ballerina tote bag

I love giving handmade gifts to little kids because, 1) they are easy to please, and 2) my kids are super proud to give gifts that "my mommy made!"  This little tote bag went to a ballet-loving four-year-old for her birthday.


No tutorial for the bag, but it is similar in construction to my Spring Tote, substituting rick rack for piping in the top seam and the handles are sewn into the seam instead of wrapping around the outside.  I love making tote bags because they are so simple.  I don't even measure my fabric most of the time.  Cut two longish rectangles of fabric and you're good to go.  :)  Yes, I am that lazy.


The ballerina girl was inspired by the felt paper dolls at Love, Charla Anne (I dare you to click over to her blog and spend less than an hour exploring its lovely contents).  And happy news ... the pattern for her adorable dollhouse and dolls is being released in her etsy shop this week.  You better believe it is going on my to-make list for Christmas.  Ruby is going to flip.


Anyway, I had a lot of fun stitching up this ballerina girl and adding little details.  To make the skirt, I cut a long rectangle of tulle and gathered it up using a basting stitch.  When it was the same width as her leotard, I top stitched over the gathering.  The flower at her waist was made using teeny tiny rick rack and this flower tutoral at Ucreate.

30 comments:

Sweat Style said...

That is the cutest bag ever! My almost four year old woud di for one. You should sell some as I would be the first to buy if you did! :)

Palak said...

You are far from lazy! love the bag, and love the chevron print!

Aliza said...

SQUEAL! I hope that was Ruby's comment, because that's what I did!!

Jess@craftiness is not optional said...

that. is. adorable. I want one for me! That wouldn't be too weird, right?

Federica said...

ciao! E' bellissima e piacerebbe moltissimo anche a mia figlia (anche lei ha 4 anni)! Mi piace tanto il tessuto che hai utilizzato e il contrasto grigio-rosa!
Saluti Federica

kristin said...

OMIGOSH SO CUTE!!! My little ballerina would go crazy for this! It's so perfectly done.

Rhonda said...

I love giving handmade gifts too - they're just so much more special than a toy from Target. And this bag is adorable - love the grey chevron, the pink rick rack, and of course, the little ballerina. Great job!

Jessica at Me Sew Crazy said...

This is so stinking cute!! What little girl wouldn't love this bag?!!

Jodi said...

Did you put the girl on after the bag was made? So cute, the details are too adorable!

laButiq said...

What a nice bag!!!! beautiful!!! I'm gonna link this post on my blog. it's about lifestyle for moms. if you have a moment please feel free to check it out :o) www.labutiq.com

shantel said...

Love!!!

Betty Minnes said...

Such a cute bag nicely done!

Jill Frank said...

Ohhh - I'm going to make one! Super cute. I could see something similar for boys with truck or something...

Andrea @ TheTrainToCrazy.com said...

Cutest bag ever! Adorable.

Anonymous said...

Oh, Jill, I wish you wouldn't promote that pattern by Charla Anne. It's not her original pattern, she has copied a vintage Betty McCall pattern and items made by other Etsy sellers. You must understand (as a designer yourself) that it is beyond low to copy someone else's great idea to make a profit. I used to admire her blog greatly, and I admire yours, too, but after this, I am feeling very sad about the morals of some bloggers.

Anonymous said...

Love love this bag! Adorable :)
Sara

homemade by jill said...

Anonymous,
I wasn't aware of a similar pattern, so I did some poking around. I assume the pattern you are referring to is McCall Crafts 8207? While I agree that the idea is similar, I would say that there are significant differences. Do I know if Charla Ann copied it? I have no idea ... I don't know Charla Ann. While I agree that copying other people's designs is dishonest and unacceptable, I prefer to give her the benefit of the doubt. It is possible for more than one person to have the same idea. It has happened to me!

All Hand-Made Crafts said...

This is a very pretty handmade bag.

Lady Moss said...

I loooove the dolls house idea, I'm working on a version inspired by it right now. I agree about giving someone the benefit of the doubt, there are so many people playing around with ideas that there's bound to be crossover right?

Ali Hall said...

Adorable and would be much loved by the giftee I am sure!

rachel said...

sooo cute! i love it. after reading anonymous's comment above, i thought you might be interested in this blog post entitled 'copied or inspired' by a quilt blogger. i just linked to it on my blog today. very insightful.

http://www.stitchedincolor.com/2012/07/copied-or-inspired-my-answer.html

my opinion is, when it comes to the sewing and fashion industry, there's nothing new under the sun. we're all building off of one another. i think that's really awesome.

Anonymous said...

No, Jill, I am sorry, it's not a matter of "the same idea at the same time". The house is exactly the same as the pattern, and the inside of the bag was copied from a bag another Etsy seller made using that pattern. It was her idea, not Charla's idea. It's so sad and so dishonest. This is not something that was "inspired" by another pattern, and it saddens me that women support people who think it is okay to outright copy other people. People will do anything to make a buck.

homemade by jill said...

Anonymous,

I am sorry that you are so upset, but from your last comment it sounds like you are implying that *I* am okay with people copying patterns for profit or that I am profiting from linking to Charla Ann's pattern. That is definitely not the case. I saw her blog post, thought it was cute, and linked to it without first scouring the internet to see if she had copied the idea.

If you would like to discuss this further, please email me: homemadebyjill@gmail.com (send me a link to the other patterns! I'd like to see them), but I'd prefer that you not leave additional negative comments on this post. I'd also encourage you to contact to Charla Ann directly, if you haven't already.

Big D and Me said...

I love this - the gray and pink together and that darling tutu - just beautiful!

Tanya said...

The itty bitty details are super sweet.

Janet said...

Did you glue the ballerina to the bag? My 5 year old would LOVE this bag...

CBH said...

Thank you so much for this post. I want to let you know that I posted a link to your blog in Creative Busy Bee Craft Inspirations, under the Page 5 post on Aug. 11, 2012. Thanks again.

Flogistix said...

wow. . .I love your homemade bags. . .cool . .thanks a lot for showing..
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The Becks said...

Where did you get your chevron fabric? I can't seem to find any anywhere! And I'm in Utah with lots of sewers here so you think I'd be able to find some!

Anonymous said...

awesome