Pendleton + Leather

March 24, 2013

A few weeks ago my friend Kristen kindly divulged that she had found some gorgeous Pendleton wool at our local fabric store. I hadn’t even been to this store yet (isn’t that embarrassing??), so we planned a trip. I was only going to buy knits and a few other things that caught my eye in the bargain bins, but after she cut the 2 yds of wool that she came in for, I decided to take the last little bit.


What was I going to do with 5/8 of a yard?? Initially I wanted to make a tote bag with a leather bottom, but I couldn’t find a pattern or even an inspiration piece to base it off of. I also wanted to make the most of the big print. It would be lost on anything smaller than a cape or huge bag. I’ve made the Amy Butler Weekender Bag three times before and now I’m using it again minus the front pockets. It features huge side panels and it’s quite thick, so I think it will be perfect.

bonded nylon

I also splurged on some leather. I’m using it for the piping, bottom panel, side pockets and handles. Leftovers may become a throw pillow.

half a beef


I’m getting used to the walking foot! I don’t close my eyes or flinch when it starts up. Well, initially I do then I’m fine for the rest of the day. Here are some close-ups of preparing the cording using a zipper foot.

preparing cording

preparing cording

I still need to order a zipper, buy veg tan to stabilize the leather bottom and handles and find a lining! Any suggestions on lining? Luckily, I can construct the entire bag and handstitch it in afterwards, but I’m worried if I wait too long it will sit lining-less for months. That would be awful.

At home I’m slowly cutting out Archer. It’s been such a long time since I’ve made a collared shirt that I’m waiting for Jen’s sewalong. I’m using a super lightweight,┬ástriped cotton in view A.


ALSO, I’m featured on my friend’s new blog this week. Read it here: HyLighted


  • erin

    It’s coming along so nicely, I think it’s going to be really beautiful when you are done.

  • sallie

    Have I mentioned how much I love your blog? Well I do. So much.
    This bag is going to be so freaking awesome. Pendelton and Leather… swoon. Seriously. Can I ask what kind of hide that is? And where you got it? I’ve always got half an eye on leather hides…

    • stephanie

      Thank-you so much!!

      Of course! I should’ve added more details. It’s a cow half-hide from Tandy Leather Factory. I’m glad I went into the store and asked for help. They were really knowledgeable and encouraging.

  • Kelly

    This bag is going to be beautiful! What great fabric, and so perfect paired with the leather. Looking forward to seeing the finished bag!

  • Ginger

    Oh, wow, I was just thinking about a weekender bag in Pendleton wool. It’s not very easy to find here in the East, though. I LOVE the wool and leather combination you’ve chosen– can’t wait to see this!

  • Andrea

    What an awesome combination. And look at you being all grown up on that walking foot! As for the lining, whatever you choose, make it a light colour. I’ve made a few bags with dark linings (black or blue) and in my experience it is so hard to find stuff in the bag against that lining that they become, literally, a black hole where stuff gets lost never to reappear!

  • Jen

    OH crap this is going to be amazing! I literally am about to submit a Pendleton blanket order and it was SO HARD not to add fabric to the cart as well. Why doesn’t anyone carry it in Chicago…wahhh. I always like the linings that Rennes does, maybe some sort of striped linen or something like that? Anything is going to look great with that wool/leather combo.

  • MadeByMeg

    Hi Stephanie! I have been totally enamored by your sense of style, color palette, and great outfits. I am passing along to you the Liebster Award, a way for us sewing bloggers to showcase each other and give a shout out to those blogs we love! I hope you’ll play along:

  • Lillian

    Great site, Steph! I’m so impressed. You do great work. I love that you showcased the Pendleton bag and the walking foot!! You’re an inspiration.

  • steven a.

    i firmly believe that every lining in the world should be silk

  • Ronda Halvorsen-Ferns

    Love it so wanting to visit the Mill store but alas on the other side of the Mtns. Where did you get your leather????
    Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you
    Ronda in Bend

    • stephanie

      Hi Ronda! I want to take a trip to Portland just to visit the store!! I bought my leather from Tandy Leather. They were really nice and helpful. I think there are Tandy storefronts just about everywhere as well as local tanneries.

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