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Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns

Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns Book Flip Through Videos Japanese Sewing Books

Book Flip Through Review – Pouch Making Classroom

January 11, 2019

Happy 2019! A little late into the year but I must confess I have been taking a nice relaxing time off. I took 2 weeks off in December, and when I came back everything was a mess at home and there was so much laundry to catch up. It is also a few weeks more the Chinese New Year which means more frantic sewing trying to get everyone’s new clothes ready. Anyway, I really wanted to review this book because I think this is one of the more useful Pouch making books I have bought so far. I realize the cover is not that attractive, and maybe many of you might skip it while browsing through online shops. But I saw the sneak preview and one of the set of instructions on the different ways to deal with zip ends caught my attention. So I just had to buy it to take a look. And then there was a pouch with 3 compartments that I’ve always wanted to know how to make, and it’s in there too!
cover

You know a book is really useful if the first thing you do when you buy it is not to make 1, but 2 pouches using the patterns 😛 This book is published by Nihon-Vogue and there are 35 different projects you can make. The lessons include how to install zippers (adjusting length / end of zips / sewing), attaching lining to your pouches, attaching different types of interfacing, sewing with special materials, and how to attach metal purse frames. With this book you can literally make any pouch you want!

This was the first one – a little cosmetic case with elastic pockets inside for small items like eyeshadows or tweezers..

pandapouch

and the second pouch I made was this – This is actually a twin pouch sewn together, and the section in between the two pouches makes a 3rd compartment. It’s really useful for sorting things out and even my daughter has asked for one for her school devices!

echinopouch2

Note how it looks like adifferent print from different angles? This is the metallic Kokka Echino Canvas from Nekoneko.co and it has a large scale abstract print, so depending on how you cut the fabric, you get a different look everytime!

echinopouch

And here’s the book flip-through video, you can find lots of other pouch designs in the video.

The lessons are very clear and easy to follow, so I would really recommend this book even though the cover looks rather plain! I hope you like it and make lots of useful pouches out of it!

Tanoshiku Manaberu! Porch No Kyoshitsu / VOGUE Japan

Title :ポーチの教室  (Pouch Making Classroom)
Publisher : Nihon Vogue
ISBN No. :978-4529058438

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Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns Japanese Fabrics

See Design for Kokka Fabrics

August 8, 2018

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged about Japanese fabrics, and I’m about to do more of these post because my favorite fabric shop Nekonekofabric has been adding more of these to the store. There are many new collections to introduce so I’ll do it one by one! I’ll need time to sew them up as well you see…

Today’s post is about a fabric from Kokka fabrics, from See Design by Donna Gorman.

seedesignbigwheels

Image from https://www.nekoneko.co/products/kokka-see-design-big-wheels-canvas-pink-50cm

This fabric, in fact, has been in Nekonekofabric’s store for a while now, and as I’m usually not really a pink person, I didn’t think very much about it. But when I actually saw the fabric real life, I was immediately struck by how Marimekko it looked! I’ve always been a big fan of Marimekko designs. Especially the geometric prints. In my younger days I used to buy their bags and even bought some fabric for my stash. The fabric was soooo expensive that I can’t bear to cut it up.

And then recently, this popped up in my Facebook feed. About a free pattern project using the latest See Design fabric on Kokka’s English blog. The project is a balloon bag and you can find this and more free patterns from Kokka’s English website here http://kokka-fabric.com/en/craft-sewing/balloon-bag/. But what really caught my attention…..

The featured project is a puffy bag in the shape of a balloon made with the seedesign series by designer Donna Gorman. Gorman, who worked at Marimekko for 24 years and is now active as a freelance textile designer, expresses her vision and contemporary design through the seedesign series with a variety of products.

I immediately went to search out the rest of the designs and got really excited when I found out that Nekoneko was bringing in some of these new prints! (ETA : These are not available in store yet but I will add the links on once they are made available!)

collection

So when I know that new fabric is coming in, I suddenly feel more daring about sewing up my existing stash. I even deliberately wanted to make it look more Marimekko like so I surfed around for Marimekko bag designs and found one in my Japanese sewing book. So here it is!

tulipbagseedesign

Presenting the tulip bag with two convenient outer pockets. A simple golden magnetic clasp enclosure. The original design didn’t come with any zips/closures but I wanted one to stop things from falling out 😂

tulipbaginners

As I wanted the bag to stand up on it’s own, I used byAnnie’s Soft and Stable foam interfacing (it’s a sew-in and not fusible) from 2Quilters.com. The lining is from Cotton+Steel Basics range – Counting Stars.

The pattern is called a tulip bag and it’s from this book (aff link to cdJapan)

Kantan, Benrina Tezukuri Bag / Boutique-sha

I hope you like what I made and I’ve got lots more yummy fabrics to show you soon! Till next time!

Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns Japanese Sewing Books

Book Review and Flip through Video – Everyday Rucksacks

August 21, 2017

Based on the last poll on books you would like me to read, this book came out second! The title of the book is Everyday Ruck(sacks). The characters “リュック” is literally translated to Ruck instead of the full word rucksack, but the Japanese have shortened it to Ruck and it’s understood that it means a rucksack / backpack.

Featured on the cover is the popular backpack style with the wire frame opening, which allows it to open fully and stay open while you dig through your backpack for stuff. Let’s take look at the different rucksacks / backpack sewing patterns you can make with this book.
everydayrucksacks

openframebag

The first pattern is the wire frame rucksack / backpack sewing pattern as featured on the front cover. See in the bottom right picture how it opens up big and wide which makes it easy to find your stuff.
toteruck

This is a cute Tote style backpack with a simple zip opening on the top.

kidsruck

The standard backpack sewing pattern. This is available in kids size as well as adult size versions. The kids size version is  32cm(H) x 23cm(W) x 12cm (D) while the adult size is 40cm(H)  x 28cm(W) x 1cm(D). This pattern comes with a detailed sewing lesson.

purseframeruck

Who said backpacks have to look sporty or rugged, here’s a cute kisslock purse frame bag.

messengerruck

This is a convertible backpack / messenger bag, made using digitally printed basket weave fabric. I’m not a big fan of these digitally printed textures but it does look like a basket weave bag from far doesn’t it?

checkoutruck

I really like this idea! and I learned a new phrase while looking this up. This back is called the レジかご リュック。 The first term レジかご (rejikago) actually means checkout while the second term means rucksack. So this is a bag designed to fit into a shopping basket, and you can carry your groceries in it after payment. There are lots of such bags available for sale online but mostly in tote bag style. This is one that converts to a rucksack/backpack that allows you to carry it on your shoulders.

shouldertote

Another interesting convertible bag. This converts from shoulder bag that can be carried messenger/crossbody style, or backpack style. The unique feature of this bag is how the backpack straps are zipped together to form one wider strap for the shoulder bag. Seems like a great idea for a travel or diaper bag.

ruckorganizer

This is not a rucksack / backpack sewing pattern, but rather a in-bag organizer for you to sort out all the small items that tend to disappear in the depths of your backpack. It will help to keep things upright as well!

sampleinstructions

There is a full, step by step photo tutorial for the making of the basic rucksack / backpack sewing pattern.

samplehowtomake

Here is an example for the other bag patterns’ instructions. I did feel that the instructions were a little brief for certain steps, and when it comes to bag making, so many of the parts look similar (for example rectangular pieces) and it takes a while to decipher the instructions. You may also need to translate some of the text to tell which part of the bag you are making too.
closeuphowtomake

A close up of the diagrams.

patternsheets

Pattern sheets attached

backcover

In summary, if you want to learn how to make a standard rucksack / backpack from scratch, the detailed sewing lesson will be a great resource. However, for the rest of the patterns, they are not that simple to sew so it may not be ideal for a beginner sewist. However, if you are quite adept at sewing bags, you will love this book because I found many new creative ideas for convertible bags in here.

For the rest of the bag patterns not shown above, here’s my book flip-through review! Happy browsing!

 

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Mainichi Ruck / Boutique-sha

Japanese Title : 毎日リュック
Translated Title : Everyday Rucksacks
Publisher : Boutique-sha
ISBN : 9784834743722

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Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns Book Flip Through Videos Book Reviews

Book Review – It’s a Small World Felted Friends

May 31, 2017

Today’s book review is not about sewing, but of a different type of needlecraft. It is a really fun and stress relieving craft that also involves needles, but using wool instead of thread. Have you tried it before? It’s needle felting!

itsasmallworldcover

What is needle felting? Basically, you take some wool, and you jab at it with a needle till it combines together to form a solid wool block and while you jab at it, you shape it into the different shapes you need, then you combine them to form figures. Sounds easy?
feltingbasics

My first encounter with needle felting was when my eldest bugged me to buy her a felting kit from Daiso before and I thought it will be cool to see how it was made, but before I got to it, she got exasperated with the fact that the wool wouldn’t stay together, broke a couple of needles and so I didn’t even get to try it. So when Tuttle sent me this book – It’s a Small World Felted Friends (and one more that I will review later). I jumped at the chance to actually learn from an expert.

myneedlefelting

Finally! Something that looks presentable! The rabbit on the left was made by me, and the donut on the right by my daughter. We didn’t follow the patterns in the book exactly because the only wool we could find was at Daiso and they were mostly in kits, which meant that the amount of wool for each color was quite limited. But we followed the techniques taught in the book and I must say that needle felting is extremely stress relieving! Until you jab your finger with the needle that is 😛

Back to the book, the theme of this book is Cute and Cuddly Needle Felted Figures from Around the World – there are so many cute figures in this book that my girls were gushing over them and happily ordering me to make them all. Here are some of my favourites!
iasw_panda

Pandas are just so inexplicably cute! Something about the black and white combination on an animal looks so surreal. Have you seen them in action before? They are really cute in real life and these are even cuter because they are mini sized!iasw_netherlands

One of my earliest memories of my toys was a little doll wearing a Dutch costume, the only thing I remember about it is the little hat and the colorful dress. Looking at how the different wool colors were used in the dress, this looks like quite a complicated pattern but so pretty to look at! The little windmill on a base behind her is one of the detailed lessons in the book.
iasw_kangaroo

Another animal that is super duper cute. See the little joey peeking out from the mama kangaRoo? 🙂

iasw_russiandolls

Who can resist these beautiful, intricate Russian dolls? Look at the colors and details!

iasw_samplelesson

There are 3 detailed lessons in this book, with full step by step instructions. Most of the basic techniques are covered in these 3 lessons so you will be equipped with all the knowledge and skills you need to make all the cute figures in the book.

The lessons included are :

Castle on a Base (learning how to create a landscape on a base)
Making a Teddy Bear (learning how to attach body parts like limbs, eyes and ears etc)
Multi-purpose Dangle (how to attach thread/straps for handphone/bag charms etc)

iasw_samplepattern

Here is an example of the instructions.

iasw_groupphoto

It’s a small world after all!

istasmallworldbackcover

More cuteness on the back cover, but you can see more here in the book flip through review. Enjoy!

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Title : It’s a Small World Felted Friends
Author : Sachiko Susa
ISBN No. : 9784805314364

 There is another book on needle felting – Adorable Felted Animals that was also published by Tuttle. I will post a book flip through plus some pictures from the book next week. Stay tuned!

Bags or Zakka Sewing Patterns Book Reviews Giveaways Japanese Sewing Books in English

Book Review and Giveaway – Patchwork Quilted Bags

August 6, 2016

Today’s book review is a yet to be released title named Patchwork Quilted Bags, and this is your favourite part – it’s in English! The author/designer is Reiko Washizawa, 鷲沢玲子, a famous and well-published Quilt designer in Japan. She has been quilting for 40 years and has published many Japanese quilting books. This book is not about making patchwork quilts though, it is a book dedicated to incorporating your patchwork creations into everyday bags. This will be a great way to bring your creative showpieces around with you since it is quite impossible to bring your quilts wherever you go.

Honestly I have never made a proper full size quilt, but I have been hoarding a whole box of handmade dresses that my girls have outgrown and planning to make a keepsake quilt out of the dresses, so I have been reading up on hand piecing and it seems kind of daunting, especially when it comes to creating a full size quilt. This book came just in time and gave me some new ideas on smaller projects I can start with, and furthermore, it combines the patchwork quilting with my love for making bags!

Let’s have a look at this book shall we? Before we jump to the details of the giveaway 🙂

cover

There are 19 projects to be made in this book and they are divided into 5 chapters. There are also additional sections in between the chapters that teach you all the basics you need to know about patchwork making. From materials, to drafting of basic quilt patterns, and even a little showcase of the author’s quilt-making story.

 

draftinginstructions

 

Before the first chapter begins, there is an introduction tutorial on how to draft the different shapes you will need in the book. This is the basis of the book, you will need to know how to draw the different shapes and how they are pieced together before you can apply them to your bags.

Now, we are ready to make some bags!

The first Chapter : Basic Bags

basicbags

The first project is the beautiful pieced Little Bird Bag that you see on the front cover. I was surprised that this bag was called a basic bag because it certainly looked complicated to me! Upon closer scrutiny, it turned out that the birds were actually part of the fabric print and were quilted on to the batting. The patchwork portion is only the strip in the middle, which is made up of hexagonal pieces.

 sewinginstructions

There are detailed instructions for every step, not just the making of the patchwork, but also to show you how to assemble the bag.

The second Chapter is about Out & About Bags

 dressedup-bags

There are beautifully embellished bags for a night out,

squarepatchworkbag

Casual basic square patchwork bags for running a quick errand,

 bowlbag

cute bowl shaped bags, perfect for carrying knitting supplies I say!

 Chapter 3 : Shopping bags

shoppingbag

Roomy bags with lots of space for shopping and marketing. Note the beautiful pattern which is called a Lemon Star Patchwork. Looks challenging to me!

 Chapter 4 : for Moms and Little Ones

 mamabag

Mother’s bag and Baby Bottle Case

lessonbags

Lesson Bags for kids

 The last chapter : Cute Little Pouches
Creative patchwork designs and small scale projects that are suitable for beginners like me!

 sewingcase

Sewing Case and Scissors Case

strawberrypouches

Strawberry Pouches

 yoyopouches

Mini Yo-yo Pouch. These pouches are made out of lots of tiny yo-yos. Amazingly cute and I love the color explosion!

 unionjackpouches

Union Jack pouches. Fashioned after the Union Jack using Liberty fabrics for the stripes. How apt!

 sampleinstructions

 Sample of detailed instructions for each project.

 There are also two large pattern sheets attached for all the appliqués and templates you will need to make the projects in this book.

Thanks to Tuttle Publishing, I was provided a free PDF book preview for this book review, and they are also,  giving away one copy of this book to one of you lucky readers! Win a copy of it before it is even released! Contest is open worldwide and will run for a week. Enter now!

To enter the giveaway, please fill in the form below. Contest ends 12th August 2016. Extra chances for those who share this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. Good Luck!

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