April 8, 2011

DOUBLE-HEADER FRIDAY: Birdie Sling Inferno!

Posted by Ethne~

Well Friends, we have reached a subject Lori and I love – Amy Butler!  Amy Butler fabrics and patterns are some of our favorites – Mur-Man’s diaper bag (made by Crafty Grandma), my little tote bags and even lots of free patterns by Amy Butler are available in quilt shops and online!

Mur-Man's nappy bag

My fave - the birdie sling - is pretty much the best tote bag EVER.  I bought the pattern at my local quilt shop, Fat Quarter, then looked all over MN until I found the EXACT Amy Butler fabric from the cover of the pattern:  

Mine exactly
The pattern comes with paper pieces you will use to trace and cut out the parts that will become the bag and handle, as well as instructions for making pockets inside.  Cut out the pieces as instructed, and follow the pattern for sewing the bag together.  (Sorry I can’t give out the instructions and cut-out tracing pieces myself – Amy Butler has proprietary rights to them – but you can buy the pattern for $14.99 and make all you want!)

I was zealous.  I made my bag, with the assistance of my friend RM, and then she and I made them with and for several other friends (RM, AM, BG, BG2, KS, and EG). 

I personally did not stop there.  I made them on a girls sewing weekend with my Girls Trip best friends (Lori couldn’t make it because she had Mur-Man that same weekend) TS, Steph (Special Guest) and CH.

CH, Steph and TS - sling marathon day!

Then for Christmas I made them for my family – Thrifty Nana, Mom D, Mom Connie, Whit and Heather.  At this point, I kinda wore myself out. (Picking out fabric combinations for all of those is exhausting in and of itself.  You have to guess what fabric your recipient will like, since you can't really ask without giving the surprise away, then actually find coordinating fabrics to work.  If you're giving away one sling, no biggie, but if you're doing marathon gifts, it's serious searching.)

This is not the most thrifty of all the crafts Lori and I do – one bag probably costs around $30 (minimum) with all of the things you’ll need.  If you go with quilt shop fabric, it is generally more expensive for the fabrics you find (~$10 per yard); fabric from Walmart or JoAnn is typically a little cheaper (~$5-7 per yard) and you can get some sweet 40-50% off coupons for a cut of fabric if you sign up for JoAnn’s mailers (COUPON TIP:  Save your Michael's craft store coupons because you can use them at JoAnn and vice versa!).  The other materials you need cost around $10 total.  Amy Butler fabric is high end from a quilt shop.

Put into gift-giving perspective though, $30-40 is decent for a Christmas, birthday (etc.) gift.  And as Lori and I have commented on, giving a homemade gift is really cool, and MUCH appreciated.

So, the end of my story is that I L.O.V.E. my birdie sling.  Naturally, that means I managed to burn it with a candle.  What?!? As I recall the event as it unfolded (I was traumatized so I had to mentally block it out), I had my birdie sling on the kitchen island, a candle was burning, and the girls spilled something.  I threw stuff out of the way of the spill – my sling onto the flame.

Burn Baby Burn - an actual flame!
Here’s how I patched it up:

I cut away the burned fabric…

Trim the char
Campfire smell no more

…and cut out a replacement square of fabric and interfacing…

Olives (not kidding, that's in the name of the fabric pattern)

…ironed the fabric and interfacing…

Square of interfacing inside

…sewed the square on…

Patches McGee

…and bedazzled my patch with a few iron-on crystals.  Good as new!

Check out Amy Butler’s fabric and patterns, Friends.  Whether you get the birdie sling or not, there are loads of cool patterns to choose from (Mur-Man’s nappy bag), and the instructions are well-written.  And I give myself a pat on the back for my WOM patch.  (Just don’t burn yours in the first place.)


Kayla said...

Very cute!I Thinking about make one for a diaper bag.
I just came across your blog I love it!

WOM-MOMS said...

Thanks Kayla! I think the birdie sling would work well for a diaper bag. One handle instead of two is helpful. Glad you're here with us! ~Ethne