Chevron Laptop Sleeve Tutorial
For patchwork on exterior front:
- long scrap for patchwork frame
- various scraps for chevrons, 2 1/2" x 10"
1 package of velcro, or 10" if you find it by-the-yard
1 yd fusible fleece
1. Every laptop is a different size, so you will need to tweak this pattern to fit your laptop appropriately. First, let's do the pattern math. Begin by measuring your laptop and noting the dimensions shown below.
To figure the size of the exterior and lining pieces, follow this simple formula: L + H + 1" x W + H + 1". We're adding that one inch on all sides of the bag to allow for seam allowances, but I can assure you that you will get a nice, snug fit. For my laptop, which is 15" (width) x 10" (length) x 1"(height), that meant that my exterior pieces were 17" x 12".
Use the same dimensions you determined previously for the exterior for the lining. The flap will be 5.5" long, but for the width, use the W + H + 1" measurement. The flap will attach to along the width of the bag.
2. Make exterior front. To create your 6 chevrons, you will cut 2 sky pieces and one geese piece from each fabric you're using, for a total of 6 geese and 12 sky pieces.
Geese: 3" x 5 1/2"
Sky: 3" squares (2 per flying geese unit)
NOTE: My exterior front finished at 17" x 12". If your laptop is a different size than mine, you can alter the patchwork frame by making it smaller or larger to best the dimensions you created in Step 1.
Be sure to trace a diagonal line on the wrong side of each sky square once you've cut them. Next, lay out your chevrons so you can plan the order.
To piece the geese, line up a sky piece with a geese, aligning the raw edges, and sew along the diagonal line you drew. Trim the excess sky on the back side and press the seam open. Repeat on the opposite side of the geese unit, making sure that the sky units cross in the top center of the geese unit.
Repeat to make a total of six flying geese units. Seam all six units together in order to create the chevron pattern, using a scant 1/4" seam.
Next, from your patchwork frame fabric, cut two pieces 1" x 4 1/2" and two pieces 1 1/2" x 17". Again, you may need to adjust these numbers so that your patchwork will finish at the correct width for your laptop, based on the dimensions you determined in step one. Seam the short pieces on each end of your patchwork strip, then the longer pieces to the top. Press seams open.
From your main exterior fabric, cut two pieces to add to the top and bottom of the patchwork frame, the top piece measuring 3 1/2" x 17" and the bottom piece measuring 2 " x 17". Seam the top and bottom pieces to the chevron patchwork and press seams open.
Let's add the Velcro to the exterior front piece. To find the appropriate placement first fold your exterior front piece in half to find the center. Place a light crease, above the patchwork, where you'll be placing the Velcro. Next, using a ruler, measure 1" up from your finished patchwork frame. Using a water soluble fabric marking pen or other marking device, draw a small dot or X on the crease.
Next, fold the fuzzy Velcro piece in half to find its' center and line it up the bottom center of the Velcro with the mark you've just made. Stitch in place, using a tight zigzag stitch all the way around.
4. Let's make the flap piece now. First, we need to add the corresponding Velcro to the flap. Using the flap panel lining piece, fold it in half just as you did with the exterior front to find the center. Crease lightly. Make a mark or X 1" from the top of the flap piece, and center the top of your sticky Velcro with this mark. Stitch in place, again using a tight zigzag stitch.
To finish the flap piece, pin the two flap pieces together, right sides together, aligning raw edges. Do not pin the top opening, which is opposite where you've placed the Velcro.
Using a 1/4" seam, seam around the three sides you've pinned and backstitching at the start and stop. Turn the flap right sides out and press well. Topstitch around the sides of the flap, taking care to skip the open side of the flap.
Center the flap along the top of the exterior back piece and baste in place, using just an 1/8" seam and a long stitch length.
5. To finish the exterior, align the edges of exterior front and back pieces, right sides together, with the Velcro at the top of the front, and the basted flap also at the top. Pin around the other three sides, skipping the top for now, and seam around the three sides, using a 1/2" seam, backstitching at the start and stop. Press seams open and flip right side out.
6. Repeat step 5 for the lining with a few exceptions - leave a gap of about 5" at the bottom of the lining and double pin the start/stop of the gap to remind you when you're stitching. This is the hole that we'll pull the exterior through to finish the sleeve. Use a slightly larger seam allowance, like a 5/8" seam allowance, to insure that the lining is slightly smaller than the exterior for a snug fit. Press seams open, but do not turn the lining right side out.
7. Place the exterior, right side out, inside the wrong side out lining - this will put the right sides together, trust me! Pin around the top opening, taking care to match the seams on the sides. For this step, I highly recommend using a walking foot as it will help insure that the thick layers of fabric will move through the foot at the same speed. Stitch all the way around the top using a 1/2" seam allowance.