Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Pattern Test Drive - Madison Wallet Bag Pattern by Serendipity Studio

At 20.5cm (8”) wide x 15.5 (6”) tall x 5cm (2”) deep the Madison is a smallish bag that can comfortably hold 6 cards, a phone plus a small purse/wallet.

The wallet flap that holds your cards is the feature that initially drew me to this pattern. After sewing up the sample and trying it out I would probably do two rows of stitching down the centre of the card pockets to make them a bit tighter.

There is an optional zipper pocket on the back and lining, the pattern suggests a chunky zipper but I only had regular dress zippers at hand which work just as well. The 132cm (52”) adjustable strap allows easy transition from cross body to over the shoulder.

Metal bag hardware always gives a handmade bag a more professional finish. The pattern suggests using o-rings and snap hooks to make the shoulder strap removable. The addition of a slide on the strap makes it adjustable. 

The pattern suggests using 2 magnetic catches, one for the Wallet Flap and one for the Main Outer Flap. Although the pattern calls for 2 different sized magnetic catches I have used 14mm Silver Magnetic Catches  on both flaps on the Skull Spot bag.

The Rose Bag has one 14mm Antique Brass Magnetic Catch on the Wallet Flap but I wanted to try something different on the Main Outer Flap. I have never used a Twist Lock before and thought this bag was the perfect project to give one a go. If, like me, you have never inserted a twist lock before I recommend using Nicole Mallalieu's comprehensive tutorial.

The Madison Bag is designed to have a very rigid structure and the pattern suggest Pellon Deco-Fuse to achieve this. Deco-fuse is not a product that is readily available in Australia and the closest equivalent that we have is Vilene S520 (once again check out Nicole's blog for a comparison between selected Vilene and Pellon interfacings.) I was hesitant to sew a bag using S520 as I know how stiff it is so I decided to make two bags and compare two different interfacing methods.

The Skull Spot Bag uses Vilene S520 Interfacing and as expected the stiffness of the interfacing made this version a bit more difficult to sew. If you are going to attempt using this interfacing option I would recommend making sure that you have a good quality machine that can sew easily through thick layers and good presser foot pressure to stop the bag from sliding around as you guide it through the machine. The finished bag is very stiff and can stand up on its own, support the weight of the metal hardware and keeps it shape well but I think it feels a bit cardboardy.

The Rose Bag uses S320 Interfacing and H630 Wadding, this combination gives the bag structure while remaining malleable. The finished bag can still stand up on its own (with some coaxing) and has enough structure to support the bag hardware. The shape and feel of this bag is a lot softer than the S520 version making this interfacing combination is my personal preference.

If you would like to recreate either of these bags here are the materials that I used:
Rose Bag
Flap - Resting In Roses Black by Alexander Henry
Bag Outer - Premium Solid Black by Northcott
Lining - Premium Solid Poppy by Northcott
Vilene s320 Fusible Interfacing
Vilene H630 Fusible Wadding
2 x Wire O-Ring 20mm / 3/4" Antique Brass – 4pk
2 x Swivel Snap Hook 20mm / 3/4" Antique Brass – 2pk
1 x Slide Adjusters 20mm / 3/4" Antique Brass – 4pk

Skull Spot Bag
Bag Outer - Skull and Bone Spot Black and White by Kokka
Lining - A Ghastlie Web Mist Grey by Alexander Henry
Vilene s520 Heavy Fusible Pelmet Interfacing
2 x Wire O-Ring 20mm / 3/4" Silver – 4pk
1 x Swivel Snap Hook 20mm / 3/4" Silver – 2pk
2 x Slide Adjusters 20mm / 3/4" Silver – 4pk

I hope this has been helpful for anyone thinking of attempting to make the Madison Wallet bag.
- Ky

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