I'm a bit surprised to tell you that I've finished up my StudioCherie duffel! I was fully expecting that it would be a more way more time-consuming and frustrating process than it was. I'm quite pleased with the finished bag, though if I were to make the bag again another time, I would probably use a heavier batting, like upholstery weight, to create a stiffer finished bag. On my bag, I used Pellon Legacy 100% cotton batting, which yields a softer finished bag with less body, but when it's stuffed to the brim, like it is in the photos, there's plenty of body.
So, now that it's done, what can I tell you about this bag...well, first off, this thing is huge! I fully expect that I'll be able to pack not only my projects for the Stash Bash retreat next week but also all my clothes in this bag. I tested it out with quilts inside and found that it can easily fit four lap sized quilts, maybe even more. This is a great bag for a weekend trip, and I believe the size is an acceptable carry-on for most airlines.
I also love the fabric I used - I wasn't sure about the orange Sketch for the handles, but it really does work nicely with the penguins, so I'm pleased with it. And these penguins always seem to make me smile.
The main thing I don't love about this bag are the raw edges on the inside of the bag, which I couldn't seem to get a decent picture of. I overcast the edges as best I could with my Viking, but admittedly, I stink at overcasting, so it's not a perfect job. Then again, how often am I going to be looking at the interior of the bag? Probably not very often, so it's definitely something I can live with.
Another thing I'd do differently next time is repeat the pockets that are written to be just on two of the four sides of the bag. I would repeat the zipper pocket that is on one short side of the bag on the other short side of the bag, and I'd also repeat the small pocket between the handles on both long sides of the bag. You can never have too many pockets :)
I've gotten a lot of questions about where I sourced all the materials for this bag, especially the long zippers and the jute, so here's the rundown on where I got everything:
Main fabric: Penguins in Blue by Nancy Wolff
Zippers: Purl Soho
Jute: SugarScout on Etsy