I have entered the “bag” phase of my maker existence. I decided to try to make a bag styled like the classic LL Bean Boat and Tote. We were gifted a pair of them as a wedding gift, and have been using them hard and constantly for almost 2 decades. And they still have much life left in them.
The LL Bean totes are made with 24 oz cotton duck. I already had some 15 oz, so I used that for my first bag prototype. I also used some 8.8 oz navy cotton duck for the bottom and straps. Duck cloth is supposed to shrink anywhere from 5-10%. So, I’ll have to see how my design holds up over time.
The finished dimensions of this bag are 17″ W x 14.5″ H x 7″ D, which is pretty close to the Large-sized LL Bean Boat and Tote. The ones we already own are the Medium and X-Large sizes, so this will be a nice addition.
If you’re interested in trying to make one yourself, here are my notes:
I used V-92 polyester thread, and a #18 needle. My Sailrite LSZ-1 cuts through all those layers like butter.
I may try making one with Sunbrella material for the bottom and handles, instead of the 8.8 oz duck cloth, as I see that marine Sunbrella is 9 oz, so fairly close. Though Sunbrella is much more pricey than duckcloth…
Next challenge: making bags out of a used mainsail that friends gifted me. Stay tuned.
I found a poster on-line featuring scratch-off tiles for each of the 62 U.S. National Parks. When you’ve visited one of the parks, you scratch off the gray-tone image for it to reveal a more colorful image beneath. After framing the poster, I counted the parks I’ve already visited and was surprised that I have logged 10 already – without even trying! I don’t really have a bucket list, but I certainly would love to see more of these national parks, especially those throughout the western part of the country. Road trip!?
I bought it here, if you want to check it out for yourself. Thanks to Monte for the handsome frame. 🙂
Monte asked me to make him a mask, since the ones he’s been using are either too small or uncomfortable. So I finally knocked out my first homemade COVID mask, custom made to his specifications. 🙂
I then asked him to make me a frame for a piece of art that our niece, Laura, drew and sent to me. He knocked it out, custom made to my specifications. 🙂 I just LOVE this drawing. Laura requested people to send her photos of their quarantine workspaces, which she then drew in watercolors. I sent her a picture of my craft space in my office, which is where I sat to make Monte’s mask.
Monte and I have enjoyed joining his sister’s family zoom sessions. Her adult kids and young grandkids live in 3 different cities. They all join. We join when we can. It’s special.
Last week my great-niece, Adelle, showed everyone one her latest project, making bracelets out of colorful rubber bands. We all asked for one of our own, and little Adelle delivered! They arrived in the mail today. I picked Seahawks colors, and I absolutely love it!
I celebrated my friend, Ann, and her well-earned retirement today. She spent a rewarding career as a school-teacher; and a damn good one. I am happy for her to explore the next decades doing whatever her heart desires.
A month ago, I posted about a paint-by-number that I decided to begin to help me waste time while sheltering-in-place. The pre-printed canvas is 16″x20″. This will take a LONG time. But, I’ve been slowly making progress, doing a little at a time. The guidance is to start with the darkest color and work your way, color by color, to the lightest.
I finally finished the darkest, background color. Minor victory. So I celebrate!
I ordered a paint-by-number kit a month ago to help me pass the time in self-imposed quarantine. It took a while but arrived today. Perhaps I should have picked something smaller… No matter, I will start tonight and take my time. Wish me luck! 🙂
During winter, the low, rising sun shoots a blinding ray of morning light through the east-facing windows on the house. An illuminating spotlight passes through the house quickly. I caught this moment as I was walking through the living room this morning. I could almost see the light move slowly across the wall as I stopped to take the picture.
I made a side trip while downtown. The Hope Outdoor Gallery has officially moved from their old location near 11th and Lamar. But some of the graffiti-covered walls remain. I took a few pics through the chain link fence that surrounds it.
Noreen and I did some shopping yesterday, then headed to the University of Texas campus. We went up in the UT Tower on a tour. Monte and I have done this once before but it was a dark and rainy day, so I was looking forward to getting a better view.
As a part of the tour, you can go outside and walk around all 4 sides of the top of the tower.
My town, looking south from the UT Tower:
The UT Tower, viewed from the Turtle Pond just north of the Tower:
The news today of the fire and destruction of Notre Dame in Paris made my heart sink. What a terrible loss. Many, many millions of people feel a connection to the 8 centuries old gothic cathedral. As I post this, Notre Dame is still burning, its roof and spire have fallen. I can’t imagine much more of a charred shell will remain. I pray that noone was injured or killed.
I was 16 on my first visit. I was immediately awed by the beautiful arches, stained glass windows, towers, transept, arches, and side chapels. I have enjoyed more visits since then, every time I passed through Paris. These pictures were from my last visit, 4 years ago…
How does one connect with a place? It must be the intertwining of a place’s beauty, its history, and cultural significance with one’s own imprinted memories. I’ve only visited as a tourist; lit a candle, sat in the pews, listened to mass being said, walked all around it, toured the towers. I cannot imagine what Parisians who have lived with it every day of their lives must be feeling today.
One of my favorite novels, Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth, tells the fictional life story of Tom Builder, a man who built cathedrals in England & France in the 12th century, as Romanesque architecture evolved into Gothic. Notre Dame was a masterpiece. Its flying butressess allowing the ribs, pillars, arches and roof to be taller, and more open inside, leaving room for its legendary stained glass windows. I don’t know how or if it will be possible to restore or repair it. But, it will never be the same. Something has truly been lost for the ages.