During the last journey I decided that we need some organising and practical bags and cases to have all important papers together and a little more order in the hand-luggage. To begin with, I bought a pattern for a trip-case: this one from "Frau Machwerk". I like her patterns, they are all very well explained and clever designed (I have already her bag "Claire" and her purse pattern).
Once again the explanations are clear and easy to follow and I made my first case in no time. For the outside I used a very nice oil-cloth that one of my students gave me. Inside there are cotton fabrics from my patchwork-fabric-collection.
You know by now that I am a bit of extra critical with little things. So here is what I didn't like about my case. One is directly visible on the photos above: The plastic foil, that is part of the divider and where on journeys you can put little papers and tickets still visibly in, creased when I had to turn it inside out during sewing. The second thing was, that the decovil for stabilising the inside and the outside came a bit off when I finally turned the whole case outside out. I refixed it with ironing over it again, but still outside there are some crinkles left (not visible at first sight, but anyway).
I thought I might advance the pattern and did some changes in the routine of sewing. For the divider I used a bias edge to fix the foil to the finished divider. That worked really well.
This time I used thick leather for the outside that I didn't stabilised with decovil. I thought it would be easy to fix the zip onto the inside part, than fold the seam allowance over and fix it with one precise seam from the outside to the leather. It showed very quickly, that the seam allowance was too small to fold it steadily and when I finally got all parts clipped together, it was even for my strong machine too hard to sew evenly. I ended up ruining my fingers and sewing the leather outside on by hand. The outcome is pretty though, but I won't do it again like this.The seam on the front is, because my leather had been one cm too small. Now it's a decorative seam :-)
As Mrs "Machwerks" cases and purses are always looking perfect at her blog, I thought she might have a special technic for turning her pieces and I send her an e-mail to ask. She was so kind and answered immediately, telling me I should better use decovil light (she recommended it in her pattern, but I had only the thicker one at home and used that). She said the light version sticks better and is easier to turn. Also I should use lots of pressure while ironing and let it cool down for 12 hours as then the glue is combining better with the fabric. She too is ironing her works after turning again, oilcloth with a thick layer of baking paper above.
You should always follow the tips of a professional, so I ordered some decovil light and when it arrived I made a third case.
This time the outside is made from a material called snap-pap. It's a kind of paper, but washable and has a leather like surface (Figure out more about that material here). Again it's a present from one of my students. It's the first time I used this material and it is nice to sew and to look at. The touch is still like paper. I like the touch of real leather better.
Anyway, this time the decovil holds very well (lots of pressure while fixing it and leaving it over night to settle). It hasn't even been necessary to iron again. Thanks to Mrs Machwerk: From now on I will follow her instructions word by word!
I used a thinner foil for the divider page and tried again to turn it. Better this time, but still crinkles. I will probably stick with my method of the second case and fix it on from the outside with a binding.
Now I only have one problem left: which of the three models am I using myself and what am I doing with the others?