Seamwork just released their Holiday Collection of 10 patterns perfect for giving. While items like a grocery set, headband and bag caddy caught my eye the one that really piqued my interest was the Rocco Lunch Bag! I’ve been thinking about making a new lunch sack for awhile, my old one is a bit too small, and I’ve been waiting for a project to use kraft-tex paper fabric. I thought the natural colored kraft-tex gives the Rocco a paper bag feel reminiscent of packed school lunches.
Wait until you get your hands on this rugged paper that looks, feels, and wears like leather, but sews, cuts, and washes like fabric.ctpub.com
Have you heard of kraft-tex? It feels like paper but behaves more like fabric. You can wash it, sew it and it’s really hard to tear. And trust me I tried! What do I like about it? It doesn’t fray so you don’t have to worry about seam finishes, its stiff so you don’t have to use interfacing and you can give it a really cool leather like texture.
In the photo slider below you can see the kraft-tex in its original condition and after I washed and crinkled the crap out of it. First I twisted it dry, worked it into a ball and submerged it in a sink of warm water. After letting it soak for a couple minutes I flattened it out a bit, scrunched it back into a ball and let it soak some more. After about 15 minutes I wrung the kraft-tex out, flattened it out a bit and laid it flat to dry.
Once dry, I traced out my pattern and cut it out. Like paper, once you put a hole in it it’s there for good so pins aren’t advisable. Use clips and on seams where clips won’t work use glue to tack down the pieces so you can sew them.
The Rocco lunch bag has a handle at the top, D rings for the closure and snaps on the sides to keep the top snug. I used a veggie PUL (Polyurethane Laminate) for the lining. The pattern calls for a thermal batting, but I didn’t have any so I just used plain batting. In a nod to paper bags I used pinking shears on some edges and left those seams exposed. This turned out to be challenging since the kraft-tex doesn’t have any stretch and I had to scrunch the paper to get in there to stitch the seam. I didn’t have enough for the flap so I stitched 2 pieces together and used the pinking shears on that seam too.
Since this was only my second time sewing with kraft-tex I am still learning. The seams are very wonky, I had to seam rip a section so holes are visible and I’ve never eased a bag through a lining gap so sloooowly. But I enjoyed the project and I like the outcome so much (wonky stitching and all) that I am planning more kraft-tex projects!
sewing with kraft-tex tips:
- Use clips not pins
- Use a larger stitch length
- Trace patterns onto kraft-tex then cut out
- Iron with steam to help soften or flatten
- Use glue to help tack seams together before sewing
- Have patience!
C&T Publishing, who makes kraft-tex, has an informative and interesting series on YouTube called kraft-tex University. There’s a bunch of how tos, tips and tutorials that got me eager to try more projects. I even got some ideas for Christmas presents!
If you want to try this paper fabric for yourself you can buy it by the meter HERE.
Now to go find a lunchable, juice box and fruit roll up! My grade six self would be so happy.