Red stripy seaside bag


Red stripy seaside bag

Having some free time over Easter gave me a chance to finish the bag I’ve been making for myself.  It’s made with red stripy material that give it a nautical feel, I’ve made it even more seasidey by painting and embroidering seagulls.  I had some problems with my original handles as they were fiddly to finish so I decided just to add a simple strap, it’s also longer than the original which I prefer.   I gave the bag a sort of crescent shape reminiscent of a ships’ bow and constructed two pockets, one for my iphone and one for other bits and pieces.  I’ve taken the bag out and about and it’s working great, it’s durable and roomy.  Now I just need to visit the seaside to test it fully ;).

Creating a bag - lining and seams

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Judo bag and Dragon drawstring bag


Dragon bag and judo bag

Dragon bag and judo bag

The second of the draw string bags I’m making is finished this one is with thicker green fabric printed with welsh dragons.  I like this fabric and it doesn’t fray as easily as the stripy fabric I used for the first drawstring bag.  I have a strip of fabric left over from cutting this bag and have been thinking of what to make with it, I’m tending towards making a wallet from it.  The judo bag has now been finished and tested as well.  After I’d finished the bag I thought of a useful addition so I made a ribbon using the same fabric and sewed one end into the inside seam.   This allows rings to be tied to the bag so that they can’t fall out during judo training.  I’ve also finished tacking the shirt I’m making ready for another live fitting this evening.

Earth Day giveaway


Tansy beetle bag for giveaway

Tansy beetle bag for giveaway

I’ve taken the beetle fabric I printed yesterday and created an envelope bag which I’m giving away to celebrate Earth Day on the 22nd April. I’ll put the details about how to enter at the end of this post.

Yesterday I wrote about creating the fabric print that’s featured on the bag and I’d like to tell you a bit more about the beetle that inspired the design. I first saw the iridescent green beetle by the River Ouse a few years ago. I took a couple of photos but didn’t think much of the bug until some time later when I decided to find out what it was. That’s when I found out about the Tansy beetle. The beetle is endangered and extremely rare in the United Kingdom, and it’s shell is so shiny that people say the Victorians used it as sequins.

Tansy beetle

Tansy beetle

It is an endangered species and in decline due to environment changes that effect it’s ecosystem. It is so scarce that the only place in the UK it is known to survive is along some of the River Ouse centered on the stretch that runs by my home in York.

So, this weekend when I was walking by the river and saw a Tansy beetle shining green and gold I was very glad that these beetles were still hanging on. This tenacious Tansy inspired me to create the design as a celebration of its survival. I thought using some of my organic fair trade cotton to create a giveaway for Earth day would be cool and a reminder to everyone about the reaches of the environment just outside our doors as well as across the whole planet.

The bag that I’m giving away is made from organic fair trade cotton and is printed with water based ink. 27 cm by 20 cm. The material is called santeen unbleached and was undyed until I added the pattern. It’s fastened with velcro at the top and although the fabric is sturdy it is probably best not to put anything too heavy in it. The beetles are each individual arranged in a unique pattern and printed in green with a touch of gold. I like to use these sort of bags when I’m shopping to separate smaller items, such as cotton reels, within my bigger bag. It could also be used to store a notebooks, as a kindle sleeve, a clutch bag or to keep an ipad in (although I haven’t check the size as I don’t own one). It’s unique and individually hand made and printed by myself.

To enter comment on this post and include the words “Tansy beetle”. The giveaway ends at midnight (00:00 GMT) on the 26th of April 2011 so only posts before then will be entered. I’ll contact the winner by email so make sure the email address you fill in when you comment is accurate. Only one entry per person and the winner will be chosen randomly from everyone who enters.