Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sewing Projects- The lunch box

 As I mentioned in my previous post, there hasn't been a whole lot of free time built in to my schedule. Somehow, I've managed to complete two sewing projects lately that I have been very happy about the results. Okay, so maybe I finished the first one in September and am just getting around to posting about it now... but you're still happy to see it, right?

It all started this summer when I finally opened my eyes to the fact that Mike was going though paper lunch bags, while I was happily using my nice fabric lunch bag. When they finally ran out, I offered to make him a fabric lunch bag of his very own and surprisingly, he accepted! (score for my big green purse!) Little did I know what I was getting myself into.

For those of you who don't know my dear Michael, he is both a Virgo and an engineer... which means very specific ideas about how some things must be. Because that's the only logical way they could be, right? Right. Mike's lunch box requirements were as follows:
1. Must not have corners, because food always gets stuck there and its gross.
2. Must close and have a handle.
3. Must not be feminine.
4. Must have a place for putting silverware.

So after drawing out several designs, I finally had the bright idea of looking to my sandwich wrapper. Its a large diamond shaped piece of fabric that folds into a square. By folding it a slightly different way, I could make a rectangle, just the shape of a typical lunch  box. It unfolds to lay flat, so no corners for yucky food!

After raiding my mom's fabric stash, I decided on heavy duty outdoor canvas, dark navy blue for the outside and navy, yellow and white striped for the inside.

I made a pattern first out of newspaper, then out of construction paper, carefully trying them out with Mike's typical lunch to make sure it would fit inside, measuring where to put the handle holes, etc. The hardest part of the whole process was sewing on the snaps to keep it closed. I had to estimate each time I put them on, and ended up ripping out and resewing most snaps at least twice. I also used bias tape around the handles holes, which I have never done before. It ended up being a bit of a process, but it worked out in the end.

The final result was a success! Mike is happy with it, and he's gotten compliments from several male co-workers, so it passes the manly-enough test. The only thing that may be changed is the snap that keeps the top flap closed. Its not quite strong enough to hold the weight of the lunch, so I may replace it with a heavier duty one.

Next up, my 500 business cards and the sewing project that will hopefully help me give them away before my last name changes...

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