I am in the middle of tidying up the 'sewing room' (aka: our bedroom) after a marathon bag-making session and I am finding that the scrap pile that I am gathering up from the floor consists of chocolate wrappers and fabric offcuts in near equal amounts...that tells me that this project has been both stressful and fattening!!!

I have now finished the bag (three days after beginning it...yes, that was another project that I wrongly thought would be just a couple of hours work). Anyway, pictures of the creation will have to wait until tomorrow as the photos taken tonight under the glare of tungsten bulbs are unfortunately unfit for public viewing!

But just to give you an idea - I have based it on a canvas summer bag that I bought a couple of years ago and have cunningly attempted to reinvent it as a winter bag using some heavier-weight, darker material. The pattern, as ever, is my own rather botched one, but I am learning soooooooooo much by doing this - mostly because I make soooooooooooo many mistakes, being a newbie to bag-making!!! Here are the things that I have learnt this time around.
  • Tracing your actual pattern onto your fabric is not enough...making your pattern with a seam allowance so that all the bits are cut out perfectly and match up exactly is a brilliant guide and so much better than trying to turn your own head inside-out by matching up randomly shaped pieces with an inch of seam allowance here and a centimetre there.
  • Using contrasting coloured thread to your material highlights any sewing inadequacies
  • While nearly every iron-on interfacing in the world requires a damp cloth in order to be fixed into place...always, always double-check this, as you may indeed have bought the only one that doesn't, and end up with a soggy, non-sticking mess.
  • Making bags shares certain qualities with various points I've sworn I will never ever attempt this again, but only five minutes after the birth of my bag and all the trauma is seeming like a distant memory and I am buzzing with ideas for my next one!

Anyway, my tidying break is now over and I must busy myself once more with some scintillating thread collection from the floor (although perhaps I might stop occasionally to allow myself to place my new baby over my shoulder and peer in the mirror and perform the odd pirouette - I am sure Ian will understand that this kind of activity will spur me on and give me the energy to tidy the bedroom even more quickly, rather than further delaying the pin-clearance from the duvet cover which is required for him to sleep painlessly).