Being a bit of an ‘old bag lady’

Firstly, a huge thank you, again, to all those who are checking in regularly to view this blog.  I’ve been blown-away with all the lovely comments (and my increased work-load!)
That increased work-load has been partly responsible for my lack of posts over the past fortnight but I’ve managed to get organised this week and factored in some time for uploading photos and writing about what I’ve been up to. I think I might even do a couple of posts today otherwise things might start looking a little crowded on here.

So here goes….

Last week, alongside making a few bits & pieces for people, I wanted to try out some new bag designs and decorative finishes.  Some weeks ago, I mentioned my new obsession with  ‘free-motion’ embroidery which I’ve been meaning to actually try out on some products rather than just playing around with on scraps. Bags seemed like a good option as there is a large amount of ‘space’ to experiment with designs.  Apart from nearly attaching my finger to the sewing machine by way of the needle (ouch!), it was pretty successful.
First up was a little calico tote bag. I’ve made loads of these (they’re those really useful bags that fold up really small & you keep in your handbag to save you needing horrible plastic bags…except, I always manage to forget to put mine back in my handbag, or leave them in the car and all my good ‘green’ intentions are lost as I shamefully admit to the cashier in Boots that, yes, I do need a bag….!)
I had a piece of Lucie Summers ‘Summersville’ fabric that I wasn’t really sure if I liked (it came in a ‘bundle’ pack of her designs but it was my least favourite). However, I cut out a little mother & baby bird template (I’ve been using this sort of thing in some ceramics work recently which I shall share once The Kiln has done it’s job!) and appliqued it on using the manic, mad, free motion embroidery technique & was actually pretty pleased with the results…although it does use up ALOT of thread and takes ALOT of concentration (hence the near miss with the ‘needle through finger’ incident when the postman rang on the doorbell!). So, here it is….a new shopping bag….destined to be left behind when I most need it!!
I think I could have zoomed in a bit more on this one to show the embroidery outline a little better, but hopefully you get the general idea (as well as the idea that I hadn’t pressed it very well before taking the photograph…tut…tut..such impatience!)

Ok, so encouraged with my success on the calico fabric, I thought I’d give it a go on some heavier weight unbleached canvas which I’ve had in my store for sometime, crying out to be made into a boxy shopping bag.  I used a design that I originally tried out on a piece of linen when I was first playing around with the technique and some small scraps of furnishing weight cloth….


and all finished off with a sage green floral lining.

Finally, on ‘bag day’, I tried another basic tote bag, but wanted to line it with a fun fabric which then would make it into a reversible bag. Again, this uses the Lucie Summers ‘Summersville’ collection fabric, and although I do like it, I think perhaps much more appropriate for spring/summer – maybe a beach bag or something (seems like a long time off though doesn’t it, given that we’re just getting in to autumn!)

So, there we have it…bags of bags.  I know there are so many of these tote bags available these days ( and very cheaply too..far cheaper than I can produce one for!) but I just wanted to create some that were a little different and individual, whilst trying out some new techniques…

Done! x

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