Hi and welcome to the cutting and prep day of the Whole Lotta bag along.  For anyone that would like to join us, the pattern is available over at my Craftsy shop!

Today we’re going to look at the effect of a couple of possible variations of what supplies you need, and how to cut them out.

For my version for the sew along I’ve chosen these Clarke and Clarke Scottie dogs, along with a co-ordinating dotty print, which I’m going to use to make a baby changing bag variation.  As it happens I have quite a lot of this fabric in both home décor weight and laminate versions due to a slight misunderstanding when purchasing some from a website one time!

The original bag in quilting weight cotton

Fabric Variations For The Basic Bag – Home Décor Weight Cotton

The fabric and interfacing requirements in the pattern are based on using a quilting weight cotton, but it’s possible to use a heavier home décor weight fabric instead if you prefer.  If you choose to go down this route, then there’s a couple of things to think about:

1. Fusible Woven Interfacing – the purpose of interfacing is to give support and provide body to your bag.  A quilting weight cotton on its own would be too delicate to use even on a basic shopping tote without some kind of support, at least if you wanted it to last any length of time!  By adding a layer of the fusible woven interfacing though, you are strengthening it, and while it still won’t stand up unaided, it is now able to withstand more strain and stress on it, especially around handles and zippers.  With home décor weight cotton being considerably heavier than quilting weight cotton, the good news is that you can dispense with the fusible woven interfacing, although you will still need the fusible fleece, as that provides the stability that allows it to hold its shape.

2. Sewing With Home Décor Weight – as mentioned in point 1, home décor weight fabric is heavier than quilting weight cotton, even with the interfacing, so you will need to be comfortable that your machine can handle sewing through that many layers. There are a couple of points in the pattern where you will be sewing through 5 layers of fabric, so maybe see if you can do a test run to ensure your machine is not about to fall out with you!

Borrowed from Sarah’s blog, as I was too stupid to take a photo!

Fabric/Design Variations – The Baby Changing Bag

When I first posted about the Whole Lotta Bag last year, several people pointed out that it would make a great baby changing bag, so I followed their advice and made one for Sarah, The Man and baby Molly.  I did make a few variations to the pattern to get the best out of the laminate lining, so if you’d like to make this, here’s what you will have to do:

1. Miss out the following pieces:
  • O11-18 (ie the parts for the zip bridge panel)
  • ML5-ML9
  • ML11-ML12
  • SL3-SL4
2. Make a couple of changes:
  • ML1-ML4 in a non-laminate fabric, as they are for outer pockets  (Dotty for mine)
  • ML10 in the laminate
  • SL1-SL2 in a non-laminate fabric, as they are for outer pockets  (Dotty for mine)
  • SL5-SL7 in a non-laminate fabric, as they are for outer pockets  (Dotty for mine)
3. Add in the following pieces:
  • 2 x O2 in the laminate
  • O5 & O6 in the laminate
  • O9 in the laminate
  • 12″ x 22″ in the laminate for lining belows pocket
  • 12″ x 16″ in the laminate for lining flat divided pocket

4. If you are using home décor weight fabric for your outer as I am, miss out the fusible woven interfacing

5. I also switched out the twist locks for magnetic snaps, as I thought it might be easier for a mum in a hurry!

Any Questions?

Please let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll do my best to answer!