Monday, March 3, 2014

New Foredeck Bag for Stay Sail

We lost overboard our foredeck bag for our stay sail  on the trip from BVI to St Martin.
Phifertex bottom from muslin pattern

Cutting the Sunbrella using the muslin pattern

Bag under construction
I decided we needed a new one.  Luckily the North Sails loft here - Tropical Sails sells Sunbrella and canvas notions.  The cash discount is a nice help.
Front of the bag with Sunbrella cover over zipper

Front zipper and Sunbrella flap to protect it
I previously made a foredeck bag for our sailboat Riot.  However, for some reason I really struggled with the design of this bag.  I kept getting stuck on the design.
port side attached to orange Phifertex bottom
FYI - most all canvas work you undertake on a sailboat is your own design - must design everything yourself...unless you buy a kit.  I don't buy kits because I always want a design that is enough different that kits don't seem to make sense....or so I think. *Yes, I am silly, stupid, delusional like that!
Top with vinyl edging

Loops in the front and vinyl edging
Anywho....while taking a break from designing/pondering, I happened to glance up and see that our new friend Mike on s/v Right Turn has a perfectly wonderful foredeck bag for his lovely 42 ft Bowman sailboat.  I hopped in the dinghy and zoomed over.  "Hi Mike.  Can I look at your foredeck bag?"  He said sure and even offered it up so I could use it for a pattern.  SWEET!
View of the top and aft end of the bag

I was still a little wobbly on my design so the next morning I dashed ashore to the French equivalent of a 5 and dime and bought some cheap muslin fabric so I could make a sample before cutting into the precious $$$ Sunbrella.  *Always measure 3 times and cut once but DON'T forget to carry the one.  I didn't carry the one when making new cockpit cushions last week and barely had enough to complete my purple (YES) cockpit pillows.  D-oh!
Port side view
The basic pattern was an oval shaped bottom piece made of Phifertex (orange because I had it on hand) so it will drain any water that gets into the sail bag and allow the sail to breath.  The top is also oval shaped with a zipper.  The sides are triangle shaped.  The front also has a zipper.  I covered both zippers to protect them. There is also a loop on the top of the back part of the bag so we can attach the halyard to it and lift it off the deck if we want.  Two loops in the front will allow us to tie the bag on and thus keep from loosing it overboard.  Amazingly, once I got Mike's bag, it only took me two days to design ours, make and test the muslin pattern and then cut and sew the final bag.  *If anyone is interested in more details, email me or leave a comment with your questions and email.


  1. Ver well done Sabrina! Love the color of the sunbrella. That's what I want for out boat. Do you know the name of the color? You are so crafty!

  2. Very well done, Sabrina! You are so crafty! What color is the Sunbrella? That's the color I want for our boat!

  3. VERY nice project. You continue to amaze me with your sewing prowess! P.S. In the title of this post, you have a type ("Fordeck"). Just thought you'd want to know. ;-)