I'd like to make a more shaped and slightly wider bag for my next one. My recent bag I patterned and cut much like a simple quilt. The next bag it seems like I'd need to "trace" my desired pattern onto the material in two separate pieces (ie, both a top and a bottom piece, instead of assuming the one piece of fabric would fold upon itself).
I'm wondering how to calculate a few things. For example, the recent bag lost about 5 functional inches in length once I stuffed it. It seems to have lost a couple inches in girth, as well. If I were to draw the shape I want on a piece of fabric, I'd have to also draw/shape it to accomodate the girth absorbed by loft, right?
Or should I just cut top and bottom pieces, then join them with a strip along the sides?
I'm also not entirely clear on the best way to baffle this. My first instinct is to create a baffled bottom shell and a baffled top shell, then sew them together. But would I then sew the adjoining baffles together?
Lastly (for now), how much extra fabric allowance do you tend to cut as compared to your desired finished size? In other words, I cut my last bag at 62 inches long, expecting it to finish at 60 inches long, but actual length came out at 57-58 inches long.
Thanks for your thoughts and advice!