Back to doll accessories, today it is school supplies. If you are sick of doll stuff I promise I will be done soon. If you like it, well, I still have a 6 year old daughter so I am sure that although I have almost finished posting all of the doll things from Christmas there will probably be more someday. Not to mention the fact that she has 2 younger sisters so I am sure there will be lots of doll stuff in our house for several more years.
I thought it would be fun to make Eliza some little things to play school with her doll. I figured that since school is such a huge part of her life right now, she might enjoy having some school things for her doll.
I knew that the first thing I was going to need was a backpack. I went back and forth for a while on what type of backpack to make. I knew that I didn't want to do a traditional backpack, not because it wouldn't have been cool or that Eliza wouldn't have loved it, on the contrary, I think it would have looked really cool and I'm sure she would have liked it a lot. However, the thought of all of the tiny pieces and zippers was not very appealing so it was out. That left making a messenger bag style or a drawstring backpack. As you can see, I decided to go the messenger bag route. I feel like I was a little off on the sizes but I didn't want to redo it. I will share the sizes that I cut my bag as well as the parts I wish I would have cut a little bigger. I feel like it should have been a little bit wider and the flap should have been longer but the good news is Eliza didn't seem so mind at all.
Everything ended up fitting inside and that was the most important part. My bag ended up about 3 1/2" tall, 4" wide and 1" deep. The flap is 3"x 4" and the strap is about 3/4" wide and about 15" long.
I used a heavier fabric for the outside of the bag and a cotton print for the lining.
For the bag I cut:
Body of the bag- 8"x 5 1/2" (I wish that I had cut my bag a little wider, maybe 8" x 6")
-1 of main fabric
-1 of lining fabric
Flap- 3 1/2" x 4 1/2" (I think that on my bag the flap needed to be a little longer so you might want to cut it 4"x 4 1/2" or even 4 1/2" square. Also remember that if you added width to the body you also want to add it to the flap, the flap should be cut 1" smaller than the body.)
-1 of main fabric
-1 of lining fabric
Strap- 3"x 16" (I actually cut mine too long and had to fold and sew it on the top to shorten it, this will give you the right length so you don't have to do that)
-1 of main fabric
I folded the body piece in half, so they were 4"x 5 1/2", and sewed up each side. I did that with both the main fabric and the lining. Then I boxed the corners. I folded it so that the side seam and middle of the bottom were lined up and the corner was a flat point. I measured where the sewing line would be 1" and drew a line. I repeated that on all of the corners and then sewed across that line. I wish I had pictures of that step, I'm not sure how to write it out in a way that doesn't sound confusing. If you don't understand how to box the corners I found this link that might help. Now your body pieces are ready. You should have 2 pieces that look like the bottom portion of the bag.
For the flap, I started by slightly rounding the 2 bottom corners on each flap. The top and bottom edges are the 4 1/2" sides. Then right sides together sew around the sides and bottom. Clip the corners and turn the flap right side out. Topstitch around the sides and bottom. I also added a row of decorative stitching just so that it wasn't plain.
Next, fold the strap in half, press, then fold the edged into the center and press again. You should have 4 layers of fabric with the raw edges folded inside. Top stitch along both sides close to the edge.
Now it is time to assemble your bag. Pin the flap to the outside body piece, right sides together. Next pin the strap to the side right sides together, the strap should wrap around the bottom of the bag at this point. Slip all of that, the outside of the body, the flap and the strap, inside of the lining. These should also be right sides together which means the lining will be inside out at this point. Sew around leaving an opening about 1 1/2 " wide along the front for turning. Pull everything through the opening so that it is all right side out, make sure that the lining is tucked inside. At this point it should look like the finished bag. The last step is to topstitch around the opening of the bag.
The only thing left to do is make all of the stuff to go inside.
I decided to decorate one side with a little bit of lace before sewing everything together. I sewed on one piece about 1" below the corners that angle up to make the point. Then right sides together I sewed around the whole piece leaving an opening for turning. I then topstitch across the short straight side. I folded the the bottom (straight side) up about 2" with the wrong sides together and close to the edge stitched up one side, around the point, and down the other side. By doing this you both sew together the pouch and sew closed the opening from turning.
To finish I made a button loop with embroidery floss and sewed on a button.
To finish off the set I made a couple of pencils (actually I made 4 but 2 of them got lost within a couple of days), a folder and 2 small notebooks.
I made the pencils by cutting a 1/4" dowel into pieces about 2 1/2" long. I then sharpened on end using a pencil sharpener and colored it with markers. I colored the tip black to look like the pencil lead, the main part of the pencil yellow or orange, a gray section to look like the metal piece and pink for the eraser.
For the notebooks I cut some lined paper into pieces 3" x 5". I cut some scrapbook paper about 1/4" bigger. I placed the lined paper on top of the scrapbook paper and sewed down the middle using a longish stitch on my sewing machine. Then I cut a coordinating strip about 1"x 5 1/4" and glued it over the fold to cover up the stitching on the outside.
To make the folder I started by drawing out my pattern. You can see in step 1 above a sample of what that looked like. I started with a rectangle 3 1/2" x 5 1/2". I added 1/4" strips to the sides with the corners angled in and a half circle cut out about 1 1/2" from the bottom. On the bottom I added another 1 1/2". From the center I angled out 1/4" on each side and rounded the corner. I cut that out of cardstock. Then I folded up the 1 1/2" bottom sections. Next I folded in the 1/4" sides and glued them down. The last step is to fold it in half.
I had planned to make a little sheet of homework or something to stick inside but our printer ran out of ink and it didn't get done. It would be pretty easy to do, I planned to make it about 2 1/2" x 3", the same size as the notebook pages.
That's it for the school supplies. Now you just need to tuck all of it inside the bag...
throw it over your dolls shoulder and she is ready for school.