PPC4 – A Shell Game

(This post is part of a continuing series focusing on the development of a new handbag pattern from its initial conception to it’s release.)

So… in our last post we revealed our original sketches for this new design, and if you’re a fan of this series, you know that what comes next is a very barebones, skeleton-type sample… a shell of a bag.

I just don’t waste time with pockets and other features at this stage. I don’t even add fleece or lining or any other foundation type component, because right now, I just want to know if the basic shell ‘works’, and by that I mean:

Do the pattern pieces for the basic silhouette line work?…
(do the pattern pieces fit together as they should, is the size what we were after?)

and is the basic silhouette pleasing and consistent with our vision?
(does the bag look the way I had hoped, do I like it enough to continue the process?)

and does the basic silhouette differ enough from our other patterns?
(I have no interest in producing the same pattern over and over again with just slight variations)

So here’s our first sample, which is just a shell. No lining… no fleece… no pockets. Basically just fabric sides with a base. I did take the time to install an old zipper into the bag opening, because this is a completely different zipper attachment feature than we have used before. This bag is smaller than the last few we’ve done and installing the zipper in this way allows the bag to open wider and I want to make sure that at least the small PortaPockets Purse Insert can squeeze thru the opening and fit easily inside.

Overall I was pleased with this first effort, and actually, this sample probably went together easier than  any of our “shell” samples thus far. So stay tuned for our next post in this series when we’ll start fleshing out the fun features for this new bag. I’ve got some unique design elements planned and for the first time, I plan on utilizing a brand new type of foundation fabric (instead of fusible fleece), AND invisible sew-in magnetic snaps for the flap (and by sew-in, I mean by machine, NOT by hand).

So, the big question is… 
what do YOU think?
and what features would YOU like to see us incorporate into this new bag?

And CONGRATULATIONS to MaryAnn (Matate) of Oklahoma! She guessed Jeter’s weight ‘on the nose’, or should we say ‘on the gut’?  23.5 pounds!!  She wins a pattern of her choice! And stay tuned for our blog post on Monday when we’ll have our biggest giveaway EVER!

Do you know someone who would enjoy this series? If so, please feel free to re-tweet it, or pass it on to others via Facebook or StumbleUpon and stay tuned for our next post in this series, where we’ll unveil our first complete sample.

8 Comments So Far, You're Next!

  1. I love the shape of this bag and the security of having the main pocket zip completely closed. An outside secure pocket for cell phone would be good and some way to secure and easily find your keys too. I’ve thought about putting a tag with a snap sewn inside my next bags for my keys with a corresponding decorative snap on my keyring that would switch from bag to bag.

  2. I agree with Melody on the outside cell phone pocket. I made the Bellagio bag and that was my favorite feature…although the bag itself wasn’t quite big enough to hold all I carry around. I love how you keep coming up with new bags, and your instructions are fantastic. Keep up the great work!

  3. I have plans for 2 outside pockets. You can see the various features I have planned for this bag in my last post. 🙂

  4. Totally like this one; I’m first in line for the pattern

  5. @ Janice – Toward the top, I put a twill tape loop in one of the inside seams of every bag I make and put a snap hook on it. That’s where I put key rings, flash drives and anything else that is small or I want easy access to.

    Kathy, I love this bag. I can’t think of anything that you don’t have covered. Still waiting for the name. I came up with Kat-Tour De Force.

  6. Congrats to MaryAnn on guessing Jeter’s weight ~ I was exactlly ONE pound off (Sorry Jeter ~ I had you at 24.5) 😎

  7. I have put carabiners in my bags to hang things from. I find they are quick and easy to use (and would be a tribute to the rockies, since they are used for climbing).
    I also have a bag that I bought which has a small magnet in a seam, that I hang my keys from. It works like a charm, just keep it away from your credit cards.

  8. That is the bag I have been looking for!!!! Will it have a nice long cross body strap?