I have been a huge fan of Sara Lawson of Sew Sweetness for quite a while now. Sara is a pattern designer of one of my favorite things…bags! This Oslo Craft bag is meant to be a “Craft” bag, made with quilting cotton fabrics, however, I immediately knew I wanted to make this bag into a garden bag. A garden bag totes hand tools, gloves, twine and other gardening notions.
A garden bag is also exposed to soil and water, which means quilting cotton is not going to work. You can use canvas duck, laminated fabric, vinyl etc. I chose to use outdoor fabric, which is essentially woven out of plastic, is mildew resistant and can be rinsed out with a garden hose if need be.
This Oslo bag is a free pattern when you sign up for Sew Sweetness email updates. I would say after making this bag - the sewing difficulty level is for a very confident beginner to intermediate. The outdoor fabric definitely upped the difficulty factor due to:
- Outdoor fabric is thick and unravels easily
- you can only use a very low heat iron - or it will melt!
- Difficult to manipulate - hard to crease for pocket pleats
No matter what fabric you make this bag from, there are lots and lot of pieces, which means a lot of prep work cutting out all the pieces! Being organized is a must on this project. Label each piece/group of pieces with post-its or paper clipped onto pieces.
Being this organized makes the sewing of the project fun and fast.
Pockets: The front pockets took a little more time as I fussy cut the fish fabric for each pocket, but attaching the pockets was pretty straightforward, provided you draw the guidelines to line them up.
Side pockets were supposed to have snap enclosures, but the outdoor fabric was too thick, so I opted to sew in velcro and it worked like a charm!
Hardware: I used metal rectangles to connect the handle straps to the bag. Very easy to sew the straps to the rectangles, just be sure to keep checking that the straps do not get twisted before they are sewn onto the rectangles.
You can also sew the straps directly onto the bag, but I like the flexibility that the metal rectangles give the handles.