It’s almost here!! In today’s step, you’re basically going to have your completed bag. In the final step (#14), we will cover the button and attach it. You may notice during this step that there is a LOT of bag to work with… just breathe and take your time. Be sure to clear excess fabric out of the way before you continue to stitch any seams. Trust me, it’s better to move a little on the slow side and have it done right instead of having to rip out stitches and correct preventable mistakes.
By now, you should have a full exterior bag and a full bag lining. With the lining wrong side out, take the exterior right side out and stuff the exterior into the lining. The right sides for the exterior and the lining should be touching each other. Make sure the button tab we made in Step #12 is tucked down in between the lining and exterior.
We are going to pin and stitch the outside of the handles and the sides of the bag. In other words, we are stitching outside the doughnut holes of the handles. We will stitch the doughnut holes after we stitch the outside lines of the bag handles. I like to start by matching up my side seams and pinning those to anchor them in place.
You can really pick any point to start, but you’re stitching each bag side in one long, continuous stitch line. Remember to back stitch to secure your threads! After stitching, you’ll clip into the seam allowance so that it’s easier to turn the bag out to the right side. The curved edges will need that extra bit of give to keep the stitch lines nice and smooth.
Once you’re done this on both sides, you’re going to turn the bag with the right sides out. Give it a good press with your steam iron to keep your seam lines crisp.
Now is when you’ll pin the inside of the handles (the “doughnut holes”). You’ll see at this point why the previous stay stitching and clipping was so important. When you line up the insides of your handles, it should be very easy to pin the curved edges in place.
You’re going to top stitch the doughnut holes to secure the seam line. As usual, back stitch to secure your threads. Be sure to pull out the button hole tab — it should stick out like a tongue when you top stitch on that side.
The last thing you’re going to do is top stitch in a long, continuous loop all the way around the bag sides and outsides of the handles.
All we need now is a fabric covered button and this Cosmo Bag is done! You should be really proud of yourself at this point. It’s a giant bag and there is a surprising amount of detail in it for being labeled a “beginner” project. If you notice anything that needs a final press, be sure to give it some love with your steam iron. See you for our final Cosmo Bag sew along post… next time!
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