So, after printing an old photo of my mother on some gesso-primed canvas using my inkjet printer, I dug through our stash of scrap fabric (acquired through freecycle -- an amazing resource of free stuff! -- from a lady who makes custom dog collars) and came up with this collection of squares, cut as per the instructions in the book. (You'll notice that I didn't think ahead in planning the size of my printed photo. I could have redone it easily enough -- if my printer had been co-operative! But it was refusing to communicate with my computer effectively, so I stuck with what I had. A little extra white space never hurt anyone.)
For the back of the bag, I chose a piece that had once been a curtain or something and already had beads attached to it. That turned out to make the project a bit more challenging, but I like the danglies:) I ended up modifying the pattern a bit because I realized that if I followed the instructions exactly, my bag would be too small for my book!
As you can see, in spite of lines drawn to facilitate perfectly lined up squares, none of my corners matched. I am so not a sewer! I considered ripping out the seams and starting again, but decided I didn't need to have a perfect bag. It has more character this way, right?
Ya -- so don't examine the lines too carefully! ;)
This is the fabric I used for the handles. It happened to be the perfectly sized and shaped piece of fabric for the job! This was my first time ever using -- oh, what's it called -- my brain is failing me -- that white backing stuff you iron on to make the fabric stiff. Is it called interfacing?!?!? Anyway -- that stuff is really cool!
It was shortly after this point (below) -- when I actually started sewing the lining to the bag -- that I began to question my sanity for even beginning the project! I broke a needle on the sewing machine, and for some reason the machine kept coming unthreaded before and after that happened. I ended up going to bed with only about 3 more inches left to sew, thinking that might just be the end of it. However, I rose before the children and tried one more time -- and I was done in a flash! It's amazing what a little sleep can do to make the world look better!
Next was the most exciting part -- the "birthing" of the bag! I've never made a lined anything before, so I wasn't convinced I'd done things right. But I'd made a quilt before -- so I had hope . . .
Sweet! It worked! It was at this point, when I put the lining into the bag where it belonged, that I really learned how an iron is a sewer's best friend! I was worried there for a while because my seams on the inside were making everything ugly!
But here is the finished product, of which I'm really rather proud :)
And here's the back. The little pocket was my own addition -- I wanted a place for my little Joy notebook.
And here are the journal and tote together:
BTW -- in case you're wondering, I really HAVE been using my journal :) I even wrote a poem yesterday. As I told my daughter (who was lamenting that a song she wrote wasn't very good), I know it isn't brilliant poetry -- but it felt really good to write it. Sometimes the process is more important than the product.
These are the other little treasures that are tucked (or rather stuffed) into my little tote (making me wish it were a tad bigger). Just a bit of inspiration . . .
So there it is -- another project completed! It sure had its ups and downs -- but I'm really pleased that I stuck with it and finished it.
Are there any creative endeavours that you started and were glad you finished? Are there any you started and wish you'd finished? Why not pick one up again and follow it through to completion. I'll bet you'll feel good about exercising your creativity :)
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