Learning to Sew – Fabric

You’ve got your sewing machine and your basic tools.  What now?  It’s time to choose a fabric for a simple first project.  You will want to select something that appeals to you, of course.  But it also must be appropriate … Continue reading

Pattern Drafting – A New Vocabulary

I am an expert at home sewing.  I know the techniques, the tools, the jargon.  I’ve made tailored suits, coats, lined dresses, and many other detailed garments.  BUT I almost always started with a commercial pattern and step-by-step illustrated instructions.  I have made very little without a pattern, and those few items were relatively simple.  I suspect that this is the same for you.  So this new pattern drafting venture will require that we get familiar with some new terms introduced in Chapter One of our textbook, Pattern Making for Fashion Design by Helen Joseph-Armstrong.

Pattern Drafting is the term for what we are in the process of learning.  It is a system of creating patterns from measurements taken from a model or a dress form.  The first process is to create a Basic Pattern Set, which is a set of five fitted patterns that are created without design features.  The pieces in this set are then traced to create a Working Pattern, from which the designers (you and me) create patterns with added design features.  The process of developing designs from this basic pattern set to other working patterns, and then to final patterns for use in creating a test garment is called Flat Patternmaking.

The Basic Pattern Set consists of a bodice front, bodice back, long sleeve, skirt front, and skirt back.  After we learn how to take measurements correctly in Chapter Two, we will be creating our very own basic pattern set from these measurements in Chapter Three.  Once you have your basic pattern set, anything you create from them are your very own designs.  Even when you create something simple from them – like a gathered skirt – it is still an original design by you, the designer!  And we are going to do much more than that.

When working with flat patterns, we will need to know how to True seam lines, to transition smoothly from one angle to the next.  If you have ever made a garment using a multi-sized commercial pattern, and cut a different size pattern line for the waist and the hips, you have already done this blending of seam lines.

Dart lines and notches are some of the ways patternmakers mark working patterns.  Special instructions are also written on the pattern piece that mark the location of fabric features, such as stripes or plaids.

Balance refers to a perfect relationship between all the parts of the pattern.  To Balance a pattern, the designer makes adjustments to improve the fit and hang of the design.  Horizontal Balance Line (HBL) refers to any horizontal line on the dress form.  HBL lines help guide the balancing of patterns.  A Plumb Line is a vertical line that is at right angles with the floor.

Styleline Guides are created on a dress form by Pin Marking or Style Tape Marking, as I did on my dress form in the following photos.

Style lines marked with pins

Style lines marked with pins

Style lines marked with adhesive tape

Style lines marked with adhesive tape

There are also a few production terms that we need to be familiar with.  A First Pattern is the original pattern developed from the basic pattern set for a new design.  Improvements are made to the first pattern, unless a decision is made to drop that particular design.  After patterns are tested by cutting and assembling in muslin, the final and error-free pattern is made.  This is the Production Pattern.  Grader is then used to size the pattern.  Designers use a medium size for developing patterns, then grade up and down to form other sizes.  (This was interesting to learn; I always assumed pattern drafters used those six-foot size zero models that walk those runways…)

*Heads up Be looking for a medium sized female to act as your Fit Model.  And if you don’t have a dress form, you will need one with measurements close to, but not bigger than, your fit model.  Don’t waste your money on those cheap crank-out forms that the fabric stores sell.  Purchase a professional dress form, such as those available from Fabulous Fit.  These come with a padding kit, so that you can make your dress form conform to the actual measurements of your fit model.

Marker is developed from production patterns.  Markers are made by arranging all pattern pieces for the entire production line onto paper, or by computer.  Before this step, the independent designer or the company has already determined how many finished garments will be produced and in what sizes.  The number of layers of fabric that are spread for a marker play a role in this process as well.  Patterns are arranged on the marker paper, or by computer, to minimize waste of fabric.

Cutting patterns from a marker differs quite a bit from what we are used to in regular home sewing.  Fabric is spread in single layers, not folded with selvages together.  Each left and right of a design requires a separate pattern piece.  And when a production house cuts out the pattern, several layers are cut at once using special fabric cutters.

To see the process of spreading fabric for a marker, watch this YouTube video.  To see the process of cutting the fabric from the marker, watch this YouTube video.

This chapter includes information about fabric qualities.  I am assuming that if you are following along with me, you are already a rather advanced sewer, and you know fabric.  If this is not the case,  please refer to my posts on Beginning to Sew topics.

Chapter One concludes with a discussion on cost sheets, pattern charts, and design spec sheets.  All of these are extremely important if you decide to go into production one day.  If that is your goal, please buy this textbook. Or go to design school.  Or both.  For our purposes, we will move on to something that directly involves pattern drafting.  In our next lesson or two, we will learn how to accurately measure our fit model and our dress form.

Learning to Sew – The Essential Tools

These are the tools we keep at every sewing machine for our students here at Golden Needles Studio.

These are the tools we keep at every sewing machine for our students here at Golden Needles Studio.

Here at Golden Needles Studio, we have a few items we consider essential for our sewing students.  In a plastic bin at each sewing station are the nine items shown here.

1)  Tape Measure, for taking body measurements, and for checking the grainline placement of patterns on fabric; 2)  Glass-head Pins and Magnetic Holder.  We like glass-head pins because they will not melt when using a steam iron to press things that are pinned;  3)  Fray Check for sealing the ends of serged seams, and several other handy applications;  4) Glue Stick for holding buttons and other things in place for sewing;  5) Fabric Shears, for cutting fabric only;  6) Small Scissors to use for clipping threads and other small jobs at the sewing machine;  7) Hem Gauge, or seam gauge, to accurately measure seam allowances and hems;  8) Seam Ripper, which is an unfortunate name.  It should be called a “seam picker,” because that is what you actually do with it.  If you use this tool to quickly rip a seam open, you are very likely to rip fabric and ruin your project.  Pick the threads of the seam out with this tool, no matter what you call it;  9) Chop Stick, which is just a handy little tool to have around.  We use them for gently turning out corners of pillows, and for holding things in place for pressing to keep fingers away from steam.

These tools are kept on a supply shelf for our students.

These tools are kept on a supply shelf for our students.

Some tools are not used quite as often, and are kept on a supply shelf here in the studio.  Shown above are:

1) Tracing Paper and Tracing Wheel, which are used to mark placement lines on the wrong side of fabric;  2) Marking Pens and Pencils, for placement markings that fall within the seam allowance.  Some disappear with time, and some require water for removal.  Marks from chalk pencils easily brush off;  3) Paper-cutting Scissors, for cutting out patterns.  We mark ours with a “P,” to keep them far away from the fabric shears;  4)  Large Safety Pin, for inserting elastic into a waist casing;  5) Loop Turner, for turning straps right side out.  The few times we’ve heard colorful language in class was mostly during this lesson.  Still, once you get the hang of it, it’s a handy tool.

If you are just beginning to learn how to sew, you will really need these essential tools.  There are many, many other tools that you will want to add as you need them, but these will get you a long way down the road of learning all the basics.  When shopping for sewing tools, keep your eye out for sales.  The fabric stores call these items “notions,”  which is not really correct.  A notion is anything that you actually sew into a project, like thread and zippers and buttons.  These are sewing TOOLS.  But if they are going to give you 40% off, that’s no time to argue semantics!  You can also use store coupons when you need a pricey tool that is not on sale.

Another nice addition to your sewing room (or corner) is a book such as the one shown below.  This one is easy to use, and has lots of photos and illustrations.  Of course you can google anything, but I still like to have a reference guide close by.  Old school, I know.

So, start gathering your tools!  Next time, we will talk about fabric qualities and why that matters.

A handy sewing reference guide is handy for looking of sewing terms and procedures.

A sewing reference guide is handy for looking of sewing terms and procedures.

Pattern Drafting – A New Journey

I’ve had the textbook for a year or so:  Patternmaking for Fashion Design by Helen Joseph-Armstrong.  It’s time to get serious about learning pattern drafting.  This is the necessary first step in creating my own designs.  Plus, I hear that learning new things keeps the brain sharp, and that’s always a good thing.  Forget Lumosity…let’s learn to create patterns and design us some gorgeous clothing!


So today, we start with Chapter One: Patternmaking Essentials for the Workroom.  I had many of these tools already, like pins and holder (mine is a magnet), paper and fabric scissors, assorted pens and pencils, a French curve ruler, weights, and tape measure.  I had to buy more rulers, a notcher, an awl, and a handy-looking tool called a Simflex folding measure.  I also – just now – ordered marking paper, used to develop first patterns from model measurements.  I will use it to learn to create a basic pattern set.

This handy tool helps to space buttonhole markings correctly.

This handy tool helps to space buttonhole markings correctly.

Weights are used in place of pins, for a quick way to cut patterns from fabric.  Pictured here are 2" washers, available from hardware stores, and Wiggle Weights that I bought at Atlanta's Original Sewing and Quilting Expo last March.

Weights are used in place of pins, for a quick way to cut patterns from fabric. Pictured here are 2″ washers, available from hardware stores, and Wiggle Weights that I bought at Atlanta’s Original Sewing and Quilting Expo last March.

Tools pictured here are marking chalk and holders, used to mark fabric; an awl for punching holes in pattern paper to mark things such as the point of darts; and a notcher, used to notch pattern paper at strategic places.

Tools pictured here are marking chalk and holders, used to mark fabric; an awl for punching holes in pattern paper to mark things such as the point of darts; and a notcher, used to notch pattern paper at strategic places.

The French curve and other rulers are used to shape patterns at the armholes, hips, and other areas.  Not pictured are the vary form curve and the hip curve,both of which I have on order.

The French curve and other rulers are used to shape patterns at the armholes, hips, and other areas. Not pictured are the vary form curve and the hip curve, both of which I have on order.

Most sewers will already have these items on hand: pins and holder, paper and fabric scissors, and a variety of marking pens and pencils.  The pens and pencils pictured here are for making patterns, not fabric.

Most sewers will already have these items on hand: pins and holder, paper and fabric scissors, tracing wheel, and a variety of marking pens and pencils. The pens and pencils pictured here are for marking patterns, not fabric.

Also listed as items needed in this chapter are push pins, stapler and staples, and black twill tape which is used on the dress form to mark style lines.  The one thing listed that I am not going to purchase are hanger hooks or ringers.  These are used to organize and hang patterns; I am not going into production anytime soon, so I don’t think I need this.  I will use, instead, skirt hangers with metal clips to organize my patterns while working my way through this textbook.

So, gather the tools you need, and maybe this textbook, and let’s learn this process together!

Next time, we will discuss some patternmaking terms from the second half of Chapter One.

Learning to Sew – The Sewing Machine

Today, we begin a new series of posts designed to help all of you who would like to learn to sew, or who have already begun taking small steps in that direction.  We will start with something very basic:  the sewing machine.

Maybe you are fortunate, and you have been given a sewing machine that someone no longer uses.  That’s wonderful!  Be sure to get the attachments and the operating manual.  And get the previous owner to show you how to thread it, make a bobbin, and make a stitch.

But if you need to purchase a sewing machine, you may feel a little overwhelmed when researching the variety of new machines available to the home sewer today.  And you may wonder if you will have to take out a second mortgage in order to buy a good sewing machine.  You can find new machines priced from $50 to $12,000!  The good news is that you can buy a good basic machine for not much money.

So here is our recommendation: the Brother LS-590.  Hancock Fabrics sells this nice little workhorse for $100, or a little less if you catch it on sale.  It’s a basic sewing machine with several built-in stitches, most of which you will never use.  But you will use the straight stitch, the zig zag stitch, the buttonhole setting, and a few others.


This is the machine that our students use in our Beginning Sewing classes here at Golden Needles Studio.  We have used seven of these for over a year now, and given them quite a workout. These little beauties will sew a variety of fabric weights without any problem.  Spend about a hundred bucks, and learn to sew.  You can always upgrade to something with more bells and whistles down the road, after you know what kind of bells and whistles you want.

Back when we were setting up our classroom, we we were prepared to spend between $300 and $400 each on basic sewing machines for our studio.  That was when I ran into a friend of mine who spends a good bit of her time teaching Haitian orphans to sew in open-weather tropical conditions; when I asked her to recommend a good sewing machine for our studio, this was it.  The Brother LS-590 is what she uses in Haiti.  That sold us, and saved us a lot of money.

The size of this sewing machine is about as small as you would want to go.  I’ve seen some smaller machines at Hancock’s.  Singer was one of the brands, I think, and they were a little less expensive.  But I would not trust a smaller machine to do the work that this one will do.

Brother has a few other models that look like they are almost the same as this one: XL-36001, XL-2610, XL-3750, and XL-2600i are all similar models in the same price range.  I feel quite certain any of these would be perfect for the beginner.

Below, see a short instructional video, explaining a few of the features of the Brother LS-590, which would also apply to other machines.  The video also shows how to thread the machine and how to make a bobbin.

So take the plunge.  Buy yourself a sewing machine.  Then meet us back here next time when we will talk about the basic tools you need for sewing.

Great Sewing Classes

We have almost finished our latest set of Beginning Sewing classes at Golden Needles Studios!  We added an afternoon class just for this session, so Karen and I have been very busy on Tuesdays, with three class periods.  We have met some new ladies, and we have had the honor to teach some ladies we already knew from church or family.  Students have made aprons, pillow cases, zippered throw pillows, and are finishing their pajama pants.  Here are a few wonderful examples:

Robin did a great job with her apron!

Robin did a great job with her apron!

Mae's apron.  The ribbon on the pocket was her design!

Mae’s apron. The ribbon on the pocket was her design!

Debbie modeling her pretty striped apron

Debbie modeling her pretty striped apron

Kathleen and Elise, ready for the kitchen!

Kathleen and Elise, ready for the kitchen!

Kristi and her pretty zippered throw pillow

Kristi and her pretty pillow.  Students learned to install a zipper in this project.

Heather's plaid zippered throw pillow

Heather’s plaid zippered throw pillow

Teresa shows her pretty pillow.  The students learned to put a zipper in with this project.

Teresa shows her pretty pillow.

The Sewing Expo…and after

The Expo is always busy and exciting!

The Expo is always busy and exciting!

This year’s annual Sewing Expo has wrapped up, and I’ve been back home for nearly two weeks, working on ideas that I took away from that awesome few days.  I meant to blog each evening while I was in Atlanta, but that didn’t happen.  My phone crashed, and though I did take a couple of pictures that day with my iPad, I found it hard to use without laughing.  There was just something funny about holding up my iPad like a camera.  And the internet connection was frustratingly slow.  Then once I got home, I was too busy sewing to type.  But this morning seems a good time to sit and do a little reflection.

Karen joined me Thursday evening, and the first thing we did was find an Apple store to get some help with my phone.  The store was located in the Mall of Georgia, which was about ten minutes north of us.  We were starving for supper, so we took the shortest tour of that iconic mall in the history of shopping. Phone was fixed, but that didn’t solve the problem of slow internet.  So we watched American Idol and Shark Tank rather than blog in the evenings.  They didn’t get the channel with Project Runway.  Probably didn’t have room with all of the ESPN channels; I think I counted fourteen.

Karen and I took several classes that were informative and interesting.  After spending all day with Cynthia Guffy the day before the Expo began (see previous post), I still signed up for a couple of other short classes with her.  My favorite was the one on shirt construction.  I love to make men’s shirts.  But that flat-felled seam finish in the arm and side seams just kill me every time I try to get it just right.  And if you don’t get it just right, it looks very homemade. For some reason, men don’t like that.  I’ve even tried to research industrial techniques and special machines for those seams, but I have not been able to figure out how they do it.  When Cynthia passed around her shirt, I saw beautiful flat-felled seams.  My hand went up.  “How do you do your flat-felled seams?”  Cynthia’s dry humor is a given.  “I’ll tell you.  First thing you do, you take out your flat-felled foot attachment.  Then you throw it away.”  Well, there’s my first mistake.  I really wanted that thing to work!  Cynthia’s beautiful seams, as it turns out, are finished haute couture style, with an invisible hand stitch.  Darn.  I was really hoping for something fast and easy.  I should have known better.  This is Cynthia Guffy, crowned Queen of Sewing Perfection.

Cynthia Guffy teaching her style of shirt construction

Cynthia Guffy teaching her style of shirt construction

I also took a couple of classes from Louise Cutting.  I recently used one of her patterns that I had purchased at last year’s expo, and I really loved it.  Her directions are clear and concise, and her Helpful Hints are really useful.  She uses lots of Steam-A-Seam strips in her construction techniques.  I had never used it, but really found it helpful for pocket placement and other applications. I’ve used it since then with other projects.

Louise Cutting teaching handy "insider secrets"

Louise Cutting teaching handy “insider secrets”

I met a new pattern designer this year named Linda Lee.  She is the founder the The Sewing Workshop which offers a unique collection of patterns.  I bought a couple of them, and can’t wait to try them out.  My introduction to Linda’s work came in a class she offered which featured a pattern called Ann’s Cardigan and Tank.  She presented us with a myriad of options that showed the versatility of this pattern.  I have lots of ideas floating around in my head for this one!

The class I probably should have stayed away from was one called “Notions Commotion.”  I know.  The class names are planned for capturing the hearts of sewing nerds, and it works.  This particular class was one that presented notions and tools from all of the expo vendor booths.  I took all kinds of notes, and then proceeded to go shopping as soon as class dismissed.  I looked like a flittering magpie gathering shiny things.  I bought some funny-looking items that I have already forgotten how to use.  But that’s what Google and You Tube are for.

I bought fabric at three different booths.  Vogue Fabrics always brings in lots of fabric, notions, and trims to choose from.  They had a lot less to load back on the truck, thanks in large part to me.  Karen helped a little.  We also both bought some shirting fabrics from The Wool House.  This place usually gets me in trouble, but this year I was pretty disciplined.  And in Louise Cutting’s booth, I bought about half of the fabric she had hanging in the “end bolts” section, which were priced so well they were calling my name.  And my credit card.

Vogue Fabrics always brings an abundance of fabric, notions, and trims

Vogue Fabrics always brings an abundance of fabric, notions, and trims

From a fellow classmate in one of my classes, I found out about Spoonflower, a company that will print original designs on fabric.  And they don’t require you to buy a tractor trailer load of the fabric.  You can buy any amount.  They offer cotton or organic cotton in several weights and weaves, silk, and a silk/cotton blend.  You can also buy the creations of other fabric designers on their website. My daughter Shelley is the resident artist around here, and she has promised to show me how to use those scary Adobe software programs so I can produce original fabric.  Or maybe I’ll just let her design fabric for me to use.  Either way, we are doing this!

I came away with so many ideas that I have decided to reopen my Etsy store to offer sewing kits that include some wonderful two-sided woven cotton and original patterns for creating skirts and dresses for little girls.  I have the samples done, and am working on the patterns and instructions.  I will also be offering some original skirts for young women in really cute fabric.  Much to do, so I’m heading back to the sewing studio.  But stay tuned!

2013 Atlanta Original Sewing and Quilting Expo

Image 6Tomorrow is the start of the 2013 Original Sewing and Quilting Expo, and I can’t wait!  In fact, I got a jumpstart by signing up for Cynthia Guffy’s skirt-fitting class that was held today, and it was so much fun!  If you have never taken a class with Cynthia, you owe it to yourself.  If she is ever in your area, don’t miss her.  Her energy and anecdotes are a bonus to her hands-on and informative classes.  Cynthia is a designer and independent pattern maker whose exquisite design details are immensely inspiring.  Every time I have seen her, she is wearing something she made, and the fit and design is classy, innovative, and inspiring.  I can’t wait to get home and make my skirt!

Today’s class was so much fun.  Not only did I come away with a well-fitting master skirt pattern, but I was also able to watch her fit a variety of body types, solving all kinds of issues.  Since Karen and I want to offer garment fitting courses in our studio at some time in the future, this was absolutely perfect.  I took lots of notes!

On top of everything else, my fitting partner was Carla Powell from Roswell, and I was so excited to learn that she is also a sewing instructor!  Carla offers classes at her studio called Stitch Pretty.   She offers a variety of classes that sound very interesting, so if you live in the Atlanta area and want to take some quality classes, look her up at stitchpretty.com.

I’m going to bed early, so I’ll be ready when the doors open in the morning.  I’ll be posting pictures and stories from each day, so stay tuned!Image 1IMG_2064

This Cynthia Guffy design features contrasting piping or Guffy seams down one side.   This vertical line elongates the body in a flattering way.

This Cynthia Guffy design features contrasting piping or Guffy seams down one side. This vertical line elongates the body in a flattering way.

A close-up of Cynthia's zipper application, which is beautifully hand-stitched

A close-up of Cynthia’s zipper application, which is beautifully hand-stitched

Another of Cynthia's beautiful skirt designs

Another of Cynthia’s beautiful skirt designs


This Cynthia Guffy design features a front insert cut on the bias which gives the skirt an A-line.

This Cynthia Guffy design features a front insert cut on the bias which gives the skirt an A-line.

Tiny Treasures

I tend to save things.  Special things, anyway.  I’m not a hoarder, by any stretch.  In fact, I am often accused of selling one too many things in a garage sale when my hubby can’t find something in his shop.  I’m not admitting guilt when it comes to his misplaced items.  But it is true that I don’t like clutter.  It jumbles my brain to have random stuff stacked around doing nothing, and the last thing I need is a cluttered head.  I have a hard enough time keeping my “thought files” in any kind of order as it is.

But there is a world of difference, in my estimation, between old clutter and treasures of the past.  I have a few boxes of things saved from my children’s growing-up years.  And I have a handful of things from my own childhood.  I wish I had a few more.

My daughter was rambling through a box from my sewing room storage the other day.  She left a couple of things out in the floor, and when I went to my sewing room to work on a project, I saw my old plastic Barbie box.  Inside were some tiny treasures.

My mama just celebrated her 75th birthday this month.  She doesn’t sew much anymore, but I remember watching her use her Kenmore sewing machine to make Karen and me school dresses when we were little.  We don’t have any of those saved from childhood, but I do have a few tiny Barbie outfits that she sewed from scraps of our dresses.


Inside the box was a teeny tiny swing coat made from a thread-patterned pink cotton.  I don’t know how she managed to make them, but there are two miniature buttonholes!  I also found two gathered skirts with a waistband and snap enclosures.  And there was a dress with a fitted bodice and round skirt made from a floral cotton.  I think the coat was for one of our Barbie dolls.  The dress was for my Skipper doll, which was (if memory serves) Barbie’s little sis.  The two skirts fit both of them, I think.


I’m fairly certain she had a pattern for the coat and dress, but the skirts she made by just measuring the waist of the doll.

I have a memory of sewing pieces of fabric together with a needle and thread, sitting in the floor while she sat at her machine.  I was intrigued with the process, as I watched my mom produce dresses and skirts and coats for me, my sister, and our dolls.  She tells me now that she didn’t necessarily love sewing back then, but it was a way to save money.  Buying fabric was a lot less expensive than buying ready-made clothes.


I have some other Barbie clothes that I saved that were store-bought.  They are also pieces of my childhood, and I’m glad to have them.  But there is really no comparison to those manufactured clothing items, and the ones my mama made.  Not only are they made with more love, but they are made with more care for details and with better-quality fabrics.  The bought ones cost more, but are not nearly as well-made.

Today, I sew because I love to sew.  I don’t do it to save money.  Frankly, with stores like T J Max and other discount stores, you can buy clothes cheaper than you can make them. Or at least as cheap.

But once you learn to fit a pattern to your body, you can sew clothes that fit better than those hanging in the stores, and you can make something no one else has.  It’s a matter of artistic expression for me.

Looking at these tiny treasures, I’d say it was artistic expression for my mom as well, even though her reasons for sewing were more utilitarian than mine and Karen’s reasons are today.

And let me say that if my sister and I were not good at remembering to say thank you then for the time and effort that went into her sewing, I’m saying it now:

Thank you, Mama.  From your daughters who love you.

A Gallery of Sewing 101 Class Projects

Beth's Apron, Sewing 101 Project

Beth Tolliver’s Apron, one of our Sewing 101 Projects

Terri's Sewing 101 Pillow Shams
Terri Bowen’s Pillow Shams, another of the projects made in our Sewing 101 course

Terri's Pillow Sham

A close-up of Terri’s Pillow Sham; the pillow shams were made in class, then Terri added the monogram at home

Zippered Throw Pillow

This Zippered Throw Pillow is also a Sewing 101 project; the back zipper allows for a pillow insert.

Another example of the Zippered Throw Pillow

Another example of the Zippered Throw Pillow

We are about to start our third set of Learn To Sew courses, so it’s about time that I posted some pictures from the last session.  We had great students and a wonderful time!

I am really looking forward to getting back into the swing of things after the holidays.  All of the Christmas decorations have been stored once again, and the studio has been set back up, ready for Tuesday’s start!

If you live in the middle Georgia area, we would love to have you join us for a class!

One of our Sewing 102 Projects is a tote bag, and this is a beautiful example made by one of our students

One of our Sewing 102 Projects is a tote bag, and this is a beautiful example made by one of our students

Here is another student-made tote bag!

Here is another student-made tote bag!