Hi, and welcome to day 6 of the Whole Lotta Bag Along.

We’re finally at the point where we can put the outer bag together, and regardless of which option you’ve gone with, either as written, or omitting various pockets, or using snaps, the outer bag goes together the same way, as par the pattern.

Tips For Assembling The Outer Bag

    1. Firstly, the strap tab ends.  There’s not much more I can give you than what’s in the pattern, but there’s a couple of points of clarification:
      • When pressing the strap tab ends, and strap, I find I get a neater result folding the ends in after I’ve established the main folds.  I don’t know why, that’s just how it works for me, but if you want to do it the other way, knock yourself out!
      • Make sure you sew along the open edges before you stitch up the folded side, it seems to make for a crinkle-free result.
    2. Once you’ve attached your strap tab ends to the sides, it’s onto the main bag assembly:
    • I can’t stress enough how important it is to make the marks in step 74 and not to sew past them.  If you sew past them, your base won’t fit, and then you’ll have a fairly large temper tantrum.  Or maybe that’s just me.  Either way, you don’t want to do that
    • When you’re attaching the side to the back piece, make sure the zipper is well away from the side seam – if you sew it into the seam, it’s a PITA to get out again if you didn’t break the needle on it!
    • When you’ve got to the end of step 77, it’s a good idea to press your seams open.  You could do it later, but it’s handier at this point, with far less wrestling to get the iron in
    • Don’t forget to trim the corners.  Just don’t.  If you don’t trim, you’ll get far too much bulk when you turn it through, and it will be a nightmare when you come to add the grid bag bottom
    • If you’re following the changing bag option, remember that you can’t use pins to attach the flap to the bag.  Also remember that the lining side should be uppermost when sewing them together, otherwise you might end up cursing and unpicking.  I’ve never done that of course.
    • When you come to attach the flap, if your machine has a free arm, use it!  It will be much easier to get through the machine if you use your free arm rather than wrestling to keep everything else out of the way.

That’s all for this session, put your completed outer bag to the side, we’ll pick up the grid bag bottom and feet when we come to the final assembly.

As ever, if you have any questions or problems, please let me know :o)