The first thing I ever ‘sewed’ was a bag. It was to a shockingly poor standard, I even used glue for some parts because I really didn’t know what I was doing. It was the first time I had used a sewing machine, and even sewing in a straight line was problematic.
But that didn’t put me off, I went on to make several more bags. Each one just a tiny bit better than the first. I made everything up as I went along, not knowing that patterns and kits for bag making even existed. So it’s hardly surprising that my bags continued to look handmade, messy and amateur. I enrolled myself into a sewing class where I learnt to use a sewing machine and read a pattern. I made a few simple garments and forgot all about bag making until now.
So, here I am again nearly 20 years on and I’ve just made a bag (three actually). But this time the bag is neat, well made and professional. And what’s more it’s fully lined (no exposed seams) and includes zip pockets. A far cry from my initial bag making attempts. What I’m particularly proud of is that this bag is close to but even better than a bag that I was trying to make all those years ago. The difference this time is that I have some sewing knowledge under my belt and a professional (my partner at Madeit Patterns) by my side. Now the bag has a name, SLING due to the triangle shape of the strap which resembles an arm sling and how you freely and casually wear the bag by slinging it on over your shoulder. And it is also a fully developed pattern and tutorial professionally and perfectly made by Madeit Patterns.
I made the largest size, SLING MAXI for myself from a navy blue polished cotton. I love how it becomes an integrated part of my whole outfit when wearing my navy dress.
What I find annoying about some of my other bags is not being able to find my keys or my phone when I need them. Well, with SLING, that’s covered. There is a hidden pocket behind the strap so you can quickly and easily reach your phone and a keep loop on the inside so you can find your keys instantly.
For my 9 year old I made SLING MIDI as a school bag. I used denim and covered the strap in randomly placed iron-on patches (very on-tend). Although she sometimes has to carry quite a few books, the weight is evenly distributed so it’s comfortable for her to wear. But the best bit is it’s hands free so she can carry her SLING bag and eat ice cream and I don’t end up having to carry her bag for her.
Lastly, I made the samllest size, SLING MINI for my 5 year old. Dark denim with a pink zip and pink floral lining. It’s perfect for scootering around and taking her toys and treasures with her.
We all love our new SLING bags, making them is very satisfying and I can see this bag making thing getting really rather addictive.