So a few weeks ago, I shared that I was really keen on creating a new pilgrim bag so that I didn't always need to carry around my light-colored canvas bag. I purchased a beautiful deep red wool, and I poked around in the scrap stash and found a brown linen for the interior (that there was just enough of). I will also be making tassels for the bag, and I believe I will use a light cream-colored wool yarn for those.
Here's a zoomed in shot on two bags from the illumination:
When I'm working on projects, especially these types of things that can go together a few different ways, I do a lot of sketches. I'm a visual person, so it's easier for me to wrap my brain around how a project can go down if I can see it. I draw it out as I think it through, and make notes. Here are the four separate sketches I made of this bag. The last is in the bottom right:
I gained a better understanding of the specifics as I continued to draw it out, and I changed my mind several times. This is only half the process, mind you, since the other half is a combination of mentally "building" the bag and thinking through the steps I can take, and looking around for inspiration. Here are some bags I found through the inspiration process:
- Aldriona's Pilgrim Bag
- Sarah W.'s Medieval Pilgrims Satchel
- A bag created by Katafalk
- Andrea's Pilgrim Bag
- Wool Pilgrims Bag from Matuls
For this bag, I had a couple more goals in addition to somewhat matching my inspiration. First, I want the bag to be smaller than my canvas bag. That bag was made specifically to allow me to carry an embroidery scroll frame, but I've only ever actually done that once. So the bag is really just a little too large otherwise and I end up carrying around a lot of stuff. This was a problem at Pennsic when I felt like I was carrying a quarter of my encampment around with me. So this bag should be smaller. The other thing was that I wanted to achieve a certain rounded shape. I didn't want the corners to be very pointed. That's mostly a personal preference.
After a bit, I decided I liked the bag somewhere in the neighborhood of 12" wide by 9" tall. That's still large enough for most paper items I carry at events, but is just a bit more demure than the canvas bag. For comparison, here's a piece of paper at the size of the new bag laying over the canvas bag:
From my sketching/mentally-constructing process, I had decided to go with a single panel for the front, back and flap (one long piece), and a long strap that would also make up the sides of the bag. Playing around with paper some more, as well as drawing out what the flap should look like, I almost had my pattern:
I say "almost" because there was still math that needed to happen, plus a whole lot of willy-nilly, eye-bally adjusting (which happened throughout the rest of what I'm showing today). Particularly I needed to add in the depth of the base of the bag (which also needs to be accounted for at the top) and figure out how long that strap piece needed to be in total. Then seam allowances, of course.
Ideally, I would have liked that side/strap to be one whole cut piece, but I didn't have that length in my material. But when all is said and done, it will be treated like one piece.
|There are two of each of those side pieces, and two of the strap pieces.|
I had seen once, I don't remember where, that regular medieval sewing thread (as opposed to threads for decorative items, embroidery and weaving) was either natural, white, or black. I don't know if this is true, but it makes a lot of sense. So I'm going to sew this bag together using 60/2 black linen thread. I'll check out the Gutterman silk options at Joann's and see if I can find a close match to the crimson for the visible finish stitching I'll need to do, but I may opt to continue using the black. Or maybe white. Who knows.