Thursday, May 3, 2012

Making your own yellow "leather" laptop case

Not to make you doubt my abilities as I try to guide you through idiot-proof diy, but sometimes when I'm making stuff, I fuck up. (For those who don't remember, sometimes it leads to me sitting in front of a blank wall, crying.) Sometimes the fuck up is major, sometimes salvageable. In this case (pun!), it was both.

Look how classy that is! Look at those smooth, straight seams! Mine would end up looking absolutely nothing like this.

I attempted to make an envelope clutch as a sleeve for my Macbook when I am tossing it in my bag to travel with it. It was not meant to be like a super-protective OtterBox, just enough to keep it from getting too dinged up and to keep the omnipresent candy in my purse from getting jammed inside a USB port. So I cut out this totally nonsensical pattern:

Just the sight of a tape measure on the table is already a bad sign.

I had grand plans, with patterns and measuring and fusible interfacing! I had measured it all out, and an initial folding into place had me feeling confident that everything was going to come up Milhouse:

The measuring was confusing me from the start, but I kept reassuring myself it would make sense. Then I started sewing and realized I was in over my head. None of my seams lined up, and when I tried, I realized the needle on my machine was not strong enough to go through four layers of fake leather, and I ended up with all of my seams looking like this:

I'll give you a moment to admire that craftsmanship.

But I soldiered on. And ended up with this weird lumpy sack covered in fucked up seams. Seams that didn't even come close to lining up. Plus, that fancy fusible interfacing that I added so that my bag would have some structure? It just added another layer to sew through, did not give any support, and ended up peeling off anyways. I wish I was joking when I say that at one point I tried to just superglue everything together.

Thank god that tape measurer was worthless for my math-challenged brain, because it turns out I had made my seam allowances about two inches too big. This allowed me to basically cut off everything I had already sewed and start over. Three straight seams around the side of the bag, then I just cut a triangle flap. Was it hemmed? No. Did it look expensive and polished? No. Did it hold my laptop? Yeah.

To try and make myself feel better, I decided to add a little snap action. Except I didn't have any snaps, because they cost money, and I had already wasted too much money on this stupid fucking project. So I dug around my room for an old wallet I haven't used in years and cut the snap off that one. 
You may recognize this guy from my sleep-deprived, gif-laden post a few nights back. 

Out came the aforementioned superglue, because I've already accepted that that this project is low-rent, to say the least.

Anyways, here we are now. A laptop sleeve that should have been simple, that I made way too hard, and tried to salvage. 

If you feel like torturing yourself learning from my mistakes, this is the fabric I used. And for the love of god, please use this tutorial I wish I had found earlier. The total cost for this project was $6 and a whole lot of pride.



  1. Hey Meg, you might not remember me at all but we were in the same graduating class at HF. I just wanted to tell you, I love your blog and your writing style is hilarious! I've actually been creepin' since you did your blog on trekkin' to California (which was awesome.) and figured I would come out of hiding. You've definitely been added to my google reader : )


    1. abby!! of course i do! haha thanks for reading/adding!!

  2. I'm like dying of laughter. It's good to know that someone out there has moments like this, too!

    And I think the laptop bag looks GREAT!


  3. I've been going through your posts tagged as "failures". Woman, you are hilarious and humble. Thank you for your honesty. *high five*

  4. it looks really good, wouldn’t have known it’s laptop case if you hadn’t mentioned it. Watertight Cases


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