Bags, packages and baggages

04Aug13

bag

Hello! How are you? Hope you’re ok and not too hot. If you’re not in the UK, it’s actually sunny here at the moment and it’s not really something we’re used to – or mentally equipped to deal with (!). Rain is forecast though, and so I’m sure normal service will be resumed shortly.

I made a bag, as you can see. I kept looking at the tatting plonked on top of that red fabric shoved in a box and I decided I should do something with it.

tatting

I started with just the border, then decided I actually really did need a drawstring bag to keep some stuff in, so  took the plunge and made the whole front piece – to match the size of a drawstring carrier bag I was using from Gap. Then I thought I should have some fun and I patchworked a section for the back too, and quilted them.

patchwork

It’s so cosy with the quilting I wish I could get *in* it. I must admit, I really did enjoy making this. It was something I wanted, with fabrics I liked – and as I was making it up as I went along it was really low stress. I usually enjoy all the crafts  I do (otherwise, why do them?) but often I’m learning something or testing something out. With this, I just made it for the hell of it and planned it as I went along. As a final touch I added interfacing to the fabric at the top to make it a bit stronger, and the cord is reused from an old in-flight bag, from Virgin airlines. I think I could do with an even bigger bag now, and so I’ll make another one when I get a chance. It was nice to be able to use that tatting too, I’ve had it for ages now and this feels like a good use for it.

I must admit, I was a bit fed up when I wrote the previous post. I think I needed a holiday, which is lucky, as I’ve just had one 🙂 One of my closest friends happens to double up as one of my most distant friends, and lives just outside Venice. I flew over last Saturday, and got back on Friday. We had a lovely time, chatting, watching a STACK of TV, eating ice cream, deconstructing our lives, finding no answers and drinking spritz. We also went to the Venice Biennale and saw some art. Well, a lot of art actually. And Venice itself is of course, beautiful. If you think it’s hot in the UK, boy is it hot there.

crane

It was also my birthday on Friday, and I arrived home to a brilliant and thoughtful package of crafty stuff from another good friend – this one a bit closer. Umm, I have an admission to make. I really like cranes and huge building sites. There’s something about them that just looks so alien – I think they’re fascinating. Often I walk through the city (of London) on the way home from work and snap some of the buildings-in-progress. The one above ‘The Cheese Grater‘ being a particular favourite. Why am I telling you this?

crane fabric

Because my friend bought me this fabric, which I think is hilarious! It really made me smile. I’m not sure yet what I’ll use it for, but something good! She also bought me some really lovely striped squares from deckchairstripes.com, a great looking book on bag making, some notecards featuring sloths (another favourite) and THIS:

measure

A beautiful bag she’s made (with seams far straighter than mine 😉 ) and a stitch counter, like the one I was admiring way back in March! I opened this part of the present thinking how nice it was that we’d made eachother bags, and nearly fell off my seat to find this inside. I’m really very lucky – not just for the gift, but to have a friend that would go so far as to notice I’d even liked this in the first place and to track it down. I still can’t believe it.

And finally, the Little Blue Monkey went off to his new home the other week, complete with a nice red hat, and giant pom-pom, and was very well received. All is right with the world.

hat

 

 

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8 Responses to “Bags, packages and baggages”

  1. 1 jane

    Your bag looks gorgeous, some really lovely fabrics in there, and the tatting looks so nice framed.

    Which sewing machine did you do the quilting on? I’m intrigued as to whether the lovely little JL one is up to the job or not.

    Looking forward to seeing what you conjure up out of the crane fabric… and the deckchair stripes and whether you ever actually use the stitch counter!

    • I did the quilting on the JL machine! I didn’t think it would cope, but it was fine – loosened the tension by one and tried out a test piece. The batting was the nice wool one, which is actually pretty thin. It’s the same one I used for my quilt – I had leftovers. (I used polyester for the iPad case, it looks thicker but to my eyes they look very similar thickness when quilted). I ended up with a hand at the back of the fabric incase I needed to pull it through the machine, but it was fine.

      I’m very excited about my new fabric stash though! And I just need to get to grips with circular needles, then I can start a big knitting project (I have the wool!) and use my stitch counter. In the meantime, I just keep looking at it, fondly.

  2. 3 Shelly

    very clever. I love the combination of crafts for this one item.

  3. I have a friend who likes cranes. She draws/paints and creates pictures with strange looking creatures (but sort of cute and funky too) based on cranes. Your bag is great, really pretty. To be fair, a plain one would look great with the tatting on.

  4. I love the tatted decoration on the bag. Perfect!!

  5. 8 Mica

    Your post reminded me of my sister in law – she loves front end loaders and even has a small one on her desk at work!

    All kidding aside, I love the little bags you make – such a clever way to use little motifs and so much better than throwing them in a box never to see the light of day again.

    That monkey is adorable! I especially love the huge pom pom on his hat:)


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