Street cred

I can tell you, without a doubt, every guy I know now notices my sewing skills – since I started sewing with pleather and leather.

Spice of Life bag by Moonshine
This little beauty had 2 features that I love.
1: It was made by Sharon, Gail, Luci and a few Rhodes ASG sewers in 1 session earlier this year. 1 session only!
2: I got to use real leather and snake skin printed silk fabric leftovers as well as leftover bag strap, in the same colour as the leather.

Making up the internal pockets was dead easy using Steam a Seam 2 lite. Yes. There are two pockets for the phone and car keys. The linings has been interfaced with light-weight interfacing.

Sealing the leather seams with double sided tape from Birdsall Leather made the external leather seams firm. The red clips above are Clover wonder clips and I bought a box of them of ebay for a lot less than I can buy them locally.


I bought the tubular handbag frame from Ghees online store and the zippers was from my Zipperstop stash that I bought in 2011. I’ve found a local bag frame supplier through ebay – Handbag Hardware Australia, making future Spice of Life bags cheaper to make.

My shoe repair guy and I are now BFFs because while he doesn’t work on handbags, he sewed up the final seam around the handles for me for $10 and he now has the contact details for NSW Leather.

Lucky for me, he was quiet when I went to see him to finish the final seam on my bag. The photo below shows how he’s winding the bobbin. It ran out of thread.

He was really understanding and his sewing machine was hand driven! So he had to hold the bag with all its layers with one hand and operate the machine with the other hand.

This classic bag style is a winner in my books. When I make this again in leather I will use one leather layer only for the bag frame so my machine can sew through it.

I did a bit of online bidding for more leather via Graysonline but stuck to my budget and didn’t result in a leather purchase, phew! That’s it for bag making for a while and my UFOs in 2012 are done – bar the computer bag that won’t get a look at until next year.

Not a bag lady

I had all good intentions of making a bag this year. I only made a hacker job doggie bag for the littlest niece.

You see I had really good intentions as I attended a zipper workshop in October and I learnt lots this year about sewing leather through the Leather workers guild association and at the Powerhouse Musuem and I even bought bag patterns and bag notions. On the weekend I joined the free Craftsy bag class. There’s also my Zipperstop haul of zips that I bought last year that I can use for bags.

Each bag pattern, as lovely as they are, have become UFOs.

1: Spice of life bag
I have the pattern and have cut out leather pieces and snakeskin look lining. I even have the handbag frames that I bought from Ghees’ online store. The yellow clips are holding the leather pieces together and now that I’ve actually sewn leather, this could be next on my sewing table. That was my intention.
The belt in the background was from a bag I had but gave away. As a sewing hoarder, I found the belt in the back of a wardrobe.

I also have the Moonshine Bella bag pattern too.

2: Computer satchel
There’s the green denim leftover from my green jeans just waiting for the McCalls to be cut out and fused. There’s unbleached bag tape and green pre-made binding to add. The bag feet were bought online from Ghee’s. I even intended to use matching binding and lining.

3: Large satchel
This bag uses green leftover drill fabric from my skinny leg jeans. The lining zipper pocket is done as is the outside covered zipper pocket. I sewed in these 2 zippers at a workshop but I haven’t wanted to revisit this piece of work while working on the trench coat.

4: Accessory pattern
Another gunna project. There are plenty of zippers from zipperstop.com and fabric in the stash to get a bunch of these bags made. That was my intention.

Maybe next year.

I think the trenches took it out of me, although I do love making clothes that fit well and bags – I just don’t know.

I’m still pondering a SWAP collection of gymwear to street wear and I’d love to do Marina’s pencil skirt sewalong. My fear is the SWAP collection will also become more UFOs.

But I think it’s back to sewing a knit dress for SIL either McCalls 5752 or McCalls 5974.

She has a holiday booked (a looming self imposed deadline) so I’d like to give her a dress for travellingl. I think McCalls 5752 might be first cab off the rank, with a possible waist tie, a v-neckline and no back zipper ’cause it’s a knit fabric.