Saturday, 18 February 2012

One More Brown Thing

This is the purse I'm carrying this month.  It belonged to my Aunt Rita and I absolutely love it just for how it is, but even more because she made it.  I remember when she started making purses and her fellow nurses couldn't buy them off her fast enough - most had fancy beaded trims and she found amazing fabrics to use.  I asked her why she didn't leave her  part time occasional work in neonatal ICU and make bags for money instead.  Her answer was that bags were fun to make; if she did it for money, it wouldn't be fun any more.  I could follow the logic, though it does fly in the face of some career advice these days.  On the whole, I think she was right; and she did love her work most of the time, though she retired soon after that conversation.

I've quite enjoyed making bags myself lately, and this one looks dead simple, as it is pretty much two squares stitched together on three sides.  There is an inside pocket on one side that closes with a small snap.  The bag itself also closes with a small snap.  I believe it is made from home decorating weight fabric. 

Good Heavens!  What a different natural light makes to a photo!

The finished bag measures 11" tall (including the 1 1/2 inch leopard trim, which looks to be a 3 inch strip folded in half) and 12" wide.  The seam where the trim has been added is covered by a 1/2 inch ribbon.  The finished straps (each one attached to its own side of the bag!) are sewn inside the bag and are 1" wide and 24" long, which makes a perfect  length for me to sling it over a shoulder.  It holds everything I need including a small notebook and my clunky camera.

So, with all those details, I'm sure you could sit down and make one just like it.  This is certainly enough detail for me and I'm sure there are a couple of colours in which I still down own a bag.  Another nice characteristic of this bag is that it lays flat and so a person could find room for a whole stack of them! 

Actually, there is even more brown in my plans.  Turns out that one cannot go from red hair to blonde in one step (without some kind of orange in between), so I've coloured my hair 'dark ash brown'.  Red hair is pretty stubborn, mind, as I can't tell much difference, but I had decided to work my way back to blonde for the summer.  If I don't like it, I can always go back to my weird red.

And funny enough, ilegirl recently discovered she looks great in brown...


Beryl said...

I can hardly wait to see you as a blonde! Although it already sounds as if you are having enough fun.
I love bags that other people make for me, but I've never actually made one myself. And I have sewn almost everything else in the clothing range. Maybe making Bags are a little too much like sewing Home Dec, which I avoid.

Anonymous said...

Blonde, huh? I went from dark reddish-blonde to light, light blonde, and it indeed seemed to take a couple of tries before the color turned out as intended. Every time I color I ask myself, Is it worth this hassle? And when I'm done, the answer is a resounding YES!

I dig the bag - lots of different shades to work with all sorts of browns. Plus, being made from fabric means it must be rather lighter-weight than leather and thus easier to carry for a long period of time.

Thanks for the shout-out. I'm still exploring the world of brown.

Shelley said...

Beryl, Gosh, I've been blonde for most of my life and the minute I retired I dyed my hair red...Not sure what that says, other than it was an experiment I long wanted to try, but didn't have the nerve to go to work with such a drastic change. I'm finding retirement rather a mixed bag at the moment. I don't really think hair colour determines happiness...but I wonder where that idea arose? Advertising, no doubt.

Ilegirl, I had white blonde hair as a child that gradually darkened. It was actually a light ash brown or dark blonde, but it always had tiny red highlights in the sun. Not an easy colour to imitate with dyes! I find colouring my hair a real hassle no matter what colour but having tried red and found the white skunk stripe annoying, I'm ready to go back to blonde and fight the dark? grey? roots for a change.

Shelley said...
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