Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Star Wars Laptop Sleeve!

Ok, so this actually started out with an idea that I had after having lunch with my friend.  She mentioned that she hadn't been taking her new laptop to classes because it was bigger than her previous case.  Bingo! Perfect handmade gift for her birthday -- or if my track record with timely gift giving is any indication, more like for the holidays!

I figured, in my head, that I might try a basic zipper pouch tutorial, of which there are a million on craftgawker.  Or at least I would try and cobble something together from a few different tutorials. And then, lo and behold, my past-self rewards my current-self after a casual perusal of my bookmarks folder (yes, yes, so sue me, I probably could better manage these things using Pinterest). This design*sponge tutorial!  Woo! Exactly what I wanted :) Mostly because I love the idea of the wrap-around zipper so it's not so ... over-sized clutch looking?

The lovely case from the Design*Sponge tutorial! Admittedly, I don't love plaid (but just about everyone else in the world does), but I love that cool metal zipper and contrast lining.

-I bought a half-yard of this luscious soft and fluffy fleecy stuff at Joann's in this beautiful buttery yellow.  Can you tell I love this stuff? It's pretty damn expensive (at least to me) for a fleece, but if you can catch it at full price and then use a 50% off coupon, I would love to buy 2.5-3 yards and back a yummy lap/couch blanket with this.  Anyways, the tutorial suggests that you need a half yard of the inner material, but really, you could probably do with a quarter yard or less since you buy the fabric on the fold (if that makes sense? You only need a maximum of a half yard of single fold fabric).  But bonus! Now I have a little leftover, what should I make with it?
-Plus, I totally scored on the Star Wars fabric, since there was just under a yard left on the bolt, so I got it half off! Joann's actually had a small selection of different kinds of Star Wars fabrics, 3 or 4 different prints I think, but I liked this one the best because of the graphic geometric look of it.  I also saw some other great nerdy prints... :)
-I also bought some metal D-rings because I kind of wanted to make this a wearable laptop case, if I could swing it, instead of something you put inside your backpack or work tote because I assume that's what my friend's problem was in the first place.
-Long zipper, probably a 22" one, I fortunately had this navy blue one that I bought at an estate sale. 
-And to top it all off, a salvaged luggage strap for carrying. I almost bought some webbing and notions while at Joann's, but I figured I had enough junk lying around at home that I must have at least one spare strap from some bygone luggage.


Look at my corners! So neat and clean! And check out those cheeky little tab holders for my D-rings.  I had to hunt carefully to find and cut out the faction symbols....and then re-cut them because I forgot to give myself a seam allowance.

It was super easy to follow this tutorial since there were some really detailed process shots.  The only part where I got kind of confused was where the bottom part was sewn up to meet the zipper seams.  I couldn't really get the foot to go over the zipper bulk, so I ended up ladder stitching the rest of it.

Sorry to make you go through all that introduction, but ta-da! The finished product!


I'm really very pleased with myself for making this! I think it looks really nice, no extremely obvious mistakes  :)

After making this and then letting it sit for a while, I decided to make a few changes:

1. Nix the D-rings and the strap and just leave it as a fun little case protector.  The tabs were too flimsy to really do a good job, I think it would have worked a lot better with webbing underneath the tab, and probably also a slightly different design with the webbing wrapped around the bottom to give it strength.

2. Give the fleece a haircut near the zipper. Can you see all that fluff near the teeth? The zipper kept catching as I was testing it out, so I just took my scissors and trimmed it down.  It wasn't too difficult, I just had to be careful to not cut a hole in my lining.


I really hope my friend likes it and uses it!  I always worry that I end up making really weird things that people won't actually use.


  1. This is amazing. I think I need to employ you to make something I've been eyeing to DIY...!

    1. Definitely, I'd be happy to help!

  2. Oh my gosh, those tabs are so awesome!!! :D

    I understand why you didn't attach them, but I love the fact that they exist! One for each faction, my nerdy heart is so happy right now!

    1. Argh, replying using my AIM id didn't work. Anyway, in case you couldn't tell from my geek out, this is your friend. Who loves yellow. Especially soft, fluffy, yellow fleece. :)