Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Giant Library Tote of Holding - Nancy Drew Style!

A while ago I discovered they made Nancy Drew fabric.  I LOVED those books growing up, so I had to have some!  Unfortunately I didn't find out about it until it had been out for a while and was getting scarce.  I was able to find a charm pack of the fabric, but then I faced the dilemma of what to make with it!  Not enough to make a quilt, didn't really NEED another purse, hoarding it was an option, but really, I should use it.... but then I had a brilliant (even if I do say so myself) idea of making a library bag!

(Book Fabric!! It was meant to be!)

Honestly, I would live in a library if I could, but since they don't really seem to like that, I take home as many books as I can every time I visit.  I'm getting better, I try to limit my checkouts to 30, and that does include books for the kiddos and movies/TV shows...  But as a result, my reusable shopping bags were not big enough, and a bag one of my best friends gave me proved to be not strong enough for the many pounds of books I bring home.

(Other side with more prints)
I set about to design a bag that would hold even the GIANT over sized kid's books, with room for lots of smaller books too.  Since it was merely going to tote books back and forth to the library, I didn't over-engineer it with 20 million pockets, flashy zippers, or built in secret compartments (but I was tempted!).  Instead, I found 18 of the charm squares I really loved, then set about to make them into 2 3x3 squares.  Lots of rearranging led to a final layout I decided was 'good enough' and then I sewed them together with a 1/4" seam.  After I had those lovely squares, I realized I had to find something to match!  Fortunately I found something in my stash that sort of matched, then cut strips to frame my work of Nancy Drew art!  I used fusible fleece and shapeflex interfacing to make sure this bag would be holding up for a long time, and then quilted around each square for more security.  Handles I measured to be long enough to sling the bag over my shoulder and made them extra padded (good thing, it feels like it weighs more than 30 lbs some days! --Now I make the kids get the paperback edition if they have it!)  A little bias binding around the top, and I was ready to bring all the books home!

(Look at all that room!  Skippjon Jones is almost lost in there and he's a big book!)

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