). I figured that my bag would be even more amazing if from the outside it looked pretty plain, but when you opened it up you’d see it in all of its geeky glory.

I do have one cool idea in mind for the outside flap, though… See that Millennium Falcon on the starship fabric? I’ve got plans for that…

And speaking of planning:

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Here’s what my work table in my craft room looks like right now. I’ve read the reviews on Pattern Review about the pattern and they definitely weren’t all rave reviews. From those reviews, I’ve learned that many of the individual pattern pieces aren’t labeled clearly (or at all!), so I made sure to label them before I cut them out. A few of the reviews mentioned that the side pocket was a bit outdated for today’s smart phones, so I’m going to attempt simple slide in pockets for both sides of the bag. I also learned that the strap directions are confusing, the strap comes out oddly puffy, and that making the strap adjustable using D-rings wasn’t the greatest idea. I decided to forgo making the strap out of the bag fabric and bought webbing to use instead. And since I inadvertently bought it about a half a yard shorter than I meant to, I’m going to leave out the adjustable length feature. I bought swivel hooks to use to attach the strap to the bag which will add back in a couple of inches to the length and will also make it so the strap twists easily to maneuver what is going to be a large bag on and off my shoulder more easily.

I spent a lot of time studying the finished project photos on PatternReview.com and I decided that I wanted to keep all the fun fabric on the inside. Since that will mean a difference in the cutting layout vs what the pattern says, I spent some time annotating a photo of the instruction sheet using Skitch on my iPad:

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I’m pretty psyched for this bag. I’m a bit intimidated by it, but I bet it will turn out to be like most projects: the anticipation is worse than the actual work. I hope so, anyway!