As promised yesterday, we have a full review of the Senna Tote. Because when you make a Senna Tote, it deserves a blog post all of it’s own!
Ever since I saw the Senna Tote, I’ve been gathering supplies to make one. Or three. And finally I scooped up the pattern over the weekend on a 50% off sale!
When I first saw this brocade, I saw the side with the silver background, and loved it. Then when it was spread out on the cutting table, I saw the side with the gold background and loved it even better. I had such a hard time deciding which side to use as the main fabric on the bag, so finally used both!
This brocade fabric makes the loveliest Senna tote ever in person, but proved quite difficult to photograph! The gold and silver brocade wanted to pick up the light and reflect it back, making the bag almost glow! And then when I edited the photos to give them a 1920s look for yesterday’s post, the details of the Senna Tote disappeared into a glowing mass!
Before I made the Senna Tote, I read many, many reviews from other seamstresses who’d made it. I found the Senna Tote to be a delightful challenge. There was never a point where the instructions were unclear, and the end result is so very professional. I just took it one step at a time, and never had to unpick any step.
One thing I’d like to try is making the Senna Tote in a smaller size. I’ve seen this done once, and I think it could be done by printing out the pattern pieces at a smaller percentage. Then if seam allowances were corrected for the sides, I think it would assemble just lovely! I’ll have to let you know.
When I originally picked out the fabrics for this Senna Tote, I planned to give the completed tote as a gift. But now that it’s made, I simply cannot part with it! I’ll just have to make another one for the intended recipient.
I’ve seen Senna Totes for sale on Etsy for as much as $100, and I do understand why they have that price tag. It took me 1.5 hours to cut this out, and 3.5 hours to sew. That’s a lot of labor, and the material cost is significant too. Each piece of the bag is interfaced, and most pieces have a canvas lining. That is what gives this bag such a professional finished look, and it wouldn’t be a good idea to skip any of these layers.
In the other reviews I’d read, some seamstresses had trouble sewing through all the layers. About 1/2 way through the process, when the layers started getting thick, I put on my walking foot, and my machine had no trouble at all.
Allegra and Mr. Skirt Fixation think I should start making and selling brocade Senna Totes…and I’m sorely tempted to do it, just to spread the beauty around! What do you think?
Since I made this Senna tote for summer, using winter materials (brocade and vegan leather!) I’m linking it up to the Top Stitcher’s Pioneer Prompt: In Like A Lion, Out Like A Lamb
Here’s the description:
Pioneer Prompt: “In Like A Lion, Out Like A Lamb”
Like most women who sew for themselves, you may have spent the winter months dreaming of sundresses, light jackets, and crafting Spring/Summer attire to compliment your warm-weather shoe collection. UNLIKE the average sewist, your visions aren’t limited by what can be made in quilter’s cotton or jersey knit. Oh no. You take the seasonal saying “In like a lion, out like a lamb” too seriously for that. Instead, you will be incorporating fur, wool, or leather (or their vegan cousins) into your women’s-wear contest submission!