Have you ever worked with velvet? I hadn't until this week .... not even in the velvet revival of the 1970's when it seemed every fashion conscious die-hard had a jacket with big BIG lapels. My friend had one and I was very envious but I didn't earn enough money working in Mr Beestons local deli to make a velvet jacket - let alone buy one, so I had a good old Crimpolene number instead! Still the wide lapels, nipped in waist and vented back but it was a poor second to Alisons' true velvet number! So, when when I found this gorgeous lilac coloured cotton velvet last week I just had to buy it and have a go at making something. A bag will be easy I thought .... ha ha ha ! The velvet fairy must have keeled over in hoots at that thought! NOOOOOOO it is not easy to work with. It slips and slides like a slippery eel I can tell you ... and apparently cotton velvet is supposed to be much easier to work with than silk velvet!
I knew I had to watch the run of the nap and had already thought to use my even-feed foot but it still slips. I eventually realised after a couple of rips that pre-basting with needle and thread is an absolute MUST for working with velvet. Pinning just will not hack it. It is the most bazaar fabric out. But it is gorgeous which is why I persevered and made not one but 2 bags!
Quilting the birdy embroidery was a doddle. I didn't even stabilise the fabric for that - just loaded it on my long arm frame and hey-presto it was done. One cute, very subtle green birdy sat on a tree branch -- design courtesy of One Song Needle Arts.
The bag design is kind of my own although I think I must have been influenced by one I saw in a book by Tone Finnager. Anyway I had a couple of these round handles and had been wondering what to do with them for a long time and I thought they would be perfect for this bag. There is something very sumptuous about velvet. It drapes sooooo well and has a degree of sophisication about it no other fabric has - which is very funny considering I allocated one of them to be a knitting bag! (My knitting is not sophisicated I can tell you!) No seriously, I think they are lovely bags and would make perfect gifts for someone. Which is why I have put them in my shop!
Talking of shops ... the Buzz bag has buzzed off to Denver this morning and I am buzzing to think someone else likes what I made!
Tobacco Road Quilt
4 hours ago