art from trash – my new bag

I am never happy with bags.
Handbags are just too small.
Or they hold too much and become too heavy.
I used to use backpacks. They make sense… After all its better to carry the weight of your life on your back than on one shoulder. With the amount of crap I carry in my bag its amazing I don’t lean to one side permanently.
But somewhere along the line I decided I needed to start using handbags. Or rather, shoulder bags.
Then I got my big diary
It wouldn’t fit into any of my handbags/shoulder bags so I started using canvas shopping bags as my work bags.
They’re ok, but they have no pockets, no inner dividers, nothing to hold things in place… I was constantly losing pens, car keys and my mobile phone.
I was sick and tired of it.

So I made my own shoulder bag.
I got this bee in my bonnet about it one night last week. I looked through the cupboard in my office, found some upholstery fabric samples which might work then started thinking of ways I could use the fabric to make a bag.
I was limited by the size of the samples. I didn’t want to make a patchwork carpetbag looking thing so I didn’t want to mix and match too many fabrics.
In the end I only used one sample for the body of the bag, though I turned the fabric inside out on the sides just for contrast.
I’d never done this before but it wasn’t that hard. I just had to work out the size and design, then cut.
Or cut and then make it work.
The living room was back to normal again.
Normal means a coffee table full of crafting stuff. That’s more normal than clean and tidy round here.
One thing I wanted was a pocket to hold things securely. I wanted a divider inside the bag so that I could put the diary in that part and it wouldn’t fall and lean..
I cut one piece of fabric which I stitched in when I put the bag together, it forms a divider ‘pocket’ at the back of the bag for the diary. I added a couple of fabric loops to hold pens inside that pocket too!
I re-used one of my canvas bags for the strap, flap and inner pocket. I just cut or picked off the bits I wanted from the old bag. I put the small zipped pocket inside on the divider, and put the straps on the sides of the bag.
I reinforced the sides where the straps join and I put in some stiff fabric under the bottom of the bag to help it hold its shape.
Lastly I needed to pretty up the flap/front of the bag…
I was inspired by this image on Pinterest:
I used scaps of burlap and another fabric (using both sides) and some blue cotton yarn for the stitches. I opted to leave out the beads. Knowing me they’d be flying off left, right and center.
Ok, it looks nothing like my inspiration, but I still think its pretty ok. And it’ll hold my diary and TWO pens!
I’ve decided to enter it into the Salvaged Art Competition being held in Kingston next month. Why not? Its all recycled!


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DIY Show Off

The Girl Creative

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