• Various/Onna Carr

A Month of Bags

Updated: Oct 28, 2019

Post by Onna Carr

This month, I made up three bags as craft projects. I knitted and felted my first purse out of a Brown Sheep Lana Loft yarn and a purple, pigtail yarn. This bag was a lengthy project, requiring a reduction in needle size from 10 1/2 size needles to size 5 size needles in order to get gauge and necessitating a decrease in size by 1/2 in height unless I wanted a body-bag rather than a handbag, which I did not. I thought about writing a "Dear Designer" letter as the knitting humorist, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee speaks of, but decided against it--they are probably plagued by such missives and do not need another.

After finishing and felting my knitted bag, I finished up a hand-quilted, reversible purse/book-bag with flap and hand-beaded trim. This bag was made from two cotton, rose prints and lined with a layer of sturdy interfacing that rested between the fabrics and was hand-quilted into place with antique knit cro-sheen. The handle was also lined with interfacing to create a sturdier and more long-lasting purse.

After finishing my second purse, I decided I was on a roll and made a crazy-quilt book-bag. This bag was made from cotton scraps machine-sewn together in every direction, cut out into two rectangles and then hand-quilted together in floral designs that matched the printed fabrics' existing patterns or was shaped like foliage out of a Star Trek episode (seriously). I then hand-seamed the edges and then hand-sewed the seams together. After finishing the seaming, I added a handle made up of four layers of cotton and attached with a double-hand-stitched, seam. I used knit cro-sheen for the thread for this project and a small-sized darning needle.

Today I finished the last of this trio of purses, which I complete in the evenings, when watching a movie or listening to an audio at home, or when listening to a Shaw Academy course. I find hand projects improve my focus and are calming. I have many purse patterns, but I still find improvising to be fun and more creative--giving me more crafty freedom!

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