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Making a quilted bag using an orphaned pineapple quilt block

by Sarah Vanderburgh

Sometimes you have an idea but no plan: this is what happened to me as I approached making a birthday gift for one of my son’s classmates this summer. Thankfully the PFAFF creative 3.0 helped me fill in the blanks and allowed me to create from beginning to end like I knew what I was doing all along!

PFAFF creative 3.0

PFAFF creative 3.0

Maybe not as dramatic as all that, but really, sometimes you just want to make and really need the tools you have to work with to support you. In this case, the creative 3.0 was able to piece, quilt, and topstitch me successfully into a completed quilted bag for a little girl’s birthday.

In this series of posts, I’ll share my creative process and the features and accessories of the creative 3.0 that helped me make this reversible bag that I kind of want to keep for myself;)

The quilted book bag stitched together quickly and easily with the features included on PFAFF's creative 3.0.

Quilted book bag

The PFAFF creative 3.0 has an impressive list of features. It’s a sturdy machine with a Color Touch Screen that lets you move around intuitively to look at the built-in stitches for basic sewing tasks to decorative ones to add a personal touch to any project.

With the embroidery unit attached you can browse through the many built-in embroidery stitches, but you can also browse through the separate embroidery manual. I like to look through the manual because it lists the size of the embroidery designs which makes it easy to decide if you want to use a design as an embellishment or use it as the feature.

The PFAFF creative 3.0 comes with an embroidery unit to let you add embroidery to any project you can dream up.

The PFAFF creative 3.0 comes with an embroidery unit to let you add embroidery to any project you can dream up.

I know I can rely on the IDT system to help me get precise stitching on whatever I create; the handy touch buttons for the needle down and reverse mean that I can focus on my design and not the basics required to have a good looking finished project.

IDT system engaged

IDT system engaged

With confidence in the creative 3.0 to work with me as a partner in creating, all that was left to do was come up with something to make!

I knew I wanted to make a book bag as my son had picked up some crafty books as part of the birthday gift. I knew a bag would be the perfect handmade addition. Since I really don’t know the girl well I needed to figure out something with broad appeal and hope for the best!

I recently finished making myself a mini pineapple wall hanging and had a block leftover that didn’t make the cut – it was an early test block and turned out smaller than the required size. It was a perfect place to start!

I grabbed the block, the remaining leftover big pieces of fabric, knowing I needed larger pieces to make a bag, and the books my son had bought to get a rough size measurement for the bag – the books need to fit inside;)

If you would like to sew along with these posts, find a leftover block in your stash and some coordinating fabrics. Here’s a really rough guideline of the fabric requirements for making a reversible quilted book bag:

Materials for quilted book bag

Materials for quilted book bag

Fabric Requirements

  • leftover quilt block for a pocket
  • batting the size of the block
  • piece of fabric the size of the block for back of pocket
  • fabric to make two outer bag panels – can be one piece or pieced together
  • batting the size of one outer bag panel
  • fabric to make two inner bag panels – same size as outer. For these, I went to my stash and cut from some yardage that coordinated.
  • piece of fabric to make handles – one 3″ x 42″ strip is what I used to make two 21″ handles

Other Requirements

  • cutaway fabric embroidery stabilizer
  • thread for piecing
  • thread for topstitching

Now that we have the creative 3.0, a plan, and fabrics, it’s time to start sewing. Join me in the next post to start stitching!

This is part 1 of 5 in this series.

Go to part 2: How initials and decorative stitches personalize a simple quilted bag


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