Monday, 3 May 2010

Latest Refashion

I mentioned a few posts ago that I wanted a rucksack to wear when riding my bike, as my normal bags keep falling out of the basket or I buy too much shopping to balance everything on the bike! Well I did have a look around the shops and either the ones I like were way too expensive, as bags are always a whim with me!! Or they were too sporty, outdoorsy for me, I love my bike but it is just a way of getting around for me so I have to wear normal clothes etc, I'm not into the whole lycra special outfit stuff. Which if you knew me you would breathe a huge sigh of relief, I'm not built for lycra, or only in industrial quantities!!

So I decided to have a wander through the many black sacks of cast off clothing I have accumulated from my daughter and her friends mainly!! I found a charcoal gray/almost black suit and decided I could use the jacket!

I drew around an A4 folder as this was the size I wanted the bag, onto pattern paper, Then I added a bit for ease and seam allowances and curved the corners. I cut 2 of these pieces from the back of the jacket, I kept the lining attached as I knew I would need the layers for padding. Then I found an old skirt in my stash that was cotton and used that for lining, I cut the back piece around an existing pocket so that I would have an internal pocket at no extra work!!

I then layered the pieces with wadding in between and machine quilted in a wavy pattern, which is a pre-set stitch pattern on my machine. I cut the side and bottom gusset, 3"wide, from the sleeves and layered them in the same way and quilted them. The front pocket is the pocket from the front of the suit jacket, I cut a big square from the front then trimmed away 1 1/4" squares from each corner then joined the 2 short edges at each corner so that the pocket had a bit of depth. I did this without damaging the pocket inner of the original jacket so that there would be 2 layers and the pocket would be a bit stronger. I then made a flower and decorated the pocket,
The pattern for this flower is from artsy-crafty babe, so thank you to Rebekah (great blog btw). It was very easy to do and I had been given some precut circles so I used them, the button was also from a bag of goodies I've been given. there is a little stitching but I used glue gun for assembly so very quick!

I joined all the pieces wrong side to wrong side and then bound the edges, this was not only the easiest way, but also means each join is stitched 3 times so has added strength. I made the straps from the fronts, the top from the shoulder down past the lapels. This part of a tailored jacket, has lots of layers for shaping and finish, I used them all, stitching them together on my overlocker, I then added strong tape to meet the bottom, centre of the back. Before I fixed this position, I tried it on and got it comfy on my back and made sure I could get it on and off easily as I didn't want to got to the fuss of making adjustable straps!! The zip came from my stash so I didn't need to but anything to make this rucksack so that was pleasing!!

I really enjoyed making this project, I did the designing and working out in my head during the previous few days so that by the time I sat down to do it, everything went very smoothly. I have used it this last week while I have been away and it has been very useful. I have also had an outing on the bike with it and was very glad of it cos I always buy more than fits in the paniers and basket!!


  1. great job! the flower is a nice touch.

  2. It looks really nice. I wonder whether I should attempt the same from a second-hand tweed jacket?