Monday, 26 June 2017

Baby Bionic Gear Bag

A year ago I attended a stitching retreat with some of my embroidery guild members. Also in attendance at the camp were a bunch of quilters. We had a chance to view their activities and several of the ladies had these nifty zippered bags that held all kinds of their sewing tools and accessories. I learned it was called the Bionic Gear Bag. The pattern is sold on Craftsy by Sally Thompson.
I was intrigued.

After buying the pattern ($17.23 Cdn or about $13US), I found out that the entire package was 82 pages long!! The first 36 are instructions for the BGB,  some photos, and the printable template for one pattern piece.

The rest of the pages are detailed instructions for making a zipped 'dumpling dish'. I made one of those a while back and would try another scaling the pattern larger.
I use it for my Wonder Clips (which I bought on eBay for a fraction of what Clover charges).
In the same vein, Craftsy offers a free pattern for a Notions Fabric Dish, also designed by Sally, and which I have also made.
It's reversible!
Both the dumpling dish and fabric dish are designed to go in the front of the full-sized BGB.

I did some more sleuthing and learned that the BGB is just a modification of the Sew Together bag by Sewdemented.

With further research I learned that Sally is having an online feud with someone who has posted a helpful video on how to cut out, assemble, and sew the BGB. Sally does not have videos on the subject posted yet and for a significant fee, they will be made available. I wasn't intrigued.

With the Sew Together videos, the other video, and Sally's long-winded instructions, I decided to make the Baby BGB as a warmup to the big one. The 'pattern' cost an additional $3.95US, It is available to BGB pattern owners, and is only one page which includes cutting instructions and one template for the sides. There are no assembly instructions - it simply refers the sewist to the BGB instructions. It has one zipped pocket, and like the BGB, a foldout front.

I raided my stash for some cute fat quarters that would go together and after several hours, came up with this. I quilted the outer fabric. In the future, I would use puffier batting.
Unzipped, it sits up. Somehow the fabrics go together. The 'bowling ball' sides were in the same fat quarter set as the bowling bag outer fabric.

And here it is with the one zipper pocket unzipped. 
... and with some sewing accessories in it...
It's 6 1/2" wide (excluding the outer zipper) and 4" high - significantly smaller than the BGB.

I did use a medium interfacing on all the pieces except the binding and yellow pocket lining. I erroneously interfaced the 4 side pieces instead of just the two outer ones, making for quite stiff side pieces. Hopefully next time I'll get it right.

I also hand-stitched the binding to the back as I tried to machine stitch it and didn't like the look of it. IMHO, hand-stitching looks a lot neater. I know some people have made a bunch of these to give to friends but I doubt I'll follow that plan. I'm a really slow (but accurate) sewist and spent several hours making this one. However, I now feel ready to tackle a full-sized BGB.

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