I am excited to introduce a new sewing pattern - the Smithfield Bag!
I love this bag in one solid color with just a pop of contrast on the piping and sturdy leather straps, or it's a great bag to showcase your favorite designer's collection.
This pattern has a few features and options that give it a lot of versatility. First, there are exterior slip pockets on the front and back of the bag. I love these pockets! It's a good place to keep a phone or small notebook handy. There is also a piping accent on the top of the bag, and around the pocket on the exterior. You can skip the piping if you prefer, but I like that it creates a nice crisp outline around the different pieces of the bag.
The pattern has options for fabric straps or for leather straps. I offer leather strap kits in my shop! The leather strap kit includes a pair of hand-cut leather straps in two lengths, with holes punched in the ends and rivets that you can use to attach the strap to your own bag, with no extra tools required. Here's a tutorial I wrote about leather straps as well.
The fabric straps have o-rings and are sewn onto the bag, but they would also look great with a metal rivet attachment. Of course, it's easy to forgo the o-rings if you prefer no hardware on your bag.
The Smithfield Bag pattern also includes two top closure options: a zipper or a magnetic snap. I love the security of the top zipper, and it also gives the bag a bit more shape at the top. The magnetic snap option makes the bag "break" a little bit more in the center, but it's a good option if you prefer an open top bag.
For interfacing, I've chosen to use Pellon Woven Fusible Interfacing (SF101). The SF101 interfacing is my default - it adheres well to the fabric, and it doesn't get crinkly like some stiffer interfacings do. It's very easy to sew, and one layer of it fused to a quilting weight cotton makes the cotton more of an upholstery weight. This pattern has some thicker areas to sew in the seams (like where seams that both have piping meet), and the SF101 interfacing doesn't create a lot of extra bulk to deal with there. In general, I prefer bags that have a bit of slouch to them. If you like your bags to have more body, I'd recommend trying a fusible fleece on this one, but I'd recommend that you trim the interfacing so that it is not sewn in the seam allowances.
What do you think of the new pattern? Would you make yours in solids or patterned fabrics? Fabric or leather straps?