Adventures in Sewing: Mom Makes a Margo

Lazies, I was in Cincinnati visiting family recently and Mom demanded that we make her first Margo Handbag together. Now, my mom considers herself pattern-challenged and the best way for her to make something is to have me make it for her. Truly, it’s a crushing and endearing reality for me as Lazy Girl. Pics are from my iPhone and they are a little grainy.

Mom’s ‘perfect’ black Margo Handbag

The Adventure Begins
Mom tested the Margo prototype (shown below) for me, so she is an expert. I made a few changes to the pattern after Mom’s initial feedback and Mom was ready for an official Margo. Mom likes what she likes and wanted a Margo that strayed from the pattern a bit. No surprise there – we all have our preferences. That’s when the adventure started.

One Fabric
First up, she wanted an all-black bag so it would go with everything. Black for every part that was going to show. This only crushed me a little bit. Mom found a black fabric with a faint gray all-over swirl for the main fabric. The only Margo I’ve made in one fabric was the design prototype made from white muslin and it wasn’t nearly this attractive.

Long-Distance Collaboration
She sent a swatch so I could search my stash for the perfect lining fabric. I said, ‘Mom, you’ll see this print up close, but from ten feet away, it will read as an all-black solid’. She said, ‘Great, that’s just what I want’. Oh the humanity. I completely appreciate what she’s going for here, but I did design Margo to take advantage of they play between two fabrics for the cover/pockets which showcase the overall design. Again, only slightly crushed.

More Changes
Mom made sure I knew she wanted her Margo to be black above the zipper. That is technically the top part of the one-piece lining fabric. Now we have to piece the lining above/below the zipper – sure, bring it on Mom!

The Lining Surprise
Next she hunted for the perfect gray for the lining, but found none. Instead, she pulled a rich, warm, soft cream fabric from her stash and it was perfect. It was interesting to see Mom’s selection. I wouldn’t have tried that fabric, or made a one-color bag, or changed out the fabric above the zip. I enjoyed Mom’s insistent departure from Margo.

Uhm, A Long Time
Mom matter-of-factly asked how long it will take us to make Margo. I said it takes me about 2 – 2 1/2 hours, but it was going to take us about 6 hours. I think she was stunned. I did factor in teaching, making and visiting. Throw in a bit of time for machine/needle/bobbin issues and we came in right at the 6 hour mark.

As we progressed through the project, I had a chance to show Mom all of the tips, tricks and techniques I’ve developed for my designs. She showed me a few things, too. Her one-fabric bag looks great. Her choice of lining fabric was a surprise and it was wonderful.

At the beginning of our adventure, Mom mentioned how she can’t allow her girlfriends to show her up by making bag after bag. Mary Lou in particular is cranking out Margo’s, Mini Miranda and Whimsy’s for her daughters and nieces. Carol is stitching up a storm, too. Mom’s been making smaller projects, so Margo is her first larger Lazy Girl project. Mom mentioned she’d like to make a bag for my Aunt Margie, her sister. Since our visit, Mom made a Newport in beautiful blues and yellows for spring.

Here’s Mom early Sunday morning showing off her new Margo Handbag.

Lazy Girl Designs Margo Handbag pattern, #127

Original Margo prototype. For the final design,
I changed the pocket openings and lengthened the handles.