Now you can have your bag match your mood. We’re following one of the latest trends showcased at high-end retailers, like Nordstrom, Free People, and Mark & Graham: small bags with a variety of wide straps. We used the flexibility and functionality of our amazing Janome studio machines and accessories to help create a trio of striking straps that clip on and off a single camera style shoulder bag.
From casual to elegant to funky and fun – make one strap or all three. When paired with a solid color bag in a classic shape, it’s easy to increase your stye options. This project is part of our special series with our friends at Janome America. The goal is to show you the different looks that can be achieved with a single design using a variety of techniques and machine features.
We used the Janome Continental M7 to create our sample bag as well as all three straps. Most of our fabric selections were from the Cosplay Category of a local fabric retailer. This meant they had stretchy, slippery, slightly sticky, but overall gorgeous, finishes. These kinds of substrates can present a sewing challenge, but with the precision and power of the Janome M7, and taking advantage of plate and presser foot changes, we stitched through project with success. Specific machine and accessory details are noted below, but two favorites were the optional Janome Ultra Glide Needle Plate and snap on the Ultra Glide foot as well as the ability to engage the built-in AcuFlex™ fabric feeding system with the narrow HP2 foot.
The pretty piped bag is designed in a Camera Bag style. This type of bag is best known for its petite, boxy proportion with a bit of depth. Ours is 3” deep. The style is also identified by full zippers and longer straps. We added piping to increase the definition of the squarish shape. The final trademark is a long, wide strap… or in this case: three long, wide straps!
The first strap is a classic adjustable in a crossbody length. We selected a gorgeous wide ribbon from Tula Pink’s LineWork collection by Renaissance Ribbons. If you’ve never made an adjustable strap, it’s easier than you might think once you understand the over-under-and-through technique. We link to our full tutorial below for all the step-by-step detail. Renaissance Ribbons has a lovely collection of wide (1½”) ribbons from which to choose to best accent your bag’s color.
Our second strap is a fixed length with a colorful, textured braid that finishes to fit 1” hardware. We show you how to wrap three thin strips around standard ⅜” piping cord to create the proper dimension. Thanks to the precision of the Janome Continental M7, we were able to use two different techniques to seam each of our skinny tubes. We show you how to trim the cord from the braided ends to create a smooth insertion into the end caps.
Finally, strap three is also a fixed length but is even wider, finishing at 2”, and is lightly padded with four lines of decorative stitching creating a unique quilted look. The fabric is a polyester twill with just the hint of spandex. The result is a very crisp surface that is perfect for the quilting stitches.
Janome America has underwritten the preparation of a full pattern bundle so you can be confident all the elements will fit together perfectly. This project does have quite a few steps and a variety of options, but don’t be deterred by the length of the instructions! As always here at S4H, we’ve included detailed instructions and photos to take you each step of the way through the construction process. Read through the instructions prior to starting so you understand the flow; we call this, “making it in your head.” You can do it – we know you can, and you’ll be so proud of your versatile, beautiful bag when you’re finished.
Our Camera Style Bag finishes at approximately 9½” wide x 6½” high x 3” deep. The adjustable strap finishes at about 52” when fully extended. The braided strap has a fixed length of approximately 43” and the quilted strap finishes at a fixed length of approximately 35”. All lengths are without taking into account the length of the swivel clips as these sizes will vary based on the brand used.
The Janome Continental M7 Professional that we used is a top-of-the-line powerhouse that has the largest sewing space available on any home use sewing machine. It also has a newly redesigned motor that provides the strength, reliability, and longevity you’ve come to expect from a Janome professional machine. That means the power behind the needle penetration is engineered to handle your toughest and thickest sewing challenges. If you’d like to find out more, visit the Janome America website or contact your local Janome America dealer to see it and sew with it yourself!
Sewing Tools You Need
- Sewing machine and standard presser foot
- Walking or Even Feed foot; or use your machine’s built-in fabric feeding system, such as the great AcuFeed™ Flex system we use on many of our Janome models, including on the featured machine for this project: the Continental M7 Professional
- HP2 foot + plate; optional for narrow stitching (a standard accessory with the Continental M7)
- Zipper foot; another option for narrow stitching
- Ultra Glide Needle Plate and Foot; optional for use with the “sticky” substrates
NOTE: We suggest starting every new project with a new sewing machine needle, but when working with tougher fabric, such as the cosplay fabrics we used, it is especially important. For our fabric selections, we found a 100/16 Leather Needle performed best.
Fabric and Other Supplies
- ½ yard of 54”+ wide mid-weight, flexible vinyl or faux leather for all the main bag panels as well as one of the three braided cords in Strap 2; we used Yaya Han Cosplay Pleather Fabric in Pink
- ½ yard of 44”+ wide quilting weight cotton for the lining and lining pocket; we used used a scrap of Star Quilt in black and white from the S4H stash – originally from the Handmade collection by Bonnie & Camille for Moda Fabrics
- ⅛ yard EACH of TWO light to mid-weight vinyls or similar in coordinating colors for two of the braided cords in Strap 2 – we suggest one solid color and one multi-color; we used Yaya Han Cosplay Pleather Fabric in Gold and Yaya Han Dragon Scales Foil in Orange
- ¼ yard of a solid color twill or similar for Strap 3; we used a standard off white cotton/poly/spandex twill
- TWO yards of 1½” wide ribbon for Strap 1; we used Peacock Feather from the Tula Pink LineWork collection at Renaissance Ribbons
- TWO yards of 1½” wide belting for Strap 1 in a color to best match your chosen ribbon; we used Dritz 1½” Belting in Black
- ½ yard of 45” wide mid-weight interfacing; we used Pellon Décor Bond
- ⅓ yard of 20” wide one-sided fusible foam; we used Pellon Flex Foam
- Scrap or ⅛ yard of 44”+ wide low loft batting for Strap 3
- 6½ yards of ⅜” piping cord (also known as size 3); you’ll need apx. 2 yards for the bag and three 54” lengths for the braided Strap 2
- 1¾ yards of double-fold bias binding to best match the lining fabric; we used Wrights Extra Wide Double Fold Bias Tape in Black
NOTE: This is for the optional wrapped seam allowance finish for the lining of the bag; if you prefer to use a different seam allowance finish, such as a simple overcast stitch, you can omit this supply.
- ONE 12″ zipper; we used a 12″ black and brass metal zipper
- TWO 1” D-rings for the bag; for all our hardware, we used a gold finish to match our zipper’s metal teeth
- Hardware for Strap 1: TWO 1½” Swivel Hooks and ONE 1½” Adjustable Slide
- Hardware for Strap 2: TWO 1” Swivel Hooks
- Hardware for Strap 3: TWO 1½” Swivel Hooks
- Four purse feet; optional
- All purpose thread to match all fabric as well as the webbing and ribbon
- Clear monofilament thread for stitching the ribbon to the webbing; optional but our traditional choice when stitching ribbon
- One contrasting thread for the decorative stitching on Strap 3; we used black
- See-through ruler
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Pressing Cloth; important when working with vinyl substrates
- Iron and ironing board
- Rotary cutter and mat
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Fabric spray adhesive; optional to help hold cording in place on Strap 2 and batting in place on Strap 3
- Straight pins
- Clips to help hold the vinyl elements; we used Wonder Clips
- Hand sewing needle
- Large safety pin to pull cording through tubes for Strap 2
- Seam sealant; optional to help seal the ends of the ribbon for Strap 1
Getting Started and Pattern Download
- Download and print the SEVEN pattern pieces required.
IMPORTANT: This pattern set consists of SIX 8½” x 11″ sheets, which have been bundled into one PDF to make the download easier. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE OR SHRINK to fit the page. There is a guide rule on each sheet to confirm your printout is to scale.
- Cut out each pattern piece along the solid line. Using the alignment arrows marked on each piece, assemble the patterns that are made up of more than one part. The Main Body Panel is made up of two sections: A and B. The Bottom Panel is make up of three sections: A, B, and C. The Top Zipper Panel is made up of two sections: A and B. The interior pocket pattern is a single piece, as are the Strap 3 End Cutaway template, the D-Ring Loop pattern, and the Strap 2 Swivel Hook Tab & Loop pattern.
- In all cases, the multi-part pieces should be butted together and taped; do not overlap the sections.
- From the main fabric for the bag plus Strap 2 (Pink Cosplay Pleather in our sample), cut the following:
Using the assemble Main Body pattern, cut TWO
Using the assembled Top Zipper pattern, cut ONE
Using the assembled Bottom Panel pattern, cut ONE
Cut TWO 1¾” x 33” strips for main bag piping
Using the D-Ring Loop pattern, cut TWO
Using the Swivel Hoop Tab & Loop pattern, cut TWO; skip if not making Strap 2
Cut ONE 2” x 54” strip for one braid cord; skip if not making Strap 2
- From the bag lining fabric (Handmade Quilt Star in our sample), cut the following:
Using the assemble Main Body pattern, cut TWO
Using the assembled Top Zipper pattern, cut ONE
Using the assembled Bottom Panel pattern, cut ONE
Using the pocket pattern, cut ONE
- From the TWO secondary fabrics for the Strap 2 braid (Gold Cosplay Pleather and Dragon Scales Foil in our sample), cut ONE 1½” x 54” strip from each fabric.
- From the fabric for Strap 3 (off white twill in our sample), cut TWO 3” x 38” strips. Then, using the Strap 3 End Cutaway template, pin the paper template in place on one end of one strip and cutaway the curves.
Repeat on the opposite end of the first strip and both ends of the second strip.
- From the low loft batting for Strap 3, cut ONE 2” x 33” strip.
- From the fusible foam, trim back the Main Body pattern piece along the seam allowance dotted line, then use this trimmed pattern to cut TWO panels. Then, on both foam panels, trim back the edges on all sides at an angle. This will help reduce bulk in the seams when you do the final layering of all the elements.
It doesn’t have to be pretty or perfect.
- From the mid-weight interfacing, cut the following:
Using the assembled Top Zipper Panel pattern, but cutting along the dotted seam allowance rather than the solid outer line, cut TWO
Using the assembled Bottom Panel pattern, but cutting along the dotted seam allowance rather than the solid outer line, cut TWO
Referring to the D-Ring Loop pattern, cut TWO 1” squares
Referring to the Swivel Hoop Tab & Loop pattern, cut TWO 1″ x 3″ rectangles
Referring to the pocket pattern, cut ONE along the dotted seam allowance and the horizontal fold line so you essentially have a half pocket piece
- Cut the ribbon for Strap 1 into ONE 55” length.
- Cut the belting for Strap 1 into ONE 55” length.
- From the piping cord, cut the following:
TWO 33” lengths for the main bag
THREE 54” length for Strap 2
At Your Sewing Machine and Ironing Board
- Find the exterior front and back panels and the two trimmed foam panels. Center a foam panel on the wrong side of each exterior panel so there is ½” of fabric showing beyond the foam on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, and using a pressing cloth, fuse in place.
NOTE: It’s a little trickier to use fusible products with vinyl-type substrates but it can be done. That said, it is important to use a pressing cloth and a lower temperature than you might traditionally use for fusing. This lower temperature means you might be pressing a bit longer to get the fusing to activate. As always, patience wins the game.
- Match up the remaining exterior bottom and top panels, as well as the lining top and bottom panels with their matching mid-weight interfacing panels. As above with the foam, each of the interfacing panels should be centered on the wrong side of the fabric with ½” of fabric extending beyond the interfacing on all sides. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse all in place; remember to use a pressing cloth with the exterior panels.
- You should have one remaining interfacing piece for the lining pocket, center this on the wrong side of one half of the lining pocket panel. Following manufacturer’s instructions, fuse in place.
- Using the pattern pieces as your guide, find the small pieces of interfacing for the bag’s two D-Ring loops and, if making Strap 2, for the two Swivel Hoop Tab & Loop pieces. Position the interfacing on the wrong side of the fabric as shown on each pattern piece and, using a pressing cloth, fuse in place. The photo below shows positioning and fusing a small square onto one of the D-Ring loops; the process is similar for all these small pieces.
Create the lining pocket
- Find the pocket panel, which should have interfacing fused on one half. Re-fold the pocket along the original fold line, wrong sides together. Press well.
- Find one of the two main body lining panels. Place it right side up on your work surface.
- Place the finished pocket on the lining. The sides and curved bottom edge of the pocket should be flush with the sides and curved bottom edge of the lining panel. Pin in place along both sides and across the bottom.
- Machine baste the pocket in place, through all the layers, along both sides and along the bottom, staying close to the raw edges. This basting will help hold the layers together throughout the remainder of the main panel construction.
Layer the front and back exterior panels
- Find one exterior panel, which should have its foam panel fused in place.
- Find the lining panel with the pocket.
- Place the two panels wrong sides together, sandwiching the foam between the layers. The raw edges should be flush all around.
- Pin or clip together all around.
- Repeat to layer the remaining exterior panel with the remaining lining panel.
NOTE: Instead of simply pinning, you could also machine baste all around, staying approximately ⅛” from the raw edge.
Create and place the piping
- If this is your first time making piping, see our tutorial, How To Make And Attach Your Own Piping. We are summarizing the steps below.
- Find the two 1¾” x 33″ strips and the two matching lengths of piping cord.
- Wrap the fabric, right side out, around the cord. Pin close to the cord or clip to hold the fabric in place.
- Re-thread the machine with thread to best match the fabric in the top and bobbin. Keep the stitch length set to a basting stitch.
- We attached our Ultra Glide Plate and Foot to make sewing across the “sticky” surface easier.
- If it’s a function on your sewing machine, it also helps to move your needle position to the far left.
- Machine baste close to the cord to create the two lengths of fabric covered piping.
- Find one of the layered exterior panels.
- Pin one length of piping to the right side of the panel, aligning the raw edges of the piping with the raw edge of the panel and leaving about 1″ free at the head and tail. We positioned our joining seam at the center bottom edge of the panel. Clip into the piping as needed to ease it around the curved corners.
NOTE: The cosplay fabric we used had a four-way stretch to it that both helped and hindered keeping everything smooth and even. It definitely helped to keep a smooth curve, but it also was important to not be stingy with your pins or clips to help the two elements (one flat and one dimensional) from fighting one another.
- At your joining point, lay the piping against the main panel so it is flat and smooth.
- With a seam ripper, peel back the fabric on one end to expose the cording underneath.
- Trim the ends of cording so the tail exactly butts together with the head.
- Fold under the end of the loose fabric to create a clean edge. Trim away excess fabric prior to folding if necessary.
- Overlap the folded end to conceal the piping cord and pin in place to create the continuous line of piping.
NOTE: Again, remember check out our full piping tutorial if this is a new process for you. The tutorial has even more steps and photo details.
- Collect the pieces for the side of the bag: the exterior and lining top panels for the zipper section – both with interfacing fused in place, the exterior and lining bottom panels – also with interfacing fused in place, and the zipper.
- Pair up each exterior piece with its corresponding lining piece.
- Place each pair wrong sides together. Pin or clip in place.
- Machine baste each pair together along their long outer sides. We left the Ultra Glide Plate in place and engaged our AcuFeed™ Flex feeding system for the best control.
- Set aside the bottom panel pair.
- Place the top zipper panel right side up and flat on your work surface.
- Cut this panel exactly in half lengthwise so you now have TWO matching strips.
- Place one strip right side up on your work surface. Place the zipper right side down on top of the strip (so zipper and strip are right sides together). Align the side edge of the zipper tape with the inner cut edge of the strip. Pin in place.
- Here is a view from the lining side.
- Re-set the stitch length to normal. Using a Zipper foot or similar, stitch the length of the strip, running the seam as close to the zipper teeth as possible.
NOTE: For our sample, we used a bit of an unusual combination. We wanted to continue to use our AcuFeed™ Flex feeding system for the additional fabric control, but we didn’t have the optional AcuFeed™ Zipper foot VD. As a work around, we attached the HP2 foot in place, but without the HP2 plate – instead putting the standard Zig Zag plate in place. This forced the needle to drop into the “safety hole” at the extreme right edge of the HP2 foot, allowing us to stitch nice and tight against the teeth of the zipper. You’ll notice in subsequent photos below that we continued to use this technique in a number of situations. We’re sewing enthusiasts, and our goal is to use the flexibility of our Janome machines to overcome any challenge in the moment. Your best option, of course, would be to have the optional AcuFeed™ Zipper foot VD :-).
- Repeat to pin the remaining half of the strip to the bottom tape of the zipper.
- Stitch in the same manner.
NOTE: As with all zipper installations, start with the zipper half way open. Stitch to the middle, where you can start to feel you’re approaching the zipper pull. Stop with your needle in the down position. Twist your fabric around slightly and carefully close the zipper. Re-position and finish sewing to the end.
- Press both strips away from the zipper teeth.
- If necessary, re-thread the machine to insure your thread matches the fabric for both the top and the bobbin. Slightly lengthen the stitch.
- Topstitch through all the layers, staying close to the seam line on both sides of the zipper.
- For all our topstitching and edgestitching, we lengthened our stitch slightly. As noted above, we continued to use our unique foot and plate combination. You could also switch to a standard Zipper foot or the Ultra Glide foot.
Create and place D-ring loops
- Find the two small D-ring squares, which should already have their interfacing squares fused in place, and the two D-rings.
- Fold in the sides of each square to meet in the middle.
- Slip each folded tab through a D-ring.
- Place a tabbed D-ring at each end of the top zipper panel. The raw ends of the D-ring tab should be flush with the raw edge of the zipper panel. Pin or clip in place.
- Machine baste each tab in place.
- Trim away any excess zipper tape so all layers of the top and bottom of the zipper panel are flush.
Complete the side ring
- Collect the completed top zipper panel, which should have the tabbed D-rings in place, and the bottom panel. Open the zipper about half way.
- Align one end of the bottom panel right sides together with the one end of the zipper panel, sandwiching the tabbed D-ring between the layers. Pin or clip in place.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch in place. Your seam should run right along, but not across, the zipper stop. Go slowly to insure your needle doesn’t strike any metal part of the zipper.
- You can choose to finish this short seam allowance with your favorite method, such as an overcast stitch. We chose not to.
- Repeat to attach the opposite end of the bottom panel to the opposite end of the zipper panel, forming a loop. Pin in place. Double check that this loop in not twisted anywhere along its length. Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch in place.
- Turn the loop right side out. Press both seam allowances towards the bottom panel – away from the zipper.
- Flip the D-ring loops up towards the zipper and topstitch along the two short seams within the bottom panel, securing the seam allowances in their “down” position.
- You now have a finished side loop.
- If you are planning to insert purse feet later, now is a good time to use the original paper pattern to mark their position on the center of the bottom panel on both the exterior layer and the lining layer.
Insert the front and back panels into the side ring
- Find the back exterior panel, which should already have its piping basted in place.
NOTE: Your front and back exterior panels are really identical, although we tend to prefer the panel with the pocket as the back panel.
- Flip the side ring wrong side out again. Open the zipper all the way.
- Find the top and bottom center points of each exterior panel as well as the top and bottom center points of the side loop. Mark all these positions with a pin or make a small marking clip with your scissors.
- Set the back exterior panel into the ring so the two pieces are right sides together. Align the top and bottom pin points of the panel and ring. Pin or clip through all the layers at these points first, then fill in around the ring. Don’t be afraid to use a lot of pins or clips. It’s best to pin or clip along the base first, then up along each side, and finally around the top.
NOTE: This technique is the same as any project where you are inserting a flat panel into a tube. In this case, we simply have a very narrow tube. If you are new to this process, check out our full, step-by-step tutorial.
- Stitch all the way around the circle, running your seam as close to the piping as possible. As above, if your machine allows you to set the needle position, move it all the way to the left. We chose to use a standard Zipper foot with the standard Zig Zag plate.
- Repeat to add the remaining exterior panel.
- This second side may be a bit more challenging to wrangle under the presser foot because you no longer have an open side. However, by making sure the zipper is all the way open and working to flatten the layers, you should be able to go all the way around without a problem. As with all things that may present a challenge, go slowly and stop – with your needle in the down position – to adjust the layers as needed.
Finishing the interior raw edges
- The method of finishing is up to you. You can leave the interior seam allowances raw or use a simple machine finish, such as a zig zag or overcast stitch. We chose to wrap our seam allowances with packaged wide, double fold bias tape.
- Find the bias tape. Cut a length to fit around one complete main panel seam allowance. Wrap the bias tap over the seam allowance, encasing the raw edges to give the seam allowance a finished edge inside the bag. Leave 1″ extra at the tail for an overlap. Pin in place all around. Don’t be afraid to use plenty of pins.
- Fold back the tail of the bias tape and overlap the head for a clean finish. Pin in place.
- Still using a Zipper foot or similar narrow foot, stitch the bias tape to the seam allowance. Remember, you are stitching only the seam allowance; don’t stitch onto the main bag itself. In the shot below you can see us approaching our overlapped joint at the center bottom of the panel.
Optional purse feet
- If desired, we recommend adding the optional purse feet at this point. In some bag applications, the feet are added earlier in the process to insure the inner prongs can be completely hidden between the exterior and lining layers. However, this particular style of bag is too narrow to allow you to easily insert its front and back panels and still leave enough room to stitch past the feet without messing up the piping. Instead, we recommend adding them now through all the finished layers.
- Above, we indicated marking the base panel for the feet. Use these markings now as the clip points to make small slits through the interior and exterior layers.
- The feet attach in much the same way as how you would insert a magnetic strap.
- The prongs will be visible at the inside bottom of the bag. They can be left as is, they are really quite flat; or you can add a simple fabric flap across just the base of the bag.
- To do this, simply cut one layer of lining fabric, using the original center section of the bottom panel pattern.
- Fold back the raw edges ½” all around.
- Drop this panel into the bottom of the bag covering all four flattened prongs of the purse feet and hand tack in place.
Bag Strap 1 – Adjustable with Ribbon Accent
- Find all the elements for the strap: 1½” webbing at 55”, 1½” ribbon at 55”, two 1½” swivel hooks, and one 1½” adjustable slider.
- Place the ribbon over the webbing so the ribbon is facing right side up. All edges of both strips should be flush. Pin or clip in place.
- Re-thread the machine with thread to best match the ribbon in the top and to best match the webbing in the bobbin. Or, use our preferred option: monofilament invisible thread in both the top and bobbin.
- Edgestitch along both sides of the strip through both layers.
- Thread through all the hardware to create a standard adjustable strap.
NOTE: Because this is already a rather long project, rather than showing all the individual images of how to create an adjustable strap, if you are brand new to this technique, please link to our full step-by-step tutorial on the process.
Bag Strap 2 – Braided with Fixed End Caps
Create the fabric tubes and braid together
- Gather all the elements for the strap: three 54” narrow strips, three matching lengths of cording, two end cap rectangles, which should have their interfacing already fused in place, two 1” swivel hooks, and the large safety pin.
NOTE: As listed in the Getting Started section, our three strips are two slightly different widths and we will construct the corded tubes using two different methods. This is because the weights of the substrates varied; the main pink “pleather” fabric was heavier than the other two fabrics, which necessitated a different approach to its tube construction that required additional width. So, our heavier fabric was cut at 2” and the other lighter-weight fabrics were cut at 1½”. If any of your chosen fabrics are more like the heavier “pleather cosplay” fabric, cut these at 2” in width and follow the wrap and stitch method shown below. If your fabrics are lighter weight, you can use the more standard stitched and turned tube method at the 1½” width.
- For the lighter weight fabric strips, fold each in half lengthwise and pin the length of the strip. The ends remain open and raw.
- Re-thread the machine as needed with thread to best match the fabric in the top and bobbin.
- Using a ¼” seam allowance, stitch the length of the strip.
- Turn the tube right side out.
NOTE: You can use your favorite method to turn skinny tubes. One of our favorite ways is to use a hemostat and we have a full tutorial you can review if you’d like to try it too. For this project, we used a simple safety pin.
- With the tube turned completely right side out, attach the large safety pin to one end of a length of cording and pull the cord through the tube.
- For the heavier weight fabric strips, we started by lightly spraying the wrong side of the strip with a fabric adhesive.
NOTE: Always remember to cover your work surface with plastic or similar to protect it from over-spray from the adhesive.
- Place the cording down the center of the strip where it will be held in place by the adhesive. Fold in one long edge ½” and finger press in place.
- Fold in the opposite long edge, so the two edges meet in the middle of the strip.
- Then continue wrapping the second fold around and over so the two folded edges are flush. Clip in place along the length of the strip.
- Stitch along the length of the strip, staying as close to the flush folded edges as possible.
- With your three fabric cords finished, loosely braid them together. If you braid too tightly, the strap won’t lay flat against your shoulder when finished. We recommend starting with the cord done in the fabric that matches the main bag as the center strand. When finished braiding, clip together the ends.
- Gently slide back each end of each tube to access the cording inside. Clip off about ⅝” of cording then gently slide the ends of tubes back into their original position. This allows the ends of your braided strap to be flat so they more easily and smoothly fit into the end caps.
Attach the end caps
- Find the two end cap rectangles. Overlap the flattened ends of the braid and pin the ends against the right side of the end cap. The ends should be overlapped enough so they are approximately the same width as the interfacing fused to the back of the end cap. The raw ends of the braid should be flush with one raw end of the end cap. Pin or clip in place
- Baste the ends in place against the flat end cap.
- Slip a swivel hook on the free end of the end cap. You’ll need to slightly tuck the sides to fit the end cap through the opening of the swivel hook.
- Once the end cap is through the swivel hook, flatten it out again so you can align the ends of the end cap right sides together. Remember, one end is already basted to the ends of the braid, so as you align the ends of the end cap right sides together, you are sandwiching the braided strips between the layers. Pin the ends together.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch across the end cap through all the layers. Trim back the seam allowance to about ¼”.
- Turn the end cap right side out through the open sides and tuck in those side raw edges.
- When full tucked into place, the width of the end cap should be 1” and the folded edges along both sides should be flush. Pin or clip along the sides.
- You are doing this end cap process on both ends of your braided strip.
- If necessary, re-thread the machine with thread to best match the end cap in the top and bobbin. Slightly lengthen the stitch and topstitch around all four sides of the end cap, securing the openings, further securing the braided ends in pace, and holding the swivel hook in its fixed position.
Bag Strap 3 – Fixed Length Quilted with Decorative Stitched
- Find the two 3” x 38” strips, which should have already had their ends trimmed with the strap end template, the 2” x 33” strip of low loft batting, and two 1½” swivel hooks.
- As you did above with the pink fabric cord for Strap 2, we suggest lightly spraying the wrong side of one of the two strips. Use this adhesive to help hold the batting in place. It should be centered side to side within the width of the strip and each straight cut end of the batting should sit below where the curves ends. This positioning allows for the cleanest side seams and the smoothest final wrap around the swivel hook.
- Pin the two strips right sides together along both long sides, including along the curves at the top and bottom of the strap.
- If necessary, re-thread the machine with thread to best match the fabric in the top and bobbin. Re-set for a standard stitch length.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch along both sides. The ends remain open and raw. You are stitching along, but not on, the batting strip.
- Clip the curves at the top and bottom and press open the seam allowances.
- Turn right side out through one of the open ends and press very flat, making sure the seams are straight and true along each side.
- Find the original paper template with its stitch line markings and use this to plot out your four lines of stitching. All four lines go across the main width of the strap, but just the two center lines continue all the way to each end.
- Select the decorative stitch you’d like to use for the quilting. On our Janome Continental M7, we used Quilting Stitch #22.
- Re-thread the machine with the contrasting thread in the top and bobbin. We used black.
- Stitch each of the four lines of quilting.
NOTE: To keep our quilting lines straight, we are using our AcuFeed™ system for this step along with the easy-to-read plate markings on our Continental M7. You could also draw in four guidelines to follow along the length of the strap. But remember, you are working on the right side of the fabric, so make sure your marking tool is one that will easily wipe away or will vanish with exposure to the air or the heat of an iron.
- We stitched the two outermost lines of stitching first and then the two inside lines.
- With the decorative lines of quilting complete, slip each raw end through one of the swivel hooks.
- Bring the raw end through so it aligns at the back of the strap at the point where the strap begins to widen out.
- Tuck under the raw end about ¼” and pin or clip in place.
- Stitch across through all the layers to secure each end.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation: Debbie Guild