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You probably guessed this from the title, but my final So You Think You Can Sew project is a bag. And not just any bag- a camera bag/laptop bag/purse in one. An Everything Bag. But first a little background on how this Everything Bag came to be.
Once upon a time, a long long time ago, pre-Burke-and-Piper, Adam and I traipsed around Europe for a summer (it was obviously pre-dental school as well, because we had the budget to ‘traipse’ for a summer).
That summer, in the leather market in Florence, I fell in love with a purse. Maybe I should call it a bag (it’s pretty big). I loved that bag and used it every day for years- it was well made, carried all my teacher stuff (do you know any teachers? The most universal teacher-trait is their love for carting around loads of stuff), and was just generally fabulous.
A few years after that Europe Summer, we welcomed Burke into our family. Luckily, along with Burke, I got a new and fabulous bag to love (courtesy of Drew and his trip to the leather market in Morocco- are you sensing a theme here? Apparently, international leather markets are my bag-store of choice).
And a couple of years after that, while I was pregnant with Piper Jane, I made myself a diaper bag (actually, I made two diaper bags- one for me and one for my sister, Kedron), full of all of the pockets and compartments the Morocco bag was lacking. A few months later, I got a new laptop and a new computer bag. And a couple of months after that, Adam surprised me with a Big Girl camera- though, no camera bag. I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I just pile my lovely, expensive camera into my Bag Du Jour (currently the rotation includes the diaper bag, a fabulous blue bag I’m borrowing from Trish, and the leather Florence purse/bag).
You know where this is headed- I needed a new bag. And courtesy of tons of research (and even more pinning), I came up with my dream bag. The only problem? My Everything Bag is a compilation of specific features of about seven different bags. I love the camera-readiness of a Jo Tote plus the laptop pocket of a Kelly Moore bag (but wider to accommodate my bigger computer) and the many-pockets of a Cake by Petunia bag. I love the blue-and-leather-trim combo of the Lovingly Prescribed doctor bag by Anthropologie (except that light blue would be destroyed by my kids/life in about a week). Oh, and I love tons of hardware. And classic styling (think wool/herringbone/leather). Yep,
pinterest! my research had created a bag monster. And so “Make a Custom EVERYTHING Bag” was added to my To Make list.
The two things working in my favor? Last year, my sister ran into a similar problem and commissioned a diaper/camera bag of champions (so I had an idea of where to start). And the finale week of So You Think You Can Sew was themed “Contestant Choice.” Perfect.
To be honest, it was quite the undertaking.
But totally worth it (I feel like I describe all of my projects that way- not low-maintenance, but worth the effort… perhaps I should rename the blog “Worth the Work”- haha).
In all seriousness, I don’t really know if there is another project that would be more useful to me currently. The fact that I can carry my camera and camera gear, my laptop, snacks and drinks, Piper Jane necessities, Burke necessities, my planner (it has its own pocket! Well, actually, everything I mentioned so far has its own pocket!), my wallet, keys, cell phone, and other assorted everyday purse paraphanalia is miraculous.
But the fact that all of those things will be 1- Safe (courtesy of foam and felted wool padding and some thick interfacing), 2- Organized in their own spots, and 3- Accessible (probably because they each have their own spot) is a dream come true. Everything Bag indeed.
So there it is. The evolution of my Everything Bag. And more pictures than you probably ever wanted to see (can you tell I am a little excited?). Stay tuned- later this week I’ll give you the 411 on all those pockets and extra features (yep, there are functional fabulousnesses that I didn’t even share yet).
And here’s the link to the SYTYCS voting. It’ll be open until tomorrow (Thursday) night at 8pm EST. If you have a minute, would you head over and vote?