Tuesday, October 26, 2010

OYW: Along - Hands-free Belt Bag

Dear Donk,

I guess I was wrong when I didn't think October would actually come this year. I mean, yes, I knew it would arrive eventually, but I thought there would be a summer shoved in there somewhere between June and NOW, but no.

Bummer. I guess the predicted horror has arrived.

Know what, though? Despite the fact that I haven't had a free weekend in two months, I did actually finish my project. WOO!

Nothing like shotgun sewing. FINISH OR DIE.

I have wanted to make the Hands-free Belt Bag since the book came out, so this was my chance to be the boss of this ~along and make it our project. I love to be bossy.

I also like to be a nark, so I'm also here to tell you things about this pattern that aren't in the book. Not that they're all bad and tattletale worthy, but they're not in the book (or the corrections that I can find) and I made some changes that suited my stock on hand/patience level/dedication to rule-following, so I hope this helps someone.

Though it already helped me, which is something else I love to be - self-involved. Hey, it's not a pretty truth, but it's a truth nonetheless.

Thing #1 that's not in the book: It calls for a swivel clasp and I still don't know why.

See, I'm sure there's a good reason why it calls for this thing I've yet to see on planet Earth, but for all my mulling and wondering and What the hell does this thing do-ing, I couldn't figure out what it was. And then, just now, I looked it up so I could link to it for you guys (you're welcome) and it appears to be a keyfob kind of thing which YAY I don't need anyway.

Sure, it might be kind of handy, but for all the bags I have that have one of these things inside of it, I'd be loathe to count three occasions when I've actually used one. And on the times I did, well, I faintly recall a mad swearing house hunt for my Long Lost Keys only to find them dangling from the "Swivel Clasp" inside whatever bag.

So, no. I didn't add one and I don't see that it will take much enjoyment away from my use of this bag.

Thing #2 that's not in the book: You don't really need to buy webbing and D-rings and shit if you already have a belt.

Especially a belt that totally matches even if you didn't plan it that way. Weird.

So, technically, I DID have webbing (from climbing) and D-rings and all the materials needed to fashion the belt for the Hands-free BELT bag part of this project, but I still dissed it because I already have a belt that, not only would work AOK, but also happened to match the fabric that I chose from my stash at random.

It's like fate stepped in to promote my lazy ass approach to this project. I like that. So I went with it.

Meanwhile, if you've ever shopped at REI or Patagonia, you probably have a belt like this, too.

Thing #3 that's not in the book: The edge stitching called for on the front of the bag would probably look good if done on the back of the bag, too.

Except it specifically says to NOT edge stitch the back panel, which I thought was some super special technique that would make itself obvious and known later in the project but it did not. I think it just says not to edge stitch because it's not technically necessary since that back panel will be against your body and not readily visible, but that's no reason for it to look ugly.

See the nice sharp squareness on the front? Does NOT look like that on the back.

If I were really motivated and had the energy to haul my machine back out and set it up, I *might* go back and edge stitch the back panel, but I think we know how that will come out in the end. Specifically, it won't happen.

But I'm here to tell you that if you want to edge stitch the back panel so that it looks all crisp and sharp (as my mom would say), you just go right ahead because you're not ruining any secret sewing technique that I can find anyway.

And those are all the things I can remember that aren't in the book but maybe should be. 

Keeping it classy in my sweats. Yikes.
I did have some designs on customizing this to be my dog beach bag, complete with poo bag holster, treat compartment and leash organizer, but by the time I made it to my machine with all of the cut out fabric and supplies and 5 minutes to work on the project, I'd run out of patience and days over which I could spread this project.

Like, sometimes (this time, too), I break up a sewing project or canning project or whathaveyou into smaller projects so that I can piece together the time and patience to complete them without throwing them away during a moment of hot fury or committing a homicide and I'd already broken this into two steps by cutting out the fabric two weeks ago when I had an hour to spare, so when I sat down to do this on Sunday it was All Go No Quit time for the bag.

I do fantasize about the day when I'll have time and patience for extra special dog poo bag crafting, but alas, that was not this day. Good thing is that the bags and treats and leash and all else will still fit nicely into this guy and I bet it gets a lot of use for beach outings with the pooch and looking extra touristy fantastic during AIDS Walk which is the time in my life every year when I honestly ask myself why I don't own a fanny pack...I MEAN Hands-free Belt Bag...so now I won't have to ask anymore.



  1. So...essentially you made a fanny pack? Now all you need is a mullet. ;)

  2. So I was going along all through this post thinking "Okay, so . . . hands-free belt bag is a euphemism for fanny pack, right?" And then you came right out there and said it at the end.

    Except your bag is not all done up in sporty neon colors suitable for Disneyland, so it's okay that it has a classier name.

  3. Okay, I wiln the others in saying I figured you were talking about a fanny pack. But then, if it is a fanny pack, you have it on backwards, Finny. Most people's fannies are in the back of them.
    Hope this doesn't embarrass you, but someone had to say something.

  4. oh finny.
    and here i thought we could be friends some day.
    and then you go and make a Hands-Free-Belt-Bag (FANNY PACK).
    i'm moderately horrified. please give it to a family member that you don't like very much, who isn't smart enough to know they aren't very cool and will wear it frequently so we can utilize it for mocking purposes.
    one day...i was at one of my son's million sporting events. sitting in the bleachers with other moms. his friend/girl is sitting next to me, along with her mother and this man walks up with a huge fanny pack beneath his large stomach.. and i audibly groan.
    and then i mumble to myself
    "there's just no reason for fanny packs. they weren't even cool in the 80's when people wore them skiing!'
    friend/girl turns her head and looks at me, almost ANGRY looking. i then realize i have, in fact, said it out loud.
    then friend/girl's father starts traipsing up the bleachers, with a huge fanny pack on.
    yeah. it wasn't one of my best moments. the time when i had to tell shannon, that her dad, was in fact, a huge dork.
    it's okay.
    we may still be friends one day.
    i've heard that thimbleanna has a fabric purse that she thinks is cute and i still like HER.


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

So, here's the thing with commenting, unless you have an email address associated with your own profile, your comment will still post, but I won't have an email address with which to reply to you personally.

Sucks, right?

Anyway, to remedy this, I usually come back to my posts and post replies in the comment field with you.

But, if you ever want to email me directly to talk about pumpkins or shoes or what it's like to spend a good part of your day Swiffering - shoot me an email to finnyknitsATgmailDOTcom.