24 March 2012

Market Bag Finished

How satisfying it is to get things finished! After I'd had my breakfast this morning, I had the option of cleaning the bathroom or finishing the Alabama Chanin market bag I've been working on. Naturally, I chose the bag. Every seam in this tote is hand stitched, and I've made it in a raw-edge patchwork technique. I've only used old cotton t-shirts (5 long-sleeved ones were required), so it was a great way to reuse fabric that otherwise would have ended up in the bin. After I discovered Natalie Chanin's books I can never throw away old t-shirts again. Every patch (8 in all) is slightly different from the other ones, so I'll show you both sides of the bag. The directions for the basic bag type can be found in Alabama Studio Style, on page 107.

Side 1

Side 2:

 And a detail shot:

And now there's no getting away from what's next. I've had my fun. Now it's time to roll up the sleeves and do some housework. After that, however, it's back to fun and games again!

Have a great weekend! - Annika


  1. Are the handles sturdy? This is a beautiful project.

    1. Thanks Melly! Well, as for sturdiness, that is something that remains to be seen. I tried to make the handles as stable as possible with four layers of fabric cut along the grain, and the stitching helps to make them even less stretchy. My first plan was to add a stabiliser or a fabric without stretch in the middle of the layers, but as the four layers seemed relatively stable, I decided to take a risk and leave out the stabiliser. This may have been a mistake. I've tried to pull on the handles and they seem reasonably sturdy. Of course, the whole bag is a bit stretchy, so I'm not planning to carry anything too heavy in it.

  2. Gorgeous! I love the stitching and the design. Thanks for the inspiration!