Sunday, August 14, 2016

Another New Bag

After two years of dedicated service, it was time to retire my previous Diva Bag. The interior pockets were starting to come unstitched at the top edges and the straps were beginning to fray. Plus, the interior cell phone pocket was designed for one of those older phones that looks like the communicators they used on Star Trek. That's Star Trek classic, with William Shatner as James T. Kirk.* Now that I have a sleek, new iPhone 6, I needed a cell phone pocket that would show it off.

End #1, with the gigantic key pocket
The Diva Bag pattern is the first purse pattern I ever sewed, and I've sewed it at least 7 times since I found it at a quilt fair decades ago. It's my one and only true-love purse. It's the Diva Essential Designer Bag, by Thumbuddy Special. No idea if Thumbuddy is still around, but I've given her information to scads of people when they ask where I got my bag. I hope she's retired and living large on the Riviera.

I have now sewed a couple other purses, as well as a suitcase, so I appreciate this Diva Bag pattern even more than I used to. There really are no fiddly bits, and you don't have to wrestle with the thing to get it through your sewing machine.

Other end, with what's supposed to be the water bottle pocket. Now it's my cell phone pocket.
Sad story.
Over the years, I've learned that the outer shell of a purse should be fairly dark colored, to disguise all the dirt and dust it will pick up being parked under tables in restaurants and tossed in the back of the dog car. And it should be in colors that go pretty well with most of your wardrobe. Unless you are the kind of person who has more than one purse. I can't handle that; moving things from purse to purse means I'd walk out of the house without my wallet way too often.

Light colored lining, with lots of handy pockets
It's best if the lining is light colored though. That way you can find that tiny object you absolutely need which has sifted its way to the bottom of your purse, with the used Kleenex and ATM slips.

Side view, showing large capacity
The Diva Bag hangs pretty small when being used, but this is a large capacity purse.  I can fit a respectable quantity of groceries in this purse when necessary, although I'm making a general effort to carry as little as possible these days. Darned tendonitis.

The way I carry the bag most of the time
One of my favorite things about this bag is that, when the mood strikes, you can sling it over both shoulders and carry it like a backpack. It's pretty darn comfortable that way too.

The way I carry the bag when my shoulder starts to give out
I'm really happy with the finished purse, except for one thing....

When I installed the zipper, I flipped it wrong way round, so my beautiful, custom-sized interior cell phone pocket is on the wrong end. Which renders it essentially useless for cell phone storage because I have to shimmy the phone for a good 5 minutes to get it past the zipper end. Wah wah wah.

I've asked a couple of my sewing friends if they think I should rip out the two bag ends and the zipper placket, with lining, and flip the whole thing around to re-install the right way. They say, "No." It's not like I don't have other pockets that work for cell phone storage; it's just one of those sewing bloopers that will do an instant re-play in my mind every time I use my cell phone.

Well, maybe only for a few months. Then I'll get used to it.

My pattern review is on here.

* Did you know that the T. stands for Tiberius? Just found that out while Googling the technical name for Star Trek walkie talkies. I'm listening to a fun history podcast called The Rhine,  which runs through the Roman history of the Rhine Valley, so Tiberius is much on my mind.


  1. Hmm. Do you think I could make this purse? Be honest. I've always loved yours and now I have time to try.

  2. Hmm. Do you think I could make this purse? Be honest. I've always loved yours and now I have time to try.