Saturday, July 23, 2016


Botanical print tote

A new tote bag! No, I am not that fast. Yet. This was in progress, along with a few others, for a while. I am just in a finishing jag :).

This tote has a pocket-panel of a botanical print done by a local friend. I have a stack of fabrics from her, and will be using more of them as pockets like this. They are so beautiful!

I totally love this bag. It has the requisite open pocket in front, zippered pocket on the back, the handles are "just the right length for me"(tm), the leather feels good, is a good weight, even with the lining, and the stitching is good! Not perfect mind you, but "man on a running horse" good enough.

Leather takes time outs, for glue to dry, for hardware to arrive, for lining to set, whatever. So I have several projects going at a time. Which is annoying because as I learn things, I may have already passed that part of another bag, and yet? I still need to finish it. Move on. I am going back to repair, replace do-over on some of the earlier bags, but some are just...learning experiences.

But this one? Totally fine :).

Friday, July 01, 2016

Maiden Voyage

So the newest leather bag went on a trip:

Travel bag

Apparently I have a standard for "what makes a good bag". I'm guessing we all do, but here's mine: open pocket in the front (may have a magnetic closure). Zipped pocket along the back, zipped top, open pocket inside (and now I will add also a zipped pocket inside...ahem), adjustable strap, and zippers all opening the correct way for a right hander to be carrying the bag on her right shoulder (i.e. from the front, to the back, in that orientation).

This bag met all the requirements except two: I wanted another zipped pocket inside for essentials but not essentials that need quick access. Also: the very last piece sewn in was sewn in backwards... ::sigh:: ... so that the zip opens the wrong way. It opens the way a person who carries their bag on their left should would want.

In my defence? It was one of those pieces that is sewn on inside out and backwards, then turned, and, much to my chagrin, I apparently messed up on the visualization of how this would all work right side out. Darn! So, I carried it on my left side. Huh. A little odd, but doable. Easy fix!

But :)! It's a comfortable size, not too heavy, much more was learned about stitching and construction and leather and and and. I have a fully lined handstitched bag about 11" x 13" with a front pocket big enough to hold a book, my phone and glasses, an outside zip pocket for my boarding pass and ID, and a center section capacious enough for tablet, headphones, and other travel essentials.

And! I like it! The pile on the pocket is Gila National Monument (to me, not literally), so it's also a memento of a trip to the Southwest. Go Me!

What trip did I take? A short jaunt to see some munchkins:


So we played and swam and climbed and slid!



Sometimes, playing in the dirt is just the best thing. Therapy for child and Grandma both :).